Great Smoky Mountain National Park, The Naming of the Park

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A Little History: Or How the Smoky Mountains
Became a National Park

Photographs courtesy of the Great Smoky Mountains National Park Service

What's in a Name: Great Smoky (Smokey, Smokie) Mountains National Park

How did the Great Smoky Mountains National Park get its name? The Smokies are named for the blue mist that always seems Dedication by President Franklin D. Rooseveltto hover around the peaks and valleys. The Cherokee called them shaconage, (shah-con-ah-jey) or "place of the blue smoke"..

As for the spelling, just as many folks call them "smokey" as do those who call them "smoky". The dictionary says both are acceptable. Residents of Tennessee typically use the official spelling of Smoky Mountains whereas North Carolina residents tend to use Smokey Mountains. But whether you say Smokies, Smokeys, or Smokys doesn't really matter. They all conjure up the same vision that millions of visitors each year take with them after visiting the Park. As for the "Great" in Great Smokey Mountains, you will have to visit the Smokies to fully understand that part of the name.

 

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