Friday, December 1, 2017

Tour of Historic Cades Cove

In early November, Mr. Handsome and I made the short drive over to the Smoky Mountains for a weekend getaway. We had met a like-minded couple at a conference a few weeks prior, and they had invited us to stay at their house.

The fall colors were at their peak, and the scenery was just incredible. We were also able to see the "smoke" (aka fog) that gives the Smokies their name.



On day one, we explored Cades Cove, a mountain farming community founded in the early 1800s. It is no longer inhabited, but you can drive along the 11-mile, one-way road and view more than 80 historical buildings and settlements. We enjoyed pulling off into the many parking areas and walking through the old buildings. (We were shocked that all of them were open to the public.)


At the entrance to Cades Cove, we drove past a beautiful, dusty-colored horse grazing in a vibrant, green meadow.


The scene was picture-perfect.


 Our first stop was the John Oliver Place. Built in the early 1820s, the cabin is the oldest in the Cove.


The cabin, which was owned by the Oliver family until the Great Smoky Mountains National Park was established in the 1930s, is a five minute walk from the road. It is a simple, one-room house with a loft.


Next, we stopped at the Primitive Baptist Church, established June 16th, 1827. (The current building was built in 1887 to replace a log structure.) We learned that the church closed during the Civil War because its members were Union sympathizers and felt threatened by the many Confederates who lived in Cades Cove.


There was a wedding that day, so we didn't go inside, but we walked through the cemetery and came across multiple tombstones of men who had fought in the Revolutionary War. 


We also found the tombstone of the man after whom Gregory's Bald, a mountain in the park, was named. A Union supporter, he was killed by Confederates three years into the Civil War.


We passed the Methodist Church, built in 1902 (although the congregation was established in the 1820s). Customarily, old churches with two doors would have been designed that way to seat men and women on separate sides. We chuckled as we read that this church did not carry that custom but that its congregation had borrowed the blueprint from another church that did. Apparently, sticking to the blueprint and cutting two front doors was easier than deviating and installing just one.


We stopped at a pull-off and hiked a short distance the Elijah Oliver Place, built by John Oliver's son after the Civil War. On the left side of the house, the family added a "stranger room." With a separate entrance, the room provided a place for overnight acquaintances to stay without jeopardizing the safety of Elijah's family.


Hope you enjoyed these photos. More coming soon.

27 comments:

  1. Anonymous12/01/2017

    Ellie, I enjoyed the pictures. The Assembly of God Church that I attend with my family as a youngster was a primitive church. Yes, it had two outhouses one for girls and one for the boys...Jane

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    1. Glad you enjoyed the photos, Jane! :)

      Ellie

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  2. I've been enjoying your mini history lessons from your travels for a while now. Thank you so much for sharing.

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    1. Anonymous12/02/2017

      Me too. They are really interesting, well written and I always enjoy the pictures. This one is no exception. Thank you Ellie! Eileen

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    2. I'm so glad to hear that, Maggie and Eileen! I'll keep 'em coming!

      Ellie

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    3. Anonymous12/04/2017

      I so enjoy your blog Ellie. Such a variety of topics and wonderfully done. Please keep blogging and please keep taking trips. I love every blog about all the places you and Mr H see. I am learning so much! Eileen

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  3. Sarah Liston12/02/2017

    Hi Ellie! My family and I visited Cades Cove and thoroughly enjoyed the trip!

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    1. Hi Sarah,

      Cades Cove was one of the most beautiful places I have ever visited. What time of year did you go?

      Ellie

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  4. Anonymous12/02/2017

    Hi Ellie, this is a little off topic, but I was hoping that you could help me. I meant to ask when you posted pictures when you guys went to the Canadian Rockies but didn't get a chance to. As a U.S citizen did you enter Canada with a passport, or did you get a passport card, or Nexus card, or just show your drivers licence to get through the boarder? I'm planning on going to Banff next summer with my family. Thanks for your response.

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    1. Hi there,

      So glad to hear that you're planning a trip to Banff! What month will you be going? Let me know if you have any questions as you plan your itinerary.

      You will not be able to enter Canada with only a drivers license. A passport book is valid for travel to all destinations by air, land, or sea. A passport card is only valid for international travel by land or sea to Canada, Mexico, the Caribbean, and Bermuda.

      You can find more info on passports/passport cards here: https://www.usa.gov/passport

      Ellie

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    2. Anonymous12/06/2017

      Ellie, thank you for your response. I guess we'll be purchasing passport cards since we will be traveling by car. We plan on hiking to waterfalls, kayaking the beautiful blue rivers and lakes, and sight seeing. What are your favorite destinations, hikes, dining in Banff, Jasper, or Kootenay National Parks?

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    3. Anonymous12/06/2017

      We plan on going in July.

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    4. July will be a great time to visit! We didn't visit Kootenay, but I have friends who live in the area and have said it is nice. We spent our time hitting all the highlights in Banff and Jasper, and we found it to be time well spent. You'll definitely want to see Lake Louise and Moraine Lake. They will be busy, but they are world-renowned and worth the crowds. (The view from the bolder pile at Moraine is often used as the iconic Rocky Mountain picture.) Johnston Canyon is near Banff Townsite and is an easy, paved hike (neat, but not as iconic as Louise and Moraine). Taking the gondola up to the top of the Continental Divide at Sunshine Village was a highlight for me. The views were out of this world. We drove over to Yoho National Park one day and hiked a portion of the Iceline Trail. It was snowy and rigorous but lots of fun, if you're looking for a hardcore hike that takes several hours and has really good views.

      If you choose to drive up the Icefields Parkway to Jasper, the Athabasca Glacier is a must-see. There are also lots of short stops along the way, if you have the time. In Jasper, there is great dining in the town and hikes nearby. My family and friends who know the area recommended Mt. Edith Cavell, but we were unable to work it in. If you're driving over to Edmonton and looking for a good hike before leaving the mountains, I recommend the Skyline Trail. It's as strenuous as the Iceline, but it should be warm at that time of year. The views were great!

      If you're driving out to Vancouver from Banff, the drive from Banff on Highway 1 is beautiful. My dad and I did that one summer when I was in middle school, and there was a lot to see. The Okanagan Valley is also very pretty--flatter land with lots of summer homes. We spent summer vacations there when I was very young.

      This post has links to all my posts about our trip to the Rockies: http://www.nashvillewife.com/2017/11/our-last-day-in-rockies.html

      Hope this helps! Let me know if you have any other questions. :)

      Ellie

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    5. Anonymous12/12/2017

      Ellie, thank you so much for taking the time to bless me with such wonderful suggestions and information. I look forward to our trip and will be looking into going to all of these beautiful destinations in the Canadian Rockies.

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  5. Anonymous12/02/2017

    Do you go away every weekend?

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    1. Nope, not at all. The vast majority of our weekends are spent at home.

      Ellie

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  6. So neat you got to visit! The John Oliver cabin belonged to my grandmother's family! The Oliver family still has their reunions at the little church. Beautiful place.

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    1. Wow! That's incredible! Wish I could sit down and talk to you about it. I'm sure your grandmother's family has lots of great stories about living in Cades Cove.

      Ellie

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  7. Anonymous12/03/2017

    Wow, I honestly don't know anyone that travels as much as you and your husband!

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    1. We enjoy exploring new places. :) But I think if I were to send you a list of all the days we traveled (mostly mini road trips) this year, it would be a lot less than it seems. The vast majority of our time is spent at home.

      Have a lovely day,
      Ellie

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  8. Anonymous12/04/2017

    Please take down or tell us how to block that "My Latest Videos" tab on the right that auto-launches a video. It is driving me nuts!!

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    1. Anonymous12/04/2017

      You can mute the sound.

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    2. Hi there,

      I haven't had other negative comments about the video widget, but I appreciate hearing your feedback.

      Have a wonderful weekend.
      Ellie

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  9. I can tell you two had a lovely time. I love the new video tab as I don't get over to YouTube website very often.

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  10. Anonymous12/07/2017

    We live in Iowa, but Ihave been to Cade's Cove four different times and each time was so special. The first time was shortly after my husband and I were married. The next time was when are children were 3 and 6. The third time, my children were older and we took my parents. And the last time was years ago with seminary class I was taking on rural ministry in Appalachia. Each time it was beautiful!!!

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    1. How neat that you have gone back multiple times through the years. Has it changed much?

      Ellie

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