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Townsend TN

Townsend Tennessee
“Peaceful Side of the Smokies”

Town of Townsend TN

The city of Townsend is located in Blount County and is one of the “Gateways to the Great Smoky Mountains National Park. Townsend is also known as the “Peaceful Side of the Smokies” and the “Gateway to Cades Cove”.

Townsend is in the center of all the tourism from Gatlinburg and Pigeon Forge and the Great Smoky National Park. Townsend features breathtaking views, lodging, shopping, food and restaurants, and entertainment.

The City of Townsend is quiet with a few restaurants, motels, outdoor shops and a world-renowned annual horse show.

History of Townsend TN

Indians were the first inhabitants of the Tuckaleechee Cove on the Little River and had built a fortified village. The Cherokee arrived in the area around the 1600s and built villages along the Little River. Tuckaleechee means, “peaceful valley” in Cherokee. Townsend divided into a fork in the road. One way led to the Great Indian Warpath and the other branch led heading South to North Carolina.

In the 1880s the lumber industry boomed Townsend. The Ohio Valley and the Mississippi Delta lumber was exhausted for the demand for wood to fuel steamboats. Logging companies began looking for other resources in the mountain regions.

In the 1900s Colonel W.B Townsend of Pennsylvania purchased 86,000 acres of land along the Little River from Tuckaleechee Cove to Clingmans Dome in the Great Smoky Mountains. The following year the Little River Lumber Company was formed.

The community was developed around the lumber mill and was named after the Colonel Townsend. The Little River Railroad was constructed connecting the lumber mill to Walland and Elkmont. A single chestnut on his land could produce 18,000 planks of wood.

By the time the Great Smoky Mountains National park was formed in the 1930s, two -thirds of the area forests had been cut down. Colonel Townsend sold 76,000 acres of the Little River Lumber Trust in 1926 which would become the Great Smoky Mountains National Park.

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