Cades Cove Preservation Association
A protective canopy has emerged in the Great Smoky Mountains National Park (GSMNP), with roots deeply embedded in the Cades Cove pioneer community. The Cades Cove Preservation Association (CCPA) was established in January 2001 with the sole purpose of preserving the rich heritage of those families previously living in the Cades Cove community.
Pioneer settlers migrated into the area now known as Cades Cove in the early 1820s. Survival for these families, led by the Olivers and Jobes, was tenuous at best. But they did succeed, showing the way for the hundreds of additional families finding homes in this beautiful cove. These families built homes, churches and schools; raised families and crops; worshipped; laughed; loved; fought; and, too often, buried loved ones in isolated family and in church cemeteries. Their homes and families were displaced through formation of the GSMNP, a little over 100 years after the initial Cades Cove residence was established. To a large extent, descendants of these families have joined with other individuals and organizations in an expanded, surrogate Cades Cove Community to “Preserve the Heritage”.
Our visible, residual Cades Cove community enjoyed today by over two million visitors annually is provided through the stewardship of the GSMNP. Without those efforts, very little of this precious legacy would have survived. Unfortunately, Cades Cove is being “loved to death”. New unwanted legacies appear daily as a result of traffic, use, graffiti and vandalism. The effects of foot traffic and weather have eroded cemeteries and damaged the remaining structures. Due to constrained staff and funding, the GSMNP is unable to counter these factors without external support. The CCPA was created to share Cades Cove maintenance and preservation objectives, in partnership with the GSMNP. Projects which have been completed include remediation of six cemeteries in Cades Cove. In addition, CCPA staff clean the three remaining churches in Cades Cove weekly.
Correlated with the decay and erosion of Cades Cove structures and cemeteries, is the erosion of family histories, largely due to the passage of the last generation of Cades Cove residents. There are a diminishing number of those family members who left Cades Cove as children, but still cling to precious memories of home sites, relationships and events. The CCPA is committed to preservation of these family histories. It is a responsibility born of the legacy entrusted to the CCPA membership. Much information and records have already been collected by the CCPA. The establishment of a Cades Cove records archive and museum of representative artifacts has been an objective of the CCPA. This is now planned at the Cades Cove Museum located at the Thompson-Brown house and at the Alnwick Community Center in Maryville and will be available for use by descendants, researchers and the general public.
The CCPA is a nonprofit organization registered in Tennessee.
Membership is available to all interested individuals and organizations. Contributions of encouragement, ideas, effort, influence and funding are appreciated. Oversight is provided by a Board of Directors. Although bylaws require elected officers to be directly descended from former residents, the CCPA is critically dependent on the participation of all members and supporting organizations. The CCPA invites all individuals and organizations who share our objectives to establish residency in our surrogate Cades Cove community. By Dave. Post
We can “Preserve the Heritage” TOGETHER. To Join Click Here
We invite you to visit the Cades Cove Museum
before your next trip to Cades Cove.