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Smokies US park seeks help identifying historic home sites

June 2, 2022 GMT

GATLINBURG, Tenn. (AP) — Great Smoky Mountains National Park is seeking help identifying sites of historic homes within its boundaries.

According to a park news release, Volunteer-In-Park Frank March estimates the park has more than 2,400 former homesites, with more than 70% identified.

The park’s Records Collection Center has documents associated with the purchase of approximately 1,200 farms between 1920 and 1940 to create the park. However, officials say European habitation in the park dates back to the 1790s and many of the homesites predating the 20th century are not documented.

The park is asking people to bring in photos of old homesites, hand drawn maps or other identifying documents. Park officials will discuss the initiative Saturday at Blount County Library in Maryville, Tennessee.