Pride of Tennessee,
The Prices have a wondrous place, it’s where I want to
Gigglemoor, the Pride of Tennessee,
The Prices host a wondrous place, it’s where I want to be…
“What is Gigglemoor?” you might ask. It is just what it
sounds like… with just a play on the spelling. It is truly
a wondrous place where you can moor a boat, and giggle more. It is
the home of dear friends where I vacationed in Vonore, Tennessee.
A WONDROUS PLACE IN VONORE, TENNESSEE
should I read about Vonore if I don’t have an invitation to vacation at
Gigglemoor?” you might ask. Because Vonore, and the adjacent
area, is a wondrous place to visit if you are looking for a relaxing,
down-home, casual, beautiful, inexpensive, historic, lake vacation.
“Where in the world is Vonore, Tennessee?” you might
ask. Vonore is a tiny town in Eastern Tennessee, located
at the confluence of the Little Tennessee River and the Tellico
River. Vonore (population approximately 2000) has a total area
of approximately 12 square miles of which approximately 9 square miles
is land and 3 square miles is water.
With 15,560 acres of surface and 357 miles of shoreline, Tellico Lake (at
the foot of the Great Smoky Mountains) is a great place for relaxing
and unwinding. Away from the hustle and bustle of the city,
the Tellico Lake area offers Mother Nature’s mountains soaring
beneath blue skies, recreation on placid waters, and tons of
information for American History buffs.
AND RESTORE AT TELLICO LAKE…A PEACEFUL RETREAT IN VONORE, TENNESSE
The 1200-acre Fort Loudoun State Park is the location of one of
the earliest British fortifications on the western frontier. Today
the fort, built in 1756, and the 1794 Tellico Blockhouse
overlook TVA’s (Tennessee Valley Authority) Tellico Reservoir and the
Appalachian Mountains. The colonial Fort Loudoun was
reconstructed during the Great Depression and was designated
a National Historic Landmark in 1965.
Nearby were the principal towns of the Cherokee Nation including Tenase…namesake
of the state of Tennessee, and Tuskegee…birthplace of the Cherokee
genius Sequoyah who is commemorated in the Sequoyah Birthplace Museum.
Sequoyah was born in 1776 in a log cabin in the former Cherokee village of
Tuskeegee, which was within one-half mile from the Museum’s
location. In 1986, the Eastern Band of Cherokee opened the
Museum as a memorial to that illiterate man who perfected a system for
reading and writing a language.
Sequoyah never learned the English alphabet but he reduced the thousands
of Cherokee thoughts to 85 symbols representing sounds. He
made a game of this new writing system. In 1821,
after 12 years of working on the new language, he introduced his syllabary
to the Cherokee people. Within a few months, thousands of
Cherokees became literate.
By 1825, much of the Bible and numerous hymns had been translated into
Cherokee. In 1928, the first national bi-lingual
newspaper, the Cherokee Phoenix, was published. In recognition of his
contributions, the Cherokee nation awarded Sequoyah a silver medal struck
in his honor, and a lifetime literary pension.
In Townsend, (one of three gateways to the Great Smoky Mountains
National Park) Cades Cove is located in an
isolated valley in the Tennessee section of the park. The
valley was home to numerous settlers before the formation of the
national park. Today Cades Cove, the single most popular destination
for visitors to the Great Smoky Mountains National Park, attracts more
than two million visitors a year because of its well preserved
homesteads, scenic mountain views, and abundant display of wildlife.
You can drive the 11-mile winding, paved loop of Cades Cove in your own
car or take a guided Heritage Tour in an Educational Touring Vehicle that
operates from the Great Smoky Mountains Heritage Center.
OUT TO RELAX ON THE PORCH OF THE HERITAGE CENTER
Great Smoky Mountains Heritage Center celebrates the cultural heritage of
East Tennessee and the Great Smoky Mountains region. Eleven friends
and I opted for The Cades Cove Heritage Tour that offered a unique
experience that was a glimpse into East Tennessee’s history.
Among the structures we visited in the Cades Cove Historic
District (listed on the National Register of Historic
Places) were the following:
The John Oliver Cabin was constructed circa 1822-1823 by
the Cove’s first permanent European settlers. It has been
reported that the Olivers spent the winter of 1818-1819 in
an abandoned Cherokee hut, and built a crude structure the following
year. The Oliver Cabin was built as a replacement for this first
crude structure, which was located a few meters behind the cabin.
The Primitive Baptist Church was constructed in 1887. The church
was organized as the Cades Cove Baptist Church in 1827, and renamed
“Primitive Baptist” after the Anti-missions Split in
1841. The Olivers are buried in its cemetery.
CADES COVE PRIMITIVE BAPTIST CHURCH (CIRCA 1887)
The Tipton Place was built in the 1880s by the descendants
of Revolutionary War veteran William “Fighting Billy”
Tipton. The paneling on the house was a later addition. Along with
the cabin, the homestead includes a carriage house, a smokehouse, a
woodshed, and the oft-photographed double-cantilever barn.
The John Cable Grist Mill was constructed in 1868. John P. Cable
(1819–1891), a nephew of Peter Cable, had to construct a series of
elaborate diversions along Mill Creek and Forge Creek to get enough
water power for the mill’s characteristic overshot wheel.
The Becky Cable House was constructed in 1879. This building,
adjacent to the Cable Mill, was initially used by Leason Gregg as
a general store. In 1887, he sold it to John Cable’s spinster
daughter, Rebecca Cable (1844–1940). A Cable family tradition says that
Rebecca never forgave her father and refused to marry after her
father broke off one of her childhood romances.
OUT FOR A PICNIC LUNCH ON THE CADES COVE HERITAGE TOUR
Various buildings have been moved from elsewhere in the cove and placed
near the Cable mill, including a barn, a carriage house, a chicken coop, a
molasses still, a sorghum press, and a replica of a blacksmith shop.
leave Cades Cove without checking our their gift shop where you can
purchase some Smokies’ tastes such as Sorghum Molasses, Pumpkin
butter, and Hot Chow Chow. Then, too, you might want to
purchase the books with such intriguing titles as “Corn from a
Jar: Moonshining in the Great Smoky Mountains” or “Call Me Hillbilly”.
FRIEND BILLY, GIGGLEMOOR’S GRACIOUS HOST, SAYS “CALL ME
Sequoyah Marina & Resort is one of the premier destinations in the
region! Located at the edge of Lake Tellico’s clean, blue waters, the
new lakefront cabins offer the privacy of wooded seclusion with
unobstructed lake and mountain views and direct water
access. Cabins that sleep from 6 to 8 people are priced from
$149 per night to $269 per night depending on the time of week and
LAKEFRONT CABINS AT SEQUOYAH MARINA & RESORT
The River Rock Bar & Grill, perched on a floating dock at the Sequoyah
Marina & Resort on the corner of Lake Tellico and the Little Tennessee
River, is an inviting down-home destination. Hot dogs,
served with every imaginable condiment, were the favorite order of the day
with our group. And each one looked better than the next.
My time in Eastern Tennessee was an eye-opener for this big city
gal. I reinforced one of life’s best lessons, gleaned from
a few words beneath a Smoky bear in the Cades Cove gift shop. The
words went like this:
large. Climb beyond your limitations. When life gets
hairy, grin and bear it. Eat well. Live with the season. Take a good, long
nap. Look after your honey!”
Right on, Smoky. I’ll keep on doing that!!!!!
JANET STEINBERG is an award-winning Travel Writer/Editor and a Travel
Consultant with THE TRAVEL AUTHORITY in Mariemont, Ohio.