Once a fertile hunting ground for the Cherokee Indians, the Cades Cove valley was settled by Europeans in the early 1800s when John Oliver and his wife established a homestead there. Now the most popular destination in the Great Smoky Mountains National Park, Cades Cove serves as an open-air museum with numerous well-maintained pioneer structures that offer a look at 19th-century Appalachian life.
The John Oliver Cabin, constructed in 1822-1823 by the Cove's original couple, still stands, as does the Elijah Oliver Place, a homestead built by their son in 1866. Other historic buildings of note along the 11-mile Cades Cove Loop Road include the Becky Cable House and neighboring John Cable Grist Mill, as well as the Dan Lawson Place and the Carter-Shields Cabin.
The Primitive Baptist Church, which was built in 1887, and the Cades Cove Methodist Church constructed in 1902, are charming locations for destination weddings in the Smoky Mountains.
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