A labor of love, this tells the story of the Great Smoky Mountains, from their birth to the present. Situated in Tennessee and North Carolina, the Great Smokies are a member of the Appalachian Range which stretches from Quebec to Alabama. They're called the Smokies because of their permanent bluish haze, and they are rainy. Today they are entirely enclosed in the Great Smoky Mountains National Park and feature a 500-mile parkway which the author rightly calls a gallery of masterpieces. He tells of the roles the mountains played with the early Cherokee tribes, in the Revolutionary War, the Civil War, and of their first discovery by a white man. Especially interesting are the chapters on the black bear, its habits and its being hunted, and on the wild boar, which was introduced to the Smokies early this century. Wild boar has sinee become a vast nuisance. The politics of starting up the National Park and of the Rockefeller contributions are elaborated, as well as the status of today's revenuers, moonshiners and the influx of social workers. (The entire process for distilling your own white lightning is detailed.) This excellent book successfully stirs the reader to see the Smokies for himself, and it includes a camping and hiking guide.