Historic Markers Across Tennessee

Indian Gap Road

Marker ID:  
Location: Clingmans Dome Road, Gatlinburg, TN
County: Sevier
Coordinates: N 35° 36.566    W 083° 26.796
  35.60943333    -83.4466
Waymark: None


Indian Gap Road

Traffic of all sorts once passed through here—Indians, explorers, Confederate soldiers, farmers with livestock herds, merchants, and families traveling for varied reasons. This is Indian Gap. The road trace that descends the hill in front of you is a remnant of the Indian Gap Road, at one time the major north-south route through the Great Smoky Mountains.

For centuries this had been an Indian trail, but in the 1830s it was widened as a toll road, with charges for pedestrians, riders, vehicles, and livestock. The new road was steep, rocky, rutted, and only about five feet wide. Ice and fallen trees often obstructed the way. But until the Newfound Gap Road opened in the 1930s, travelers had no better way to cross the mountains. To avoid the arduous crossing, many opted for lengthy routes around.

National Park Service, Department of the Interior.