No Hensley Tour on July 23
There will be no Hensley tours offered on Wednesday, July 23 due to road maintenance associated with recent storms. Shillallah Creek road will remain open for hikers. Hikers should excercise caution when hiking. For more information call (606) 246-1075
Shuttle to Hensley Settlement
There will be no shuttle or tour to Hensley Settlement on August 10, 2014. Tours on other days will continue to be offered as scheduled. For questions and more information please call the park visitor center at (606) 248-2817, extension 1075.
Back the Bears!
Support the park's "Back the Bears" campaign and help keep our bears wild and safe! More »
Cave Tour Alert!
White Nose Syndrome is a disease that is killing bats in great numbers and has been found in park caves. While visiting Gap Cave please do not wear or bring anything that has been in other caves. Skylight Cave is currently closed.
Labor Day Concert to Commemorate Labors of our Nation During the Civil War
Contact: Carol Borneman, (606) 248-2817
"Privates By Choice" to Perform at Cumberland Gap
The origin of Labor Day may rarely be thought of as much more than a welcome respite for the working masses. Likewise, our personal celebrations on Labor Day probably do not reflect the effect work has had upon our whole history as a nation.
On Saturday, August 31st, 2013 at 8:00 p.m. Cumberland Gap National Historical Park will host the band “Privates by Choice” as they perform original musical scores that will highlight the labors of our nation during the Civil War. To commemorate the 150thanniversary of the war, the group will perform a unique selection of newly composed acoustic/folk songs during this free concert at the Wilderness Road Campground Amphitheater.
Instruments featured will be guitar, mandolin, violin, hammered dulcimer, cello, mountain dulcimer, bass and some light percussion in various combinations. Within the crying of the violin and the steady drumbeat of the dulcimer, one will be able to hear the groans of soldiers as they scuffled up these mountains.
Ranger Pam Eddy shares “The song entitled ‘Biscuits of Manassas’ literally sends a shiver down my spine every time I listen to it! I was excited to hear the tune recently played on the radio and am thrilled to invite everyone from the region to see this fabulous group in person over Labor Day weekend!” The ensemble's writers and musicians all have Kentucky roots, except for one Missouri boy. The band members are well-seasoned musicians with credits and recordings gracing many public radio station programs.
The concert will offer an interesting opportunity for reflection on the connections between Labor Day and the Civil War. In the 19thcentury, our nation was experiencing an age of tremendous growth. However, a great fundamental economic difference was emerging between the country’s northern and southern regions. In the north, labor focused essentially around manufacturing and industry and small scale farms. For the south, the bulk of the economy rested upon a system of large-scale farming dependent on slave labor to grow major crops such as cotton and tobacco.
Among other things, these fundamental differences in the types of labor performed in separate regions of America would eventually lead to Civil War. Likewise, the preservation of the nation would rest upon the efforts of American men, women and children during the war. Our nation owes our very existence to work - as Americans have toiled in sweat and persevered in earnest to sustain America’s liberty and unification throughout the years.
The Wilderness Road Campground is located in Virginia, two miles east of the Hwy 25E and Hwy 58 intersection. Visitors should proceed to the amphitheater, located at the end of loop C where parking is available. In case of rain, the program will be held at the national park visitor center, located on Hwy 25E, just south of Middlesboro, KY. This program is being co-hosted by the Friends of Cumberland Gap and park partner Eastern National.
For more information about Cumberland Gap National Historical Park, please call (606) 248-2817 or visit www.nps.gov/cuga.. For more info on the Friends of Cumberland Gap National Historical Park and how to become involved, please visit www.friendsofcumberlandgap.org
Did You Know?
Between 1775 and 1810 some 300,000 settlers crossed Cumberland Gap and began settling the land west of the Appalachians. These brave pioneers were following dreams of prosperity in the wilderness of Kentucky.