Restoration and Preservation
Today, National Park Service staff work to keep the buildings preserved. This restoration and preservation keeps the stories of the settlement and its families alive.
In 1964, Cumberland Gap National Historical Park was chosen as one of the sites for a Job Corps Conservation Center as outlined in President Lyndon Johnson's War on Poverty. The center operated here from 1965 until 1969 and one of their primary goals was the rehabilitation of Hensley Settlement. The youth worked closely with former Hensley resident Jess Gibbons for four years, but by the time the center was disbanded only two structures were completely restored, so the job fell to park staff to restore the rest over the next few years.
Life is calmer at Hensley Settlement today, with daily guided tours during the warmer months and occasional events. Keeping the structures in good repair is one of the missions of the park facility management team, who are always brushing up on their skills to do the work in as authentic a manner as possible.
Last updated: June 17, 2015