Cumberland Gap National Historical Park

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Cumberland Gap National Historic Park
Photo credit: 
Darcy Kiefel

In 1775, frontiersman Daniel Boone widened a Native American path through a natural break in the central Appalachian Mountains known as Cumberland Gap. As many as 300,000 settlers journeyed westward through the gap to the new frontiers of Kentucky and the Ohio River Valley. Cumberland Gap National Historical Park interprets this critical piece of American history while protecting 20,500 acres of lush Appalachian wildlands. One popular attraction is Pinnacle Overlook, which offers the best view of the Cumberland Gap. This view was threatened by potential development around 150-acre Fern Lake, which is the only source of drinking water for nearby Middlesboro, Kentucky. In 2009, The Trust for Public Land helped protect 1,800 acres of the 4,500-acre Fern Lake watershed as an addition to the park. Our efforts to protect the watershed continue.

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Since 1972, The Trust for Public Land has protected more than 3 million acres and completed more than 5,200 park and conservation projects.