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What Goes into a Name: Clingman’s Dome

A photo near the top of Clingmans Dome.

Highpointers have the opportunity to encounter all sorts of interestingly named places in their quest to reach the highest point of every state. Some names, such as Hawkeye Point and Hoosier Hill, make it easy for folks to know the state to which these points belong.  Other names, such as Cheaha, point more to the history of places, and there is no shortage of highpoints named after people.

Once such highpoint is Clingmans Dome in Tennessee. What is interesting is how much Thomas L. Clingman’s life is tied to neighboring North Carolina and Elisha Mitchell, the man for whom the highest point east of the Mississippi River is named. 

Michael Hardy at the Avery Journal dove into the topic of Clingman and his ties to the area recently in an article worth the read

As time goes on, there will undoubtedly be continued pushes to rename certain highpoints. This makes it all the more important to learn the history behind the name to see if it really does best reflect the area.

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