Little River Road in the 1920s

Little River Road in the 1920s © Knox County Public Library

This was just a fun assignment. I had the photo above, taken by Jim Thompson sometime in the 1920s or 1930s along Little River Road in the Smoky Mountains, between Townsend and Metcalf Bottoms. So I set out one day last week to see if I could find the exact location, and see what it looks like today, if it had changed much.

Below is what I found. The rock overhang looks the same after 80 or 90 years.  Still has those cracks up high. It looks like there might be some fill along the river to widen the road. But really just about the same.

Little River Road in 2011

Little River Road in 2011 © William Britten use with permission only

Top photo used with permission of C.M. McClung Historical Collection, Knox County Public Library

Related Stories


  1. frank umbdenstock

    hey there mr britton, just wanted to tell you how much the pix of the littler river road impressed me. i love the old time pix tons. thank you for posting it. it gives me that smokies fix i need. i am from festsu, mo, so i do not get to the mtns. much any more.

    thank you again.


    frank umbdenstock (um-den-stock)

  2. Angie Coffey

    Love your work Mr. Britten,
    I love the mtns. And spend as much time as I can up there. Is that Davey Crokett rock?, I have always heard folks refer to it that way. I could be wrong. :). I plan to stop by your studio first chance I get, however, now that the weather is getting warm, I only come up there whenever I have out of town visitors. Normally I only come in cold weather to hike and backpack!

Submit a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *


error: Content is protected !!