Great Smoky Mountain Association National Park Calendar

Photographers, writers, nature lovers, actors, botanists, governors, senators, filmmakers and park rangers called on Wiley Oakley, shown here crouching at the center of a group of hikers, to guide them all over the Great Smoky Mountains. He stood 5-foot-3 inches and weighed about 120 pounds soaking wet, and he captured the giant spirit of the Smokies and shared it with anyone who cared to look. Also identified in the photo are Will Ramsey (left) and photographer Jim Thompson (third from right).

The Great Smoky Mountains Association’s 2020 wall calendar does more than mark the year to come.

The GSMA’s latest Great Smoky Mountains National Park calendar also is a look back in time through the lenses of gifted Smokies photographers from the pre- and early-park eras.

Featuring historic photos selected from park and regional archives, the 12-month calendar shares images taken by such noted photographers as Jim Thompson (1880-1975), Doris Ulmann (1884-1934), George Masa (1881-1933) and Carlos Campbell (1892-1978).

“Each year we present a special glimpse into the Smokies through our wall calendar, and normally we show some amazing modern photography of scenic vistas and colorful landscapes,” said Frances Figart, creative services director for GSMA. “I felt it would be a nice change of pace to highlight many of our historic images focused on both natural and cultural history.”

The 11-inch square, spiral-bound calendar presents Smoky Mountain residents, landmarks, flora and scenic landscapes in sepia-toned photographs. On the cover, a Thompson image depicts a band of circa-1920s Smoky Mountains hikers — Thompson included — loaded with hiking gear and accompanied by Wiley Oakley, legendary mountain guide. Details about the images are contained with background information and biographical text about the artists who photographed them.

Beyond tracking the days of the year, GSMA’s wall calendar also functions as a resource of natural history and the history of the national park. Each month highlights wildflowers in bloom, seasonal wildlife changes, park weather summaries, notable dates in park history, sunrise and sunset times and park special events.

Designed by Lisa Horstman, GSMA senior publications specialist, the 2020 wall calendar is a companion publication to “Pictures for a Park,” a pictorial tribute to the early photographers whose work was crucial to the birth of the Great Smoky Mountains National Park. These and other GSMA publications can be purchased at visitor centers within the park and GSMA visitor center stores in surrounding communities and are priced at $11.95, with a discount for GSMA members. They are also available online at GSMA’s web site, Smok iesInformation.org.

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