Commission supports renaming Clingmans Dome

By Mike Steely

Senior Writer

The Eastern Band of the Cherokee was successful in obtaining the support of the Knox County Commission to re-establish the original tribal name of “Kuwohi” to Clingmans Dome.

Clingmans Dome in the Great Smoky Mountains is the highest point in Tennessee and the tribe is petitioning the federal government to restore the title. For more than 150 years the peak has been known for former U.S. Congressman and Senator and Confederate General Thomas Clingman. Prior to that is was Kuwohi, meaning mulberry place, and was a hideout for Cherokee who resisted the Cherokee Removal.

The split vote saw two commissioners, John Schoonmaker and Carson Dailey, vote “No” with Schoonmaker noting the historic designation that is listed on the National Registry of Historic Places. He cited the cost of the name change for signs, maps, etc. and wondered why the state has yet to sign on to the change.

In other business, the commission’s brief regular meeting saw many items pass “on consent” with one vote including the contract with Pugh and Associates as the county’s outside auditor. Many of the consent items were discussed the previous week in the commission’s work session.

Thermocopy of Tennessee was approved to manage the sheriff’s department print services and Keep Knoxville Beautiful was contracted for litter, education and coordinated services funded by a state litter grant. A memorial bench at Beverly Park from DJ and Wendy Corcoran was approved.

A property on Magazine Road was sold to Thomas A. Williams for delinquent taxes and a contract with Helen Ross McNabb Center, Inc., was approved for services at the Behavioral Health Urgent Care Center.

A lease agreement with the Community and Senior Center of Corryton was postponed and appointments were made to various boards and commissions.

The lease of space in the TVA Tower East was approved to pass from Nexus Group, Inc. to Peace Communications LLC, which assumed the lease there.

In the zoning portion of the meeting, a request from DC Foundations Inc. to rezone a property at 6789 Oak Ridge Highway was postponed until next month. The company is requesting an office, medical and related services zoning change on a lot currently zoned for agricultural use. There were complaints that earthwork was already underway and some questions about existing permits to do so.