Watauga State Park (former) – Bristol TN

Project type: Parks and Recreation
Quality of Information:
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Construction for Watauga State Park began in 1939 with the CCC arrival to survey, clear land, and begin dam construction and other facilities (Van West, 2001). Kingsport Times (Sept. 18, 1939) indicated the name Watauga was rejected due to so many nearby projects with the name Watauga, and the park was to be named Kettlefoot State Park, but other records indicating a name change were not located. The CCC camp was expected to be completed by October, 1939, and landscape architects were developing park designs. Watauga State Park was developed as one of four Recreation Demonstration Areas for Tennessee (Jones & Stager, 1986). By 1941, work on the park had stopped, due to “lack of men and material” and it was suspended in 1942 due to the end of the CCC program. The Division of State Parks concluded by 1945 that the area was not suitable for a state park and the property was deeded to the state. It is currently known as Steele Creek Municipal Park. There are low stone walls of the type constructed by the CCC that are older than any other construction in the area, although whether built by the CCC is not documented. The CCC camp was closed prior to completion of construction.

Source notes

Ives, R., & Zuber, L. J. (1940). Zoning for Park Protection: Eight Tennessee Counties Provide for Public Planning. The Regional Review, IV(4 & 5). Retrieved June 19, 2016 from https://www.nps.gov/

Jones, J. B., & Stager, C. (1986). State parks in Tennessee built by the CCC and WPA between 1934-1942. National Register of Historic Places Inventory Nomination Form. United States Department of the Interior. National Park Service.

Name selected for county park. (September 18, 1939). Kingsport Times, p. 3.
$65,000 allotted to Watauga Park. (February 9, 1941). Kingsport Times, p. 1.

Work on new state park nears standstill. (October 9, 1941). Kingsport Times, p. 8.

Van West, C. (2001). Tennessee's New Deal Landscapes: A Guidebook. Knoxville: University of Tennessee Press.

Project originally submitted by Susan Allen on June 23, 2016.

We welcome contributions of additional information on any New Deal project site.


Location Info

4 Little Lane
Bristol, TN 37620

Coordinates: 36.5741328, -82.2355068

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