Great Smoky Mountains National Park straddles the ridgeline of the Great Smoky Mountains, the lower section in latitude of the Blue Ridge Mountains, which divides the larger Appalachian Mountain chain. The border between Tennessee and North Carolina runs northeast to southwest through the centerline of the park. Plants and animals common in the country's Northeast have found suitable ecological niches in the park's higher elevations, while southern species find homes in the balmier lower reaches.
The park was chartered by the U.S. Congress in 1934 and officially dedicated by President Franklin D. Roosevelt in 1940. It encompasses 814 square miles (2,108 km²), making it one of the largest protected areas in the eastern U.S.It was the first national park whose land was paid for in part with federal funds; previous parks were funded wholly with state money or private funds. It is the most visited national park in the U.S., and on its route from Maine to Georgia, the Appalachian Trail also passes through the center of the park.
NEON data (relocatable terrestrial) from this site.