Tuesday, January 29, 2013
The Walnut Street Bridge is a Six-span through truss bridge over the Tennessee River on Walnut Street. It opened in 1891 and is a length of 2,370 ft. The bridge was closed to auto traffic in 1978, sat in disrepair for about a decade and then was converted into one of the world's longest pedestrian bridges. Now, the bridge is on the National Register of Historic Places.
There is not one place you can go to find every historical marker in Tennessee. Part of the reason for this is there are different organizations which supply these markers, such as state and local historical commissions. While some of these organizations have a guide, it can be tough to merge them all together in one collection. My goal is to do just that. Now, it is quite an ambitious goal, and it may never be possible to get to every single one in the state, or even really know how many even actually exist. On this page, I have taken all of my Tennessee Historical Marker photos (over 1000 and counting) and organized them into several galleries, sorted by geographic regions across the state. Also whenever possible, I provide the marker's location in the description, such as the road or highway it is located on.
Go to the Historical Markers of Tennessee page
Monday, January 28, 2013
Located on the bank of the Toccoa River by the old bridge in McCaysville, GA is this memorial to the seven astronauts who died in the Space Shuttle Challenger disaster.
The Challenger disaster is one of the most common "Everyone remembers where they were when they found out" moments. I was in the 2nd grade and when we got out of PE class, our teacher told us about it. My older brother was a huge NASA fan and when I got home from school, we watched the live news coverage for a good part of the afternoon.
This is the first time I have found such a memorial. I can't find any particular connection between McCaysville and the disaster (such as one of the astronauts being born or living here.)
Sunday, January 27, 2013
Craighead Caverns is an extensive cave system located in Sweetwater, Tennessee. It is best known for containing the United States' largest and the world's second largest non-subglacial underground lake, The Lost Sea. In addition to the lake, the caverns contain an abundance of crystal clusters called anthodites, stalactites, stalagmites and a waterfall.
Decades ago, before the sea at the bottom of the cave was found, there was a bar inside the cave (or Cavern Tavern), with multiple moonshine stills. One of the problems with this is the atmospheric conditions inside a cave counteract the effects of drunkedness and bar patrons would drink more than their usual limit. The lack of sobriety wouldn't be noticed until attempting to climb all of the stairs out of the cave. As our tour guide put it: The higher you get - The higher you get.
Saturday, January 26, 2013
The Factory at Franklin has turned into a commercial success so a few years ago, investors decided to turn the historic but abandoned Lebanon Woolen Mills into an adaptive reuse shopping center with retail stores, dining, office space and meeting facilities.
Friday, January 25, 2013
Construction of this courthouse began in 1928 in the Linden town square after the previous courthouse burned down. It cost $47,000 to build.
The courthouse is three stories with a full basement and has a classically-inspired design. The exterior is made of brick and detailed stone with elaborate detail to the stone work around the entrance. Along the top two stories stone quions are built at the corners on the walls as paired pilasters which forms a two story giant order capped by a full emblature.
Thursday, January 24, 2013
When this theater opened in 1948, its 1350 seats made it the fourth largest in the state of Alabama. Today, the theater is owned by the Zodiac Players. For the full history:
Wednesday, January 23, 2013
A Quacking Good Place
Ducktown is a small town in Polk County, TN, in the southeast corner of the state. This sign is seen where highway TN68 meets Main st. It's also the only reference I found to the city's waterfowl namesake.
Tuesday, January 22, 2013
For many years, Nashville had a Children's Museum on Second Ave. S. At the time, they had a large model train display which involved 1:48 O-scale trains rumbling around scaled replicas of local landmarks, such as Union Station, the L&C Tower and Woodmont Christian Church.
The Children's museum was relocated in 1974 to Fort Negley hill where it became the Cumberland Science Museum (and is now the Adventure Science Center). The model trains were not a part of the relocation and are now part of the Tennessee Central Railway Museum. These O Gauge buildings were built to scale using light wood, paper, cardboard, and glue by members of the Nashville Association of Model Engineers around 1955.
Monday, January 21, 2013
If you've been to Rock City before, but prior to 2012, there's a good chance you've never seen this before. As part of Rock City's 80th Anniversary celebration in 2012, they made the former sight accessible to the public again. I had heard of it before this year, but only from vintage post cards.
In the early years of the park, this was seen along the Enchanted Trail. However, when they opened Fairyland Cavern the route needed to be changed. Now, at the spot where the old trail used to go, visitors are encouraged to watch their step and travel the short distance up the uneven path and see it again.
It is what it is - a large stone that resembles a face, and it must be an unpleasant face since they called it a witch and not a fairy or a princess. For good measure, that pipe was added to the witch's mouth. More recently, the support beams have been added to hold up the stone pipe. As it turns out, now that I know where it's located, it can be seen from the more modern alignment of the trail and you can see it from the other side. But, since it doesn't resemble a stone witch from that side, nothing told you to look at it.
On my website, I have created a gallery entitled "A Tour of Rock City" where I not only have tried to find all of the gnomes, but all the other wondrous scenes at the beloved tourist attraction.
Sunday, January 20, 2013
Located in a National Historic District near the center of Pulaski, TN, the museum stands almost on the spot where the "Boy Hero of the Confederacy" was executed on November 27, 1863. Captured behind enemy lines with damaging information in his possession, Davis faced death by hanging rather than betray his source. The museum contains Civil War memorabilia as well as leg irons worn by young Sam Davis. The Museum is maintained by the Giles County Historical Society by Appointment Only. The actual spot of the execution is marked with a simple stone marker.
The day before I found this museum, which is tucked away in a residential neighborhood, I found a post card of this place in an antique store in the town of Cowan.
Saturday, January 19, 2013
Port Royal is a Tennessee state park, mostly in Montgomery County remembering many of the states earliest settlers who lived here and various forms of transportation through the area.
For many years, the main remaining sight here was an old wooden covered bridge. Built in 1903, the original alignment of Port Royal Road crossed the Red River here. The bridge was in use until 1955 when a more modern bridge was built.
Then, in 1972 the bridge partially collapsed. Then, it was rebuilt in 1977. Next in 1998, a tornado destroyed most of the bridge and only a segment of it remained. I don't know if the huge May 2010 flood collapsed the rest of it or if it happened before then, but the flood did enough damage in the area that it would have. (This photo was taken about a month after that.)
Older photos can be seen here:
Friday, January 18, 2013
Thursday, January 17, 2013
This species of Macaw, is a large blue (top parts) and yellow (under parts) South American parrot, a member of the large group of Neotropical parrots known as macaws. It inhabits forest and woodland of tropical South America. They are popular in aviculture because of their striking color, ability to talk, ready availability in the marketplace, and close bonding to humans.
Wednesday, January 16, 2013
In 2009, a construction project along US31 about 2 miles south of the middle of Franklin unearthed human bone fragments in an area that was part of the Franklin National Battlefield. Forensic anthropologists determined that these were the remains of a Civil War soldier. Also found were six Union tunic buttons and a Minié ball, although it was impossible to verify whether it was a Union or Confederate soldier. Accordingly, he was designated an Unknown War Soldier, an American who had died for his country.
On Oct. 10, 2009, the community honored this soldier with a period military funeral at St. Paul's Episcopal Church. After the service, a horse-drawn caisson and honor guard carried the coffin here at Rest Haven Cemetery. Several thousand spectators and national media were in attendence, as scores of reenactors conducted a burial, and upon the grave they poured soil from the 18 states represented at the Battle of Franklin. Also present were two actual sons and a daughter of Civil War veterans.
Marking the grave are original column sections from the Tennessee State Capitol from 1856, which now stand in remembrance of all unknown soldiers of the American Civil War.
Tuesday, January 15, 2013
This is one of a series of small murals painted on the side of a building in the middle of Columbia, TN, just a block north of the town square. These murals were painted by local artist Bonnie Callewaert.
I had never heard of this company or Slackwater Navigation in general. The company operated along the Duck River between Columbia and Centerville in the 1840s.
Monday, January 14, 2013
Seen early in the morning in downtown Memphis when there was some morning fog. The double arch bridge opened in 1973 to connect Tennessee and Arkansas via Interstate 40 over the Mississippi River.
Sunday, January 13, 2013
This 1877 house served as office and quarters for the cemetery keeper until 1931. The design of the building is Second Empire, which is characterized by gables and a roof consisting of two slopes on all sides.
The look of the house is the same as it was in 1877 except for the addition of a kitchen and porch in 1836. Today it serves as park staff quarters. The building is listed on the National Register of Historic Places.
Saturday, January 12, 2013
This lovely Victorian Home is located along the main road through Trenton (US45W). I'd tell you all about it, but it looks like the home's owner's have a blog where they have chronicled their journey through remodeling the home.
Friday, January 11, 2013
Thursday, January 10, 2013
Wednesday, January 9, 2013
Here is a very faded advertising barn seen along US 64 in southwest Tennessee. The letters are very faded, but is looks like the top line is SAVE MONEY, the middle line is RELIABLE and at bottom is FURNITURE CO. If you stay on US64, it will take you into Somerville where according to google, there is or was a Reliable Furniture store. The barn is near the small community of Laconia.
Tuesday, January 8, 2013
When travelling the Natchez Trace Parkway through Lewis County, TN, there is a small parking area for a small scenic stop known simply as Fall Hollow.
From the parking lot, it's a 100 foot walk along a paved sidewalk to a wooden observation deck. From here, you can see the upper half of the Fall Hollow Waterfall, where you can see the water tumble about 30 feet. There is a second stream right next to it that tumbles just as far and they meet just a few feet below. [Side note: To get the view in this picture, I walked around the area below the observation deck. This is not recommended unless you are very cautious.]
The official paved trail stops here, but in another 5 minutes of steep hiking, there is much more to see. As you leave the overlook, and walk along the top, unless it's dry season you'll see another 30 foot waterfall of side drainage. From here you can make a steep decline to the area below and if you make a left, you get to a small bridge crossing the tiny trickle and look up at this smaller falls.
Still at the base but off in the other direction, you see what I think is the best site here. The two streams that we saw merge from the observation deck now free falls 20-25 feet into a small pool below. Behind this is a small grotto where you can walk behind the falls.
Monday, January 7, 2013
This is the old station built by GM&O. Recently, this has been a business but now there's a for rest sign out front. Originally, I thought it was a passenger depot until I got this comment from flickr user Rando4038:
this was not the gm&o passenger station at humboldt tn , this was the freight house, the passenger station the gm&o had was shared with the l&n rr at the diamond where the tracks crossed each other, the station was located on the southeast corner of the diamond, it was demolished in the early 1970's
Sunday, January 6, 2013
This is stop #13 on the Old Tennessee Trail. According to the Williamson County Historical Commission marker:
The Union Meeting House was built on this site in 1821. With the Restoration movement and the preaching of Andrew Craig and Joel Anderson, Lieper's Fork became the first Church of Christ south of Nashville. In 1831, Seth and Rebecca Sparkman were the first members to be baptized for the remission of sins. David Lipscomb led a convention of Christians, who met here in 1862, to adopt positions of non-combatants in the Civil War. Their petition to Military Governor Andrew Johnson was rejected. Lieper's Fork sponsored the Boston Church in 1854 and the Berea Church at Southall in 1876. The present building was built in 1877.
For a more in depth history, check this page on their website.
Saturday, January 5, 2013
I think my favorite thing about the ostrich is of all the animals on the planet, they have the smallest brain, compared to the size of the rest of the body. While they don't bury their head in the sand when frightened, I wouldn't want to get in a fight with one.
Friday, January 4, 2013
There's an impressive waterfall just to the right of this photo. Unfortunately, there's nowhere to stand to get a good tripod-mounted view of it. I brought my tripod and by golly I was going to use it! 15 feet upstream from the big falls is this rather tiny 3-5 foot waterfall, but it stretches the entire width of the Duck River here.
Thursday, January 3, 2013
The Delta Queen is a famous steamboat and is a National Historic Landmark which is now docked in Chattanooga, TN serving as a floating Boutique hotel.
The Delta Queen steamboat is 285 feet long, 58 feet wide, and can hold 176 passengers. Its two steam engines can produce 2,000 horsepower for a stern-mounted paddlewheel.
The Delta Queen dates back to 1926 where it served passengers between San Francisco and Sacramento. At the time, it and the sister ship Delta King were the most expensive and lavish steamboat ever commissioned. New highways made the steamboats unneeded in California so during World War II it was requisitioned by the U.S. Navy. Since 1948, it has run passenger service along the Mississippi, Ohio, Tennessee and Cumberland Rivers while changing ownership several times. It was listed on the the National Register of Historic Places in 1970 and a National Historic Landmark in 1989.
At the end of 2008, all passenger service stopped and was again put up for sale. In Feb. 2009, the steamboat arrived in Chattanooga at Coolidge Park Landing along the Tennessee River across from the downtown area. The Delta Queen hotel officially opened on June 5th of that year. Since then, ownership has changed again, but in the mean time it still operates as a fancy place to spend the night. There's even one room that is said to be haunted by Mary Green, the boat captain in the 40s.
for more pictures of the Delta Queen, check out my website's Coolidge Park gallery:
Wednesday, January 2, 2013
Train bridge over the Caney Fork River which is on the border of Warren and White county. At this spot, the street forms a bridge over the tracks creating this vantage point. The tracks are live and today used by the short line Caney Fork & Western Railroad.