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Wednesday, December 31, 2014

Fayetteville Town Square south side

Fayetteville Town Square south side

Fayetteville, TN town square - across from the Lincoln County Courthouse

Tuesday, December 30, 2014

TVRM Railfest 2013: Southern Steam Locomotive #630 Departs

TVRM Railfest 2013: Southern Steam Locomotive #630 Departs

Railfest is the annual celebration at the Tennessee Valley Railroad Museum in Chattanooga, TN. This year as part of the celebration, they offered Southern Railway 2-8-0 #630 as an excursion round trip to Cleveland, TN. This photo was taken as the train departed the station.

I took a ton of photos, and as of this writing, I haven't picked my flickr-worthy favorites yet, but you can see quite a thorough collection of photos of #630, the Missionary Ridge Local with Southern FP7 #6133, and other rolling stock on the grounds. This gallery is on my website here:

Also, I took video and put it on youtube:
Just the steam train departure seen here: youtu.be/QVBCATNnTQI
That, and more footage of the steam train: youtu.be/85iljPK1TfY
All the steam footage, plus the Missionary Ridge local: youtu.be/AhCCpvO41iM

Sunday, December 28, 2014

Waverly 1978 Disaster Site Memorial Museum

Waverly 1978 Disaster Site Memorial Museum

On February 24, 1978 at 2:55 PM, two days after 24 cars of a Louisville & Nashville train wrecked on this site (The tracks are behind me across a street and behind a fence), workmen were cleaning up when 22,000 pounds of liquid propane fuel from a derailed tanker car ignited and caused a massive explosion. The blast and resulting fire destroyed a great part of Waverly's old town section that included homes and businesses. Sixteen people were killed in the disaster, including Waverly's police and fire chiefs. More than 200 people suffered injury, and damage was in the millions of dollars.

Today at this nearby site is an L&N Caboose, which also functions as a museum. Even though I stopped by on a Saturday in January and nobody was around, the door was unlocked. If you happen to arrive when the door is locked, there is a sign in the window for who you can call to have the door unlocked.

Saturday, December 27, 2014

Vintage Wall Ads for Pepsi-Cola and Uneeda Biscuit - Roanoke, VA

Vintage Wall Ads for Pepsi-Cola and Uneeda Biscuit - Roanoke, VA

On the Left:

Virginia Carriage Factory inc.
Manufacturers of
Carriages, Buggies, Etc.

and then...

Fountains also in Bottles
Drink Pepsi-Cola 5 Cents
Delicious - Delightful

Vintage Pepsi Cola wall ad - Roanoke, VA

On the right:

The King of Wheat Foods
Uneeda Biscuit
Sold only in packages
5 cents
National Biscuit Company

Then, the signpainters...
The O. J.Gude Co. Va.Inc
Dixie Sign & Painting Co.

Vintage Uneeda Biscuit ad - Roanoke, VA

This is on the side of a building in downtown Roanoke, Va.

Friday, December 26, 2014

See Rock City barn in Amish Country

See Rock City barn in Amish Country

Ethridge, a small town in the northern part of Lawrence County, is the central location for Tennesse's Amish population. The city is also located along US43 between Columbia and Lawrenceburg. Several Amish merchants opened up shops long this main road. This was soon followed by other merchants who capitalized on the fact that people came to this area to shop, and other trading posts, antique malls, gift shops and shopping centers opened on the main road. A minor tourist spot was born, and often when you find a tourist spot in the south, a barn telling you to see Rock City isn't too far away.

This photo is from 2012 and I last photographed this barn three years prior in 2009. Since then, the barns owner has added all of the metal signs you see here: Coca-Cola, Greyhound, Pet, Purina Chow. I also waited until the Amish man in his buggy had rounded the corner. (Generally speaking, the Amish don't like to have their picture taken where they can be identifiable.) This is one of 86 different Rock City barns I have posted to flickr in my Rock City Barns set.

Wednesday, December 24, 2014

2011 Tennessee State Christmas Tree closeup

2011 Tennessee State Christmas Tree closeup

On Monday, Nov. 28, 2011 Governor Haslam continued the Tennessee tradition of lighting the state tree along the Charlotte side of the state capitol. That year, the tree was a 35 foot tall Norweigan Spruce tree. If you look closely, prominent among the decorations on the tree are Tennessee State Flags.

Tuesday, December 23, 2014

The Great American Peanut Tour

The Great American Peanut Tour

So I saw this giant peanut along the side of the road. (It was along US231 south of Dothan, AL which has a bit of peanut popularity.) It looks vaguely like the Nascar simulator that came to town a few months ago. Perhaps if was a simulator and you rode inside of it, it would simulate the life of a boiled peanut.

The trailer lists the National Peanut Board website, so I thought I'd go there and copy and paste some peanut fun facts.

Astronaut Allen B. Sheppard brought a peanut with him to the moon.

In August 1976, Tom Miller, a University of Colorado student, pushed a peanut to the top of Pike’s Peak with his nose(14,100 feet!). It took him 4 days, 23 hours,47 minutes and 3 seconds.

Archibutyrophobia (pronounced A’-ra-kid-bu-ti-ro-pho-bi-a) is the fear of getting peanut butter stuck to the roof of your mouth.

My dog is named Peanut! (not actually listed on their website, but true nonetheless.)

Monday, December 22, 2014

A Lynchburg Christmas

A Lynchburg Christmas 4

I love what they do at the Moore County Courthouse for Christmas, with the lights along the top, electric candlelights in the windows and the wreaths at the doors.

I have a total of 10 photos in the "A Lynchburg Christmas" subset. You can see them all here:

Sunday, December 21, 2014

A Camel sighting in Tennessee

100 Things to see at the fair #16: Petting Zoo Camel

Usually this time of year, if I see a camel, it is part of a nativity scene. Instead, this camel was seen at the petting zoo at the Tennessee State Fair.

Saturday, December 20, 2014

US62 Cumberland River Bridge

US62 Cumberland River Bridge

Built in 1952, this bridge carries US62 and US641 across the Cumberland River just upstream from the Land Between the Lakes area. It is a Cantilevered Warren through and deck truss that is 1466 ft. long. You can see video of the drive over it here: youtu.be/DsUjtvvqyNs?t=5m19s

Friday, December 19, 2014

Franklin Theater at Christmas

Franklin Theater at Christmas

The Franklin Theater was seemingly on the verge of being torn down or repurposed for many years. Now that it has been saved, it's in great shape. Plus there's a new marquee that was unveiled not too long ago.

Thursday, December 18, 2014

Wetumpka Falls - near Ledford Mill

Wetumpka Falls - near Ledford Mill

Last year, I posted some photos of Ledford Mill and the waterfalls on their property. If you ever visit them, make sure to also see Wetumpka Falls which is only 1/4 mile away. The city of Tullahoma is only three miles away but technically this is in Moore County and Lynchburg.

Along Shipman Creek Road is a small paved pull-off which can hold 3 or 4 cars and you can see the waterfall from the creek.

There are two parts to the falls, the smaller upper part is a five foot tall tiered section and the main waterfall is a 15 foot plunge into a tiny slot canyon. I've been told that there used to be a moonshine still by the upper part several decades ago, so you might see someone call this Moonshine Falls.

Getting to the top is done via a short but steep and muddy trail up the right side of the stream. getting up close to the main plunge is easy as you can get as close as you want as long as your willing to walk up the stream.

I enjoyed this waterfall but it was not without its costs. I brought with me two cameras, my Canon EOS 50D for these still photographs and a Canon Powershot SX40 for HD video. As I was setting up for one of these photos, the SX40 fell out of my pocket into the stream and it was completely soaked, but only for a few seconds. I didn't get home for several hours, but I had that camera dry in a bag of rice for a couple of days but it still wouldn't power on. :( If you'd like to see the final video I ever made with that camera, which is of this waterfall, look here: www.youtube.com/watch?v=roV9EWrplSY

Wednesday, December 17, 2014

Budget Motel neon sign

Credit cards now accepted!

This colorful hotel sign is on Cummings Highway on the west-of-Lookout-Mountain side of Chattanooga (This highway is where US11, 41, 64 and 72 all get together) Credit cards now accepted!

Tuesday, December 16, 2014

Elvis's Blue Christmas Tree - 2009

In 2009, the Dig-N-Dream Garden Club of Manchester, TN presented Trees of Christmas 2009: Music of Christmas. Each of the 24 trees was decorated to represent a different Christmas song.

Monday, December 8, 2014

Coffee County Courthouse at Christmas - Manchester, TN

Coffee County Courthouse at Christmas - Manchester, TN

Have you ever seen one of those youtube videos where some guy has decorated his house and had the lights blink and pulsate and dance with a popular Christmas Song? Well, the fine folks in Manchester decided to do that with the Coffee County Courthouse - except they did it with about a dozen songs. The whole "show" takes about 30 minutes.

I recorded some video of this and posted it here:

Sunday, December 7, 2014

Allardt Presbyterian Church

Allardt Presbyterian Church

Located on TN52 - Allardt, TN in Fentress County. Listed on the National Register of Historic Places. At Christmas time, they had a couple of wreaths on the main entrance

Saturday, December 6, 2014

Tennessee State Capitol Christmas at Night (side view)

2011 Tennessee State Capitol Christmas at Night (side view)

The Tennessee State Capitol sits upon Capitol Hill in downtown Nashville. It was designed in a Greek Revival style by prominent architect William Strickland and completed in 1859.

For Christmas, all of the lights along the base of the capitol have added a red tinting which colors most of the building. Only the lights for the cupola have not changed to red, however the lights inside the cupola window are green if you look closely.

Friday, December 5, 2014

Nickajack Dam

Nickajack Dam

Nickajack Dam is a TVA hydroelectric dam on the Tennessee River just upstream from Chattanooga.

Before the completion of Hales Bar Dam in 1913, the Tennessee River Gorge was one of the major impediments— along with Muscle Shoals and the Elk River shoals— to year-round navigation on the Tennessee River. Along with unpredictable water levels, the gorge was filled with numerous water hazards, some of which had been given nicknames such as "The Suck", "The Skillet", and "The Pan." In the early 1900s, the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers realized that a dam near the southwestern end of the gorge would flood the water hazards and eliminate the gorge's rapid downstream current. Chattanooga engineer Josephus Conn Guild offered to raise funds to build this dam in exchange for rights to the dam's electrical output. After receiving authorization from Congress in 1904, he organized the Chattanooga and Tennessee River Power Company (later TEPCO) in 1905, and the company began building Hales Bar Dam in October of that year. Hales Bar's weak limestone foundation — which hadn't been considered in the selection of the dam site— presented numerous obstacles from the outset, but the dam was finally completed in 1913.

In 1939, after a contentious court battle, TEPCO was forced to sell its assets— including Hales Bar Dam— to the Tennessee Valley Authority. The dam had been leaking since its construction, and TVA immediately initiated a series of foundation improvements that by 1943 had succeeded in halting the leaks. In 1960, however, the leaks had returned, spilling at an alarming 2,000 cubic feet per second. Around the same time, TVA began expanding locks on its dams to at least 600 feet to accommodate the increase in traffic the river had experienced since World War II, and it was determined that expanding the Hales Bar lock would be "prohibitively" expensive. Rather than spend the necessary expenses to upgrade Hales Bar, a decision was made in 1963 to build a new dam altogether on a more solid bedrock a few miles downstream.

The Nickajack Dam project was authorized January 9, 1964, and construction began April 1, 1964. Funding set aside for repair work on Hales Bar was transferred to the Nickajack project. The reservoir's construction— which basically involved extending the Hales Bar Reservoir 6 miles downstream to Nickajack— required the purchase of 8,300 acres, 500 acres of which had to be cleared. 82 families and 8 miles of roads had to be relocated. Two generators and several switchyard parts were moved from Hales Bar Dam to the new dam. Construction was completed on December 14, 1967, at a cost of $73 million. Operations at Hales Bar Dam were halted the following day, and by September 1968, Hales Bar Dam had been dismantled and its reservoir merged with Nickajack Lake.

Thursday, December 4, 2014

Capri Theater Sign- Shelbyville, TN

Capri Theater

The Capri Theater is in Shelbyville, TN about 1 block away from the Bedford County Courthouse. This theater is still in Operation, but was not open on the day I was there. Their neon sign lights up, but not this day.

Wednesday, December 3, 2014

Abandoned House with Christmas Wreath

Abandoned House - Rogersville, TN

..at least I assume the house is abandoned. Despite the wreath on the front door, the picture was taken in September. I do not know if the house has any significance other than being old.

Tuesday, December 2, 2014

Barn advertising Fuston's Discount Variety Store


"Enough Said"
Manchester Highway
Woodbury, Tennessee

This barn is located on Highway TN145, which is the quiet country road in Cannon County that runs from Woodbury to Auburntown. This painted advertisement barn, with chickens running around is located somewhere between the unincorporated towns of Brysonville and Hardscrabble. It's not far from a pretty neat goat farm.

I'm not sure, but I think I saw another barn for these people on US70 near Dowelltown.

Monday, December 1, 2014

Clinchfield Depot - Johnson City, TN

Clinchfield Depot - Johnson City, TN

It is listed on the National Register of Historic Places as the "Carolina, Clinchfield & Ohio Railroad Station and Depot." The brick building was built in 1930.

Saturday, November 29, 2014

Southern Caboose - Collierville, TN

Southern Caboose - Collierville, TN

Located near the Historic Colliersville Train Station along with other rolling stock.

Friday, November 28, 2014

Rugby School

Rugby School

Rugby is a small community along the Cumberland Plateau in Morgan County, founded by British Immigrants in 1880. The Rugby Colony was designed to be a utopian community, but the design failed in less than a decade. Still a few townspeople and their descendants lived in the area over the next several decades. In the 1960s, residents, friends and descendants of Rugby began restoring the original design and layout of the community, preserving surviving structures and reconstructing others.

The Schoolhouse was originally built in 1880 and reconstructed in 1907.

Thursday, November 27, 2014

Sewanee Memorial Cross - Happy Thanksgiving!

Sewanee Memorial Cross

This is the approx. 60 ft. tall Memorial Cross on the campus of University of the South in Sewanee, TN. The cross was built in 1922 in honor of war veterans and is near the edge of a western bluff of the mountain, where you can see it for miles away.

Wednesday, November 26, 2014

Shelby County Courthouse - Memphis, TN

Shelby County Courthouse - Memphis, TN

The Shelby County Courthouse in Memphis, TN is the state's largest and one of the most ornate. Memphis became the county seat of Shelby County in 1866. An ornate courthouse was already planned but the after effects of the civil war delayed this and a local hotel was purchased and renovated to be the courthouse for a few decades. The Courthouse was built in 1910 for one and a half million dollars. Until 1966, this imposing structure of neo-classical Ionic design with blue Bedford limestone housed the executive and legislative chambers of Memphis and Shelby county. In 1984, an 8-year renovation and refurbishment took place to preserve the mahogany doors and paneling, brass door knobs embossed with the county seal, walls, pilasters and flooring comprised of seven varieties of marble.

On the exterior of the courthouse are several forms of statuary. Most prominent are the six seated figures carved from single blocks of Tennessee marble, representing Wisdom, Justice, Liberty, Authority, Peace and Prosperity. They were designed by J. Massey Rhind at a cost of $74,000. Near the top of the north facade are six standing figures: Prudence, Courage, Integrity, Learning, Mercy and Temperance. Pediments above many entrances are decorated with carved scenes depicting religious law, Roman law, statutory law, common law, civil law and criminal law. At the apex of each of these pediments is the head of Minerva, Roman goddess of wisdom.

To see other views of this courthouse, including some of the marble statues and the pediment carvings, look here: www.flickr.com/photos/brent_nashville/tags/shelbycountyco...

Tuesday, November 25, 2014

Limestone Quarry Cave & Lake - Erin, TN

Limestone Quarry Cave & Lake #3 - Erin, TN

Around 1870, the Lime industry began to flourish in Erin and Houston County. Several Limekilns were built in the area and several still remain. Limestone was loaded into the fire chambers of these kilns and was converted into a fine lime powder. It was the county's biggest industry until the 1940's when the high quality limestone was depleted.

The man-made cave you see here is one of the places where the Limestone was excavated. This hill / mountain was quarried for a long time. Then, as they continued to dig, they struck a spring, which caused the cave to flood the way it is today. (The water really is that shade of blue - no photoshopping on my part to get that color!) According to legend, as the water started to fill the cave rapidly, the crew had to get out quickly and left all of their equipment down there.

The cave has three openings and two of them are easy to get to. As you drive highway TN49 (Main Street in Erin) look for the Piggly Wiggly, and you can see the lake behind it. Behind the Piggly Wiggly, there are some parking spaces and a picnic table right near one of the cave openings. From these parking spaces, you can already see one cave opening, but it's not the best one to use. (There's a No Trespassing sign at this entrance, probably because of safety concerns. Picture #4 of the series shows the view from behind the sign.) Instead, you'll want to take the path that leads around to the right for the best entrance and view. from the entrance, if you turn around and look across the outside part of the lake, you can see one of the intact limekilns.

Monday, November 24, 2014

Ledford Mill Falls

Ledford Mill Falls

Ledford Mill is an 1884 grismill listed on the National register of Historic Places. The nearest city is Tullahoma, sometimes listed as Wartrace, but is in the corner of Moore County, so it's technically in Lynchburg. Visually, it's an unusual setting for a Middle Tennessee Mill. The road leads right up to the door on an upper floor of this mill in the narrow valley.

Mills need a place to harness the power of water, and are usually situated at a waterfall or a dam. This place has both. An old large metal pipe runs from the top of the dam of Shipman's Creek to the mill. a path with a wooden pedestrian bridge leads to a bench where you can sit and watch the 20 foot waterfalls in a peaceful setting. With the lake above the dam, you can see the fish which are considered pets at the mill.

Like most gristmills, it went out of business decades ago. However, the mill was restored in 1996 by innkeepers John & Mildred Spear who operate the mill as a three room bed & breakfast. During business hours, the mill is open as a gift shop / antique store. Visitors are allowed to look around but when the paying overnight guests arrive, they get the area to themselves.

Sunday, November 23, 2014

Jordonia United Methodist Church

Jordonia United Methodist Church

Built around 1920, this church was nominated for an architectural award in 1975 by the Metro Nashville Historical Commission. The foundation is made of stone, while most of the exterior walls are covered in white clapboard. The upper half of the front facade is covered by a patterned shingling and 18 stained glass windows. This is a high and steep pitched standing seam tin roof with a bell tower and steeple.

Saturday, November 22, 2014

Norfolk Southern Tennessee River Bridge - Knoxville

Norfolk Southern Tennessee River Bridge - Knoxville

Located in downtown Knoxville, this railroad bridge now used by Norfolk Southern has elements dating back to the Civil War, but has been rebuilt several times.

The stone piers and approaches are the oldest element of the bridge, dating back to the 1850s. Wooden spans were completed in 1867. In 1903, wooden spans were replaced with a steel trestle. It underwent a major rebuild in 1940. A tugboat hit one of the piers in 1993 and that pier was fortified. The center span of the bridge is a Pratt through truss and the other segments are Warren deck trusses.

The original builder of the bridge was Knoxville & Charleston Railroad which chartered in 1852. In the 1870s, they became the Knoxville & Augusta Railway. In 1890, they were bought out by East Tennessee, Virginia and Georgia Railway. Then, in 1894 they were bought out by Southern Railway.

Friday, November 21, 2014

The Chat-N-Chew Drive-In

The Chat-N-Chew Drive-In

This vintage neon sign for a drive-in is located in the Petersville suburb of Florence, AL along Cloverdale Rd.

Thursday, November 20, 2014

James White's Fort - Knoxville, TN

James White's Fort - Knoxville, TN

according to Wikipedia:
White's Fort, was an 18th-century settlement that became Knoxville, TN. The name also refers to the fort, itself.

The settlement of White's Fort began in 1786 by James White, a militia officer during the American Revolutionary War. When William Blount, the territorial governor of the Southwest Territory, moved the territorial capital to White's Fort in 1791, he renamed it Knoxville in honor of Henry Knox, the American Revolutionary War general and Washington's Secretary of War.

The fort itself began when James White built a cabin near what is now the corner of State Street and Clinch Avenue. This cabin soon became the center of a cluster of fortified log structures known as White's Fort. The original cabin later became the kitchen of the Kennedy House, which was built in the 1830s. In 1906, when the Kennedy house was demolished for development, Isaiah Ford bought the log structure and moved it to Woodlawn Park. It was purchased again in 1960 by the City Association of Women's Clubs; in 1968, the timbers were reconstructed as part of the fort. The fort still stands on a bluff near its original location. Seven log cabins and the stockade fence remain. The cabins house pioneer artifacts and furnishings.

For more info:

Wednesday, November 19, 2014

Lee University Office of Admissions

Lee University Office of Admissions

I suppose this used to be a house of an adjoining property to the college in Cleveland, TN along Ocoee St. and then the college bought the house and converted it to offices.

And the house is along the Old Lee Highway, which is just a coincidence, being named after different Lee's.

Tuesday, November 18, 2014

Chester County Courthouse - Henderson, TN

Chester County Courthouse - Henderson, TN

The original courthouse burned in 1913 and was replaced by this building a year later. The Classical Revival styled building is two stories atop a tall base. The front entrance features a two story pedimented portico supported by four columns. Also, it has a low hip roof with an open square, domed cupola. In 1955, a brick veneer was added. Today, the courthouse is on the National Register of Historic Places and the grounds are host to a yearly barbecue festival.

in neighboring McNairy County, Sheriff Buford Pusser gained national fame for taking on local corruption. A semi-autobiographical movie about Pusser was made in the early 70s, Walking Tall. The movie producers wanted the film to be shot where the events happened, however the local elected officials didn't want to be embarrassed by the national attention brought to the corrupt county. Instead, they were embarrassed by having the movie filmed here in Henderson (partially at this courthouse) and losing out on important revenue. Due to term limits as sheriff, Pusser had time to be a technical consultant for the film. Then, when he reran for sheriff again, the locals ignored all the good he did to clean up the county and how he helped Hollywood work next door, did not vote him back into office.

Monday, November 17, 2014

Marrowbone Lake Dam

Marrowbone Lake Dam

Built in the 1930's (I think) and it doesn't inspire much confidence. Marrowbone Lake is one of Nashville's best kept secrets, as it is maintained by the TN Wildlife resources Agency and is not a city or state park. I guess water is supposed to flow over the top of it, so the level of the lake is maintained, but is it supposed to leak like that?

Sunday, November 16, 2014

St. Paul's Episcopal Church - Franklin, TN

St. Paul's Episcopal Church - Franklin, TN

According to the historical marker:

This "Mother Church of the Diocese of Tennessee," was begun in 1831, four years after its congregation was organized in 1827. Here James H. Otey, its first rector, was elected the first bishop of Tennessee. It was so damaged through use as a Civil War barracks and hospital that it had to be remodeled in 1870. It is the oldest Episcopal Church and congregation in Tennessee, and the oldest Episcopal Church building in continual use west of the Appalachians.

After its use in the Civil War as a barracks and a hospital, there were major changes to the building as the entrance was placed here and the altar was moved to the other side. New pews, an organ, and Tiffany stained glass windows were added during the remodel. In 1988, a National Register study of Williamson County historical resources described it as "one of the finest remaining" Gothic Revival style churches in middle Tennessee.

Saturday, November 15, 2014

Blue Crowned Motmot - Nashville Zoo

Blue Crowned Motmot

Seen at the Nashville Zoo in the walk-through aviary.

If you like zoo animals, or are a fan of the Nashville Zoo at Grassmere, I invite you to check out my Nashville Zoo website gallery:

Friday, November 14, 2014

Hamptons of Skullbone, TN Murals

Hamptons of Skullbone, TN Murals

Skullbone is a small community in West Tennessee located at the intersection of highway TN105 and Shades Bridge Rd. Or, perhaps a better explanation is: This is Skullbone, TN.

The main (or only) attraction in Skullbone is Hampton's General Store, a building from 1898 which over the years also served as a post office, gas station, City Hall and Mayors Office. Under the awning, we read that the store (addressed as 102 Davy Crockett Ave. North) has been owned by Landon & Ruby since 1964. By reading around the awning, we also see that Skullbone is the "Capital City of Skullbonia."

So, Where did the name Skullbone come from? For that, we look at the murals on the side of the store. This region was home to the "Undefeated Champions of Bareknuckle fist and Skullbone Fighting: Hence the name Skullbone."

Want to learn more about Skullbone? Check out this website, which includes the text of an interesting letter. In 1952, the locals wrote a jovial letter to TN Governor Browning petitioning the state to officially recognize the kingdom of Skullbonia.

Thursday, November 13, 2014

Nashville Skyline at Dusk 2014

Nashville Skyline at Dusk 2014 #3

Every time I decide to take a photo of the Nashville Skyline, there seems to be a subtle change. The most notable difference I see is that the CVS/Caremark building is now the Baker Donaldson building.

While I was taking this long exposure still photo, I had a second camera setup to take a time lapse video. See it here:

Technical details: This photo was taken on 2/1/2014 when sunset at 5:13 pm. This was at 5:50pm, 30sec., f/22 ISO100

Wednesday, November 12, 2014

Elvis Presley Blvd. Inn neon sign

Elvis Presley Blvd. Inn neon sign

You probably can't name something after Elvis unless you plan to bring a truckload of money. Luckily for this motel, highway US51 that runs in front of Graceland has been renamed Elvis Presley Blvd. and you can name your business after the street it's located on.

Oh, they also advertise that all of their beds are King size.

Tuesday, November 11, 2014

Shelbyville's Veterans Memorial statue - Happy Veterans Day!

Shelbyville's Veterans Mem. statue version #4

Located at the Bedford County Courthouse in Shelbyville, TN. This statue was dedicated on Mar. 11, 2006 and was sculpted by Russ Faxon of Bell Buckle, TN. There are 1,111 bricks honoring donors of the project. There are 4 benches, one at each corner, to represent the 4 continents that the Veterans have fought in.

Monday, November 10, 2014

TVRM Railfest 2013: Southern FP7 #6133 Excursion

TVRM Railfest 2013: Southern FP7 #6133 Excursion

As part of the activities of the 2013 Railfest at the Tennessee Valley Railroad Museum in Chattanooga, Southern Railway's EMD FP7 #6133 made a visit. This Diesel locomotive built in 1950 was used to pull their excursion, the Missionary Ridge Local throughout the weekend. It is normally on display at the North Carolina Transportation Museum which offers this writeup:
"Southern Railway #6133: The locomotive was built by the Electro-Motive Division of General Motors in 1950. This FP-7, operated by the Southern Railway, was the property of the CNO&TP (Cincinnati, New Orleans & Texas Pacific). The FP designation meant the locomotive could be used for passenger or freight trains, using a 567-B 16 cylinder prime mover, generating 1500 horsepower. These were F-7 freight locomotives with a steam generator placed at the rear of the locomotive, increasing body length by four feet. FP-7 locomotives were used on small branch-line passenger trains throughout the Southern Railway System. By the late 1970s, there were very few FP-7s left on the roster due to Southern eliminating many passenger trains. The 5-8 left were used for excursion trains as part of the Steam Program begun in 1966. The 6133 was donated to the NCTHC in 1980, and restored by the volunteers to its original green/ imitation aluminum paint scheme. It is used to pull the train ride around the property when needed."

I took more photos of #6133 than I have posted to flickr. You can also see quite a thorough collection of photos of the highlighted steam locomotive Southern #630, the Missionary Ridge Local with #6133, and other rolling stock on the grounds. This gallery is on my website here:

Also, I took video and put it on youtube: All the steam footage, plus the Missionary Ridge local: youtu.be/AhCCpvO41iM

Sunday, November 9, 2014

Field of the Woods Bible Park: World's Largest Ten Commandments

Field of the Woods Bible Park 1: World's Largest Ten Commandments

Field of the Woods Bible Park reminds me that they don't build tourist attractions like they used to. The park is best known for the World's Largest Ten Commandments, but the Christian imagery runs throughout the park. The park started in 1945 and was considered an outreach ministry by the Church of God of Prophecy denomination (which had its origins less than five miles away).

Most people come to see the 300-foot wide Ten Commandments which is laid out on the side of a hill. The best vantage point is to climb the hill on the other side of the parking lot so you can get the whole perspective. Or, if you're in good shape you could climb the 350 steps to the top where there is a giant Bible which doubles as an observation deck.

There are plenty of other things to see while you're there, most of which were added during the first decade of the park's operation. When you climb the other hill to get the best view of the Ten Commandments, you're climbing Prayer Mountain and along the way there are several headstone shaped markers which explain some of the Bible's basic principles. Next, there's a replica tomb of Jesus that includes at the entrance a replica of the stone to be rolled away. In the middle of the parking lot is what looks like a radio tower topped by a giant star which is an information booth that probably hasn't been used for decades. There's also a baptismal pool, a decent gift shop, an old missionary's airplane, the All Nations Cross, the curator's residence and a bunch of other random monuments and messages.

One other highlight of the park is a replica Golgotha which is where Jesus was crucified between two criminals. If you think the Golgotha vaguely resembles a face - it does. Golgotha translates to "Place of the Skull." When you view their Golgotha from atop the observation deck you'll notice the shrubs in front of Golgotha are arranged to spell out "JESUS DIED FOR OUR SINS."

I first learned of this place about 20 years ago when my parents stopped by on a trip through western North Carolina. I finally had my chance to visit recently when I went tent camping at a place nearby. Not as many people stop by as they used to. (In one of my pictures, you can see my car is the only one in the parking lot.) If I understood the guy in the gift shop properly, the Church of God doesn't fund it the way they used to, so there's no telling how long they'll remain open. So, if this is the type of place you'd really like to visit, I'd recommend sooner rather than later.

See all of my photos in this set here: www.flickr.com/photos/brent_nashville/tags/fieldofthewood...

Saturday, November 8, 2014

Along the Midway: 2013 Coffee County Fair

Along the Midway: 2013 Coffee County Fair

For all my other Coffee County Fair photos, look here: www.flickr.com/search/?tags=coffeecountyfair

On the right is a Ferris Wheel. On the far left is the Rock-O-Plane.

Friday, November 7, 2014

Madison Bowling neon sign

Madison Bowling neon sign

Gallatin Rd. (US31E) in the Madison area on Nashville

Thursday, November 6, 2014

The "See Rock City" barn you can see from Rock City

The "See Rock City" barn you can see from Rock City

When I started my quest to take photos of Rock City barns, it began with the one you can see from Rock City from the see 7 states overlook. The people at Rock City own this farmland below and it is part of their Enchanted Maize at Blowing Spring.

I believe this is a unique design for the Rock City Barn painters, the only one to be painted like a birdhouse, their other major form of advertising. Originally, the barn was built in 1948 by Gene Tibbs at his farm in Dalton, GA. In the 60's, Clark Byers painted the barn to be visible to motorists travelling along I-75. Whitfield County named the barn a historic site in the 80's but an expansion project by the Central Church of Christ in Dalton meant the barn was in danger of being torn down. A collaborative effort between the people at Rock City, the Tibbs Family, the church and a business that specializes in relocating historic log houses enabled the barn to be where it is today.

This is now one of 85 different Rock City Barns I have photographed and uploaded to Flickr in my Rock City Barns set. People often ask me how I've found so many of them. I have drawn from many resources such as books and web sites and sometimes luck, but there's not really one "go to" place to find them all. Well, now on my website, I have tried to create a one stop source for the locations of all of the barns I've been to. On my Map of Rock City Barns page, I have plotted each barn on a Google Map.