Thursday, September 11, 2014


The Louisville area was settled in the early 1800s, and its situation on the Tennessee River* helped it grow into a key flatboat and steamboat port. It was incorporated in 1851. In 1974 Louisville's downtown was declared a national historic district by the National Register of Historic Places.

*The Holston River is now defined as ending at the French Broad River, where the confluence forms the Tennessee River just above Knoxville. Before 1933, the terminus of the Holston River was defined as where the Little Tennessee River enters the river. That point, the confluence of the Holston and Little Tennessee rivers, was considered to be the beginning of the Tennessee River.

According to Tennessee Valley Authority historians, when the TVA was created in 1933, Congress mandated that the TVA headquarters be located on the banks of the Tennessee River. Since the TVA headquarters were already designated to be located in downtown Knoxville, as part of area development on what was then the Holston River, to fulfill the Congressional mandate, the official start of the Tennessee River was moved upstream from Lenoir City to the confluence of the Holston and French Broad rivers.

Two hundred and forty-nine families in Blount, Loudon, and Knox Counties were relocated for the Fort Loudon Dam project between 1939 and 1942. (Source: All We Knew Was to Farm: Rural Women in the Upcountry South, 1919-1941, Melissa Walker, p. 154) 

Thursday, August 21, 2014


Crossville may be best known for the federal government's Subsistence Homesteads Division which established the Cumberland Homesteads outside of Crossville during the 1930s, as part of the New Deal program. Cumberland Mountain State Park was also built as part of this project.

During World War II, Camp Crossville was built on the site of an abandoned 1930s Civilian Conservation Corps work camp. 

Homestead Tower Museum

 Link to more information about this museum and the history of the Homestead project.  Link

Crossville Depot

Monument to men who served in the Civil War

An article that appeared in the Nashville Daily Union on June 25, 1862 about troop movement in the Crossville area.  (The Nashville daily union. (Nashville, Tenn.), 25 June 1862. Chronicling America: Historic American Newspapers. Lib. of Congress. )  Link

Cumberland County Courthouse

Mileage and directions sign

Located on US Highway 70, Crossville was a crossroads for Tennessee travelers until the interstate system was developed.

The Palace Theatre opened in 1938 and is used for various functions today.  Link

Tuesday, July 8, 2014

Cumberland Mountain State Park

Cumberland Mountain State Park is situated on the Cumberland Plateau approximately halfway between the plateau's Walden Ridge escarpment to the East and the plateau's western escarpment to the West. The southern fringe of the Crab Orchard Mountains is just to the East of the park and the northern tip of the beautiful Sequatchie Valley is just to the South. Crossville is the closest city.

The Works Progress Administration and the Civilian Conservation Corps, arrived in the area in 1934 to build the recreational area's facilities as part of Rosevelt's New Deal program. The construction of Byrd Creek Dam began in 1935 under the direction of the National Park Service and was completed in 1938, creating the 50-acre Byrd Lake. The dam is constructed of a native sandstone commonly called Crab Orchard Stone.

This building houses the restaurant and the gift shop.  If you are lucky, you can get a table with a great view of the dam.

Friday, June 27, 2014

Downtown in Cumberland Gap

The passage created by Cumberland Gap was well-traveled by Native Americans long before the arrival of European-American settlers. The earliest written account of Cumberland Gap dates to the 1670s and was written by Abraham Wood of Virginia.[1]
The gap was named for Prince William, Duke of Cumberland, son of King George II of England, who had many places named for him in the American colonies after the Battle of Culloden.[2] The explorer Thomas Walker gave the name to the Cumberland River in 1750, and the name soon spread to many other features in the region, such as the Cumberland Gap. In 1769Joseph Martin built a fort nearby at present-day Rose Hill, Virginia, on behalf of Dr. Walker's land claimants. But Martin and his men were chased out of the area by Native Americans, and Martin himself did not return until 1775.[3]
In 1775 Daniel Boone, hired by the Transylvania Company, arrived in the region leading a company of men to widen the path through the gap to make settlement of Kentucky and Tennessee easier. On his arrival Boone discovered that Martin had beaten him to Powell Valley, where Martin and his men were clearing land for their own settlement – the westernmost settlement in English colonial America at the time.[4] By the 1790s the trail that Boone and his men built was widened to accommodate wagon traffic and sometimes became known as the Wilderness Road.

Cumberland Gap was the center of a lot of activity during the Civil War and these are sometimes called Battle of the Cumberland Gap. In June 1862, Union Army General George W. Morgan captured the gap for the Union. In September of that year, Confederate States Army forces under Edmund Kirby Smith occupied the Gap during General Braxton Bragg's Kentucky Invasion. The following year, in a bloodless engagement in September 1863, Union Army troops under General Ambrose Burnside forced the surrender of 2,300 Confederates defending the gap, gaining Union control of the gap for the remainder of the war.

Sunday, June 22, 2014

Third Creek Greenway

Our family has been using the Third Creek Bike Trail since it first opened and we continue to use it. The trail has expended over the years, so you can walk a section or you can ride the whole trail. You could walk it, but it would take a while.  Link showing map of the Third Creek Greenway.  Link

Boo and John Meyer working cleaning up debris in the creek

Boo has lost interest, but John is still working            

Greenway Community Service award

Field of Daisies on Third Creek Greenway