June 1, 2017 marks the 221st anniversary of Tennessee’s admission as the 16th state in the union. East Tennessee’s most important cultural heritage sites are partnering to celebrate Statehood Day on Saturdays, May 27 and June 3, and Sundays, May 21 and May 28. The sites include places of historical significance in the exciting journey from the creation of our country to the founding of our state. The Historic Homes of Knoxville include: Blount Mansion, Crescent Bend, James White’s Fort, Mabry-Hazen House, Marble Springs, Ramsey House, and Historic Westwood. Each site will have individual ways of celebrating the birth of Tennessee. These are free museum days to the public.
+ Westwood (Sunday, May 21, 1:00 PM – 4:00 PM)
Built as a “wedding promise” in 1890 by John Edwin Lutz and his wife, Ann Adelia Armstrong Lutz, on property owned by her grandfather, Drury P. Armstrong. The highlight and most significant component of Westwood is the studio which was designed by Ann Adelia Armstrong Lutz, an accomplished artist. Today Historic Westwood is home to Knox Heritage and the East Tennessee Preservation Alliance. The home will be open for free tours. Parking available at Laurel Church of Christ. Address: 3425 Kingston Pike, Knoxville, TN 37919. Information: 865-523-8008, www.historicwestwood.org
+ Blount Mansion (Saturday, May 27, 10:00 AM – 2:00 PM)
Construction on Blount Mansion began in 1792. The restored mansion was open for tours in 1930, making it the oldest museum in Knox County. Commemorate the creation of the state of Tennessee and celebrate the pioneers who settled and transformed the southwest territory into the vibrant state of Tennessee. Hosting free admission. Address: 200 W. Hill Avenue, Knoxville, TN 37902. Information: 865-525-2375, www.blountmansion.org
+ James White’s Fort (Saturday, May 27, 10:00 AM – 3:00 PM)
Built in 1786, James White’s Fort was home to the founder of Knoxville. More than 10,000 visitors tour the Fort each year and experience the frontier lifestyle through hands-on interpretations. Tennesseans for Living History volunteers will be demonstrating the lifestyle of 1796: open hearth and fire pit cooking, weaving, spinning, and other pioneer era tasks. Free admission; donations gratefully accepted. Address: 205 E. Hill Ave, Knoxville, TN 37915. Information: 865-525-6514, www.jameswhitefort.org
+ Mabry-Hazen House (Saturday, May 27, 10:00 AM – 3:00 PM)
Built in 1858 and housing three generations of the same family from 1858-1987, the Mabry-Hazen House served as headquarters for both Union and Confederate forces during the Civil War. The Civil War, a gunfight on Gay Street in 1882, and a Breach of Promise lawsuit in the early 1930’s are only a few stories that bring life and color to a visit to the museum. Hosting free admission with living historians. Donations are appreciated. Address: 1711 Dandridge Avenue, Knoxville, TN, 37915. Information: 865-522-8661, www.mabryhazen.com
+ Marble Springs (Saturday, May 27, 10:00 AM – 5:00 PM and Sunday, May 28, 11:00 – 4:00 PM)
Marble Springs was the home of John Sevier (1745-1815), Tennessee’s first governor and Revolutionary War hero. Marble Springs State Historic Site will commemorate Statehood Day with a living history weekend. Visitors are invited to experience 18th century demonstrations such as wood carving, spinning, and weaving; 18th century style militia drills; weapons demonstrations that will showcase period appropriate firearms; and much more. Details are subject to change.
+ Crescent Bend House & Gardens (Saturday, June 3, 9:00 AM – 1:00 PM)
Crescent Bend House & Gardens is one of the Southeast’s finest house museums and gardens. Built in 1834 by Drury Paine Armstrong, Crescent Bend was once a 900-acre working farm and so named for its prominent setting overlooking a majestic crescent bend in the Tennessee River just west of downtown Knoxville. Hosting free admission. Address: 2728 Kingston Pike Knoxville, TN 37919. Information: 865-637-3163, www.crescentbend.com
+ Ramsey House (Saturday, June 3, 12:00 PM – 3:00PM)
Ramsey House was built in 1797 by Knoxville’s first builder, Thomas Hope for Francis Alexander Ramsey, one of Knoxville’s first settlers. Celebrate Statehood Days with one of the founding Families of Knoxville. Ramsey House will host free tours until 3:00 PM, and visitors are invited to stay and enjoy a lively game of vintage baseball until 4:00 PM. Address: 2614 Thorngrove Pike, Knoxville, TN 37914. Information: 865-546-0745, www.ramseyhouse.org
In addition to the Historic Homes of Knoxville, Sequoyah Birthplace Museum (Vonore) and Crockett Tavern Museum (Morristown) will also host Statehood Day events on June 3.
+ Crockett Tavern Museum (Saturday, June 3, 11:00 AM – 5:00 PM)
The Museum was built on the site of the boyhood home of Davy Crockett. It is a reconstruction of the 1790’s John Crockett Tavern. Open with free admission. Address: 2002 Morningside Drive, Morristown, TN 37814. Information: 423-587-9900, www.crocketttavernmuseum.org
+ Sequoyah Birthplace Museum (Saturday, June 3, 9:00 AM – 4:00 PM)
The mission of the Sequoyah Birthplace Museum, a property of the Eastern Band of Cherokee Indians, is to promote the understanding and appreciation of the history and culture of the Cherokee Indians in Eastern Tennessee, particularly the life and contributions of Sequoyah. The Museum will collect, preserve, interpret, and exhibit objects and data that support this mission. Free admission. Demonstrators will include corn husk dolls and other activities with living historians. Address: 576 HWY 360, Vonore, TN 37885. Information: 423-884-6246, www.sequoyahmuseum.org