Scary Stories at Fort Watauga

 

Thursday, October 26 @ 7:30 pm

 

Scary Stories at Fort Watauga is soon to be upon us! On Thursday, October 26th at 7:30 pm, the walls of the historic recreation of the fort will be alive with tales of haints and happenings of days gone by. An annual event not to be missed, Scary Stories is set inside the fort, creating a unique atmosphere for an evening of spooky tales geared to the entire family.

We are excited to welcome three exceptional storytellers to the fort this year; C. Keith Young, and the Front Porch Storytellers – Mary Jane Kennedy, and Chad Bogart. Each of these talented tellers is sure to bring a smile to your face and a chill to your spine!

Keith Young, Raconteur, has performed as the featured storyteller/emcee for the Virginia Highlands Festival, First Night Kingsport, Kingsport Funfest Showtime, Fayetteville Christmas Past Festival, Erwin Strawberry Festival, the Stone Soup Festival (South Carolina), Elizabethton’s Covered Bridge Celebration, Roan Mountain State Park Miller Homestead Days, Sycamore Shoals State Park, plus numerous appearances at Tellabrations and Jonesborough Days. His work as a storyteller, emcee, humorist and professional musician spans more than three decades.

The Front Porch Storytellers developed and co-founded by Mary Jane Kennedy and Chad Bogart is actively presenting storytelling programs throughout the area and in Elizabethton. Be sure to check out their Historic Ghost Walks in downtown Elizabethton! They have been telling stories together for ten years at many schools, civic functions, senior homes and organizations throughout the Mountain Empire.

Mary Jane Kennedy spent 30 years teaching in Orlando.  She has a background in music, voice over, historical research and storytelling.  She is the Co-Founder of The Overmountain Singers, The Homespun Storytellers and The Front Porch Storytellers.  She has been actively performing in the area for the last twelve years both in music and storytelling.

Chad Bogart, co-founder of the Front Porch Storytellers, descends from a long line of Appalachian storytellers. His abilities are enhanced by a background in music, living history, and historical interpretation. Chad’s interests in scary stories stemmed from family ghost tales told by his Grandmother, and are a favorite among his listeners.

Bring a lawn chair or a blanket and make it a point to mark your calendar now for an exciting evening with family and friends!

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SABINE HILL DEDICATION AND CELEBRATION

SCHEDULED THE FIRST WEEKEND IN NOVEMBER

The Tennessee Historical Commission and Sycamore Shoals State Historic Park are pleased to announce the opening of Sabine Hill in Elizabethton, Tennessee. This beautiful early 19th century home was constructed c. 1818 by the family of Brigadier General Nathaniel Taylor. Architectural historians consider the home to be one of the finest examples of Federal style architecture in the State of Tennessee. The property was restored as a capital project of the Tennessee Historical Commission and will be operated as a unit of Sycamore Shoals State Historic Park. “We are very honored to partner with Sycamore Shoals to help provide a valuable addition to the area’s thriving tourism industry,” notes Tennessee Historical Commission Executive Director Patrick McIntyre. “This exciting new attraction for Elizabethton is the culmination of a decade of work that began when we learned the home was imminently threatened by demolition.”

Jennifer Bauer, Park Manager at Sycamore Shoals said “It was the intent of all involved in this process that this should be a model historic preservation project. Extensive research and a high quality restoration of the property and home were paramount in the process of bringing the Taylor home back to life.”  Research included archaeological investigations of the grounds, obtaining cut dates of the primary beams in the main house through dendrochronology, and detailed historic paint studies of the interior and exterior of the structures.

The process of saving Sabine Hill has been a continuum of events since the mid 1900’s. When the house was sold to the Reynolds family in the late 1940’s, their stabilization of the structure ensured it would not fall. Subsequently, other private owners worked together to preserve the house, the original doors, mantles, and examples of varied architectural details inside the home. When threatened with demolition, the local community and Taylor descendants came together to call for the future preservation of the Taylor home.

Ultimately, the success of the efforts of both citizens and state government working together can now be seen in Tennessee’s newest and finest State Historic Site, Sabine Hill.

Sabine Hill will once again radiate with the life and stories of its earliest inhabitants, Brigadier General Nathaniel Taylor, his wife, Mary Patton Taylor, their children, and descendants.

 

In celebration of the opening, Sycamore Shoals State Historic Park will be conducting guided tours by reservation on November 4, 5, 11 and 12 and also hosting an entertaining celebration at Sycamore Shoals on Saturday evening, November 4th at 7:30 pm. The Saturday evening event will include historic dance demonstrations & guest participation, a glimpse into the history of Sabine Hill via clothing of the era, and fun for the whole family. This event is sponsored by the Sabine Hill Social Society and Friends of Sycamore Shoals. 

Tours for these two weekends will be conducted at 9 am, 11 am, 1 pm, and 3 pm on Saturdays and 1 pm and 3 pm on Sundays and are by reservation only by logging onto http://www.tnstateparks.com/parks/about/sycamore-shoals and choosing “Upcoming Events” in the left hand menu. Tours meet at Sycamore Shoals State Historic Park. Additional opportunities to tour Sabine Hill will be announced at a later date.

 

Sycamore Shoals State Historic Park                              Tennessee Historical Commission

1651 W. Elk Avenue                                                            2941 Lebanon Pike

Elizabethton, Tennessee 37643                                       Nashville, Tennessee   37214

423-543-5808 for additional information

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The Overmountain Victory Trail Celebration

Saturday and Sunday, September 23rd and 24th

 OVTA Watauga River Crossing – Mon. Sept. 25th, 2 pm

 

It was the year 1780. The tide of the Revolution had turned against the colonists. The British, forced out of New England, gained new allies in the divided South and won victory after victory in a bloody civil war. Charleston had fallen, and American forces had crumbled at the battle of Camden. But then the impossible occurred…The frontiersmen of the western mountains began a long march, gathering an army along the way, from the highlands of Virginia to the hills of South Carolina. At a place called King’s Mountain, they destroyed British forces and opened the way for the final American victory at Yorktown.

The route they took from Virginia to South Carolina, we now know as the Overmountain Victory National Historic Trail. Come celebrate with us as we recreate the muster of the Overmountain Men, which occurred here at Sycamore Shoals over two hundred years ago. Re-enactors in period clothing will be on hand throughout the weekend to share stories and demonstrations of that exciting and tumultuous time.

The weekend long celebration runs 10am to 4pm Saturday, September 23 and 10am to 3pm Sunday, September 24, and is a must for the whole family. The park’s host living history organization, the Washington County, NC Militia, will present 18th century demonstrations and activities in and around Fort Watauga. Discover the vital role Sycamore Shoals played in the early frontier community, and how its significance would impact our nation’s history. Hear the story of the Overmountain Men and their historic gathering at Sycamore Shoals.

While enjoying the activities of the weekend, be sure to visit the award winning museum and interpretive center, and don’t miss the park’s interpretive film “Sycamore Shoals – Story of the American Spirit”. Also visit the Eastern National Book and Gift Shop to take home a special souvenir or a gift for the history buff or avid reader in your family. It will be a fun filled and action packed weekend sure to entertain and educate all ages. Admission is free so bring the entire family and relive some of the most crucial days of the American Revolution.

On September 25th, 1780 Col. William Campbell and 400 mounted militiamen from present day Abingdon, VA crossed the Watauga River at Sycamore Shoals and joined Colonels Isaac Shelby and John Sevier in response to a threat from British Major Patrick Ferguson. At 2:00 pm On Monday, September 25th, 2017 the Overmountain Victory Trail Association will recreate the historic river crossing. For the past 42 years Members of the OVTA have recreated this historic occurrence since 1975, following the same route and timetable as their legendary forebears from Abingdon, VA to Kings Mountain, SC. This event is also free of charge and is open for all to enjoy this memorable experience.

 

EVENT SCHEDULE

 SATURDAY, SEPTEMBER 23rd  

 

10:00 – “Raising the Colours”Join the Overmountain Men inside Fort Watauga as they assemble for morning instructions, militia inspection and posting the flag. (Fort Watauga)

 

11:00 – “Life on the Homefront” – Come to the Talbot House for a look at the woman’s role on the 18th century frontier. See how the women and children fared after the militia had marched off in search of Patrick Ferguson and the Tory army.

 

11:30 – “Echoes of Revolution” – Join the Watauga Valley Fifes and Drums and learn about martial music of the 18th century. (Fort Watauga)

 

12:00 – “Every Seventh Man” – Oral tradition states that the Overmountain Men left behind one in seven to guard the settlements as they went in search of the tory army. Witness the Watauga Home Guard drill and hone their skills as defenders of the frontier. Learn about the different firearms used in Colonial America.

 

1:00 – “Trail Talk: Walking in Frontier Footsteps” – Join historic interpreter Chad Bogart for a guided walk through the park grounds as he recounts the story of the Overmountain Men, the historic militia muster at Sycamore Shoals, and the victory at Kings Mountain. Program begins at Fort Watauga.

 

1:30 – “Echoes of Revolution” – Join the Watauga Valley Fifes and Drums for an exciting glimpse into the musical world of the 18th century.

 

2:00 – “Keep Yer’ Powder Dry” – Join historic interpreter Lisa Bennett to hear the story of Mary Patton and learn about the making of gunpowder on the colonial frontier. (Talbot House)

 

3:00 – “Every Seventh Man” – Learn about the different firearms used in Colonial America.

 

4:00 – Camps Close – Join us tomorrow for another exciting day of life on the colonial frontier!

 

SUNDAY, SEPTEMBER 24th    

 

10:00 – “Raising the Colours”Join The Overmountain Men inside Fort Watauga as they assemble for morning instructions, militia inspection and posting the flag.

 

11:00 – Worship Service – Feel free to join the militia for Sunday morning service held in the courtyard of Fort Watauga. Following the service witness the Washington County Militia fall in for inspection of arms, and orders are given for the day.

 

11:30 – “Echoes of Revolution” – Join the Watauga Valley Fifes and Drums for an exciting glimpse into the musical world of the 18th century.

 

12:00 – “Every Seventh Man” – Oral tradition states that the Overmountain Men left behind one in seven to guard the settlements as they went in search of the tory army. Witness the Watauga Home Guard drill and hone their skills as defenders of the frontier. Learn about the different firearms used in Colonial America.

 

1:00 – “Keep Yer’ Powder Dry” – Join historic interpreter Lisa Bennett to hear the story of Mary Patton and learn about the making of gunpowder on the colonial frontier. (Talbot House)

 

2:00“Echoes of Revolution” – Join the Watauga Valley Fifes and Drums for an exciting glimpse into the musical world of the 18th century.

 

3:00 – Retiring the Colors – Camps Close – Thank you for joining us for a great day of frontier living history. Join us next time!

 

ONGOING ACTIVITIES FOR BOTH DAYS INCLUDE:

Open Hearth Cooking – Flintlock Musket & Rifle Demonstrations – Militia Drill

Colonial Music – 18th Century Laundry – Colonial Games – 18th Century Camp Life

And Much More!!!

All activities are weather dependent. Schedule is subject to change or cancellation.

 

MONDAY, SEPTEMBER 25th

 

2:00 – “OVTA Watauga River Crossing” – The Overmountain Victory Trail Association will recreate the historic river crossing of 1780. For the past 42 years Members of the OVTA have recreated this historic occurrence following the same route and timetable as their legendary forebears from Abingdon, VA to Kings Mountain, SC.

 

Immediately Following the Crossing – Join State and National Park Service staff, OVTA members, and reenactors for a dedication of the new entrance to the Sycamore Shoals Visitors Center featuring the newly installed Overmountain Victory National Historic Trail commemorative marker. (Program will take place at the Overmountain Man Statue in front of the park’s visitors center)

 

Sycamore Shoals State Historic Park

1651 W. Elk Avenue

Elizabethton, TN 37643

 

Historic House Museums:

The John and Landon Carter Mansion

Sabine Hill

 

423-543-5808

 

 

www.sycamoreshoalstn.org

www.tnstateparks.com/parks/about/sycamore-shoals

www.facebook.com/sycamoreshoals

www.friendsofsycamoreshoals.org

 

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