Monday, August 22, 2011

Antiquing in Clinton Tennessee…

Clinton Tennessee is the ‘mecca’ for antiquing hobbyists and/or incurable shoppers in East Tennessee.  This city of a bit over 9,000 has been able to keep much of the old downtown shopping area together with the conversion of many of the former retail locations into a wide variety of small and large antique stores…with a few antique ‘malls’ thrown in for good measure. 

For the uninitiated, an antique mall is a large antique store where individuals rent booth space…usually sharing in the day to day operational oversight as well.  I believe that the Clinton Antique Mall is the largest such operation in town…

This view is looking down Market Street from the old railway station in Clinton.  This photo was taken on a quiet and very hot Sunday.  Some of the antique stores are closed on Sundays but there are still more than enough open to satisfy the avid antique buff.   

Although some fairly old buildings are evident, many of the earlier central city structures were lost in a 1908 fire that destroyed 17 businesses and 14 homes. 

The town was founded in 1801 and it was named Burrville in honor of Thomas Jefferson’s 1st Vice President…Aaron Burr.  After Burr was disgraced following his killing of Alexander Hamilton in a duel in 1909, the town was renamed Clinton.  The new name honored one of our founding fathers, Jefferson’s second Vice President and the former Governor of New York, George Clinton.

This is the Market Street Antique Store… Fox Channel 43 viewers voted that this business is the best antique store in the Knoxville area.  The red brick building to the right is also part of the expanded store.  For more information, go to or call 865-269-4031.

Clinton is located on the Clinch River/Melton Hill Lake or reservoir and it’s the county seat for Anderson County Tennessee.  The town is roughly centered on the intersection of TN Highway 61 and US 25W.  It’s important to note that in 2011, Business Week picked Clinton as the best place to raise kids in Tennessee…

This is The Staffordshire Spaniel… They have a nice selection of quality items.  This store is located at the bottom, (or top), of Market Street’s antique row.  They don’t have a website listed, but the phone number is 865-269-4338.  They can be found on Facebook at

From 1895 until the mid-1930’s, Clinton was known as one of the 3 Tennessee centers of the freshwater pearl industry.  Saturdays were pearl trading days on Market Street.  Clinch River pearls were featured at the Paris Exposition in 1900.

Burrville Antiques is another of the antique shops on Market Street… Information regarding this shop can be found at  Phone: 865-269-4522.  For more on Clinton’s many quality Antique Shops, go to

There are antique stores stretching from the old railroad station where I shot my first photo…all the way down to end of Market Street.  Then there are 3 additional shops across the street…to the right of Allee’s Antiques above.  Allee’s Antiques is on line at  Phone: 865-463-7954.

Clinton also stages two major antiquing events every year.  In the spring, they hold the Clinch River Spring Antique Fair.  In the fall, there is the Clinch River Antique Festival.  Both events feature between 70 and 100 dealers and vendors along Market Street with live music, food and many special family related events.  This year the fall festival is planned for October 7th and 8th.

This is the Olde Tymes shop.  It’s a dual operation with RLF Antiques occupying the front of the store and Marshall Vintage Timepieces located in the back.  They really have some great old clocks for sale…and they do repairs as well.  RLF Antiques Phone: 513-324-9273.  Marshall Vintage Timepieces has a website:  Phone: 865-566-3669.

There was a dark chapter in Clinton’s history… The town was the site of the first African-American desegregation of a state supported school in the southeastern USA.  The ‘Clinton Twelve’ successfully integrated the all white Clinton High School on 8/27/56.  But, within a couple of days, outside agitators stirred up local emotions and riots broke out in early September.  The National Guard was brought in for awhile and there was sporadic violence for about 2 years.  The school was actually bombed in 1958.  An estimated 75 to 100 sticks of dynamite were used and the school was destroyed. 

A bronze statue of the “Clinton Twelve” is now displayed outside the front entrance to the former Green McAdoo School where all of these pioneers of school integration had attended elementary school.  The Green McAdoo School was the community’s segregated elementary school for African-American Children until 1965.  The school was completed in 1935 and it is now a museum and it’s listed on the National Register of Historic Places. 

Clinton has come a long way…from ugly controversy to it’s status today as the ‘best place to raise kids in Tennessee’!  It is a nice town to visit.  To see another blog that I published related to Clinton, go to

Just click on any photo to enlarge it…

Thanks for coming by and take care, Big Daddy Dave


  1. I didn't know any of this about Clinton.

  2. Nice read, thanks for the info. I always like to know a little about an area before I go picking. I hope I find some good treasures