Monday, October 29, 2012

Random ‘Finds’ – National Register of Historic Places

We have found that a great way to explore an area is to make a listing of historic places in a county or area, and then get in the car, get out the Magellan and begin searching.  I develop my list of historic sites by perusing the county by county listings from the National Register of Historic Places.  These listings sometimes provide an address but as an alternative, coordinates are provided and then a map can be pulled up on a computer…and that map almost always furnishes an address.

The following ‘finds’ from the National Register of Historic Places are from Monroe and Loudon Counties in Eastern Tennessee.
This is the McCollum Farm in the Greenback area of Loudon County.  From an article in the Greenback Historical Society’s “Chronicler” published on 1/10/11, I learned that Joseph McCollum built this home before the Civil War.  He moved in with his new bride, Nancy.  He was a master craftsman and a tanner.  He built caskets as needed for his neighbors; he made shoes, and raised cattle, sheep and mules for their meat and hides.  His wife processed the wool from the sheep.     

This home has come a long way following its purchase by Tim Grindstaff! 
This earlier photo was ‘borrowed’ from a posting on Wikipedia.  As per the Knox Heritage website, Tim received a preservation award for his work on this home in 2010.  The Greenback Historical Society held an open house shortly after the award was made…and over 200 local residents came to view Tim’s efforts to preserve this NRHP home.

For more information regarding Knox Heritage, go to  To learn more about the Greenback Historical Society, click on  
This is the Mason Place in Lenoir City Tennessee.  It was built by Thomas Jefferson Mason, a river boat captain and a Union sympathizer. William Cassada was the contractor, Mason's son-in-law and a Confederate sympathizer.  Note that he built the stars and stripes of the Confederate flag into the upstairs porch balustrade.  

Prior to the Civil War and construction of the house, slaves had made and stacked a quarter million bricks for construction of the home.  During the conflict, the bricks were used for a gun replacement at Fort Hill.  Rather than wait for replacement bricks, Captain Mason decided to build the house out of heart-of-pine.  The house was originally part of a 1,200 acre plantation.  At various times during the Civil War, the home was occupied by both the Northern and Southern armies.  For a period of time, the Mason Place was operated as a bed and breakfast, but I couldn’t find a current B&B listing for this home.
This is the Stickley House in Madisonville Tennessee.  It’s also known as the Cannon-Stickley House although its first owner was Joseph E. Houston and his wife, Blanche.  Their daughter Josephone married Vastine Stickley…  This 1846 Greek revival home was designed by New York architect Thomas Blanchard.  It has two spiral staircases, its original mantles, wainscoting, as well as brick walls that are five bricks thick.  Although the Greek Revival style was common for courthouses and other civic buildings, houses built in the style are more unique.

Joseph was a tanner by trade but after the Civil War he apparently served as Circuit Court Clerk, Sheriff and Master of the Chancery Court.  He and Blanche were married in 1834 and they lived to celebrate their 50th anniversary, no mean feat in the 1800’s!  One of their descendant’s, Nancy Elizabeth Jones Stickley, was active in the DAR and she contributed the Stickley Collection (genealogical) to the Tennessee State Library and Archives. (It contains materials from 1600 – 1946)
This house was recently on the market… An open house was staged on 9/15/11 and over 200 people came through the property.  It sits on 5 acres about a block from downtown Madisonville.  The home has 3 bedrooms and 1.5 baths in 4,236 square feet.  The listing price: $220,000.  The listing I found showed that it had been sold.  To see what this impressive house looked like on the inside and also what work needed to be done by the new owner, just go to
That’s about it for this edition of my little historical blog… So much to research and so little time and space!  Photos have already been taken and more research into the history of East Tennessee is already underway… What the heck, I can’t always blog about food and restaurants!  My doctor wouldn’t appreciate it!
Just click on any photo to enlarge it…
Thanks for stopping by for this little trip back in time!
Take Care, Big Daddy Dave 


  1. They say its haunted. I live in Maddie

  2. The Mason place is in Loudon not Lenoir City :) My boyfriends the great great great grandson of Thomas Jefferson Mason :) His father and uncles grew up in that house :)

    1. Haylee, Error noted! I checked the listing again and you are indeed correct. Thanks and Take Care, Big Daddy Dave