This Presidents Day, the state’s three presidential homes are uniting to launch the Tennessee Presidential Trail.
The Andrew Johnson National Historic Site and Cemetery in Greeneville will be linked with Andrew Jackson’s Hermitage outside of Nashville and the President James K. Polk Home and Museum in Columbia to form the trail, according to a release from organizers. Also included in the trail are the State Capitol and Tennessee State Museum in Nashville.
The project was spearheaded by Kellye Murphy, tourism and marketing director for Visit Columbia TN (City of Columbia), and completed through the working partnership with Ann Dee Jones, vice president of marketing and communications for Andrew Jackson’s Hermitage.
“I had this idea two years ago to link together our state’s presidential homes in a way that would bring greater tourism to the state at large,” Murphy said. “To see this idea come to life is amazing. Visitors to the homes are able to step back in time and learn what life was like during the respective time periods — not just in Tennessee but in our country as a whole.”
Murphy was inspired to create the Tennessee Presidential Trail when the Tennessee State Museum opened, the release stated. The State Museum is home to 13,000 years of Tennessee art and history, including an 1817 painting of Andrew Jackson and artifacts related to James K. Polk and Andrew Johnson.
“Tennessee has a rich presidential history, and we encourage residents and tourists to take advantage of the many resources available right here in Tennessee to learn more about that history,” said Tennessee State Museum Executive Director Ashley Howell. “The State Museum, the State Capitol and the three historic sites on the Presidential Trail make for a remarkable start on that journey.”
Visitors who follow the trail will find several locations to explore at the Andrew Johnson National Historic Site and learn more about the life and legacy of the 17th U.S. president. Guests are encouraged to tour the homestead, which served as Andrew Johnson’s home before and after his presidency, as well as his early home, tailor shop museum and the national cemetery. For hours and information, visit nps.gov/anjo.
Andrew Jackson’s Hermitage, home to the seventh U.S. president, is one of Tennessee’s most visited historic sites. Opened to the public in 1889, Andrew Jackson’s Hermitage is a 1,120-acre National Historic Landmark with more than 20 historic buildings, including Jackson’s mansion and tomb, restored slave cabins, a church and gardens. For hours and information, visit thehermitage.com.
President James. K. Polk Home and Museum preserves and interprets the only surviving home of the 11th president. The site features a 30-minute docent-guided tour of the main house. Guests can also visit the Visitor Center, gardens and kitchen outbuilding, as well as exhibits featured in Polk Presidential Hall. For hours and information, visit jameskpolk.com.
To learn more about the Tennessee Presidential Trail, visit the Facebook page at www.facebook.com/TNPresidentialTrail.