The Second-Oldest Town in Tennessee

It was perhaps 16 months ago when I visited, and blogged about, the oldest town in Tennessee. That would be Jonesborough, once part of North Carolina and today just a stone’s throw from the redrawn state line. I remember walking around the antique shop-lined Main Street on a hot, sunny day, walking past centuries-old churches, some of which still feature separate seating for slaves.

The weather was decidedly different – autumnal, cold, and sporadically rainy – when, two weeks ago, I visited Dandridge, the second-oldest town in Tennessee.

dandridge-2

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Finding Bush in Tennessee (It’s Not What You Think)

Tennessee continues to surprise me. I will go several weeks lamenting about the fact that there are no bars, Indian restaurants, or art house cinemas where I live…but then I’ll read about a scenic hiking trail close to home, or drive through a picturesque Civil War-era town, or stumble upon a surprising museum, and feel invigorated again.

It is this last discovery about which I want to write a few paragraphs today.

The Bush Beans Museum and Visitor Center

A few years ago, my parents toured the Bush Visitor Center in Chestnut Hill, TN. I remember their enthusiastic review of the experience, particularly their raves about the on-site restaurant. They suggested a return visit one day last week, and if I wasn’t as excited as they were about the prospect of touring a plant that is most famous for its production of baked beans, I nonetheless agreed to tag along.

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