Category: Businesses & Professionals

Cheek’s Crossroads Store Journal, 1802-1807

By , July 1, 2011

This fantastic resource has been digitized and is fully readable on-line, thanks to the library at Brigham Young University.

Click here to view the book.

Progress on the Morristown & Cumberland Gap Railroad

By , May 15, 2011

A large force is now at work on the Morristown and Cumberland Gap railroad.

The track for sometime has been completed to the Holston river about five miles from Morristown. At this point a fine iron bridge is being erected and before many days will be completed.

At this end of the line from Corryton on the K C G & L railroad, the track has been laid two miles beyond the Lea Springs depot site and before many days the iron horse will be at Rutledge, the county seat of old Grainger, and from this point Bean’s Station, near Tate will soon be reached. In fact we are assured that the whole line will b completed and equipped within sixty days.

The people along the entire line are very much elated over the bright prospects and rapid progress. And the people of Knoxville will soon be in a position to go with ease and at pleasure to Lea Springs and Tate’s without change of cars. And this new and direct route to Morristown, through the beautiful valleys of Richland and Bean’s Station with the fine Clinch Mountain scenery will prove interesting and pleasing to the eye for a change.

When this important link is completed considerable travel will undoubtedly be secured from the Carolina’s via Cumberland Gap and Middlesborough to the west, also from the direct south in connection with the K C G & L railroad.

Knoxville Daily Journal — Tuesday, September 1, 1891

Transcribed by Robert McGinnis and used by permission.

Along the Morristown & Cumberland Gap Railroad

By , May 14, 2011

The soon to be completed Morristown & Cumberland Gap  railroad will provide a boom not only to the terminus at Morristown in Hamblen County, Tenn., but is small towns and hamlets along its route. The road will also provide a faster transportation to many of East Tennessee most famous watering holes.

Among the most prominent are those at Lea Spring in the lower end of Grainger county and Tate’s in the upper part of the county. The climate is exceedingly healthy and pleasant at all seasons of the year.

This important link after leaving Morristown crosses the Holston river at Shields Ferry about three and half miles from the city.

The first station or regular depot will be at the Woodson Taylor place, six miles distant and the next at Bean Station, one and half miles from Tates and ten from Morristown.

The third will undoubtedly be at the old Bowen farm, four and one half miles from Rutledge, the county seat.

The fourth at Joppa or Spring House, six miles south of Rutledge and the fifth at Lea Springs, which is about six miles above and halfway between Joppa and Carrolton, the termination of the road and only twenty-one miles from Knoxville and forty-four from Cumberland Gap.

The entire length of the M & C G R R from Morristown to Floyd or Carrolton, as it is now called, is forty miles and it is generally believed  will be in running order early in the spring.

There is more behind this important railroad link that on may now suppose. And as a valuable auxiliary to Morristown and East Tennessee in general, it will play beyond a question of a doubt a most useful part.

Knoxville Daily Journal — Thursday, July 10, 1890

Transcribed by Robert McGinnis and used by permission.

Morristown & Cumberland Gap Railroad

By , May 14, 2011

Today marks a new era in the history of Grainger county. Dirt was broken for the Morristown and Cumberland Gap railroad which starts at Morristown and intersects with the Knoxville and Cumberland Gap and Louisville railroad at Luttrell.

Early this morning all the people of Grainger county gave up the plane and harvest field for one day, and with wives, children, old men and young, all came to Rutledge to spend a day in celebrating the event of so much importance to this county. There was by estimate at least five thousand people present from Grainger and surrounding counties.

After the lapse of about forty years, this country realizes her mistake in refusing to aid public enterprises. A proposition was submitted to Grainger county to take stock in the East Tennessee and Virginia railroad, now the East Tennessee, Virginia and Georgia railroad. The opposition to the subscription told the people that the road must go up the Bean Station valley and the result was the road was not built up this beautiful valley.

It was too late after they discovered their mistake. They resolved that if another opportunity presented itself they would not let it pass. The people of this county have seen with counties grow and prosper and they have seen towns flourish and hence the great demonstration of today…

The vast crowd moved to a place about one fourth of a mile east of Rutledge to a beautiful grove where a stand had been erected and the ladies of Rutledge had in a beautiful manner decorated it with flowers. After music by the band, Mr. Lon Shields, in a few appropriate remarks introduced W S Dickson, the handsome young mayor of Morristown, who came to congratulate the people on securing a road and who was not jealous of the prosperity of his mother county.

General J G Martin, president of the road was next introduced and he made a splendid speech. He said he had asked the people of Grainger county in good faith for its subscription and the same had been given and he now on his part was going in good faith, build the road, just as fast as men and money could, from Morristown on to Luttrell and other points….

After speaking was over the vast crowd repaired to  spot in a field a sort distance away where the ground was to be broken. There was drawn in the line three of the oldest citizens of Grainger county, Absalom Miller, 89, Jimmy James, 85 and Absolom Manley, 80. They had been chosen to break the dirt. Promptly at 3 o’clock, with pick raised, Jimmy James, said this was the proudest day of his life, he had been raised in Grainger county and to be called on in his old days to break dirt for a railroad company, was reaping of the desire of his life and he had but one other desire and that was to ride on the railroad.

At the end of Mr. James’ remarks, with breathless silence, these three old veterans drove their picks into the earth and there went up a tremendous shout from the crowd. After the dirt was broken the picks were handed over to J L Mitchell, J P Grant and J F Biddle, who were forty years old and they dug the earth. After them came three young men, twenty-one years old, who represented the bone and sinew of the county. Then came three young boys, ten years old, who represented the rising generation.

Thus it was the pick, was handed from old age to young hands. As the young boys took the picks the band struck up a beautiful piece of music and the air was rent with cheers. Mothers waved their handkerchiefs and strong men their hats. The boys turned the picks over to the contractors, who went to moving dirt in earnest.

The contract for the road is let and under construction from here to Morristown and will be completed just as soon as it can. The heaviest work is on the Morristown end. The grade from here to Luttrell is easy. The work for this end of the road is not yet let, but will be in a short time. It is expected that within twelve months from now the trains will be running on the road.

Knoxville Daily Journal — Thursday, July 10, 1890

Transcribed by Robert McGinnis and used by permission.

Grainger County in 1882

By , May 13, 2011

County seat, Rutledge, having 126 inhabitants.  Other towns are, Tate Springs and Mineral Hill Springs, which are both noted summer resorts.

Navigable streams are the Holston and Clinch rivers, which afford water for flat boats. Besides these rivers there are a great number of creeks which furnish abundant water power.

The general surface of the county is made up of a number of flute-like valleys and ridges running from northeast to southwest.

The soil is generally good. There is great abundance of timber of many varieties, the oaks and pines predominating.

The mineral resources of Grainger county are undeveloped, though valuable minerals are believed to exist. The agricultural products are corn, wheat, oats and the various grasses, clover predominating among the grasses.

In the county there are a number of manufacturing establishments on a small scale.

The principal religious denominations are Methodists, Baptists and Dunkards.

County taxation on $100:  for schools 15 cents; for roads, 15 cents; for county purposes, 30 cents; special tax to pay indebtedness, 25 cents.

Source:  Hawkins, A. W., and Colton, Henry E., eds.  Hand-book of Tennessee.  Knoxville:  Whig and Chronicle Steam Book and Job Printing Office (1882), pg.  92.

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