Tennessee Politics In Action
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Southern food and its consequences
I cannot call Southern cuisine healthy. Gravy, breads, deep fried chicken and fish made me gain a few pounds in a couple of weeks. The slow style of life of people from South make them accumulated those pounds with a quick speed, and as a result Tennessee has many obese people. It is sad, but it is a fact.
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Tennessee is nicknamed "The Volunteer State".
the state motto is: agriculture and commerce
state flower is the Iris.
state tree is the tulip poplar.
state animal is the racoon.
the state flag: three stars for the three areas of Tennessee (east, west, middle) in a unifying blue circle on a red field.
the state seal: XVI representing Tennessee as the sixteenth state; plow, wheat, cotton for the agriculture of the state; flat bottom boat for river commerce
Music, Music, Music!
Note: the photo is really an old poster I had of Elvis as a teenager; yes, I kept it all these years!
Music plays a huge role in the lives of people in Tennessee. The state is rich in musical heritage. In East Tennessee, the first settlers descended from England, Ireland, and Scotland. They brought their traditional music and instruments with them. Because many of these settlers lived in isolation, their ballads were preserved, & their music influenced folk music.
Another type of music popular in Tennessee in the 19th century was religious (gospel) music. The Black community had a strong influence on gospel music.
Also, ballads accompanied by a fiddle were usually heard at country dances. Harmonicas and banjos were also often heard. Thus, Bluegrass is also associated with east Tennessee.
By the time the radio appeared in the 1920s, the folk songs and bluegrass music of East Tennessee were brought to the rest of the country. It was then referred to as "hillbilly" or country music.
In about 1927, the Grand Ole Opry was created and has survived for more than 6 decades! Nashville became known as Music City, USA, & the new studios there created what's known as "the Nashville Sound". Folk and hillybilly were replaced with country western to describe this American music.
Jazz and blues were influenced by African slaves. The Western area of Tennessee was most influenced, especially
Then, along came Elviswho combined styles of country and western with rhythm and blues to come up with a new form of American pop music known as Rock N' Roll!Related to:
- Historical Travel
Three "Black Marks" on the History of Tennessee
Sadly, 3 situations during Tennessee's history make it less than perfect.
1. Even though President Andrew Jackson, the "people's president, was for the "common man", it only applied to white men! Andrew Jackson negotiated the Chickasaw Purchase by which the Indians gave up their lands between the Tennesse & Mississippi rivers. While president, The Indian Removal Act of 1830 was passed, enabling the government to force Indians in the East to move west of the Mississippi River. The Cherokees were most affected. About 14 thousand were marched westward along a route that came to be known as the Trail of Tears. During this time, Indians endured unimaginable hardships; a fourth of them died before reaching Oklahoma.
2. Slavery in Tennessee depended on which of the three areas you lived in. It was an economic issue as well as a moral one.
East Tennessee, with its small, family-run establishments, lived on uneven terrain & rocky soil which were not conducive to creating large plantations. Thus, there were few slaves here. Although blacks in East Tennesse were free, they were rigidly segregated.
Middle and West Tennessee were filled with people who had come west from Virginia & North Carolina (tobacco & cotton plantations). They brought their slaves with them
Once again, Andrew Jackson plays a part in an unsavory situation. He served as vice-president to a group who favored removing all backs to Liberia (West Coast of Africa) .About 6 thousand blacks were taken there.
3. The secret society known as The Ku Klux Klan was founded in Pulaski, Tennessee, in 1865 by Nathan Bedford Foressest, a former Confederate general.
The Klan used terror & violence to pursue its aims. They usually wore mask & white robes & covered their horses with white blankets. Thank goodness, Tennessee passed laws against the Klan in 1869!
Even those these terrible facts exist in Tennessee's history, the Tennessee of today does not reflect that past.Related to:
- Historical Travel
Hill People of Tennessee
The people of Tennessee are diverse, but they all seem to have one common denominator--they are "down-to-earth" and quite friendly.
The hill people of eastern Tennessee are no exception to these qualities. They live on small farms and are somewhat isolated because of the mountains. Because of this, they live much as the pioneers of the past.
Their customs and language date back hundreds of years. Many make their own furniture and other household goods. They also make pottery, quilts and children's toys.
A treat as a visitor is to attend one of their craft shows because the crafts made by the hill folk, you can be sure, will be of the highest quality.
(Note: the photo is from the Almanac)Related to:
- Arts and Culture
Tennessee Valley Authority (TVA)
In 1933, the United States Government created the Tennessee Valley Authority (TVA). It's mainly in Tennessee; although it did include parts of Kentucky, North Carolina, Virginia, Georgia, Mississippi, and Alabama.
A problem was created when, for years, the forests of Tennessee were cut down to build houses, but no new forests were planted. In addition, the Tennessee River often flooded, ruining farms. Another problem in the area was lack of sufficient electrictiy. So, the TVA was created to solve these problems.
TVA workers planted new forests, built dams to stop the flooding, and built power plants for producing more electricity.
But, the real story of the TVA started in the 1930s around Norris, Tennessee, which is actually a town that TVA built as a model community. And you know what? It is a very special place. I thought that I would hate it; instead, I found it delightful with village greens, meandering pathways, actual hand-laid stone bridges and curbs, and the Norris Dam with its attractive art deco style.
The vast lake with its 800 miles of shoreline is, indeed, spectacular.
This government-planned town and first dam were named after Nebraska Senator, George Norris, because he led the fight to create the TVA, which, in the end, was responsible for building both of them.
If you read about the history of the TVA, you'll discover that this area, prior to the Norris Dam, was mostly worn-out cotton fields, rows of tenant shacks, and eroding land. Thank goodness for the TVA.Related to:
- Historical Travel
A "Laidback Way of Life
Allan and I have played golf and vacationed all over Tennessee, but a place that we've gone back to three times is in the middle section of the state in Crossville at Fairfield Glade Resort.
This photograph was taken by my sister-in-law, Jayne, who, along with her husband Ron, stayed with us one time.
The thing that we admired about this area of Tennessee was the attitude and way of life. I feel as though I am in the slow lane of a super highway. These people, fortunately, are on another time zone, so to speak. They never seem to be in a hurry, and they never seem to be under stress. Our own stress seemed to melt away whenever we vacationed there.
On this trip, we were there in the fall, which is evident in this photograph. What beautiful countryside with deep valleys, high bluffs, massive trees, and lovely waterfalls; no wonder the people are so happy.
I also noticed that this area is what I term, "The Bible Belt" of the United States. Churches are everywhere, and you see Bible scripture on Billboards along the roadsides.
If you are interested in a vacation that is relaxing, and if you love the great outdoors, I have to say that Tennessee is the place to go.Related to:
- Spa and Resort
- Hiking and Walking
Tennessee's Very Own Horse
"Walkers" originated in central Tennessee and are called Tennessee Walking Horses. They perform an unusual running walk where the horse places its back foot in front of the front hoof print when moving. They are certainly a delight to watch.
Walkers come in all colors, but the majority of them are chestnut, bay, sorrel, or roan. Many of them have white markings. If well taken care of, they live for 20-30 years.
These horses were created by crossbreeding Thoroughbreds, Morgans, Standardbreds, and American Saddlebreds on Central Tennessee farms in the 1800s.
Tennessee Walking Horses do make great family horses used for pleasure and trail riding. Most people love these horses because of their good tempers, and the smooth ride they provide.
People in Tennessee are very proud of their special Tennessee Walking Horse because the horse is friendly, intelligent, and easy to ride.
In Shebyville, Tennessee, every August, there is a Tennessee Walking Horse National Celebration that lasts for one week. It's the largest show in the nation for Tennessee Walking Horses. It's the show that every Walking Horse trainer hopes to enter at least once in a lifetime.Related to:
- Family Travel
- Horse Riding
Weekend... it is noisy... Tell me this and I will answer that people maw backyards! Tennessee climate makes grass grow very fast, so if an owner wants to keep his backyard looking nice, he has to cut the grass once (sometimes more) a week. People are lucky to have mawing machines. Many of them just hire others to cut their grass, so those others make good business during spring, summer and fall.Related to:
- Family Travel
People in Tennessee are great lovers of flowers
The favorable climate of Tennessee with hot days, many rains gives so many opportunaities for flower lovers to spend spare time on flower beds, with pots and soil, or on mawing maching cutting grass in the backyard.
I took a picture of one of the biggest plant inside a room which I ever saw. This plant was grown with help of Dee. She is so good with plants. I bet she could grow a beautiful flower from a dead seed even.Related to:
- Family Travel
People in Tennessee are great lovers of wild birds
You can see the feeding boxes hanging on the trees, houses, special sticks.
My neighbour, nice old lady, put seeds to bird's boxes almost every day a week. I see that it is not only hobby or tradition. This process of feeding birds is like a part of her enjoyment of nature. Then people sit down in their chairs on the porch or in the yard waiting for birds, watching them and talking how beautiful they areRelated to:
- Family Travel
The dungeon of Tennessee houses
Once I came to one of the houses, and when owners showed me it, I noticed in the room downstairs PEPSI, peanut butter, creckers. My first thought was that owner forgot about it, so being polite I just kept being quiet. Then in awhile, I have got to know that it is sanctuary in case the hurricane occures.
Because the state of Tennessee is a center of hurricanes which may bring a lot of destructions, many houses in Tennessee have a room like this where people can hide themself in case the hurricane will be. This room has a storage of food, water, creckers. Probably I would put blanckets either. It was so cold in that room!Related to:
- Family Travel
arts and crafts
Try to chainsaw a statue, of a bear for instance. No! you had better leave that to the pros. This guy had enough trouble doing his hundreds....
We saw this chainsaw modelling at
The Gatlinburg Craftsmen's Fair.
There is a summer and a fall show. Both at the Gatlinburg Convention Center.
All sorts of arts and crafts are on display.
In Gatlinburg you will find several weddingchapels. It is maybe not the most romantic place to get married, but it sure is convenient.
There are several packages, check the websites for more details.
The picture shows:
Sugarland Wedding Chapel
Gatlinburg TN 37738
phone: 865-430-1555 http://www.sugarlandweddings.com/
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