Norris Things to Do

  • shows the general layout and access paths
    shows the general layout and access...
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    park views
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  • Welcome to the Museum of Appalachia
    Welcome to the Museum of Appalachia
    by Stephen-KarenConn

Most Recent Things to Do in Norris

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    Norris Dam State Park

    by davecallahan Updated Apr 4, 2011

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    park views
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    Just north of Norris Dam is a nice state park where you can spend a restful afternoon contemplating your navel.

    The park facilities include public restrooms and water fountains, camping area (under 50 sites), picnic areas, cabins, boating marina (with launch dock), pavillions for rent.

    Take a camera and get some beautiful pics of hills and valleys (never been there in fall but it must be outstanding then).

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    Norris Dam

    by davecallahan Updated Mar 2, 2007

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    stock photo of the dam

    About 1900 ft long and 250 ft high, this dam holds back the Cinch River to form Norris Lake and prevents seasonal river floods down stream. The Tennessee Valley Authority had this constructed (with much controversy) in the 1930's.

    I wasn't much impressed with the dam. We have ones similar in Upstate New York. But it does make for a pleasant one hour outing if the weather cooperates. Take a camera and shoot a few picks. The scenery is good and the place is quiet (except in spring when the water is rushing.

    Information about the lake behind the dam can be found at:
    http://www.norrislakeinfo.com/lakeinfo.shtml

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    Museum of the Appalachia

    by davecallahan Updated Mar 2, 2007

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    shows the general layout and access paths
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    This outdoor museum was nicely landscaped and had good access path/sidewalks. They did not advertise handicap access but most of the areas were easily approached on paved/cemented walks.

    The day we were there was early in the tourist season and we were self-guided. Groups can purchase a guided tour. Most of the objects are well-identified but the guides are knowledgeable about the history of the places and probably make the walk more interesting.

    There were structures brought in and reconstructed on site from all over the Tennessee mountain area. Homes, cabins, barns, drying sheds, a building filled with farm implements collected over the last 150 years. There are live animals, a working farm and on scheduled weekends, there are live actors/artists (painters, fiddlers, singers, quilters).

    We spent over two hours (moving at a fair clip) just to see all there was to see. We could probably have spent at least another other if there had been a guide with his spiel. We used two single-use cameras (48 pictures) and probably could have used one more. The general scenery is great and the place is very very quiet.

    Cost was $10 per person (AAA 2003) and the visit was well worth the price.
    There was a gift shop (ca-ching ca-ching) and a cafeteria with great homemade soups and pies. The people were very friendly (my wife talked to one staff person for a half-hour about grandkids). The weather can be a bit cooler so a sweater might be advisable.

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    The Hacker Martin Gristmill

    by Stephen-KarenConn Updated Nov 7, 2005

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    The Hacker Martin Gristmill

    The Hacker Martin Gristmill is the newest addition to the Museum of Appalachia. It is an authentic water-powered corn and wheat mill that was originally located in the community of Boone's Creek, a few miles from Johnson City in northeast Tennessee. The Mill is still undergoing renovations, and can only be viewed from the exterior at this time.

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    The Arnwine Cabin

    by Stephen-KarenConn Updated Nov 22, 2004

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    The Arnwine Cabin

    In the Arnwine Cabin, in the early to mid 1800's, old Wes Arnwine and his wife reared a large family, and many hundreds of descendents still live in the East Tennessee region. The last occupants of the cabin were "old Aunt Julie and Polly Ann" Arnwine.

    The cabin was built around 1800 on the Clinch River near Liberty Hill in Grainger County - about 40 miles northeast of the Museum. It has been designated as an historical place by the U.S. Department of the Interior and is included on the National Register of Historic Places - one of the smallest buildings ever to receive such a designation. It is fully furnished in frontier style.

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    The "Dan'l Boone" Cabin

    by Stephen-KarenConn Written Nov 21, 2004

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    The

    This one-room, dirt-floored structure was used by 20th Century Fox as the frontier home of Daniel Boone in the TV series for CBS called Young Dan'l Boone. It is an authentic pioneer log cabin, built in the New River Section of Anderson County, Tennessee, in the early 1800's. It is fully furnished with the earliest frontier pioneer artifacts.

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    The Broom and Rope House

    by Stephen-KarenConn Written Nov 21, 2004

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    The Broom and Rope House

    Broomcorn was grown by almost every early family and made into round brooms, consisting of a few bunches of broomstraw tied on a stick. The wooden "geared and cogged" rope making machine housed in this old log buiding enabled one to make any size rope desired by twisting three smaller strands into one. The machine is made completely of wood.

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    McClung House

    by Stephen-KarenConn Updated Nov 21, 2004

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    The McClung House

    The McClung House was built a few miles southwest of Knoxville on the wagon path that later came to be known as Kingston Pike and U.S. Hwy. 70. It is thought to have been built in the 1790's, by the McClungs who later became one of East Tennessee's most prominent families. Tradition has it that this house was used asa hospital for wounded soldiers during the Civil War.

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    The Cantilever Barn

    by Stephen-KarenConn Updated Nov 21, 2004

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    The Cantilever Barn

    This Overhang or Cantilever Barn was moved from its original location near Seymour in Sevier County, Tennessee. The extreme eastern part of Tennessee, in and near the Great Smoky Mountains National Park, is one of the few regions in the country where this type of barn is found. The rocky, steep terrain with few level building sites made it practical to build a larger structure as this on a smaller foundation.

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    The Peters Homestead House

    by Stephen-KarenConn Written Nov 21, 2004

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    The Peters House and Homestead was moved from its original location in adjoining Union County near the village of Lutrell. The first known occupant was Nathaniel Peters who lived here about 1840. His oldest daughter, Cordelia, was born here and raised her own nine children in this house, where she died at the age of 87.

    "Cuzin" Raye Rutherford and other entertainers may often be seen here in the Peters House playing their musical instruments and singing old-time mountain songs.

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    Bark Grinder

    by Stephen-KarenConn Written Nov 21, 2004

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    Pioneer Bark Grinder

    This bark grinder was used by pioneer settlers for crushing the bark of trees to obtain tannin, a necessary ingredient in the tanning of animal hides. A mule would be used to power the grinder, walking around in circles to turn the heavy stone.

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    Irwin's Chapel Log Church

    by Stephen-KarenConn Updated Nov 21, 2004

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    Karen at Irwin's Chapel Log Church

    The Irwin's Chapel Log Church or meeting house, was built aroung 1840, near the community of Hamburg, in the mountainous county of Madison, North Carolina. After it was no longer used as a meeting house, it was acquired by a local farmer and was later purchased by Thomas Tweed of Woodfin, North Carolina, for $35 and a cowboy hat. John Rice Irwin purchased the building and all the contents from Tweed's widow in 1976.

    The log pulpit and benches were reportedly from the original church, and the rocking chair belonged to old Ben Davis, a Baptist preacher who rode over Madison County on a horse "spreading the word."

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    Tater Valley School House

    by Stephen-KarenConn Updated Nov 21, 2004

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    Karen in the Doorway of  Tater Valley Schoolhouse

    This very small one room log schoolhouse was moved from nearby Tater Valley, Tennessee. It is completely furnished in the manner of an early mountain school, including chalk board, desks, wall maps and a pot bellied stove.

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    Blacksmith Shop, Mill House and Wheelwright Shop

    by Stephen-KarenConn Updated Nov 20, 2004

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    Blacksmith, Mill House, and Wheelwright Shop

    These three shops under one roof represent three of the most important pioneer industries. The blacksmith shop, in which wooden bellows are used for firing the forge, features a large assortment of tools used in a typical shop of this region. An actual blacksmith sometimes can be seen working here. The center portion of this building houses the wheelwright shop - one of the most complete in the country.

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    Mark Twain's Family Cabin

    by Stephen-KarenConn Written Nov 20, 2004

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    Mark Twain's Family Cabin

    Mark Twain's Family Cabin, moved here from 'Possum Trot, Tennessee, once served as the home of Mark Twain's parents and some of their children. The famous writer and humorist was born some five months after the family left Tennessee in 1835, so it is likely he was conceived in this cabin.

    There is a little corn crib adjacent to the cabin that came from an isolated area in the Kentucky mountains.

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