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hotels in dickson tn

1 March 2022

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History of Dickson Tennessee

The history of Dickson, Tennessee began in the early 19th century when Montgomery Bell acquired land in the area for a forge. By 1825, the forge was producing iron and continued to expand as railroads were built through the area. After the Civil War, Dickson boomed as a center of industry, but following World War II, most of this industry left the city. Today, Dickson is still a small town but has begun to grow again with more people moving into the area.

Early 19th century

The area that became Dickson County was part of a 3000000acre land grant given to John Donelson by North Carolina in 1783. The land grant passed to his son-in-law, Col. James Robertson and his partner, Richard Henderson (the founder of Hendersonville). In 1797, they deeded this tract of land to John Buchanan and Thomas Craighead. In 1800, Montgomery Bell moved to Tennessee from Pennsylvania and acquired several thousand acres along the Cumberland River near Bledsoes Lick from Thomas Craighead. He began construction on a forge on Pine Creek in 1803 or 1804 and completed it in 1806 or 1807. The forge produced about 1200to per year for use by local farmers.

Dickson was named after Congressman William Dickson. The city is home to Tennessees oldest courthouse in continuous use (1803). The courthouse square includes several other buildings listed on the National Register of Historic Places: The Thomas Douglass House and the William Fitzgerald House are both Federal style houses built in 1810. Nearby is Oaklawn, an Antebellum mansion owned by the family of Confederate general Robert Hatton.

The downtown area includes a number of antique shops as well as several art galleries and restaurants, making it a popular tourist destination for people from Nashville and elsewhere in Middle Tennessee. The Renaissance Center on Highway 46 is a community center located on a farmstead that served as a Civil War hospital during the Battle of Nashville. Craft festivals are held regularly at the center, which also houses art galleries and studios for local artists.

The city hosts an annual Strawberry Festival each year on Memorial Day weekend that attracts approximately 20,000 people to its streets.

Landmarks in Dickson Tennessee

Dickson County, Tennessee is rich in lore and legend. For anyone interested in learning more about the history of Dickson County and Middle Tennessee, here are some places to visit.

Dickson County Courthouse. The old Dickson County Courthouse was built in 1822 and burned down in 1876. The present building was constructed in 1877-78. The original building design had a bell tower with a four-faced clock which rang each hour. Later this tower was replaced with a smaller one which housed only a bell (no clock). In 1911 the clock tower was restored and four faces were added, along with a larger bell. In 1962 an electric clock was installed on the south facade of the courthouse and a new bell hung in the old tower. The present bells were cast by McShane Bell Foundry of Baltimore, Maryland at a cost of $3,678.00. A time capsule is buried under the steps of the courthouse on the west side. It was placed there during the Centennial Celebration of 1976 and contains documents relating to that celebration as well as other items of historical interest to future generations.

Old Timers Day

Every year over Labor Day weekend, Old Timers Day is celebrated in Downtown Dickson. This event celebrates the roots of the city with a showcase of local talents and an antique car show. There is also plenty of food and shopping on Main Street.

The Renaissance Center

This beautiful building was once the home to Dickson High School when it was built in 1914 and served as a school for 76 years before becoming The Renaissance Center in 1990. The Renaissance Center is full of local art and history and hosts many events throughout the year including exhibits, educational programs, classes, theatrical performances and lectures.

The Renaissance Center Theatre has been beautifully restored to its original splendor with its elaborate proscenium arch, elegant ceiling details and original light fixtures.