Historic Travellers Rest
Historic Travellers Rest Plantation has been a significant landmark since the 18th century. From prehistoric skulls to a successful plantation, Travellers Rest stayed in the Overton Family for over 100 years. It played a role in Nashville’s history and today stands as a historic museum.
John Overton was a prominent judge for the Superior Court of Tennessee. He purchased over 1,000 acres south of Nashville to build his home in 1799. During construction, Overton discovered many prehistoric skulls that were located where the present house cellar is. These skulls led Overton to nickname the property Golgotha. The skulls have since been attributed to a burial site for a Native American Mississippian village.
The home upon completion was two stories with only four rooms. Judge John Overton thought that it was sufficient for his family to occupy. He had to travel a lot around the state serving in courts and decided to change the name of his home to Travellers Rest. This home served as his place of rest when he was not traveling the state.
His term as Superior Judge ended in 1810, he expanded the home at Travellers Rest and soon after he was a co-founder of Memphis, Tennessee. Overton was also an advisor to Andrew Jackson. In 1820, he married widow Mary McConnell White who had several children from a previous marriage. Together they had some children of their own.
After John Overton’s death in 1833, Mary continued to care for the plantation. At one point there were over 80 slaves who worked the grounds of Travellers Rest. She passed away in 1862, and her son John Overton II took full control over operations at the plantation.
The home remained in the family for many years. Finally in 1954, it was facing the struggles of demolition. A museum was established upon the property to save it from being destroyed. Today many visitors come to explore the grounds and home of the Overton’s at Travellers Rest.
Violet Sky’s Visit
Travelers Rest is a beautiful property that has an extensive history. The long driveway leading up to the home sets the tone for its magnificent presence. While the home represents the charm of early 1800s architecture it does bear the honor of being listed on the National Register of Historic Places.
How to Visit
Travellers Rest is located in southern Nashville at 636 Farrell Parkway. Hours and admission are applicable to the site. For more information about visiting the property, please visit the official website here.
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