In the last few years, someone who mentions the movies at Tiny Town may cause a bit of confusion – especially for those who remember the Tiny Town of the past.
Going north through Adams, the traveler went through Guthrie and then to the big intersection on Highway 41 north. From that intersection, one could go to Clarksville, to Olmstead, to Hopkinsville.
Because there was no lottery in Tennessee at the time, many people went to Tiny Town just to buy lottery tickets. There were several smaller businesses there for purchasing the tickets. It was indeed a Tiny Town.
One could find the Stagecoach Inn nearby.
Stagecoach Inn or Gray’s Inn was built in 1833 by Major John P. Gray, the mayor of Elkton, Ky.
The National Park Service tells that the beautiful old house was used as a hospital during the Civil War.
Certainly, 100 years later, the Stagecoach Inn had become a restaurant well-known for its steaks. Often, bridal luncheons and other special events were held there.
There are still questions about some of the stories told about the Inn. One of these stories told that Jenny Lind, the “Swedish Nightingale,” sang from the balcony there.
What is true is that Jenny Lind once stopped at Tanglewood on the “Louisville and Nashville Pike.” With the singer was P.T. Barnum, her promoter.
The owner of Tanglewood, John Buntin, asked her to sing, and she did. A historic marker was posted there at one time.
This story may be found in “Historic Robertson County” by Catherine Holman and Jean Durrett.
Another questionable tale is that Andrew Jackson spent the night at Stagecoach Inn.
If he did, it would certainly be ironic, for internet sources tell that it was one of the stops along the Trail of Tears.
It is said that White Path, a Cherokee chief, stopped there at the well. Supposedly, he named it “Utok Amawah” or “Well of Sweet Water.”
Incidentally, White Path was already close to death and is buried in Trail of Tears Park in Hopkinsville.
“Historic Robertson County” tells that Sam Houston went through the county with a Cherokee delegation on their way to Washington, D.C.
They hoped to save their land, but the effort failed. The Trail of Tears was the result.
The New Echota Treaty sent Cherokees from northern Georgia, western North Carolina, and eastern Tennessee to Oklahoma.
They crossed the Tennessee River at the mouth of the Hiwassee River and then walked to McMinnville. They came through Murfreesboro and Nashville and into Robertson County.
Coopertown and Turnersville are noted particularly as places passed by the Cherokees.
Ironically and tragically, land near the massacre at Battle Creek was part of the Trail of Tears. That land was then owned and still is owned by the family of J.L. Watts.
The Trail of Tears led on to Port Royal, where a part of the Trail still may be walked today. The Red River was crossed at that point before the Cherokees continued to the area near Stagecoach Inn, on to Hopkinsville, and on.
Around 17,000 Cherokees and their slaves began the trip in 1838. Over 4,000 died.
In the Eagle’s Eye is sponsored by the Robertson County Historical Society. Call 615-382-7173 for more information.