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New Johnsonville Area Events

Events in the New Johnsonville Area

Including Waverly, Richland Harbor, Duck River & Cuba Landing TN

If you're looking for something to do, we hope to help fulfill your quest with these events happening in the New Johnsonville area.

The River Flows Through The History of Johnsonville Hike

Where:  New Johnsonville90 Bell Beard Road

When:  November 24, 2017 - 1:00 p.m.

Contact:  (931) 535-2789

It's the day after Thanksgiving and what to do? Many will go shopping, but what about you? Why not burn off some calories and enjoy the late autumn splendor on a Ranger lead hike at Johnsonville State Historic Park? We'll explore how the Tennessee River has shaped the history of Johnsonville since the Civil War. This hike is moderate in difficulty and both adults and children are welcome.

Once inside the park; follow the signs that say "1pm Hike" to meet the Park Ranger at the trailhead. Free admission. We recommend bringing a water bottle, good walking shoes and to dress for the weather.

The Trail Flows, The Trail of Tears - Charlie Rhodarmer

Where:  New Johnsonville90 Bell Beard Road

When:  November 26, 2017 - Unavailable

Contact:  (931) 535-2789

The Cherokee people were forcefully removed from their homelands in Georgia, Alabama, and Tennessee to live in Indian Territory, now Oklahoma. They traveled by foot, horse, wagon, or steamboat in 1838-1839. In fact the water route of the Trail of Tears flowed right past what is now Johnsonville State Historic Park. Join Mr. Charlie Rhodarmer, manager/director of the Sequoyah Birthplace Museum of Vonore, TN for a Sunday afternoon presentation on the Trail of Tears and its connection with the Tennessee River.

Program is free to the public and is presented in support of the Smithsonian Institution's WaterWays Exhibition at Johnsonville State Historic Park November 18th - December 31st, 2017. The WaterWays Exhibition is a presentation of Museum on Main Street which in partnership between the Smithsonian Institution Traveling Exhibition Service, Humanities Tennessee, and Tennessee State Parks.

Recommended for Home Educators. Underwriting for this program is provided by Humanities Tennesse.

African-American Cemetery Re-Dedication

Where:  New Johnsonville90 Bell Beard Road

When:  November 29, 2017 - 11:00 a.m. to 1:00 p.m.

Contact:  (931) 535-2789

937 marked the beginning for Tennessee State Parks. It also marked the beginning of the end for the town of Johnsonville, which would soon be claimed by the construction of Kentucky Dam and the flooding of the Tennessee River. Over the past 80 years, on a hillside in Johnsonville rests an African-American cemetery that became neglected and overlooked. Through the interest of local historians, the work of dedicated volunteers reclaimed this cemetery from the forest. The cemetery is the final resting place of two African-American soldiers from WWI.

As part of this 80th Anniversary Event for Tennessee State Parks, join Deputy Commissioner Brock Hill and other dignitaries as we rededicate this almost forgotten cemetery. Celebrate with us as we look forward to the future of this historical site and of your Tennessee State Parks.

This event is open to the public and we welcome all to attend! Please RSVP by email to Roberta Harper at Roberta.Harper@tn.gov.

Living Lands & Waters - Mike Coyne-Logan

Where:  New Johnsonville90 Bell Beard Road

When:  December 5, 2017 - 7:00 p.m.

Contact:  (931) 535-2789

Is it possible for one person to really make a difference? Living Lands and Waters http://livinglandsandwaters.org/ is one such story. Join Education Coordinator, Mike Coyne-Logan as he shares how Living Lands and Waters travels the Mississippi River and its tributaries physically cleaning up the river and educating teachers, students and communities as to what they can do to improve the rivers around them.

Program is free to the public and is presented in support of the Smithsonian Institution's WaterWays Exhibition at Johnsonville State Historic Park November 18th - December 31st, 2017. The WaterWays Exhibition is a presentation of Museum on Main Street which in partnership between the Smithsonian Institution Traveling Exhibition Service, Humanities Tennessee, and Tennessee State Parks.

Recommended for Home Educators. Underwriting for this program presentation is provided by Humanities Tennessee.

Civil War Naval History of Tennessee - Myers Brown

Where:  New Johnsonville90 Bell Beard Road

When:  December 7, 2017 - 7:00 p.m.

Contact:  (931) 535-2789

Enjoy and evening with author and archivist, Myers Brown of the Tennessee State Library and Archives as he delves into the Civil War naval history of Tennessee. During his presentation he will provide an overview of Federal and Confederate Naval activities and personalities associated with Tennessee during the Civil War. This discussion will offer insight into some of Tennessee's historical naval personalities including profiles of figures such as David Farragut, Matthew Fontaine Maury, and Samuel P. Carter.

Myers Brown is a native of Old Hickory, Tennessee. He received his B.A. in history from Oglethorpe University and his M.A. in public history from Middle Tennessee State University. He is a Fellow and a former Governor of the Company of Military Historians and is on the advisory boards for the Tennessee Civil War National Heritage Area, the Tennessee Civil War Preservation Association, and the Tennessee Great War Commission.

Currently, Myers is employed as an archivist at the Tennessee State Library and Archives and works with the Archives Development Program. Prior to joining the Tennessee State Library and Archives, he served as a curator with the Tennessee State Museum, the Alabama Historical Commission, and as Curator of Military History at the Atlanta History Center. He also served as the chairman of the Tennessee War of 1812 Bicentennial Commission.

He is the author of two books: Images of Tennessee's Union Cavalrymen was published in December 2008, and Images of Tennessee Confederates in April 2011. He served as editor of the Best of the Tennessee Historical Quarterly, Volume 5, Nathan Bedford Forrest and the Confederate Cavalry in West Tennessee, published in April 2013.

He is an adjunct professor at Trevecca Nazarene University in Nashville, and has also taught at Cumberland University in Lebanon, and Volunteer State Community College in Gallatin.

Myers is married to Angie and they have a daughter named Morgan. They reside in Old Hickory, Tennessee.

Program is free to the public and is presented in support of the Smithsonian Institution's WaterWays Exhibition at Johnsonville State Historic Park November 18th - December 31st, 2017. The WaterWays Exhibition is a presentation of Museum on Main Street which in partnership between the Smithsonian Institution Traveling Exhibition Service, Humanities Tennessee, and Tennessee State Parks.

Recommended for Home Educators. Underwriting for this program is provided by Humanities Tennessee.

Steamboatin' to Union Victory - Captain Henry Detweiller

Where:  New Johnsonville90 Bell Beard Road

When:  December 10, 2017 - 2:00 p.m.

Contact:  (931) 535-2789

Captain Henry Detweiller on The Role of Steamboatin' in the Union Victory! Based on the pilot's logs of Captain Detweiller, Brian "Fox" Ellis steps on stage immersing the audience in the vital, though unsung role of steamboats in the siege of Vicksburg, the capture of Natchez, and the horrors of Shiloh. Captain Henry Detweiller was there and shares an eyewitness account. He delivered troops and supplies during the Civil War, was a friend of Lincoln and rival of Mark Twain! Fox brings these stories to life in a first person monologue that shares a unique voice in this important chapter of river history. Fox is also the Riverlorian for the Spirit of Peoria.

Brian "Fox" Ellis is an internationally acclaimed author, storyteller, historian, and naturalist. He has worked with The Abraham Lincoln Presidential Library and Museum, The Field Museum and dozens of other museums across the country. He is the author of 16 books including the critically acclaimed Learning From the Land: Teaching Ecology Through Stories and Activities, (Libraries Unlimited, 2011), the award winning children's picture book The Web at Dragonfly Pond, (DAWN Publications, 2006) and Content Area Reading, Writing and Storytelling (Teacher Ideas Press 2010). Many of his stories are also available on one of 12 CDs. Fox also has deep roots in the Tennessee River Valley with Cherokee ancestry, a great-great-uncle who fired the first shot at Shiloh, and a father who farms just upstream on land that has been in the family since the early days of TN statehood. He and his wife run a Bed and Breakfast in Bishop Hill, Illinois, The Twinflower Inn.

Program is free to the public and is presented in support of the Smithsonian Institution's WaterWays Exhibition at Johnsonville State Historic Park November 18th - December 31st, 2017. The WaterWays Exhibition is a presentation of Museum on Main Street which in partnership between the Smithsonian Institution Traveling Exhibition Service, Humanities Tennessee, and Tennessee State Parks.

Recommended for Home Educators. Underwriting for this program is provided by Humanities Tennessee.

Paddling the Tennessee River - Kim Trevathan

Where:  New Johnsonville90 Bell Beard Road

When:  December 14, 2017 - 7:00 p.m.

Contact:  (931) 535-2789

Kim Trevathan, who paddled the length of the river in 1998, will focus on his personal, professional, and spiritual connection to the Tennessee River. He'll talk about why he decided to paddle the length of a dammed river in a canoe with his dog Jasper in 1998. Showing photographs from the trip, he will describe the challenges (big boats, nine dams, weather, finding places to camp), what he learned, and about why he's planning a second trip going upstream from Paducah to Knoxville, in the same boat. Having grown up in Murray, Kentucky, and now residing in Maryville, Tenn, near the headwaters, Trevathan hopes to convey the spiritual and transformative possibilities of the Tennessee River and other waterways.

A native of Murray, Ky., Kim Trevathan's books are Paddling the Tennessee River: A Voyage on Easy Water (2001), Coldhearted River: A Canoe Odyssey down the Cumberland (2006), and Liminal Zones: Where Lakes End and Rivers Begin (2013). All three books were published by the University of Tennessee Press. His outdoor columns have appeared in the Daily Times (Maryville, Tenn.), the Metro Pulse (Knoxville), and the Knoxville Mercury. Trevathan has been teaching writing (journalism, creative nonfiction, and fiction) at Maryville College for 15 years. In the spring of 2018, the 20-year anniversary of his canoe trip down the Tennessee River and also the year he turns 60, Trevathan plans to paddle the Tennessee River going upstream.

Program is free to the public and is presented in support of the Smithsonian Institution's WaterWays Exhibition at Johnsonville State Historic Park November 18th - December 31st, 2017. The WaterWays Exhibition is a presentation of Museum on Main Street which in partnership between the Smithsonian Institution Traveling Exhibition Service, Humanities Tennessee, and Tennessee State Parks.

Recommended for Home Educators. Underwriting for this program presentation is provided by Humanities Tennessee.

Mr. Lincoln's Brown Water Navy School Day

Where:  New Johnsonville90 Bell Beard Road

When:  December 15, 2017 - 10:00 a.m. to 2:00 p.m.

Contact:  (931) 535-2789

Just what is a Brown Water Navy? How is it different from a Blue Water Navy? What was the Federal Navy doing in Tennessee anyway during the Civil War? These are all great questions and we have some great answers for you. Visit with Federal sailors and learn what role the Navy played in the Civil War history of Johnsonville. Find out how the sailors spent their time around the Army supply base at Johnsonville. As part of the event, visit the Smithsonian Institution's WaterWays exhibition at the Welcome Center. Learn how water impacts people's lives in peace, during war, for industry, recreation and more...

Mr. Lincoln's Brown Water Navy

Where:  New Johnsonville90 Bell Beard Road

When:  December 16, 2017 - 10:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m.

Contact:  (931) 535-2789

Just what is a Brown Water Navy? How is it different from a Blue Water Navy? What was the Federal Navy doing in Tennessee anyway during the Civil War? These are all great questions and we have some great answers for you. Visit with Federal sailors and learn what role the Navy played in the Civil War history of Johnsonville. Find out how the sailors spent their time around the Army supply base at Johnsonville. As part of the event, visit the Smithsonian Institution's WaterWays exhibition at the Welcome Center. Learn how water impacts people's lives in peace, during war, for industry, recreation and more...

An Interview with Robert Elvington

Where:  New Johnsonville90 Bell Beard Road

When:  December 23, 2017 - 2:00 p.m.

Contact:  (931) 535-2789

Robert Allen Elvington was born April 9, 1929 in Johnsonville, Tennessee. He passed from this life after a long illness on August 8, 2016 at his home in Waverly, Tennessee.

Mr. Elvington served in the Armed Forces of the United States of America as a Corporal in the 7th Infantry Division in combat in Korea. He was honorably discharged in October of 1952. Back in the states, he went to work for Oman Construction in Nashville, Tennessee as a heavy equipment operator building the infrastructure for many of the city's new neighborhoods, hospitals and the Municipal Auditorium. He met his future bride after seeing her with a family friend. He had a car, they wanted to cruise, and the rest is history.

The couple married on April 5, 1958 in Corinth, Mississippi. They moved to Nashville where Robert continued working for Oman. In 1963, the young Elvington family moved back to Humphreys County where Mr. Elvington commuted for a few years until being hired at Conalco Aluminum Plant. He worked there for 23 years until the plant closed in 1985.

The Elvingtons started Waverly Family Florist in 1983 and he drove the delivery truck. After they sold the business, they traveled with Brown and Root Construction. They finally retired to enjoy more time with their grandchildren.

When he was feeling well, Mr. Elvington spent nearly every day at the Johnsonville State Historic Park (former site of Old Johnsonville) where he enjoyed sitting in his jeep by the water, watching the wildlife and talking with friends and visitors to the park. He never met a stranger and could start a conversation with anyone.

The staff at Johnsonville State Historic Park especially enjoyed hearing Mr. Elvington share his stories of growing up in Old Johnsonville. In 2013 Park Manager Jerry Wooten and Regional Interpretive Specialist John Froeschauer conducted an oral history interview with Mr. Elvington and recorded his reflections on life in Old Johnsonville before it was claimed by the construction of Kentucky Dam and the impoundment of the Tennessee River.

An Interview with Robert Elvington

Where:  New Johnsonville90 Bell Beard Road

When:  December 30, 2017 - 2:00 p.m.

Contact:  (931) 535-2789

Robert Allen Elvington was born April 9, 1929 in Johnsonville, Tennessee. He passed from this life after a long illness on August 8, 2016 at his home in Waverly, Tennessee.

Mr. Elvington served in the Armed Forces of the United States of America as a Corporal in the 7th Infantry Division in combat in Korea. He was honorably discharged in October of 1952. Back in the states, he went to work for Oman Construction in Nashville, Tennessee as a heavy equipment operator building the infrastructure for many of the city's new neighborhoods, hospitals and the Municipal Auditorium. He met his future bride after seeing her with a family friend. He had a car, they wanted to cruise, and the rest is history.

The couple married on April 5, 1958 in Corinth, Mississippi. They moved to Nashville where Robert continued working for Oman. In 1963, the young Elvington family moved back to Humphreys County where Mr. Elvington commuted for a few years until being hired at Conalco Aluminum Plant. He worked there for 23 years until the plant closed in 1985.

The Elvingtons started Waverly Family Florist in 1983 and he drove the delivery truck. After they sold the business, they traveled with Brown and Root Construction. They finally retired to enjoy more time with their grandchildren.

When he was feeling well, Mr. Elvington spent nearly every day at the Johnsonville State Historic Park (former site of Old Johnsonville) where he enjoyed sitting in his jeep by the water, watching the wildlife and talking with friends and visitors to the park. He never met a stranger and could start a conversation with anyone.

The staff at Johnsonville State Historic Park especially enjoyed hearing Mr. Elvington share his stories of growing up in Old Johnsonville. In 2013 Park Manager Jerry Wooten and Regional Interpretive Specialist John Froeschauer conducted an oral history interview with Mr. Elvington and recorded his reflections on life in Old Johnsonville before it was claimed by the construction of Kentucky Dam and the impoundment of the Tennessee River.

WaterWays - Smithsonian Traveling Exhibit

Where:  New Johnsonville90 Bell Beard Road

When:  November 18, 2017 thru December 30, 2017 - 10:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m.

Contact:  (931) 535-2789

Water is life. Not only do we need water to physically live, water is part of our everyday lives influencing our work, play, and the choices we make everyday. Learn more how water shapes our lives by visiting the traveling WaterWays exhibit from the Smithsonian Institution. The exhibit will be available at the Johnsonville State Historic Park Welcome Center from 10am-4pm Monday through Saturday.

Johnsonville Charge 5 Mile Run

Where:  New Johnsonville90 Bell Beard Road

When:  January 27, 2018 - 2:00 p.m.

Contact:  (931) 535-2789

The Johnsonville Charge 5 Mile Run is part of the Tennessee State Park Running Tour. This is the 39th year of the State Parks Running Tour, the longest state parks running series in the U.S. It consists of 21 road races, of which two are trail race with distances varying from 5 to 13 miles. All races are held on Saturdays from October to March at 11 AM local time in 21 different State Parks, located from Memphis to Kingsport.

These events are sponsored by local running clubs, which are responsible for registration, timing and results. The State Parks provide facilities, race security and traffic control. Walkers are welcome. Total number of participants last season was 3,000.

First come, first serve parking will be available in the lower area of the park. All other parking will be 1 mile away from Start/Finish line and will be serviced by shuttle bus. Plan to arrive early for the best parking closest to Start Finish line.

Looking for more?  View all the Kentucky Lake & Lake Barkley Events.


Take A Kid Fishing
Photo by Shawn Dunnaway

These boys had a blast bank fishing on Kentucky Lake. Take your kids on a fishing trip to Kentucky Lake and Lake Barkley!