Summertime is vacation time.
It is a time when many folks are eager to travel afar to experience new and exotic locations. However, many people prefer the simpler pleasure of visiting interesting places closer to home.
Fortunately, Hendersonville residents have many interesting places to visit right in our backyard. We are blessed to live in a city and a county that contain some of the most historic sites in the nation, all available with just a short drive and low admission fees.
In addition to the entertainment value, local historic sites also offer tremendous educational opportunities to keep younger minds active during summer break from school.
Let’s take a look at three area historic sites that are popular with both locals and tourists.
Historic Mansker’s Station is located in Goodlettsville adjacent to Moss-Wright Park. The site features two primary attractions, the Bowen Plantation House and a reproduction of the original Mansker’s Fort.
The Bowen House, built circa 1787, is a two-story structure that is the oldest standing brick home in Tennessee. The house was constructed for Revolutionary War Capt. William Bowen, and it was the birthplace of William Bowen Campbell, who served as the governor of Tennessee during the mid-1800s.
The replica fort depicts a wooden log station that was common throughout Middle Tennessee during the late 1700s. It is particularly popular with children, who get to experience what frontier life was like in a fort.
Mansker’s Station also has a Welcome Center that contains a gift shop and a visitors’ museum. In addition to regular operating hours, Mansker’s Station also hosts a variety of special events throughout the year.
Historic Mansker’s Station
705 Caldwell Drive, Goodlettsville
Most Hendersonville residents are familiar with Rock Castle, an 18-acre historic property located on the peninsula at the intersection of Indian Lake Road and Rock Castle Lane. Built in the late 1700s by prominent surveyor and Revolutionary War veteran Daniel Smith, Rock Castle stands today as the oldest structure in Middle Tennessee.
Along with the original house, Rock Castle is also home to the Smith family cemetery, which contains monuments dating back more than 200 years.
Today, Rock Castle is a popular destination in Hendersonville. Each year, it hosts thousands of visitors who attend such events as Sumner Harvest Days, Songwriters’ Nights, a Folk and Bluegrass Festival and the Wonderland Easter Egg Hunt. Along with these public events, Rock Castle is also a popular wedding venue, playing host to more than 25 ceremonies each year.
Rock Castle also offers an outdoor performance pavilion and a gift shop.
Historic Rock Castle
139 Rock Castle Lane, Hendersonville
Historic Rose Mont mansion in Gallatin was built during the 1830s by Josephus Conn Guild, a notable lawyer, judge and politician. Featuring large decorative columns, covered balconies, a sculpted rose garden and an expansive front lawn, Rose Mont is one of the most beautiful and historic properties in Middle Tennessee.
During its heyday, the Rose Mont property was the site of a thoroughbred horse and cattle farm that spread out over 500 acres. Today, Rose Mont serves as a popular wedding and event venue, hosting dozens of special occasions each year.
Along with the mansion itself, Rose Mont also features a detached ballroom and reception/meeting hall that can accommodate up to 175 guests. These facilities are frequently used to host birthday parties, anniversary celebrations, bridal showers and more.
Historic Rose Mont
810 S. Water Ave., Gallatin