I have traveled around the world and seen some amazing architecture. Courthouses in particular seem to get the special treatment, no matter where you are or how large the town or city. They tend to be the largest, most ornate structure in town, outside of churches or cathedrals. I have found this to be especially true in small American towns. In these small towns, the courthouse is often in the center of town, towering over all other buildings.
Knoxville has the Knox County Courthouse, erected in 1885. The historic courthouse still houses several county departments. However, the majority of the city and county services are in the City-County building, erected in 1979.
Knoxville also has the Howard J. Baker Federal Courthouse. While originally built for Whittle Communications in the early 1990s, it has all the makings of a proper courthouse. I guess that’s why they made it into one. It has a large central courtyard with a beautiful clock tower and cupola. It is considered a postmodern version of neo-Georgian architecture.
The quatrefoil patterns on the balcony and porch of the courthouse.
A better view of the front porch and the arches at the entryway.
The clock tower gives the courthouse a colonial element
A man takes a smoke break in the courtyard of the Knox Co. Courthouse.
The Howard J. Baker Federal Courthouse has an arched entry and a beautiful clock tower and cupola.
Howard J. Baker Federal Courthouse in downtown Knoxville, TN
Other Tennessee Courthouses
The historic Loudon County Courthouse is the standard brick with arched windows and doors. Although, it does not have a clock tower or a front porch with columns, as most courthouses do. Construction on this building began in the late nineteenth century. The Jefferson County Courthouse is located in downtown Dandridge, TN. One of the oldest courthouses in the state of TN, it was erected in 1845. It is constructed in the Greek Revival Style with a tall cupola and large square columns on the front entry. The building is on a large hill, giving it a slightly uneven look.
The historic Loudon Courthouse
It’s Christmas in small town America. The historic Loudon Courthouse is decorated and picturesque.
Jefferson County Courthouse is located in downtown Dandridge, TN.
We finally got back on the road for Tuesday Trekkin’. My Tuesdays have turned into take the cat to the vet day. We have 6 cats and 4 of them are seniors, so vet visits are a way of life. Anyway, back to the real reason we’re here.
Plans? What plans?
We had been planning to go to Jonesborough, the first town in Tennessee. However, plans are more like suggestions for us, so that didn’t happen. It was cold and I didn’t fancy walking around outside in the cold. We decided a car ride might be a better option. We could see things and still enjoy the heated seats. There was also the lure of possible snow in the mountains. Snow can make pretty pictures.
We planned to eat at a bbq place in Townsend, but we got there and it was closed for the season. We found a great little Italian place, Brianna’s Italian Restaurant and Cuisine, just down the road instead. It proved to be a happy accident. Walt had the stromboli and I had the eggplant parmesan. Both were excellent! We will definitely be going back.
Cades Cove was a bit of a disappointment as there was only a bit of snow here and there. Winter in the mountains is brown. Cades Cove is a valley in the Great Smoky Mountains National Park. The road is an 11 mile loop where you can see tons of wildlife, some old historic cabins, and a few old churches. We took the shortcut though and saw none of that. Onward we went.
They just blew a whole in the mountain and made a tunnel.
The trees are bare and there is a dusting of snow. You know that water is cold!
The Great Smoky Mountain National Park is full of trails and paths
Winter in the Cove is quiet.
Walt decided we might try Elkmont, but the sun was setting fast. We weren’t sure we’d make it in time. They close a lot of the roads after dark due to possible hazardous conditions in the winter. But we made it! I had not been there before and found it pretty cool. It’s a small resort community in the mountains where people could stay in the summer. Most of the leases were up in 2001. After that, it became a ghost town. The Wonderland Hotel was once in this area, but in 2005 it collapsed. Most of the historical items were removed and a small annex was left. The annex burned down in 2016.
Several houses in the Elkmont Community are still standing and in decent shape.
A log cabin in the Elkmont Community
A summer cabin in the Elkmont resort community
The steps to the Wonderland Hotel
Sitting on the steps that go up to the ruins of the Wonderland Hotel
The chimney of the Wonderland Hotel stands alone at sunset in Elkmont.
An old sink from the ruins of the Wonderland Hotel.
In 2017, I started a new travel blog called Tuesday Trekkin’. I take Tuesday off of work so my husband and I can spend some time together and travel around East Tennessee. So far, we’ve gone to Clinton, Norris, the Foothills Parkway, Burlington in East Knoxville, and Lenoir City.
Clinton was the first official Trek. Clinton is an adorable little town with tons of antique shops. I also recommend a trip to the Green Mcadoo Cultural Center.
Green McAdoo Cultural Center Sculpture
Downtown Clinton Tennessee
Hoskins restaurant sign
Historic Clinton TN
The next Trek was to the Foothills Parkway in the Great Smoky Mountains in East Tennessee. A beautiful drive up the mountain with gorgeous views.
An old road side store in rural Tennessee. It’s old, rotting, falling apart, but the flag still stands.
The back porch is overgrown with weeds, as the cover threatens to fall in.
The side doors stand open, hanging from the hinges, threatening to fall off at any time.
Norris, TN was our third trek. We timed this just right. The leaves were amazing that day!
He stood very still, showing very little fear of us.
It was closed for the season. But we were able to look around.
Orange and Yellow leaves create a fiery bed around the historic Rice Grist Mill in Norris Dam State Park.
Stone steps at the Rice Grist Mill in Norris Dam State Park. The autumn leaves have fallen and the recent rain gave them the feel of an orange water fall.
A heron sits still and quiet by the stream in Norris Dam State Park in the fall.
Norris Post Office sits among the fallen autumn leaves.
The colorful autumn leaves are reflected in Norris Lake on the quiet, still water.
I snuck in a weekend trek to Nicholasville, KY on Thanksgiving weekend.
The Jessamine County Courthouse in Nicholasville, KY looks different from most other American courthouses.
A small church just off of the main street in Nicholasville.
An old cafe sign I found in an alley in Nicholasville, KY.
The Jessamine County Courthouse in Nicholasville, KY is an unusual Gothic architecture.
One trek kept us close to home with a drive around Burlington in East Knoxville.
The Lunch House in Burlington is a popular spot for breakfast and lunch.
Greenlee’s Drug Store has long been closed for business.
Ace Building Golden Gloves Arena in Chilhowee Park
The Homer Hamilton is an amphitheater in Chilhowee Park. It is used for concerts during the Tennessee Valley Fair.
Our final trek of the year was to Lenoir City. The best thing about Lenoir City was the Le Noir Restaurant. Downtown was quiet with a few antique shops.
One of the best meals we’ve had on a Tuesday Trek so far.
A warm interior with a little retro feel. The food was great and service perfect!
This sign is modern with a retro feel. It felt a little out of place since it’s so new compared to everything else downtown
A lit barbershop pole in downtown Lenoir City, TN.
The long shadows at sunset and the Christmas bow give this that small town feel.
The flag blowing in the wind with the Used Books sign grabbed my attention immediately.
The side entrance to the firehouse feels very retro and looks inviting in this early sunset photo
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The second installment of Tuesday Trekkin’ features the Foothills Parkway in the Great Smoky Mountains in East Tennessee. We decided it’s fall and the leaves might be ready for viewing. We left the house with a plan to eat lunch at a Cuban place in Maryville, a small town on the way. We went the wrong way and ended up a little out of the way. A slight argument involving the words, “I will not turn around!” may have happened. I will just say that I was not driving and leave it at that.
Aroma Cafe Interior
We finally made it to the Cuban place – The Aroma Cafe. We placed our order at the counter and grabbed our number. It’s a small place and our food was made to order. We both had Cuban Sandwiches with Cuban coffee. I also added fried plantains and a guava and cream cheese empanada. Raiders of the Lost Ark was on the TV and I admit it made me want to watch it again. It seemed the perfect movie for our lunch. The food was fine. The sandwiches had mayo, not something either of us expected or cared for. The plantains were yummy and the empanada was fine. If we go back, I’d definitely try something different. I hear the flan is pretty darn good there. We finished and got back on the road.
US 129 Dragon Harley Davidson
We made our way to the Foothills Parkway with intent to stop at Look Rock and take pictures. We missed it some how. We did stop at several spots and got some great views. Photos of mountains and trees are pretty, but not my favorite. I prefer something that tells a little more of a story. We made our way down and came out at Chilhowee Lake where the Chilhowee Dam is located. The lake was beautiful and it would have been a great day for a picnic. We stopped at the Harley Davidson store and I took pics of the old building beside it. Did I mention the area is a well known place bikers of all kinds, motorized and manual. We saw motorcyclists and bicyclists making their way up the mountain. Kudos to both.
Back in Knoxville, I remembered that we needed beer. We stopped at the Casual Pint in Bearden, grabbed a few six packs and had a pint while there. A low key trek but a great day anyway.
Left Hand Milk Stout
Walt soaking up the sun
This week’s gallery is orange, orange, and orange! Not the fruit. I don’t seem to have any photos of oranges. Might need to make a new goal.
I live in East Tennessee. If you don’t know, that’s the home of the Tennessee Volunteers. Go Big Orange! is the motto around here. Especially in the fall. I know it’s spring, but it feels like a good time to show my love for the color orange.
My husband has an orange International Harvester pickup. It has its own personality and is maybe a little worn. But it still runs like a charm, sometimes.
Also, I have an an orange and white cat. Anyone will tell you, orange cats are the best! They tend to be a little more affectionate and loving. Maybe a little more people oriented. At least, the ones I’ve met. This boy is no exception. He loves a good snuggle.
And there’s always orange food. Donuts anyone? Yes, I ate some of those after taking that pic. The orange peppers, however, were given to the compost heap.
Orange Fog Lights
Single Orange Leaf
Chrome Hood Ornament
International Harvester Truck
Buick 8 front end
Big Orange Cleaners and Alpha Omega Hair Design
Yoder’s Donuts, dripping with hot glaze.
The dictionary defines a bridge as a structure carrying a road, path, railroad, or canal across a river, ravine, road, railroad, or other obstacle. This week’s gallery contains photo of bridges around the world. Some bridges over large bodies of water and some over small creeks.
To purchase prints of these photos, click here.
Seán Heuston Bridge
Storm clouds roll in over the city, just as the sun is setting.
A detail from the Grattan Bridge.
Clouds Over the House
South Bank View
Time on Thames
The Bridge Ove
Samuel Beckett Bridge
To see a gallery of bridge art by other artists, click here.
I live in East Tennessee, so a great many of my photos are from the area. We sometimes take our home town for granted. We ignore the history, the landmarks, and the beauty. Last year, I tried to make an effort to take photos of my area just like I would if I were a tourist. I ended up with a collection of reflection photos from downtown Knoxville and some nice photos from rural Tennessee. Of course, the Sunsphere appears as well. To purchase prints of the following, click here.
Big Orange Cleaners and Alpha Omega Hair Design
Fire Exit Reflection
Four Empty Squares
The Mighty Tennessee
A young woman takes a selfie in a second floor window.
Tennessee times 3
Watch for destrians
Tennessee Theatre Marquee
Downtown Knoxville reflections
The JFG Coffee sign in the Old City
JFG Coffee Sign with map
Sky on Jellico
Jellico Motel Restaurant sign is reflected in the windows of the closed restaurant
Jellico Motel and Restaurant sign. Memories of Americana and road travel in its hay day.
Oliver Hotel Sign
Kay’s Ice Cream
Gas Station Trailer Park
Out of Gas
To view a gallery of Tennessee art, click here.