Location: Vonore, Tennessee
Webpage: Tennessee State Parks
General Description: Fort Loudoun State Park is a 1200 acre park centered around one of the earliest British fortifications on the western frontier in eastern Tennessee. During the French and Indian War, in 1756, the Colony of South Carolina was threatened by the French and Indian forces along the frontier so they constructed Fort Loudoun to protect the area and strengthen the ties with the Cherokee Nation that had a number of villages in this area of Tennessee. After 4 years the relationship with the Cherokee Nation fell apart due to the imprisonment of many of their chiefs and the Cherokees captured Fort Loudoun in 1760. After fort was abandoned until 1933 when the Tennessee General Assembly purchased the property and reconstructed the fort. Today it is an impressive reconstruction of a 1700 frontier fort with log walls and buildings.
1) It is always fun to place locations in history and it was interesting to find out that this part of eastern Tennessee was the frontier back before and early on in American history. This fort was built and lost during the period of the French and Indian War which is about 20 years prior to the birth of the United States, even though it was not lost to the French, but to their Cherokee allies after serious mistreatment of the Indians.
2) The fort has been reconstructed, which means they have rebuild the wooden walls surrounding the fort along with the dry moat in front of the walls. They have also rebuilt all of the barracks, cook house, blacksmith, store, and officer quarters. It made it very easy to visualize what life in the fort was like back in the mid 18th century.
3) The visitor center has an excellent film about the history of the fort and informative exhibits that give a good understanding of life back in the 1700s on the frontier. The fort had a long history of supply problems from the military forts in the Colony of South Carolina on the other side of the Smoky Mountains.