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TENNESSEE-
Charlotte
, TN- 8/99

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CHARLOTTE, Tennessee- 8/99

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CLUBS & ORGANIZATIONS OF CHARLOTTE
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F & AM Lodge #97

Historic Tour Stop # 28

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HISTORY OF CHARLOTTE

HISTORIC TIMELINE OF CHARLOTTE, Tennessee
The whole city is listed on the National Register of Historic Places.
There are more than 22 historic structures built between 1804 and 1920

1804

Charlotte is established
The first County Court meets in a log house 3 miles from city on March 18
Court meets at homes of Robert John Nesbitt or John Spencer for the first 4 years
Forty acres of land is authorized by the Legislature to be purchased for the town.
Charles Stewart donates fifty acres of land to establish the town.
His offer is accepted because of a large spring located on his land.
A man named Ash is hired to survey the property.
A Public Square and fifty-nine regular shaped lots result from the survey.
Town lots are offered for sale beginning in 1804.
Profit from sale of lots is used to build courthouse which still stands.
City located on main stage route between Nashville, Clarksville, and Memphis
The first store on the square is Molton Dickson's general store.
It serves as a site for public rallies and sales before the courthouse is built.
The first house in Charlotte is built by William Peacock.
John Hyde builds the next house on the southwest corner of the square.

1806

Town becomes county seat
The first post office is opened
John Spencer opens first store in Charlotte
John Spencer is granted a license for a saloon
John Holland opens a general store
Elisha Williams operates the first blacksmith shop

1807 The first post office is opened in Charlotte
1810 The first tavern is established by Rank Ellis on northwest corner of square
1812 A tavern is operated by Ben Joslin
1819 The Tennessee Supreme Court holds regular sessions in town from 1819 to 1821
1828 The city is incorporated
1830 A devastating tornado strikes the town on May 30
The tornado levels all but two buildings including the first courthouse
Most public records from courthouse are never found
Some books are found several miles away

The roof of the jail is found 13 miles away
Tracy Academy is established in Charlotte before 1830
The Voorhees-James House and one other building are the only ones left.

Courtesy of:
The James Family Preservation Trust &
Stray Leaves website -  www.ericjames.org

A little correction on the background data...
The home was built in 1806 by Jacob Voorhees.  William James 1795-1872, A
former senator in Kentucky, migrated to Charlotte and purchased the home in
July 1819. Through the left door the public entered his store and post
office. Sen. Wm. James was postmaster in Charlotte, his wife assuming the
position on his death. Later the store would serve as a bank. He also taught
school in Charlotte. Five children were born in this home. His son, Col.
William James 1847-1933 graduated West Point in 1872 and retired from the
military in 1902, returning & occupying his family's home. Col. James
inherited extensive land holdings in nearby White Bluff, of which William
Sr. was a founder. He contributed the land for the Col. William James Middle
School, in which he is buried, and the Methodist Church next to the school.
The home in recent years has been fully restored. Among the family relations
of these William James is Frank & Jesse James, Jefferson Davis, the
Presidents Bush & V.P. J. Danforth Quayle, as well as numerous judges,
senators, representatives and community founders in the Commonwealth of
Kentucky. They also are related to Thomas James 1744-1825, one of the
earliest founding residents of Nashville.

 

1843 A bill is introduced to move state capitol to Charlotte
The bill fails by one vote in the legislature
1849 The General Merchandise Store is built
Building construction is by L L Leach from Pennsylvania
Historic Tour of Downtown Charlotte, Tennessee*
*Much of the information to follow was obtained from a brochure by Sherry J Kilgore

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#1 Dickson County Courthouse

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Bids are issued for courthouse construction in 1806.
The estimated cost of construction is approximately $ 10,000.
The courthouse and jail are completely demolished by a tornado on May 30, 1830.
Court sessions are held in the schoolhouse until new courthouse can be built.
Present building is erected on the foundation of the original courthouse.
The jail is rebuilt with materials from the former courthouse
The new courthouse is completed by builder, Phillip Murray in 1833.
The jail burns 1878.
The building is enlarged in 1930.
Major restoration of the old courthouse is completed in 1989.
The Dickson County Courthouse is the oldest courthouse in use in Tennessee.
#2 Peoples Bank
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The Dickson County Banking Company is organized in 1907.
The existing building is erected in 1920.
The name is changed to the Peoples Bank in 1988.
Extensive remodeling is completed to the building in 1988
#3 Cumberland Presbyterian Church
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The church is organized in the bounds of Montgomery Bell State Park in early 1800's.
The first building is erected in town in the 1820's.
The existing building is erected by donated slave labor in 1855.
It contains an upstairs slave gallery.
Construction is by brick fired in James Dickson's kiln.
The church serves as a Union hospital during the Civil War.
Extensive repairs are made to the building in 1949.
The former steeple is destroyed by lightning.
The bell tower houses a bell salvaged from a steamboat named the Sarah Blayden.
#4 Dickson County Courthouse Annex
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Building is erected 1977.
Building occupies site of Charlotte Stagecoach Inn, torn down in 1913.
Dillingham's Store occupied site until 1976.
#5 Dickson County Election Office
Building erected in 1930.
Built on site of the Prestly House.
#6 Bower's Store Building
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Building erected as a general merchandise store by Isaac Bowers in 1888.
Later becomes the Charlotte Coffee Shop and the Charlotte Square Restaurant.
#7 U S Post Office
Building erected in1965.
#8 Charlotte Drug Company
First building constructed in 1920
Present building was constructed as a restaurant and law office.
#9 L L Letch Building
Building erected as the Leonard Lane Leech General Merchandise Store in 1849.
It was known as the Earnest Store and was for many years the Masonic Lodge.
#10 Voorhies-James House
Built by Captain William James in 1806.
The first floor served a store with the second floor being a residence. 
James became the first postmaster for Charlotte
Building later became the residence of Jacob Voorhies.
Voorhies later served in the State Senate.
#11 Hickerson-Colonel T K Grigsby Residence
Built by Ward and Madeling Hickerson in 1950
Located on the site of the former Grigsby Residence, built 1820.
#12 Raymond's Garage
Building erected 1920.
#13 Smith House
Built in 1880.
#14 L J Browning Residence
Built in 1880.
# 15 Collier-Cook House
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Built by William Clements Collier in 1855.
The upstairs section is added by Justice William Loch Cook in 1929.
#16 B A Collier Store
Built by Oscar Caldwell in 1949.
All of the original counters and some of the original furnishings remain.
#17 Hickerson Hotel
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The first building is a store owned by Tom Overton
It is destroyed by the 1830 tornado.
The present building is constructed in 1853.
It is bought by Felix Hickerson as a residence.
A conversion to a hotel on the stagecoach route to Clarksville is made before 1876.
The building is used by General Kirwine's headquarters during the Union occupation.
The old kitchen and dining room town down and rooms turned to apartments in the1920's.
#18 Hickerson Shoe Shop
Building erected by shoemaker Felix Hickerson in 1876.
#19 Marsh Residence
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Home built in 1930.
#20 McNelly-Marsh Residence
Home constructed in 1840.
Many changes have been made by recent additions.
#21 Christopher Columbus Collier Home
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Home built by C C Collier, a local merchant in 1830
#22 Old Masonic Lodge/Post Office
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The building is erected with a post office on the first floor with a Masonic Lodge above.

#23 Mayor's Office
Building erected 1900.
It serves for many years as the law office of William Leech, Sr.
It has twice housed the Mayor's Office.
#24 Leech and Mallory's General Merchandise Store
Building constructed before the Civil War, about 1860.
It houses an undertakers establishment at one time
Captain W J Mallory operates the White Elephant Saloon in the building.
The Bernadine Grocery occupies the building in 1977.
#25 Old Jailer's House
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The old jail, destroyed by the 1830 tornado, was built in 1804.
The present building is built from bricks from the old courthouse.
The building is enlarged to present size in the 1930's.
Acquisition is made by the Dickson County Historical Society in 1978.
Historical records and artifacts of Dickson County are housed in building.
#26 Town Spring
Emerges from a cave spring located southeast of the Public Square.
It flows down the hillside and empties into Town Branch..
Was site of an early Indian camp.
#27 Leech-Black Home and Office 
Home built by Dr Daniel R Leech in 1855.
#28 Charlotte Mason Lodge #97
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The lodge is chartered on October 6, 1842.
Meetings are held on the Court Square for 148 years.
The existing building is erected 1991.
Charlotte Lodge is the only one in the state to meet by the sign of the moon.
#29 Leech-Jackson Residence
Home built 1900.
#30 Hicks Motor Company
The building is erected as a Desoto/Plymouth dealership in 1920.
#31 Water Street Church of Christ
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The church building was begun in 1912 and completed in 1914.
#32 Millinery Shop
Built sometimes in the 1900's.
#33 Barn
The building is a remaining part of the original tannery and stables.
#34 Charlotte Office Building
The Historic Office Building is erected in 1902.
It was originally the Charlotte Methodist Church until 1974.
The City acquires the building in 1975 and uses it until it is sold in 1979.
It has held offices for the District Attorney General since 1990.
PEOPLE OF CHARLOTTE
Early settlers include:
Montgomery Bell
Sterling Brewer (Lt Governor from 1821 to 1823)
James Douglas
John Ellis
Frank Ellis
John Hyde
Ben Joslin
James R Napier (James Robertson's son-in-law)
Thomas Parnell
William Peacock
John Reed
Christian Robertson
John Spencer
Marable Stone
Anthony Wayne Vanleer
Elisha Williams
Aunt Charlotte Robertson
Charlotte is named for Charlotte Robertson of Nashville

Andrew Jackson
Is a lawyer and a judge in Charlotte.
He preside over the court of Law and Equity.
CHURCHES OF CHARLOTTE
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Calvary United Pentecostal Church Water Street Church of Christ Central Church of Christ Charlotte First Baptist Church
McGavock AME Church
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Rebuilt 1930
SCHOOLS OF CHARLOTTE
Charlotte Jr High School

Grades 7-9
250 Humphreys St
PO Box 40
Charlotte, TN 37036
Charlotte Elementary
School
Grades K-6
4000 Hwy 48 N
Charlotte, TN 37036
Tracy Academy
Established 1830
STATISTICS OF CHARLOTTE
POPULATION of CHARLOTTE
1960    551
1970    610
1980    788
1990 1,015
2000 1,153
LOCATION CODES for CHARLOTTE
Zip 37036
Area 615
Phone Prefix 789

 

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