August 21, 2013

Southern Roadtrip Detour: Rogersville, Tennessee

I'm such a sucker for small southern towns that boast some sort of historical significance. If Davy Crockett slept there or anything similar, that's good enough for me. This is why when I was traveling along I-40 in East Tennessee recently and saw a sign for Historic Rogersville, I suggested to my friend and traveling companion that we take a detour.

My friend Terry and I had driven from Knoxville to nearby Johnson City to hear Emily P. Freeman speak at a women's conference. You might be familiar with Emily as author of the book Grace for the Good Girl and her blog, Chatting at the Sky.

It was an enjoyable event and Emily shared some encouraging words, but the highlight of the trip (in my opinion) was historic Rogersville.

It's a little ways off the interstate, but we had some time so we decided to check it out. Rogersville, Tennessee is one of the oldest towns in the state and has a couple of claims to fame. One is the amount of Federal-style architecture, which was impressive. Another is the Hale Springs Inn, an historic hotel and tavern that is fully operational and apparently quite the popular spot for swanky events. We were disappointed to find that it was closed to the public for a wedding that particular day.

Since we couldn't check out anything beyond the exterior of the Hale Springs Inn, we headed out of town just a bit to another historic site, the Thomas Amis Mill. The Thomas Amis home, a log cabin, was built in the late 1700s and it has now been restored and converted into a restaurant.

Amis Mill Eatery offers a full menu of different tasty items, including cheesy squash soup which I'd never had before but enjoyed very much.

It was so fun to dine out on the back porch of a house built in the 1700s while looking down at this lovely view. I hope to travel back to Rogersville again because it's just so quaint. Plus the Hale Springs Inn restaurant seems like a good excuse to return!

Have you made any fun or unexpected detours lately? Safe travels!