As you step back in time with your visit to the Heritage Center, you’ll have the opportunity to wander through our Historical Village.
The Historic Village is home to 13 historic buildings that have been furnished according to the period in which they were built. Some of these buildings were de-constructed, transported to the Heritage Center and then put back together for our guests to enjoy.
In our efforts to preserve and protect the Heritage of our region, we have made every attempt to showcase buildings, cabins and barns that are authentic and true reflections of East TN.
Our Historic Buildings include:
- The Cardwell Log Cabin – On July 16, 1891, James Andrew Cardwell and Martha Clabough were married in Servier County, Tennessee. Between 1892 and 1895, James built this cabin, their first home, located between Pigeon Forge and Gatlinburg. This single-pen cabin was built with logs he had cut from trees on the property. Additional trees were cut for lumber and tan bark, which helped pay for the 100 acres the Cardwell family purchased. James was a skilled carpenter, but principally a farmer raising wheat, assorted vegetables, tobacco, cattle, and hogs. James and Martha had ten children, but only six survived. In the 1920s, the Cardwells moved to a new house on the property and Uncle Willie moved into this cabin.
- The Montvale Station
- The Wilder Chapel – Historic Wilder Chapel Church, which was moved from Amerine Road in Maryville to the Great Smoky Mountains Heritage Center in Townsend, was dedicated to the late Rev, Ray Robinson. Wilder Chapel, an A.M.E. Zion Church, turns 110 years old this year, having been built in 1910. The Wilder Chapel Cemetery Association donated the church to the Heritage Center and it was moved and now sits in the middle of the center’s historic village, separating the residential area from the businesses.
- A Smokehouse
- A Set-Off House from the Little River Lumber Company
- A Wheelwright Shop
- A Sawmill
- An Underground Still and Shed
- A Granary
- Two Cantilever Barns – Ninety percent of all cantilever barns built in the United States are found in Blount and Sevier Counties, make them almost exclusive to East Tennessee. The characteristic feature is a second-story loft that was cantilevered over one or two log cribs. The overhang provided the farmer with convenient, weather-protected wagon access to any point around the barn. The cribs on the lower level were used for livestock or storage, while the second floor was used for the storage of hay.
- Print Shop
- Authentic Outhouse
Items in several of these buildings are touchable, making them the ultimate experiential classrooms! The Historic Wilder Chapel is even available to rent for your Wedding day.
Village pathways are wheelchair accessible, but are made of gravel.