Monterey in Putnam County, Tennessee — The American South (East South Central)
Standing Stone Monument
The sandstone rock atop this lighthouse-shaped pedestal is the only known remaining fragment of the 16-ft dog-shaped monolith that stood for centuries ½ mile to the west, marking an area of peace for the American Indians who travelled and hunted the Cumberland Plateau. The origin of the stone monolith, Nee Yah Kah Tah Kee (Cherokee words meaning Standing Stone) pre-dates written history. On October 17, 1895, the monolith, diminished over time and finally removed by the railroad laying tracks to Monterey, was memorialized by the Fraternal organization Improved Order or Red Men, Narragansett Tribe, No. 25, and dedicated to Monterey before a crowd of 3,000. The irregular shaped stones used to form the base symbolized the bond of freedom, charity and friendship that should exist between all people. In 1979, the Town of Monterey, by proclamation, established Standing Stone Day to honor the heritage of the Standing Stone monolith and what it represented to the area's history. Standing Stone Day is celebrated the second Saturday in October with the placing of a ceremonial wreath and tomahawk at the monument base to remind us to always be at peace
Topics. This historical marker monument is listed in this topic list: Native Americans.
Location. 36° 8.677′ N, 85° 15.875′ W. Marker is in Monterey, Tennessee, in Putnam County. Marker is on 401 E Commercial Ave. In Front of Putnam Public Library. Touch for map. Marker is in this post office area: Monterey TN 38574, United States of America. Touch for directions.
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within 10 miles of this marker, measured as the crow flies. Standing Stone (here, next to this marker); Gen. John T. Wilder (approx. ¼ mile away); Stokes' Atrocity (approx. ¼ mile away); Old Cumberland Hotel / Saint Raphael Mission (approx. 0.6 miles away); a different marker also named Standing Stone (approx. ¾ mile away); Mount Granger (approx. 7.4 miles away); France Cemetery (approx. 9.2 miles away); Cap't Champ Ferguson (approx. 9.2 miles away). Touch for a list and map of all markers in Monterey.
Also see . . .
1. Standing Stone American Indian Cultural Center. Tennessee WordSmith website entry:
Early American settlers in the area discovered a large monolithic stone on a sandstone ledge (reports on its height vary, ranging from 8 to 16 feet)- travelers described it as looking like a dog sitting on its haunches. Legend says the stone served as a marker on the Tollunteeskee Trail, which served as a trade route between several Indian tribes, and that it may have been a boundary marker between the Cherokees and the Shawnees (some (Submitted on October 21, 2016, by Sandra Hughes Tidwell of Killen, Alabama, USA.)
2. The History of the Standing Stone. Active Rain website entry:
According to an old Cherokee legend, the Standing Stone represented a sitting bear. The legend has it that a young hunter went out in the woods to find food for the tribe. While on this journey, a storm came and he needed to seek shelter. This storm would not pass until the morning so he camped out all night. The next morning as he awoke, he was distressed and was unaware of where he was. The sky was clear and he climbed to the peak of a stone. As the young hunter was looking around, he noticed he was at the base of a stone that resembled a sitting bear-Standing Stone. He immediately ran back to camp and shared his experience and the tribe celebrated the sacredness of this rock. (Submitted on October 21, 2016, by Sandra Hughes Tidwell of Killen, Alabama, USA.)
Credits. This page was last revised on December 29, 2021. It was originally submitted on October 21, 2016, by Sandra Hughes Tidwell of Killen, Alabama, USA. This page has been viewed 335 times since then and 11 times this year. Photos: 1, 2, 3, 4. submitted on October 21, 2016, by Sandra Hughes Tidwell of Killen, Alabama, USA. • Bill Pfingsten was the editor who published this page.