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“Bite-Size Bits of Local, National, and Global History”
Hermitage in Davidson County, Tennessee — The American South (East South Central)
 

The Hermitage Mansion

Symbol of Democracy?

 
 
The Hermitage Mansion Symbol of Democracy? Marker image. Click for full size.
By Sandra Hughes, September 25, 2010
1. The Hermitage Mansion Symbol of Democracy? Marker
Inscription. Elegant as it is, The Hermitage Mansion is also a prime example that, indeed, beauty sometimes does lie “in the eye of the beholder.” Andrew Jackson's visitors got their first good look at his home as they rounded the graceful curves of its cedar-lined carriage drive. Jackson seems to have carefully staged visitors' impressions of his mansion and farm. The direct frontal view disguised the fact that the Greek revival facade does not continue around the sides of the house. For family members and most visitors, his Greek revival mansion symbolized Americans' celebration of their liberty and love of democracy. Others saw something quite different. To enslaved African Americans and social reformers of the time, the stylish Greek revival design sent much more than a clear signal about Jackson's own personal status. For them, it represented slavery and the failings of American Democracy.

In warm hospitality, around-the-clock exhausting labor, peaceful moment or contentious discussion, Jackson's home spoke powerfully to many people in many ways over the years. And still does.If we listen.
 
Location. 36° 12.832′ N, 86° 36.776′ W. Marker is in Hermitage, Tennessee, in Davidson County. Marker can be reached from Rachels Lane 0.3 miles east
The Hermitage Mansion~Greek Revival Style image. Click for full size.
By Sandra Hughes, September 25, 2010
2. The Hermitage Mansion~Greek Revival Style
The Greek revival style's association with ancient Greece- the first democracy - made it an especially appropriate style in the minds of many for the young United States. American interest in Greece grew from sympathy for the Greek War of Independence (1821-1830) and emerging archaeological finds.
of Hermitage Road. Touch for map. This marker is located on the pathway between the Visitors Center and The Hermitage Mansion. Marker is at or near this postal address: 4580 Rachels Lane, Hermitage TN 37076, United States of America.
 
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within walking distance of this marker. Civil War at The Hermitage (within shouting distance of this marker); The War Road (within shouting distance of this marker); The Hermitage Landscape (within shouting distance of this marker); The Architectural Evolution Of The Hermitage (about 300 feet away, measured in a direct line); The Jackson Family Cemetery (about 400 feet away); The Hermitage Garden (about 400 feet away); “A Being so Gentle And Yet So Virtuous” (about 400 feet away); Explore The Hermitage Grounds (about 500 feet away). Touch for a list and map of all markers in Hermitage.
 
Also see . . .  The Hermitage, The Home of President Andrew Jackson. (Submitted on February 8, 2012, by Bernard Fisher of Mechanicsville, Virginia.)
 
Categories. Antebellum South, US
 
The Hermitage Mansion Greek Influence image. Click for full size.
By Sandra Hughes, September 25, 2010
3. The Hermitage Mansion Greek Influence
The Grecian influence can be found on the interior of the Hermitage mansion as well as the exterior. Classical decorative motifs and styles can be found in art, on furniture, and on the scenic wallpaper
A Greek Reader image. Click for full size.
By Sandra Hughes, September 25, 2010
4. A Greek Reader
In Colonial America, students studied ancient Greece and Rome, learning their languages and history. These classical studies influenced the founding fathers and continued as an important part of educational curriculum in pre-Civil War America. Andrew Jackson Jr. and Jackson's grandsons all studied classical languages and literature.
The Carriage Drive image. Click for full size.
By Sandra Hughes, September 25, 2010
5. The Carriage Drive
Shortly after Andrew Jackson retired to The Hermitage from Washington, he had this guitar-shaped driveway laid out. The drive's “S” shape was decorative but it also made it easier to maneuver carriages in this narrow space. Jackson supervised the planting of the eastern red cedars, a native Tennessee tree, that lined the drive and the fences of the narrow yard. Many have died from disease and storm damage so only a few of the original trees remain.

Andrew Jackson's visitors entered the carriage drive through these gates located where the drive meets Rachel's Lane. A slight hill in between the gate and the mansion hid their view of the house until they progressed father along the drive.

A tornado that struck The Hermitage on April 16, 1998 devastated the cedars on the carriage drive. Andrew Jackson's visitors entered the carriage drive through these gates located where the drive meets Rachel's Lane. A slight hill in between the gate and the mansion hid their view of the house until they progressed father along the drive. A tornado that struck The Hermitage on April 16 1998 devastated the cedars on the carriage drive.
Wide view of The Hermitage Mansion Marker image. Click for full size.
By J. Makali Bruton, June 14, 2015
6. Wide view of The Hermitage Mansion Marker
The Hermitage Mansion as seen on the cedar lined drive. image. Click for full size.
By J. Makali Bruton, June 14, 2015
7. The Hermitage Mansion as seen on the cedar lined drive.
 
 
Credits. This page was last revised on June 16, 2016. This page originally submitted on February 7, 2012, by Sandra Hughes of Killen, Usa. This page has been viewed 564 times since then and 24 times this year. Last updated on July 12, 2015, by J. Makali Bruton of Querétaro, Mexico. Photos:   1, 2, 3, 4, 5. submitted on February 7, 2012, by Sandra Hughes of Killen, Usa.   6, 7. submitted on July 12, 2015, by J. Makali Bruton of Querétaro, Mexico. • Bill Pfingsten was the editor who published this page.
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