Rock City turns 75

Rock City, the wonderfully retro roadside attraction atop Lookout Mountain, turns 75 years old this week. The Chattanooga Times Free Press ran a great piece (alas, subscription required) on this venerable home of gnomes and old school kitsch.

The history section of the Rock City website tells the story of how Garnet and Frieda Carter created Rock City as an offshoot of a 700-acre development they planned for the top of Lookout Mountain. While Rock City has become an icon for millions of travelers, thanks to the almost 900 “See Rock City” barns and countless birdhouses, the community that the Carters created is hanging in there as well.

“Fairyland” was the name they chose for the development, and it is a wonder in this wink, wink, nudge, nudge sniggering time in which we live that the name has lasted. But it has. The Fairyland Club thrives, and can be seen at 1201 Fleetwood Drive.


The Fairyland community is a good place for a walk along streets with fun names: Elfin Road, Cinderella Road, Peter Pan Road, Alladin Road, Fairy Dell Trail, Mother Goose Trail, and Gnome Road.

And the funniest thing of all? Rock City isn’t in Tennessee–it’s in Georgia.

This blog is part of a much larger website, also entitled Tennessee Guy, that contains travel and cultural information about Tennessee. Visit it here.

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