For decades, passersby on Highway 11-W west of the hamlet of Bean Station have zipped past an extravagant bandstand that suggests more elegant times.
Nearby is a half-timbered building that similarly looks out of place.
These two structures are all that is left of the Tate Springs resort, which came into being right after the Civil War when Samuel Tate bought 2,500 acres and built a hotel that could hold 500 guests. A subsequent owner upgraded the place to a world class resort that attracted wealthy families such as the Mellons, Firestones, Fords, Rockefellers, and Studebakers. More details are here. The resort was done in by changes in travel brought on by the automobile and the economic crash of the Great Depression. The resort was sold to the Kingswood School, which owns it today.
Here is a photo of the bathhouse in its prime.
And here is a postcard of foxhunters assembled at the gazebo for an evening’s entertainment. Not quite the sort of fox hunting done in England. (This postcard is courtesy of the Tennessee State Archives.)
Further west is Kelly’s Restaurant, named for the daughter of the proprietress, and serving good country cooking.
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