Looking for a day trip that combines history, the arts, and unique stories of decadence from the days of yesteryear?
Come visit Belmont Mansion in Nashville.
The mansion is Tennessee’s largest house museum and one of the few 19th century homes with its history centered on a woman.
Adelicia Hayes Franklin Acklen Cheatham was one of the wealthiest women of the antebellum South. A widow turned entrepreneur with steely resolve, Adelicia survived two husbands and the loss of six of her 10 children.
She successfully saved her vast fortune by traveling to Louisiana during the height of the Civil War, where she secretly and illegally negotiated with both Union and Confederate troops to allow her Acklen cotton to be shipped to New Orleans. The cotton was shipped to England and sold for $960,000 in gold. She then deposited the fortune into a British account and reclaimed it after the war.
Belmont Mansion remains a splendid example of Italian, villa-style architecture and is full of original art, antiques, and the personal items of Adelicia and her family largely acquired while on a tour of Europe.
Built between 1849 and 1853, Belmont Mansion is a 36-room, 19,000-square-foot home. Step inside the mansion and you will be transported back to a time of high-society grandeur.
In celebration of Adelicia’s 200th birthday, Wednesday, March 15, the mansion will hold a free admission day for all visitors. With guided tours, visitors will learn about one of America’s most fascinating women, dubbed the Scarlet O’Hara of Tennessee.
Belmont Mansion, on the National Register of Historic Places since 1971, currently operates as a house museum, maintained by the Belmont Mansion Association. Belmont Mansion is open daily for guided tours, Monday thru Saturday from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m., and Sunday from 12 to 4 p.m. The mansion is located at 1700 Acklen Ave., Nashville, 37212.
There are several tour options. Outside of free admission day, the standard tour, which requires no reservation, cost $12 per person.
For more information about Belmont Mansion, visit www.belmontmansion.com or call (615) 460-5459.