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The Tennessee State Museum is scheduled to reopen to the public Thursday, Oct. 4, at its new location at Bicentennial Capitol Mall State Park. To celebrate the new space, there will be no admission charge for any of the new exhibitions on opening day.
About the museum
The 137,000-square-foot, two-floor facility is designed to tell the Tennessee story with interactive exhibits and multi-media presentations. It's located at the corner of Rosa Parks Boulevard and Jefferson Street.
Inside you'll find a "Tennessee Time Tunnel," which is the anchor of the museum. The "tunnel" features artifacts, exhibits and stories from its permanent collection with media and interactives.
Side detours leading into six different galleries will allow visitors to explore specific periods and themes, including Tennessee's Civil War history, music, art and cultural issues of the day.
What will be in the permanent galleries?
- Natural History introduces visitors to the origins of Tennessee’s landscapes as well as its diverse animal and plant life, while also using fossils to show examples of life from long ago.
- First Peoples (13,000 BCE to 1760 CE) tells about the state's first peoples and their culture, as well as how they defended their homelands against the European encroachment.
- Forging a Nation (1760-1860) delves into the stories of Southeastern Indians and Overmountain People, enslaved and free African Americans, the Creek War and War of 1812, Andrew Jackson, the Trail of Tears, President Polk, westward expansion and more.
- The Civil War and Reconstruction (1860-1870) will show visitors how Tennesseans determined to secede from the Union and how the state remained divided on the issue throughout the war.
- Change and Challenge (1870 to 1945) explores how Tennesseans found ways forward through economic upheavals, social changes, and international conflicts. Visitors will learn how Tennessee women fought for the right to vote. Visitors will also examine how Tennesseans shared the nation’s challenges in World War I, the Great Depression, and World War II
- Tennessee Transforms (1945 to Present) highlight the impacts of post-war innovations on Tennesseans, the struggle of African-Americans to share in the new prosperity and the development of Tennessee’s music industries
Read more about each exhibition here.
The Museum’s Grand Opening Weekend hours are: