Handwritten Tennessee Constitutions Moved To Public Display

Tuesday, December 4, 2012

Tennessee State Library and Archives staff will carefully move all three versions of the original handwritten Tennessee state Constitutions to the Supreme Court building on Tuesday, in preparation for a five-day public display.

The meticulously preserved documents will be removed from a vault at the State Library and Archives building and carried by hand starting at 10 a.m. Tuesday in their archival boxes next door to the Supreme Court building. A Tennessee Highway Patrol detail will provide security as the state’s most significant documents travel for their first-ever public display as a group.

The largest document – the State Constitution written in 1834 – measures approximately 2 feet by 3 feet.

This is the first time the three documents – handwritten in 1796, 1834 and 1870 – will be on display together for the public to view. The event is part of the 75th anniversary celebration of the Supreme Court Building, which was dedicated in 1937. The celebration also includes the opening of the Tennessee Judiciary Museum within the Supreme Court Building with a public ceremony at 10 a.m. on Wednesday.

Following the period of public exhibition, the original Constitutions will be returned to a vault at the State Library and Archives and digital duplicates will be on display at the Judiciary Museum.

The museum will be open to the public with the original constitutions on display on the following dates and times:

  • Thursday, from 8 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.
  • Friday, from 8 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.
  • Saturday, from 10 a.m. to 2:00 p.m. to especially allow school children who can't come during the week to view the constitutions
  • Monday, from 8 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.

Starting Tuesday, Dec. 11, the museum will be open weekdays from 9 a.m. – noon. There is no admission charge. The Supreme Court building is at 401 Seventh Ave., Nashville, 37219, at the corner of Charlotte Avenue.


Chester Martin Remembers The Clarence T. Jones Observatory

A true example of American   - and Chattanooga - ingenuity, it was Clarence T. Jones's childhood dream to build a telescope of worthy size and importance. As a professional architect he was able to connect with all the necessary local sources to produce the handsome instrument shown here. Working with the new Barnard Astronomical Society, the telescope with all its component ... (click for more)

First Thanksgiving in Chattanooga (Civil War)

By “first Thanksgiving Day”, no, I do not mean the harvest thanksgiving meal which the Separatist colonists of New Plymouth shared uncomfortably with their Wampanoag neighbors.   Nor do I mean any of the thanksgivings proclaimed on a one-time basis by a U.S. President after that.   In this case, the “First Thanksgiving Day” means the inaugural event of those that have ... (click for more)

Valerie Bray Pleads Guilty In Death Of Well-Known Runner Cameron Bean

A long-time Moccasin Bend Hospital employee pleaded guilty on Tuesday morning in connection with the death of well-known runner Cameron Bean. Ms. Bray pleaded guilty to criminally negligent homicide and leaving the scene of an accident with a fatality involved. Defense attorney Bill Speek said she faces one-two years on each charge at a sentencing hearing on Feb. 1 at 1:30 ... (click for more)

Officer Who Was Shot Returned Fire; Is Recovering Well; Shooter Still On Loose

Chattanooga Police Chief Fred Fletcher said Monday morning that the officer who was shot three times on Thursday is recovering well.   Chief Fletcher said the officer was wearing a bullet-proof vest and one bullet hit the vest, which protected him during the shooting.  The officer was able to return fire, although Chief Fletcher would not comment on how many bullets ... (click for more)

An Open Letter To Tennessee Electors Of The President - And Response (2)

This an open letter to the following people who are Tennessee's presidential electors this year: Joey Jacobs (Brentwood), Beth Scott Clayton Amos (Nashville), Jason Mumpower (Bristol), Susan Mills (Maryville), Liz Holiway (Harriman), Lynne Davis (Lascassas), Tom Lawless (Nashville), Mike Callahan (Monterey), Pat Allen (Clarksville), Shannon Haynes (Alamo), and Drew Daniel (Memphis).  ... (click for more)

Roy Exum: Abolish Bail For Poor

Our terribly overcrowded Hamilton County Jail may get some help from an unsuspected corner – the Obama administration is tackling the fact that right now over 450,000 people are in our country’s jails because they are too poor to pay for bail. It is a violation of the Constitution to “punish people for their poverty.” As the Eighth Amendment provides, “… excessive bail ought not ... (click for more)