Historic Collinsville Pioneer Settlement in rural Montgomery County will open its annual season on Saturday, April 1, featuring hands-on activities for all ages from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.
Visitors on April 1 can experience an array of interactive demonstrations – such as butter making and blacksmithing – led by docents dressed in 1800s garb, along with tours of the many buildings and homes that dot the historic site. April Fools will be the theme for kids’ educational activities, including “Pioneer Prankster’s Trail of Tricks and Journey of Jokes,” and all activities are included with special event admission.
Special activities on April 1 (subject to change):
- Butter making and storytelling in the Visitor Center
- Blacksmith demonstrations, forging metal to make items such as horseshoes, hinges, farm tools, etc.
- Spinning and weaving expert demonstrating how homespun cloth was made on a loom.
- Trail of Tricks photo scavenger hunt with prizes and Pioneer Prankster’s Journey of Jokes.
- 19th-century-themed children’s activities, such as the Game of Graces, sack races and crafts.
- Late 19th-century stationary internal combustion engine (hit-and-miss engine) demonstrations.
- Civil War history, including a live uniformed soldier with military items and physician showcasing medical equipment and practices from the period.
- Tobacco Talks in the Chestnut Tobacco Barn (1 p.m.) with Carolyn Ferrell.
Visiting Collinsville gives guests the opportunity for a self-paced, self-guided stroll through a re-creation of the past with an audio tour. The 40-acre, open-air property showcases pioneer life from 1840-1900 with 16 authentically furnished buildings. See the earliest “first home” to the expansive Dogtrot House, a tobacco-drying house, smokehouse, church/schoolhouse, wildlife center, loom house, cobbler’s shop, teacher’s home and more. Picnic tables are placed throughout the property and a covered pavilion with tables and restrooms is also on site. A visitor center greets guests and offers period souvenirs.
Historic Collinsville Pioneer Settlement’s 2023 season runs April 1 through Nov. 19, except for holidays. The site is open Thursday – Saturday, 10 a.m. – 4 p.m.; and Sundays, 1-4 p.m. Regular admission is $8 for ages 13 and up; $4 for ages 6-12 and free to children under age 6. Military receive a 10% discount with a valid ID. Special event admission varies. The property is open other days and times for groups of six or more guided tours, camps, rentals, weddings, or special events.
“Collinsville is the perfect place for folks of all ages to enjoy a serene getaway that recalls a simpler time,” said Visit Clarksville Chairman Kyle Luther. “We hope guests from near and far have an opportunity to visit for our opening day or at another time throughout the year.”
Historic Collinsville will host additional special events throughout the 2023 season, including the following tentative dates:
- April 8: Easter Celebration
- May 6: Planting Day
- May 13: Mom’s Day Out (free admission for mothers)
- June 1: Tennessee Statehood Day (free admission)
- June 17: Dad’s Day Out (free admission for fathers)
- July 4: Independence Day Celebration
- July 22: Storytelling Festival
- Aug. 19: Montgomery County Heritage Day
- Sept. 23: Create at Collinsville (art event)
- Oct. 13 & 14: Lantern Tours
- Oct. 28: Spooky Stories
- Nov. 18: Thanksgiving Day Recognition
- Dec. 2 & 3: Christmas Event
More information about Historic Collinsville is available at www.historiccollinsville.com or on Facebook at www.facebook.com/historiccollinsville.
About Historic Collinsville
Historic Collinsville Pioneer Settlement opened in 1974 to give children a hands-on experience outside of the classroom about life from the 1840s through the turn of the century. It has been open to the public since 1997, recreating the past with restored historical structures, each filled with authentic period furnishings that show a glimpse of life before and after the Civil War. The property is located at 4711 Weakley Road in Southside, 20 minutes south of downtown Clarksville. Montgomery County Government purchased Historic Collinsville from founders Glenn and JoAnn Weakley in 2018. The property is managed and marketed by Visit Clarksville.
# # #
Jeff Krinks, Prufrock Communications