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4th of July celebration at Museum of Appalachia
sons of american revolution
Sons of the Revolution ceremony.

ruby patterson as betsy ross
Ruby Patterson as Betsy Ross talks with young boy. Images by Nell Moore.

Witness an anvil shooting, ceremonies by the Sons of the Revolution, flag demonstrations, bell-ringing ceremony, liberty pole raising, and live music at the annual July 4th Celebration & Anvil Shoot at the Museum of Appalachia. The event will be held on Thursday, July 4, 2013 from 10:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m.

Anvil shooting used to be a way that rural folks celebrated special events -- they "shot the anvil" to celebrate the nation’s Independence, Christmas, and even Davy Crockett’s election to the U.S. Congress. Some years ago, two men, each more than 100 years old, watched the Museum’s anvil shoot and recalled this tradition from their early childhood.

Now, shooting the anvil has come to be the highlight of the Museum's fabulous July 4th Celebration. Folks as far as 15 miles away have reported hearing the blast while everyone gathered for the event feels the earth shake under their feet.

Along with the big boom several times during the day, there are patriotic ceremonies and lots of old-time mountain music of the Southern Appalachian Mountains.

A bell-ringing ceremony will occur at precisely 2:00 p.m. coinciding with the National Bell Ringing Ceremony when more than 10,000 bells across the country are rung in unison. Thirteen youngsters will be selected from the audience to ring the bell in honor of the thirteen original states.

The Liberty Pole raising at 2:15 p.m. will commemorate a Colonial American practice signifying dissatisfaction with the English government. It illustrates the spirit of liberty among colonists in the early days of the War for Independence.

Wander the Museum's Village and see demonstrations of "Betsy Ross" sewing our nation's first flag, spinning, blacksmithing, woodcarving, mountain dulcimer making, sassafras tea brewing and cedar rail splitting.

Tasty summertime treats will be available, including grilled hamburgers and hot dogs, kettle corn, homemade ice cream, cakes, pies and cookies.

This is a free event for Museum members. Non-members: Adults (19+) $20, Youth (13-18) $10, Child (5-12) $6; Children under 5 are free. The Museum is located 16 miles north of Knoxville, one mile east of I‐75, exit 122 at 2819 Andersonville Hwy, Clinton TN 37716.

The Museum is open from 9 a.m. to 6 p.m., so July 4th visitors will have plenty of time to tour. The extensive village and farm complex includes dozens of historic log structures, display buildings filled with authentic Appalachian artifacts, gardens surrounded by split rail fences, and farm animals in a traditional setting. The Hall of Fame offers a portrait of the Appalachian people, both famous and not-so famous, and these exhibits may be enjoyed in air-conditioned comfort.

Published June 30, 2013

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