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  • Newsletter Archive | Bristol Historical Association | Bristol, TN

    BHA Newsletter Archive September 2007 View November 2007 View March 2008 View September 2008 View December 2008 View August 2010 View July 2011 View September 2011 View October 2011 Announcement View October 2011 View Christmas Luncheon 2011 View December 2011 View March 2012 Program View March 2012 View May 2012 View October 2012 View October 2013 View October 2014 View September 2015 View Contact Us!

  • Previous Leaders | Bristol Historical Association | Bristol, TN

    Bristol Historical Association Past Presidents Joyce A. Kistner 1979-1981 Fred P. Entler 1984 Edith M. Davis 1985-1986 Victor N. (Bud) Phillips 1987 Ruth C. Keller 1988 Joyce A. Kistner 1989-1990 Anna F. Horne 1991-1992 James Otis 1982-1983 Robin H.W. Bagnall 1993 Ruby A. Reynolds 1993 Thomas K. Finks 1994-1995 Roy J. Williams 1996-1997 Frazier King 1998-1999 Kermit Lowry, Jr. 2000-2001 Bill King 2002 Frank Blanton 2003 Linda Brittle 2004-2005 Mary Beth Raniero 2006-2009 Isabelle Ladd 2010-2013 Tim Buchanan 2014-2017 Sid Oakley 2018-2019 Charles (Butch) Flannagan 2020-2021 Barbara H. Smith 2022-Present VICTOR N. (BUD) PHILLIPS LEARN MORE JOYCE A. KISTNER LEARN MORE Victor N. (Bud) Phillips City Historian, Author of Bristol History, and former owner of the historic home on Solar Hill known as "Pleasant Hill" Bristol's beloved historian, V.N. "Bud" Phillips, was born on August 25, 1929, in the Big Piney Valley, Beech Grove Community, near Ft. Douglas post office in Northeastern Johnson County, Arkansas, the youngest of seven children. In 1945, at the age of fifteen, Bud began preaching and traveling as an evangelist. Bud arrived in Bristol in 1953, and quickly fell in love with the twin cities. For a time he was connected with the Graham Institute and Evangelistic Association and also had a social work ministry with the Bristol Salvation Army. In November of 1982, he moved to Solar Hill in Bristol, Virginia, and began renovating an historic house built in 1873 which he named “Pleasant Hill". ​ In addition to his vocation of ministering to his fellow man, Bud had a number of varied talents and interests throughout his life. He founded the Hudson Realty Company at Hudson, North Carolina and later operated the Bus Station Café at Clarksville, Arkansas. He also enjoyed antique dealing and collecting as well as interior design and decoration. But it was as an author and historian that Bud achieved widespread fame. Bud's adopted home of Bristol inspired him to pursue one of his lifelong ambitions, writing. Bud was fond of saying, "I will here state my honest belief that if a thing can happen, it has happened in Bristol." He used information he had gathered from early residents beginning with his arrival in Bristol and continued to research the history of the Bristol area for the rest of his life. He became the author of many books of local history, authored a very popular newspaper column, "Pioneers in Paradise," hosted two television shows and one radio show, gave countless speeches and conducted many tours, all dedicated to the history of his adopted town. Bud served on the Board of the Bristol Historical Association for many years and was the Association’s official Historian. Bud Phillips Day was celebrated in Bristol on May 5, 2004. On April 27, 2008, he received the Mayor’s Outstanding Citizens Award. In 2006, he was made the Official Historian of Bristol, Virginia/Tennessee. ​ Bud passed away in his sleep on Monday, January 9, 2017, at age 87. He is buried in historic East Hill Cemetery, established in 1857, the site of many of his famous tours, where he rests in good company with other important figures of Bristol's past, including city founders, Civil War soldiers, Revolutionary War General Evan Shelby, and many more who have made contributions to Bristol and the nation. ​ ​ ​ ​ ​ ​ ​ ​ ​ ​ ​ ​ ​ ​ ​ ​ ​ ​ ​ ​ ​ ​ ​ ​ ​ ​ ​ ​ ​ ​ ​ ​ ​ ​ ​ ​ ​ ​ ​ ​ ​ ​ ​ Video credit to City of Bristol, Tennessee/BTN-TV Video credit to City of Bristol, Tennessee/BTN-TV Bud Phillips Antiquities of Bristol Playlist Pleasant Hill 214 Johnson Street READ THE NEWS STORY Pleasant Hill was the third house built on Solar Hill after the great Johnson land sale of July 5, 1871. It was built by William H. Smith, an early Bristol contractor, for local attorney Capt. John Harvey Wood. Construction began in 1872 and was completed in the spring of 1873. The Wood family moved into the house in May of that year. The brick cost one cent apiece at the time and one cent each to lay. Originally, a small portico was over the front door. In 1875, a chimney was damaged by lightning. While having it repaired, Capt. Wood decided to add a veranda extending across the front of the house. The first telephone in Bristol was installed in what is now the dining room. ​ The story has long been told that Jefferson Davis, ex-president of the Confederate States of America, spent the night in the home in 1873. He slept in the north upstairs bedroom. Standing on the portico the next morning, Mr. Davis delivered an address to a large crowd of Bristolians who had gathered in the front yard and on the lot across the street. The first wife of Capt.Wood was Laura Lucretia James, a daughter of a very prominent early Bristol merchant, W.W. James, from Blountville, Tennessee. She died in 1891. Later, Wood married Virginia Holmes, a widow from Winchester, Virginia. It was at that time that he built the late Victorian home which still stands next door at 210 Johnson Street. Capt. Wood and his second wife moved into this house, and he gave Pleasant Hill to his daughter, Mary, wife of Samuel Harris. Gertrude, one of the Wood children who was reared at Pleasant Hill, married a Dillard, moved to New York City, and became the first licensed woman driver in that city. Over the years, the house had several owners. At one time it served as the parsonage for State Street Methodist Church. Later, the house became a rental property. In 1982, the late Bristol historian and author, V.N. “Bud” Phillips took possession of the home and began restoring it. Following Bud’s death in 2017, the house was sold, and the new owners have furnished it in keeping with the style and period of the home. The new owners care deeply about Bristol’s history and allow the Bristol Historical Association to use part of the house for administrative purposes. BUD PHILLIPS Joyce Kistner Joyce Allison Kistner’s interest in and devotion to Bristol history began when she was only a child. Riding in the family car through downtown Bristol, she recalls often asking about many of the interesting buildings that lined the streets. Later, as an adult, she wondered why Bristol did not have an historical organization to protect and preserve the many unique and important buildings along with their histories –the structures and stories that form the very fabric of our community. So Joyce, with the help of eight dedicated friends, founded the Bristol Historical Association in 1979, with Joyce serving as the organization’s first president. They began with an adult group and a children’s group to start working toward the objectives of preservation and the goals of educating the public as to Bristol’s history. Early speakers included Fred Entler, Tom Daniel, Mary Landrum, Dr. Kermit Lowry, and David Edwards from the Department of Historic Resources who spoke with business leaders about preservation and architectural features of buildings. In 1982, the association sponsored a visit from the president of the National Trust for Historic Preservation, Michael Ainslie, who presented a program and included a workshop on the theme, “Preservation Downtown U.S.A.” Ainslie advocated for revitalization and economic redevelopment through historic preservation. ​ After several years of sponsoring public programs and archival exhibits of Bristol, the group published A Pictorial History of Bristol in 1985. The book was a great success and helped raise community awareness of the association and its work. Other notable examples of BHA’s work were the sponsorship of the placement of a number of historic markers, including markers for the founders of Bristol, Col. Samuel E. Goodson and Joseph Rhea Anderson, in East Hill Cemetery; the Founding of Goodson-Bristol Virginia marker at the Bristol Virginia courthouse; and the Bristol Sign marker on State Street. ​ Joyce’s interests and community service efforts are not confined to BHA alone. She is a talented and award winning artist. She is an active supporter of the YWCA and its programs for young girls. She has traveled to Venezuela on a church mission trip, supported the American Red Cross, served on the Virginia State Historic Register Advisory Board as well as the electoral board for Bristol, Virginia, and is a member of many other organizations including the 17th Century Colonial Dames and the Blue Stocking Club. Joyce was a teacher in the Bristol Virginia school system for twenty-eight years and a member of the School Board after she retired. She made sure her students learned the history of the Twin City, the state, and the country by taking field trips around Bristol and to places such as Williamsburg, the Virginia Governor's Mansion, and Richmond, Virginia. Joyce owns a very old and authentically furnished log cabin that was relocated to her property, and she often gave tours of it to her students. Joyce is passionate about teaching the public, especially young people, the importance of preserving and honoring the past. In a 2014 interview, Joyce stated: “We need to know the past in order to appreciate the future and to preserve it. I think Americans really don’t know enough about their history. It was called civics, and I think it lost some of its importance. It’s really our heritage and where we came from, and we should be preserving it.” The importance of Joyce’s efforts to preserve and promote Bristol’s rich history may be best summed up in a resolution passed by the Virginia Legislature’s House of Delegates on April 3, 2013. House Resolution No. 506 states: Commending Joyce Kistner. WHEREAS, Joyce Kistner of Bristol has enriched the lives of countless fellow residents with her civic involvement and community service; and WHEREAS, a retired educator, Joyce Kistner taught fourth grade at Stonewall Jackson Elementary School for many years, creating a nurturing environment in which all of her students could thrive; and WHEREAS, Joyce Kistner also advocated for strong schools to prepare Bristol students for their futures as a member of the Bristol Virginia Public Schools Board; and WHEREAS, Joyce Kistner continues to influence young people as a member of and volunteer with the Bristol Historical Association, sharing Bristol’s history with fourth grade students in Bristol, Virginia, and Bristol, Tennessee, public schools and two area private schools; and WHEREAS, Joyce Kistner gives to each student she teaches a special bookmark she designed and created; the bookmark depicts scenes from Bristol’s history and serves as a reminder to students of the information they learned; and WHEREAS, Joyce Kistner also wrote and illustrated Tracking Bristol VA.-Tenn. History, a history book for young people that provides interesting facts and games to help them learn about their city’s rich history; and WHEREAS, a model citizen, Joyce Kistner exemplifies the role that committed residents can make in the well-being of their communities; now, therefore, be it RESOLVED by the House of Delegates, That Joyce Kistner hereby be commended for her many contributions to the City of Bristol and its residents. After 40 years, Joyce is still actively involved with the Bristol Historical Association. She presented BHA’s 40th Anniversary Celebration program, held virtually due to COVID-19 in 2020, and curates and coordinates BHA’s rotating library exhibits, a program she initiated in 2016. As one of Joyce’s long time friends observed, “She’s such a perfectionist at everything. She is so civic-minded. She is so community oriented that she has more energy than any person I have ever met.” Joyce’s contributions to the Bristol community continue to enrich our history. Video credit to City of Bristol, Tennessee/BTN-TV JOYCE KISTNER CONTACT US!

  • Give | Bristol Historical Association | Bristol, TN

    GIVE! Your Gift Matters! You can help the Bristol Historical Association and make an important contribution toward preserving the history of our community by making a donation, bequest, or other planned gift. There are a variety of methods to give that will assist us with our efforts and offer you, the donor, or your heirs, a tax benefit. ​ Add an immediate gift or pledge for ongoing work of BHA and see your legacy at work! To donate now via PayPal, please click the link below, or make your check out to the Bristol Historical Association and mail your gift to Bristol Historical Association PO Box 204 Bristol, TN 37621. ​ Please let us know if your donation is in memory or honor of any individual and also if it is intended for a specific BHA program or project, such as the Robert Preston House Project, Archives, Ford House, etc. DONATE TODAY! Country DONATE More Ways to Give Bequests Do you want to leave a legacy? Please consider including the Bristol Historical Association in your estate planning. A bequest or gift made through your will and/or trust can help assure the future viability of BHA as well as dramatically shape its future. Charitable Gift Annuities, Charitable Trusts, and Securities Through a charitable gift annuity or charitable trust you retain an interest in the gift, with the remainder to be received by BHA at a later time. BHA also welcomes financial donations in the form of securities. Tax Benefits There may be specific tax benefits to you and your estate in utilizing one of the planned giving tools in support of BHA. Donors may also designate that the funds be used for specifics uses such as the BHA's annual budget, ongoing programs, and/or other special projects. The Bristol Historical Association is a 501(c)3 non-profit corporation and your gift is tax-deductible to the fullest extent of the law. For more information about planned giving, please contact BHA through this web site at BristolTNVA@aol.com , or write to us at Bristol Historical Association PO Box 204 Bristol, TN 37621. We Collect History Too! As we continue to record and collect the ongoing history of our community, we are also pleased to accept donations of historical materials. To arrange a material donation, please email BristolTNVA@aol.com Email Now! CONTACT US!

  • E.W. King House | Bristol Historical Association | Bristol, TN

    E.W. King House LEARN MORE! The History . The E.W. King House is one of the few remaining homes built at the beginning of the 20th Century in Bristol and provides an excellent example of Victorian architecture in the Queen Anne style. It was constructed by one of Bristol's most prominent businessmen, Mr. Edward Washington King. The architect was George Franklin Barber who published a catalog of “Modern Dwellings” in 1901, and it included the plan that E.W. and Alice King chose for their home. The McCrary brothers, renowned builders in Bristol, constructed the Anderson Street home, and John Jay Fowler, a local African American master brick mason, provided the beautiful brick work for this job as well as other prestigious buildings in Bristol, including some at King College. As a respected citizen and philanthropist, E.W. King had a profound impact on the growth and development of Bristol. Mr. King was praised for his progressive community action and his support of education. This view was exemplified in the many buildings he blessed Bristol with over the years, both residential and business structures. The location of the E.W. King House is of further historical importance because the house rests on a hill overlooking downtown Bristol near the grounds of the 18th Century fort built by General Evan Shelby which served as an important Revolutionary War era outpost through which countless settlers passed during the westward expansion of the United States Completed in 1903, the Edward Washington King house was listed on the National Register of Historic Places in 1999. The house design incorporated energetic details such as decorative chimneys, molded bricks, and a Renaissance Revival rooftop balustrade. The building has three full floors in addition to attic space and a basement. It boasts beautiful views of downtown Bristol and the surrounding mountains. The house retains many original architectural features and fixtures. Among the home's accouterments are original hardwood floors, paneled doors, stairways, windows, elaborate mantels and tiled fireplaces, handcrafted wood moldings, and stately wainscoting. The house was divided into apartments during the latter half of the century and later weathered years of vacancy. During its thirteen year ownership of the house, BHA spent over $170,000 to repair, maintain, and stabilize the home. The property was dried in with a synthetic slate roof, guttering was replaced, the chimneys rebuilt, and other necessary exterior repairs were performed to protect the home and begin the renovation to a new era of one of Bristol's premiere homes. Even restored, a true value could never be obtained when the historical significance of this Bristol treasure is factored in. Following several years of fundraising efforts in hopes of restoring the house as a museum dedicated to local history and culture, the Bristol Historical Association made the difficult decision to sell the property, citing the double impact of the economic downturn and sharp increases in construction costs. In October of 2016, the Board of Directors of BHA accepted an offer to purchase the E.W. King House. The stipulations of the sale included covenants to protect the integrity of the exterior of the house. However, three years later, the purchaser decided to pursue other ventures and sold the house to Brad Fluke, CEO of Honey Do Service, Inc., a home repair firm. Following restoration of the property, the Honey Do Service’s offices will be headquartered in the historic Anderson Street home. The Bristol Historical Association is proud to have been the steward of this historic property and has accomplished its mission of protecting and preserving the E.W. King House. Additional goals of educating the public about its owner and builder, Edward Washington King, and his tremendous influence on the growth and development of our twin cities have been accomplished through events held for and on the property. BHA's E.W. King House committee, chaired by Nedra Hartley, was especially instrumental in this process. Thanks to the combined efforts of these individuals and many others who volunteered their time and talents, Bristol Historical Association was able to preserve the E. W. King House, and it will continue to be a treasured landmark in Bristol and a tribute to the outstanding contributions of E.W. King and his family to the community. EW King House ACT NOW! Donate to the Bristol Historical Association today! DONATE CONTACT US!

  • Ernie Ford House | Bristol Historical Association | Bristol, TN

    Ford House Birthplace of Tennessee Ernie Ford The History . In 1991, the Bristol Historical Association discovered that the Birthplace of Tennessee Ernie Ford, located at 1223 Anderson Street in Bristol, Tennessee, was available for purchase. The house, while outwardly unassuming, had historical significance. The Association decided that this house was just what was needed and would be a great location for meetings and display of memorabilia. The Ford House, as it has since become known, was ideal for the organization and provided an opportunity to preserve a bit of Bristol's history. Prior to proceeding with the plan to restore the house, Ernie Ford was contacted to determine his feelings about the project. He was elated to discover the intentions of the Association. When he returned to Bristol for the grand opening of the Paramount Center for the Arts, he met with members of the organization on several occasions. Later, upon his return to California, BHA received several phone calls from him desiring to know how the restoration was progressing. While researching the history of the house, it was discovered that it was built in the early 1900's. Years later, following a severe fire, many repairs were necessary, thus altering the original design. Aluminum siding had been installed over imitation brick siding, which previously had covered the original clapboard siding. Inside, the house had taken on a modern look, with narrow woodwork and small windows. The two original fireplaces had been covered over following the installation of electric baseboard heaters. Restoration of the interior began with replacing the narrow woodwork. The next big project was to uncover the two fireplaces and locate suitable mantels. These were found in a nearby old house that was being demolished. Four windows needed to be replaced and were obtained from another old house. The original pine floor, which was heavily damaged by the fire, had been covered with carpeting which was removed and a new pine floor installed.. The dropped ceiling, not original to the house, was replaced with bead board. The property surrounding the house was in need of landscaping. A driveway alongside the house was graded and graveled. The association purchased an adjacent house and razed it to provide space for off-street parking. All rooms have furnishings from the era when the Ford family resided there. The living room includes a Victrola, a settee and a matching chair, a rocker, and a Bible table which were purchased; and a beautiful antique piano and floor lamp, both donated. Over the mantle hangs a large oil portrait of Ernie, which was painted and donated to the Association by Patricia Woody, a local resident. The center room houses a large collection of the star's personal memorabilia. Most of these plaques, awards, photos, and other items were donated by Mr. Ford's son Brion. One of Ernie Ford's favorite features of the house was the original clawfoot bathtub. On his last visit home in 1991, Ernie reminisced about being bathed in that bathtub as a small child. A modern kitchen was restored as an early 1900's kitchen, featuring a wood-burning cookstove and large porcelain cast iron sink. The back room has been returned to its original use as Ford's parents' bedroom. Much time and effort went into the entire project. The house restoration was completed in 2007. An historic marker, 1A 142, installed at the house by the Tennessee Historical Commission reads as follows: ​ Tennessee Ernie Ford’s Birthplace 1919-1991 Ernest Jennings Ford was born 13 February 1919 in Bristol, Tennessee. In 1937 he began his career at WOPI Radio in Bristol. Known professionally as Tennessee Ernie Ford, he began his rise to fame in1948 with Capital Records. The 1955 success of Sixteen Tons brought him to prime-time TV as host of the Ford Show (1956-1961) and the Tennessee Ernie Ford Show (1961-1965). His 1990 induction into the Country Music Hall of Fame, placement of three stars on the Hollywood Walk of Fame for his achievements in radio, television, and recordings, and receipt of the Presidential Medal of Freedom all reflect his status as one of America’s top entertainers. ​ In February of 2019, an exciting lineup of special events commemorated the 100th birthday of Bristol's most famous son, Ernest Jennings "Tennessee Ernie" Ford. Ford, who was born in Bristol, Tennessee, on February 13, 1919, went on to become an international TV, radio, and recording star in the 1950s. Ford hosted his own TV variety show and earned three stars on the Hollywood Walk of Fame, a Grammy Award, and the Presidential Medal of Freedom. His song "Sixteen Tons" sold more than 20 million copies and was inducted into the Grammy Hall of Fame and the Congress National Recording Registry. Along with the Birthplace of Country Music and the Bristol Historical Association, a committee led by former Bristol VA mayor Don Ashley worked tirelessly to put together a variety of events that celebrated the life and legacy of "The Ol' Pea-Picker." ​ Festivities began on February 10th, when Anderson Street United Methodist Church, the Ford family's home church, hosted a special service followed by tours of its Ford archives. Tours of The Birthplace of Tennessee Ernie Ford, 1223 Anderson Street, were held that afternoon from 2-5 p.m. On February 12th, the Birthplace of Country Music Museum hosted the "Buck and Sid Show" in which Ernie's son, Buck Ford, reminisced about his father's career and life with long time Ford family friend Sid Oakley of the Bristol Historical Association. The program also included the screening of Ford family home movies. On February 13th, Ernie's actual birthday, the Bristol Post Office on 6th Street offered a special stamp and envelope cancellation marking Ford's birthday. Buck and Murphy Ford were the guests of honor for special events that afternoon beginning at 2 p.m. at the Paramount Center for the Arts. Episodes of Ford's TV shows and specials were shown, followed by a birthday celebration at 4 p.m. complete with birthday cake, courtesy of Food City. Local musicians performed Ford songs. During Radio Bristol's Farm and Fun Time on Thursday, February 14, from 7 - 9 pm, the "Heirloom Recipe" segment featured two of Tennessee Ernie's favorite recipes, "Betty Ford's Gumbo" and "Ernest Ford's Cornbread and Sausage Dressing" read aloud in grand style by Buck Ford. Bill and the Belles performed for the event. In addition to the events listed above, a special month-long collection of Tennessee Ernie Ford memorabilia was on display at the Birthplace of Country Music Museum in addition to their permanent Ernie Ford exhibit. ​ BHA photographer Amy Hopper recorded some of these activities in short videos which may be viewed on BHA’s Youtube Channel: Many photos and other links were included in the BHA newsletter highlighting this event which can be viewed here: ​ ​ ​ Also, the newsletter commemorating Ernie's 97th birthday can be read here: ​ Ernie's 100th Birthday Videos Ernie's 100th Birthday Newsletter Ernie's 97th Birthday Newsletter ACT NOW! Donate to the Bristol Historical Association today! DONATE CONTACT US!

  • Volunteer | Bristol Historical Association | Bristol, TN

    Volunteer . Individual members and committees work to further our mission in many ways, including: Designing and selling merchandise through local vendors Restoring and accrediting the Robert Preston House as a regional museum Maintaining and preserving the Birthplace of Tennessee Ernie Ford Preserving the V.I. College Legacy Fielding inquires about Bristol’s history Collecting and preserving historic memorabilia Preparing and installing rotating exhibits at the Bristol Public Library Scanning and filing historic photos and documents Making educational presentations at local schools, including historical slides of Bristol Recognizing historically significant buildings through placement of BHA markers / plaques Sharing interesting email and Facebook posts (Bristol History), Publishing newsletters Promoting area sites and places of interest Maintaining this website... and more! ​Wouldn’t you like to be involved? Email us for more information at BristolTNVA@aol.com To join the association, please click the application link below. Download Application CONTACT US!

  • IC Fowler House | Bristol Historical Association | Bristol, TN

    King-Lancaster-McCoy Mitchell House LEARN MORE Anchor 1 The History . I The King – Lancaster – McCoy – Mitchell House is the most historic house in Bristol, Virginia. The handmade brick residence was built 1816-1820 by Colonel James King on the highest point of his property overlooking the meadows where he raised cattle. The settlement was once known as “King’s Meadows” before it took the name of Bristol nearly half a century later. ​ Colonel James King and his son, the Reverend James King, were key figures in the founding and development of Bristol. They contributed to the business world through the iron business and the commerce of buying and selling. The Reverend James King gifted the land needed to create Bristol’s King University and served as pastor for two early Presbyterian churches. The King family occupied the house until 1853. President Andrew Jackson was a frequent visitor to the house and was escorted to Washington for his inauguration by William King. The house has watched a city grow up around it. Although it was located close to downtown, the property was not actually included inside the town limits when Goodson (Bristol) was incorporated in 1856. The residence housed the Sapling Grove post office from 1839-1853, and it was a stopping point for stagecoaches traveling from Abingdon to Blountville from 1839-1856. Mountain View High School, which later became Sullins College, began in the house in 1869. ​ In 1991, the Bristol Historical Association initiated a study to determine the oldest section of the home, the remainder of Colonel James King’s original dwelling. An elaborate map of Washington County, drawn by John Wood in 1820, marks the presence of the house with a small square and the legend “Colonel James King’s brick house.” Analysis by the Department of Historic Resources in Richmond, Virginia, revealed that the original structure consisted of a two-room plan, divided by a central winding stair case leading to two bedrooms upstairs. The formal entrance was originally on the north elevation. The central portion is presumed to be part of the original structure. The rear wing housing the kitchen is believed to have been added shortly after the original structure was constructed. Several changes to the house were made by subsequent owners. In 1881, John J. Lancaster, a prominent wealthy banker of New York City, remodeled it for his mother and two maiden sisters as a gift. This work was done by prominent Bristol builder John Crowell. Crowell built the north half of the house in the late summer and autumn of 1881. In 1891, H.E. McCoy, the founder of Bristol’s Dominion National Bank, built a major addition to the house for a new living room entrance hall and portico redirecting the formal entrance to the east elevation. The addition completed an ingenious composition by connecting an identical two-story gabled façade1820 structure with a flat roofed “hyphen” which housed the bathroom above and formal entry hall below. ​ The house was purchased by Joseph D. Mitchell in 1899. Mitchell had arrived in Bristol in 1882, with only two dollars in his pocket, and he boarded at the house with Mrs. Thomas Lancaster. She put him in what is now the dining room, and when he later became wealthy, he confessed that on the first night he spent there, he vowed he would someday own the grand house on the hill overlooking the town. About nineteen years later, his dream came true. In 1903, Mitchell added a kitchen wing that is distinguished only by the ornate Carpenter Gothic wood columns. The house belonged to the Mitchell family for over 100 years. Mitchell’s daughter, Margaret, was born in the home in 1901 and lived there for 99 of her 102 years. Margaret willed the house and its contents to King College (now King University). The property has now been restored as the private residence of Daniel and Monica Shew. The King – Lancaster – McCoy – Mitchell house, located two blocks from State Street at 54 King Street, was listed in the National Register of Historic Places in 1994 and included in the Solar Hill Historic District in 2001. ACT NOW! Donate to the Bristol Historical Association today! DONATE CONTACT US!

  • Historic Properties | Bristol Historical Association | Bristol, TN

    Photo Gallery Historic Pictures . Load More Modern Pictures . Load More Historic Markers . Load More Historic Figures . RJ Reynolds Joseph Anderson Rev James King COL James King AD Reynolds Margaret Anderson Caldwell CONTACT US!

  • Historic Images | Bristol Historical

    Historic Images Photograph Collection. BHA'S Carolyn and Roy Williams Collection of Historic Photographs contains hundreds of images available for purchase. Images can be purchased as jpgs, on CD, via Dropbox, emailed, or as black and white 8x10 prints on archival matte photo paper. Images are created from original old negatives or photographs and are not perfect. The image price for individual or private use is $20 each. For commercial or business use prices, or to ask about availability of a particular image or theme, please contact BHA at BristolTNVA@aol.com for pricing. Historic People . Historic Markers . Historic Photos . Load More CONTACT US!

  • Officers/Committees | Bristol Historical Association | Bristol, TN

    BHA Officers / Committees OFFICERS AND COMMITTEE CHAIRS . Officers. President 1st Vice-President 2nd Vice-President Corresponding Secretary Treasurer Immediate Past President Recording Secretary Barbara Smith Judy Slaughter Amy Hopper Pat Buckles Wilma Gill Charles Flannagan Dreama Chapman Directors. 2024 Directors Linda Kirk Carter Miles Brenda Otis Jennifer Surber Charles Flannagan Alice Ann Hoffstatter Jan Rainero Sid Oakley 2025 Directors Joyce Kistner Jennifer Hayes Tom Rogers Tim Buchanan Vickie Mitoraj Carl Coalson Angela Hopkins Daniel Shew Standing Committees. Archives ​ Arrangements Collections Display Exhibits Education & Outreach Finance Ford House Historian Historical Markers Membership Merchandising Newsletter/Website Nominating Parliamentarian Preston House Programs V. I. College Legacy Ways & Means Website Correspondent Susan Long / Linda Kirk / Jennifer Surber Vickie Mitoraj Mary Lou Sproles Joyce Kistner Joyce Kistner Isabelle Ladd Brenda Otis Tim Buchanan Linda Kirk Carter Miles Alice Ann Hoffstatter Amy Hopper Amy Hopper Pending Isabelle Ladd / Jan Rainero Daniel Shew Tim Buchanan Mary Beth Rainero Charles Flannagan CONTACT US!

  • Volunteer | Bristol Historical Association | Bristol, TN

    Research . BHA receives many inquiries regarding the rich history of our area, its people, and its historic buildings and landmarks. BHA does not maintain a library or archives for local historical research by the public at this time. Researchers and Genealogists may visit the Bristol Public Library for local research. https://bristol-library.org/ 701 Goode Street Bristol, VA 24201 Phone: (276) 645-8780 Fax: (276) 669-5593 For inquiries received that require research, BHA volunteers may conduct in depth research for a fee for those individuals unable to visit the library. The research fee is $40 per hour excluding the scanning of documents and research findings and the costs of postage/shipping where applicable. Other Resources for Research: Shelia Steele Hunt Director, Department of Archives and Tourism Government of Sullivan County, Tennessee P.O. Box 3179 3425 Hwy. 126, Suite 100 Blountville, TN 37617 www.historicsullivan.com Office 423.323.4660 / fax 423.323.46352 Sharon Steele-Smith https://tngenweb.org/sullivan/ The Washington County, VA Historical Society sullivantngenweb@gmail.com The Archives of Appalachia 423.439.4338 or archives@etsu.edu https://www.etsu.edu/cas/cass/archives/

  • IC Fowler House | Bristol Historical Association | Bristol, TN

    IC Fowler House Bristol Herald Courier Article The History . Isaac Chapman Fowler was born in Tazewell County, Virginia, on September 23, 1831. He attended Emory and Henry College and became a merchant and postmaster of Emory, Virginia. At the outbreak of the Civil War, Fowler worked for the Commissary Department of the Confederate States of America under General John C. Breckenridge and eventually lost all his property. After the war, in 1868, Fowler came to Bristol, known as Goodson at the time, and along with his brother Elbert, purchased the Bristol News from A.C. Smith who had started the newspaper in 1865. Fowler became the paper’s editor and remained in charge until February 1884. He was very involved in the community, serving as Mayor five times, from 1871-1875, and serving as a member of the Virginia House of Delegates twice, 1875-1879 and 1881-1883. He was the Speaker of the House in 1881-1882. Fowler remained in Bristol until he was appointed as Clerk of the U.S. District Court in Abingdon in 1884, at which time he moved there to a house on Main Street. He resigned in 1904 just prior to his death in 1905. Fowler is buried in Bristol’s historic East Hill Cemetery. The I.C. Fowler House at 417 Spencer Street was built by Fowler in 1867. It is one of the oldest standing structures from the original town limits of Goodson, Virginia. It was constructed by carpenter and furniture maker George Blackley in the Greek Revival architectural style. It is listed on the National Register of Historic Places as well as the Virginia Landmarks Register as a contributing structure to the Virginia Hill Historic District. It was in the parlor of this house that I.C. Fowler, W.W. James and several other businessmen formed the committee to establish Sullins College. Following Fowler’s move to Abingdon, Charles Finch and his family became the second owners of the house. Finch worked for the Norfolk & Western Railway and was a member of the Goodson Town Council. It was Finch who made the motion that Goodson be renamed Bristol. Over the years, the home had many owners. Finally, Blevins Funeral Home acquired the I.C. Fowler house and used it for the storage of funeral equipment for a number of years. In the fall of 1988, Heritage Family Funeral Services bought Blevins and its property, including the Fowler house. Blevins donated the house to the Bristol Preservation Society which later merged with the Bristol Historical Association, and the house then became the property of BHA. BHA sold the house in 2009 to Scott Otis, who along with his father, Dr. Jim Otis, spent years working on restorations before selling it to Tom and Vickie Mitoraj in 2019. The Mitorajs completed the restoration in 2021. The house retains many of its original features, including fireplaces, a central staircase, plantation windows and casings, and flooring. Thanks to the preservation efforts of BHA, the Otis family, and the Mitorajs, the I.C. Fowler House remains standing as both a testament to one of Bristol's early leaders and a tangible part of the historic fabric of our community. ACT NOW! Donate to the Bristol Historical Association today! DONATE CONTACT US!

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