Civil War in Tennessee: War in the Mountains
mile marker/exit 46
Erwin, TN 37650
Secession bitterly divided Tennessee’s mountain residents in 1861. Most were Unionist, but this part of the state remained Confederate territory until later in the war. Guerrilla warfare was common here. Secessionists and Unionists lived side by side in the beautiful Nolichucky River Valley (Exit 37). Local farm boys joined both the Confederate and the Union armies. East of Unicoi (Exit 32) on Tennessee Rte. 107 is Bell Cemetery, site of the Limestone Cove Massacre. In November 1863, Confederate Col. William A. Witcher’s cavalry rode to the Bell Farm, killed nine young men who were en route to join the Union army, and burned the farmhouse. The Tipton-Haynes State Historic Site in Johnson City (Exit 24) commemorates Landon C. Haynes, a Confederate senator during the war. Postwar hostility toward former secessionists was so strong that he moved to West Tennessee.