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The main Carter House, no photos were permitted inside, but the rooms were displayed with historical furnishings.
Carter House - The Battle of Franklin
Closest available address
1140 Columbia Ave, Franklin, Tennessee 37064
Open Mon.-Sat. 9am-5pm & Sun. Noon-5pm.
Best time to visit
Summer, Fall, Spring
The Carter House is a 19th century brick building that was once part of a 288 acre farm. War and fate combined to place this property at the center of the Civil War Battle of Franklin in November 1864. In addition to the principal home, there are several outlying buildings and a small museum on the 15 acre property. The Carter House opened to the public as a museum and historical site in 1953.
Following the fall of Atlanta, Confederate forces invaded Tennessee hoping to reverse their fortunes in the war. Union troops converged on Nashville to defend the area. The Southerners had an opportunity to destroy an isolated Union force but failed to do so, and these Union soldiers retreated to Franklin. Despite the obvious strength of the Union line and warnings from his subordinates, the Southern commander attacked late in the day. Confederates briefly broke through the center of the line but suffered appalling causalities including the irreplaceable loss of key generals. Union defenses held and the Northerners successfully evacuated at night.
The Carter House, Carnton Plantation and a few isolated parcels of land are all that remain of the battlefield. The Carter House museum and grounds can be toured on one’s own but only guided tours are available inside the house. While the museum was fairly small and a bit dated, it did have a number of impressive battlefield artifacts. The informative house tour lasted an hour and covered both the Carter family and the battle. The tour started with observing bullet holes on the walls of buildings. The house includes period furnishings, but the tour related more to the family and historical events. This is not a traditional battlefield experience in the sense of rows of cannons and large open fields, but the Carter House is definitely worth a visit for those wishing to learn more about a pivotal Civil War battle. The tour was interesting enough to recommend it for a general audience too, not just for Civil War types.
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