Permanent Exhibits

The Living Heritage Museum exhibits are divided into four sections that explore themes predominant in American History. Topics address Native Americans, pioneers, agriculture and rural life, Civil War and politics, developments in technology and transportation, as well as daily life for East Tennesseans. Relive more than a century of the rich, turbulent history of Southeast Tennessee! Click here for a Museum exhibit floor plan.   After visiting our exhibits, your tour of McMinn County history and heritage can continue with an exploration of Civil War veteran and soldier grave sites.
Brought to you by the Cemeteries of Athens Preservation Association, the Tennessee Civil War National Heritage Area, and Hacker Sign & Graphics Company.


Changing Perceptions:Changing Perceptions Through Troubled Times

  • Native Americans-The Principal Peoples
  • Slavery to Segregation-The Tennessee Enigma
  • Uncle Sam Wants You
  • Greasing the Wheels of Democracy

From Grammar to God: Ways of Enrichment

  • Reading, Writing, and Arithmetic-Education in McMinn County
  • Finding Fulfillment-Religion in McMinn County
  • Spelling Tests and Football Games
  • Childhood in McMinn County

From Fire to Electricity:Transitions of Life in the Home

  • Home in the Heartland-Pioneer Life
  • A Proper Place for Proper Entertaining
  • Spelling Tests and Football Games-Education in McMinn County

Iron Ties and Bank Notes

  • Working the Land
  • From Furs to Factories
  • White Collar: McMinn County Middle Class
  • Simpler Things in Life