The Tennessee State Library & Archives will celebrate 227 years of statehood by hosting free events on Statehood Day, Thursday, June 1, and a family-friendly celebration event on Saturday, June 3.
“The Library & Archives displays Tennessee’s three original constitutions once a year to celebrate statehood,” said Tennessee Secretary of State Tre Hargett. “This is an opportunity for Tennesseans to see the original documents that still to this day provide the foundation of our state government. There will be so much for visitors to explore on Statehood Day and at our family-friendly celebration on June 3. I hope Tennesseans join us for either or both days of celebration.”
On Statehood Day, June 1, Debbie Mathis Watts will perform her song, “The Tennessee in Me,” an official state song of Tennessee, starting at 8 a.m. The Library & Archives, with assistance from the Tennessee Highway Patrol Honor Guard, will transfer Tennessee’s three priceless original constitutions from 1796, 1834 and 1870, typically protected in a vault, to the Library & Archives’ lobby. The constitutions will remain on display until 4:30 p.m.
The Library & Archives will also feature rarely seen historical documents, including the Cumberland Compact, Governor John Sevier’s Address to the first Tennessee General Assembly, the Cherokee Nation 1827 Constitution and the founding documents of the State of Franklin.
In addition to viewing Tennessee’s original founding documents, guests can pick up free historical craft kits and receive a Passport to Tennessee History. The free Passport to Tennessee History features information about the Library & Archives, Tennessee State Museum, Bicentennial Capitol Mall State Park and the Tennessee State Capitol and space to collect a distinct stamp from each location.
“The Library & Archives team is excited to welcome visitors during our two days of Statehood Day celebrations,” said Tennessee State Librarian and Archivist Jamie Ritter. “We hope parents bring their children to our family-friendly event celebration on Saturday, June 3, and have some fun while learning something new about the history of Tennessee.”
On Saturday, June 3, from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m., the Library & Archives is hosting a family-friendly Statehood Day Celebration event with a children’s scavenger hunt, games, crafts and historical interpreters. On June 3, Tennessee’s three original constitutions and other founding documents will be displayed publicly in the Library & Archives lobby from 8 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.
The Library & Archives is joining Bicentennial Mall State Park and the Tennessee State Museum for a variety of events to celebrate Statehood Day. Park Rangers will offer a free guided tour of Bicentennial Mall State Park starting outside the Tennessee State Library & Archives at 9 a.m. For more information, visit tnstateparks.com.
The State Museum is celebrating Statehood Day with a children’s story time, statehood artifacts on display, family crafts and a Statehood Anniversary Commemoration at noon on June 1. For the Tennessee State Museum’s full schedule of Statehood Day activities visit, TNMuseum.org/Statehood.
The Library & Archives’ Statehood Day Celebration events will take place at our building, 1001 Rep. John Lewis Way N., on the northeast corner of the Bicentennial Mall State Park in Nashville. Attending the Library & Archives Statehood Day Celebration events is free. No reservations are required.
For more information about the Library & Archives Statehood Day Celebration, visit sos.tn.gov/tsla/statehoodday.