Photo Record

Object Name Transparency, Slide
Catalog Number 2012.007.009.a,b
Description a&b) These two slides, dated October 1967, are photographs of the Tellico River Mansion, which was built by Elisha Johnson. Johnson came to Tennessee after his son, Mortimer, fled their home in New York after he killed a man in a duel, which was considered a murder in the state of New York. In about 1845, Mortimer arrived in Tellico Plains, where he was impressed with the iron industry. He wrote to his father about the Tellico Iron Company. Elisha came down to Tellico Plains and bought the company with his brother, Ebenezer. Once the company became successful, Elisha moved his family down to Tennessee and began the construction of the mansion in 1846. From 1846 until 1864, Elisha's, Mortimer's, and Ebenezer's families lived together in the mansion. The Civil War brought trouble for the Johnsons' when their foundry was taken over by the Confederate Army. After the war, General Sherman acquitted Elisha of any wrongdoing because of his northern birth and sympathies. Despite this acquittal, however, Sherman's army destroyed the foundry so completely so that it could not be rebuilt. The Johnson family left Tennessee and Elisha settled in Ithaca,NY where he died in 1866. During the reconstruction era, the Mansion was left unoccupied. In 1877, Colonel W. A. Hoskins of Chattanooga organized a company that bought the Tellico Iron and Manufacturing Company and the Mansion was included with the company. For a time it was a popular summer hotel. From 1892 to about 1894, Robert L. Bright of Fayetteville lived in the mansion with his family while he built the railroad from Athens to Tellico Plains. A young Englishman, Cyril F. Herford came to Tellico Plains by way of Florida at the turn of the century. He ran the Tellico Iron and Slate Company, which actually became more a real estate business. He married Sarah Dismukes of Fayetteville, Tennessee and their family lived in the mansion from 1901 until 1949.
Date 1967
Film Size 2.00" x 2.00"
Accession number 2012.007