Photo Record

Object Name Image, Digital
Catalog Number 2015.077.002.a-f
Collection Picnooga Collection
Description a: Digitized photograph, original 8" x 10". The subject of the picture is the famous Lookout Mountain Fairyland Inn/Club built near Chattanooga, TN by Garnet & Frieda Carter in the 1920s. It was an amenity for their new mountain residential community called Fairyland (see 2015.077.001). They offered fine dining, bands & dancing, a bar, social lounges, guest rooms, and eventually a swimming pool, guest cottages, and a golf course. Built of dramatic mountain stone with tudor trim, the Inn perched right on the edge of the east bluff of Lookout Mountain with a spectacular view of the valley, the city, and many mountain chains beyond.

The large swimming pool was right on the brow as well, just south of the Inn. The small log guest cottages were on the same grounds, appropriately called Mother Goose Village. In 1990 the Inn and cottages were placed on the National Register of Historic Places. The golf course construction was delayed, however, a misfortune which led to a national American pastime. As an interim activity, the Carters built a mini golf course among the rocks, trees, and bushes outside the Inn. It became known as Tom Thumb Golf and was patented in 1927 to spread around the world.

The Inn was the focal point of 450 residential acres, 100 acres of parks and trails, and the beautiful gardens of Rock City. This picture shows the main entrance at the awning, and a woman there at the mail drop. Antique cars of the era are parked along the curved driveway.

b. Digitized photograph, original 8" x 10". It's subject is the south end of the Lookout Mountain Fairyland Club, steps on the right leading up to the eastern veranda and down to the pool area. The main circular driveway leads in toward the large dining & dancing ballroom with massive fireplace. The unique architecture integrates the building with a huge boulder at left. Coats of arms adorn the bay window, and flag poles rise from the roof line. The antique cars, of course, date the picture itself.

c: Digitized photograph, original 8" x 10". The picture features an inside view of the Lookout Mountain Fairyland Inn, an area just inside the front entrance. This is a massive lounge is arranged around a grand, central, mountain stone fireplace featuring a bas relief of Pan over the mantle, which is decorated with evergreens and candles. Other areas are enhanced by flower boxes and wreaths. The room soars upward with a vaulted ceiling and mezzanine, well lighted by windows on the right, and on the left by access to porches overlooking the valley.

There is comfortable over stuffed furniture, a writing/reading desk, rustic chandelier, and electric lamps on the tables. A wind up Victrola and grandfather clock stand in the far left corner. Magazines and ash trays are generally available. The hardwood floor is covered by a large area rug. One source of heat is evident as a hot water radiator. Two sets of double doors at the far end of this entry lounge open into a large dining room, also with hardwood flooring. Straight back wooden chairs are pulled up to tables set with linens. Some hanging plants and windows are seen as well.

d. Digitized photograph, original 8" x 10". It shows the large Fairyland Inn/Club swimming pool in a heavily wooded setting just south of the inn itself. As least two electric lights are visible, one on a high pole, the other on an overhead wire. An iron fence encloses what is probably a mountain stone pool deck with low diving board. What may be a shower head appears at bottom right, along with a ladder accessing the pool. At least two adults are present, a man in a suit and a woman in a dress sitting on one of the many straight back chairs lining the deck. The other people are younger swimmers, seemingly three girls (bathing caps) and three boys. All wear the old fashioned, modest, dark toned, generic swim outfits. shorts and a sleeveless t-shirt. The misty valley below is visible in the distance.

e. Digitized photograph, original 8" x 10". It shows one of the small guest cottages available to Fairyland residents' guests at the Inn. These were grouped in an area called Mother Goose Village. All were built in a rustic log cabin and stone style. This particular cottage is nestled among trees and boulders with a path leading to a little front porch with wood railing. Flower pots, several windows and a fireplace chimney are visible as well.

f. Digitized photograph, original 8" x 10". It shows the same Fairyland Inn/Club guest cottage as described above at e. It appears to be taken in another season, as the deciduous trees are fully leafed out. A few extra items can be seen in this shot: a wall mounted sign at the top of the steps, a mail box, a log bench on the rocks at far left, some informal shrub landscaping, low stacked stone walls, and a person by a car at right. An overhead wire runs between rough poles, either phone or electricity. The larger cottage window facing the road exhibits a number of nick nacks. Below it is a rectangular lettered sign which reads "GINGERBREAD HOUSE".
Date 1927
Accession number 2015.077