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Statehood Day Celebration

Celebrate with Sequoyah Birthplace Museum with live demonstrations.

Sequoyah Museum

In the days before statehood, Tennesseans struggled to gain a political voice and suffered because North Carolina did not want the trouble or expense of protecting its western counties. The national government formed under the Articles of Confederation was too weak to meet the westerners’ demands.

In 1784, frustrated settlers formed the breakaway State of Franklin, also known as “Frankland.” The ever-popular John Sevier was named governor, and the state began operating as an independent but unrecognized government.

In 1795 a census taken that showed Tennessee’s population had grown to 77,262 which more than met the federal statehood requirement of 60,000 citizens. The next step in the statehood process was a vote by the citizens. Most citizens supported statehood which was easily approved by a vote of 6, 504 to 2, 562. Governor Blount called for a constitutional convention to meet in Knoxville, where delegates from all the counties drew up a model state constitution and democratic bill of rights. The Tennessee Constitution borrowed from the United States Constitution and the North Carolina Constitution. The constitution allowed free males 21 or older who owned land to vote without regard for race. Therefore, both white and free black men who met the requirements could vote. The voters chose John Sevier as governor. Tennessee leaders converted the territory into a state before asking Congress for approval. Since the Southwest Territory was the first Federal territory to apply for statehood, Congress was uncertain how to proceed. Members of the Federalist party opposed statehood for Tennessee because they assumed voters in Tennessee would support their opponents, the Democratic-Republicans. Finally, Congress approved the admission of Tennessee as the sixteenth state of the Union on June 1, 1796. Knoxville was the first state capital.

Sequoyah Museum

So visit Sequoyah Museum to celebrate this important Tennessee Holiday. Their 1809 Blacksmith shop will be open with demonstrations going on throughout the afternoon. Come out and share the afternoon with living history in their 1800’s Dog-trot Log cabin. Learn about Cherokees in the Civil War.

The museum is named for Sequoyah, a Cherokee, who could not read or write in any language, who perfected a system for reading and writing the Cherokee language so that the nation and its heritage would live forever. Our acorn printing press will be doing demonstrations throughout the day. All Statehood Day activities are free and also enjoy free admission to the museum.


Sequoyah Birthplace Museum

A museum dedicated to the life and story of Sequoyah, creator of the Cherokee written language.

576 Highway 360, Vonore, TN | 423-884-6246 | www./

Hours: Mon-Sat 9:00 - 5:00 Sunday 12:00 - 5:00

Highland Manor


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