It would be hard to find a property in Middle Tennessee with more history than Dixona Farm, located in Dixon Springs in Smith and Trousdale Counties.
The 148-acre farm on Dixon Creek, which includes a pasture, forest and a natural spring, contains “Dixona,” one of the oldest homes in Middle Tennessee and listed on the National Register of Historic Places. Constructed in 1787-88 by Tilman Dixon, the revolutionary war-era explorer who settled the town of what is now Dixon Springs and is buried on the property, the residence held the first Smith County tribunal in 1799 and was also used as the first tavern and post office for the county. Louis Philippe, Duke of Orleans and later King of France, stayed in this house during his sightseeing tour of America in 1797.
Today, Dixona is the full-time residence of Faith Young, who has worked hard to preserve the house. She protected her property forever with a conservation easement through The Land Trust. Faith’s son Stephen, an attorney in Nashville, represented his mother during the transaction and worked with Land Trust staff to make sure that all of their family goals were addressed.
The Land Trust has worked with multiple families in Smith County since 1999, including Tom Beasley, whose family has farmed the land in Dixon Springs since 1803. Mr. Beasley has protected almost 500 acres of the original Beasley Farm, portions of which are adjacent to conserved Dixona Farm.
The protected Beasley Family property holds ancient Native American burial mounds given a rough chronology of the 1300s up to the early 1400s CE. Statues excavated from the site are now part of the Smithsonian Institution collection.
PHOTO BY: NANCY RHODA
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