History of the Van Dyke House by Lisa Long & Jeff Wilkins

Lisa Long is current owner of the Van Dyke house and Jeff Wilkins is the carpenter who is restoring the woodwork in the home. 

(From the Daily Post Athenian Dec 9, 2016 by Greg Moses)...

Known as “Prospect Hill,” the home was built around 1833 by Thomas Nixon Van Dyke, a prominent Athens lawyer and judge who also served as president of the Hiwassee Railroad and was active in the civic endeavors of the city. The home was one of the largest in the area at its heyday and the then-80 -plus-acre estate boasted magnificent terraced gardens and well-appointed grounds – some of which later became Cedar Grove Cemetery.

“Wealthy people from Atlanta would come up to the house in the summer for parties,” Jim said. “It was quite the showplace in its time.”

The “showplace” during the Civil War entertained both Confederate General Nathan Bedford Forrest and Union General William T. Sherman, the latter taking up residence in the house while Van Dyke, a staunch Secessionist and Confederate sympathizer who was arrested in 1864 by Union soldiers, spent time in a prison camp until the war’s end, returning to Athens in 1866, where he would live out the remainder of his life.

Lisa Long & Jeff Wilkins will share:

  • History of the Van Dyke house
  • Power Point presentation of the home prior and after tornado destruction
  • Explanation and samples of the woodworking

This is a Heritage School Program.

Cost: $5 non-member which includes a full tour of the Museum.


Event Date: 
Saturday, January 27, 2018 - 11:00am to 1:00pm