By Ashley Rader
Another window to the past has opened in Elizabethton, and one of the first to peek through was Tennessee’s governor.
Gov. Bill Haslam dedicated the new Interpretive Exhibit at Sycamore Shoals State Historic Area in a special ceremony Friday morning, calling the long-awaited interactive museum “an outstanding educational venue to learn more about our rich and storied past.”
“This is a part of Tennessee history,” Haslam said. “From dynamic murals to interactive opportunities, the new Sycamore Shoals interpretive exhibit will take park visitors on an interesting journey into Tennessee’s history.”
A lot of history is packed into the center – nearly 40 years more than expected.
Sycamore Shoals Park Manager Jennifer Bauer said the interactive local history museum was originally planned to be a part of the visitors center when it was opened in 1976. But because of budget constraints and cuts, it was eliminated from the plans; funding was not granted until this year.
“This is a beautiful room,” she said. “It has came to be what it was meant to be. It was a dream of so many people, and it has finally become a reality.”
Tennessee Department of Environment and Conservation Commissioner Bob Martineau described the new exhibit as a dream that was “a long time coming.”
“The state parks are here to tell the story of the area,” Martineau said. “State parks engage people and help to protect the legacy that we will pass down to our children.”