MURFREESBORO, Tenn. (WKRN) – Black History Month was celebrated at the Stones River Battlefield in Murfreesboro on Saturday.
A group took a bus and walking tour of the battlefield.
The property was once occupied by African-American families, many of whom owned land and settled before and after the Civil War. Several of them were forced to sell their property to the government for the national park.
The Cemetery Community, as it was known, was the hub of the black community in Rutherford County.
“It’s a very complicated story and one that certainly we’re telling, and we have people here who are two to three generations removed from the original folks that lived here. They grew up on this property, so we’re hearing this essentially straight from the horse’s mouth. It can’t get any better than that,” stated Jim Lewis.
The one-room school that was rebuilt twice became dilapidated and fell down. A cinder block school still stands in the community, which used to be known as The Bottoms.
Historic homes still stand near the battlefield property.