In addition to Mule Day, Columbia, Tennessee is best known for being home to the eleventh President of the United States, James K. Polk. Located on W. 7th St., the Polk Home the only surviving residence of James K. Polk other than the White House, as well as the first brick home built in Columbia. And this year is particularly special as the ancestral home celebrates its 200th year of existence, hearkening back to its construction in 1816.
In recognition of this important bicentennial anniversary, the staff at the Polk Home just opened its doors to the new exhibit "West to Prosperity: The Polk Home at 200." The exhibit was kicked off with a sneak preview and a reception in the courtyard last Thursday evening, May 26.
The exhibit runs through December 31 and depicts how the Polks and other frontier families transformed Tennessee wilderness and canebrakes into a thriving region of farms and small towns. Located in the Polk Presidential Hall, the vignettes include a blacksmith shop, farming displays, an 1837 Conestoga wagon, a general store and a Polk's law office.
The exhibit is well worth taking the time to see and is perfect for the whole family. James K. Polk Home Museum Director John Holtzapple, Curator Tom Price and staff members, such as Jaryn Abdallah, have brought a piece of American and local history to life with this exhibit. What a delightful and pertinent way to kick off the bicentennial celebration.