Many people in the northern Alabama region have visited Lynchburg, TN, to tour the Jack Daniel’s Distillery. I finally made my trip last summer with my Baby Girl and I really enjoyed the tour (except for the part when we walked through the steam room, where the incredible heat did not combine well with 90-degree temperatures outdoors and middle-aged hot flashes. I almost passed out. Seriously. The guide got pretty freaked out at the sight of my ashen face.)
There is a lot of outdoor walking so be prepared. An interesting note: Because Moore County is “dry” and doesn’t allow alcohol sales, the distillery gets around the law by selling “collectible” bottles of whiskey.
I wrote about Jack Daniel in my book “Forgotten Tales of Tennessee,” including the fact that Ole Jack died after kicking the safe in his office when he couldn’t recall the combination. His injured toe turned gangrenous, which led to his death in 1911. (He was born on an unknown date in about 1849.)
I also loved downtown Lynchburg, a quaint little square with antiques, a general store and restaurants. The Welcome Center is located in a refurbished service station and the old jail is open for tours. The Moore County Jail was in use for nearly 100 years, from 1893 to 1990. The aging cells were fascinating and creepy and the memorabilia was interesting. For info on the downtown area, call 931-759-4111 or click here.
One of the most iconic places downtown is Miss Mary Bobo’s Boarding House Restaurant. It is a community-table eatery in a historic home. Guests are seated at large tables (our round table had eight seats) where they share a meal with strangers. Homey comfort foods are set in dishes on a huge Lazy Susan and guests turn the table and serve themselves, just like at Grandma’s house. The food was incredible and there were so many options, about 10 or 12 different dishes, I think. Plus, it is fun to get to know the people with whom you are sharing a meal. TIP: Be sure to make reservations in advance. It is always booked. Call 931-759-7394.
TNvacation.com says: “Miss Mary Bobo’s began back in 1908 when a young Miss Mary assumed ownership of the historic Salmon Hotel. The original structure was raised in the 1820’s as a traveler’s hotel and is built over a natural spring. Miss Mary ran the boarding house until her death in 1983, just one month shy of her 102nd birthday.”