Open House at Andrew Johnson Homestead Friday Evening December 6th

December 04, 2019

Holiday Open House at Andrew Johnson’s Homestead

Greeneville, TN – President Andrew Johnson’s Homestead, located at 209 South Main Street, will be open Friday evening, December 6, 2019 for a Victorian holiday experience. Decorations in the home reflect the holiday season of the 1870s. Visitors can mingle with staff, some of whom will be dressed in period attire, and listen to Christmas carols played on the family’s original Steinway piano.
Historically accurate holiday decorations have been placed throughout the Homestead. Diary accounts, newspaper descriptions, and oral histories have each provided a glimpse into the Johnson Family holiday practices. Decorations include items found from the fields and forests, such as dried flowers, fruits, cones, holly, and greenery which surrounded Johnson’s Homestead. In the grandchildren’s room, traditional home-made decorations include corn-shuck dolls, gingerbread men, paper-chain garlands, and tin-punch ornaments.
In addition to holiday decorations, other portions of the Homestead will be prepared for the coming holidays. Displays of original family china, crystal, and silver sets will adorn the dining room. Johnson’s top hat, dress shirt and bowtie collar are laid out for display, as though the president, himself, is preparing for a special evening with friends and family.
The family’s copy of Charles Dickens’s A Christmas Carol is in Mrs. Johnson’s room, as though she were reading the timeless classic to the grandchildren. Charles Dickens was a guest of President Johnson at the White House during his tour of America in 1868.
Children are invited to make a hand-crafted holiday ornament of their own. Visitors can warm themselves by an outdoor fire, weather permitting, where cider and cookies will be available. The holiday open house will run from 5:00 pm to 8:00 pm.