Whites Creek, TN (October 7, 2008)… A little known part of Middle Tennessee History will come alive at the James Gang Festival and Shootout in historic Whites Creek on Saturday, October 18th from 9:00 am until 4:00pm.
It will be a dramatic reenactment on the exact site where, almost 127 years ago to the day, a James Gang member was captured, forcing Jesse and Frank James to flee the Nashville area and thus end the James Gang era in Tennessee.
“Jesse James and his gang were very active in the Whites Creek area,” said Bonnie Hudgens, proprietor of Earthman’s General Store where all the excitement took place so long ago. “And that’s just part of the rich history of the Whites Creek community that few residents of Nashville and the surrounding area know about.”
Earthman’s General Store was constructed in 1874, and is now listed as an historical site on the Tennessee Registry. In 1881, the building was a combination grocery store and saloon where James Gang member Bill Ryan, alias Tom Hill, was arrested and carted off to the Nashville Jail after implicating himself in a James Gang heist in which he participated in Muscle Shoals, Al.
The James Gang drama planned for the day was embellished by local playwright J. Ecklond & titled Raw Whiskey & Oysters: The capture of Bill Ryan and the James Gang –Guns Blazing. The play will be reenacted at 11:00 am and 2:00 pm.
In addition, a number of Nashville musicians will be performing throughout the day. “With the plethora of unbelievable talent in this city, you will not want to miss the opportunity to sit back and relax to the tunes of what could be the next biggest stars to come out of Music City”, said Larry Jeffries, a local songwriter, musician, sound engineer, and manager of the festival’s music entertainment.
Various craftsmen will be offering tips & displaying their wares with arts, crafts, leather goods, honey goods, woodworking, soap making, bead work, iron work, quilting, pottery, gardening and more.
Food will be available on site, offering BBQ, Ho-Made fried pies, and fresh baked goods.
Everyone is encouraged to wear 1880’s period clothing (but not mandatory) and bring their own chairs & blankets. Earthman’s General Store is located just seven miles and only 10 minutes from downtown Nashville. Take I-24 West to Old Hickory Blvd.(Exit 40), and turn left. Travel two (2) miles to Whites Creek Pike, and turn left. Earthman’s General Store is the 2nd building on the left.
In the event of rain, the James Gang Festival will take place on Sunday, October 19.
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PRESS RELEASE SPECIFIC IMAGES:
James Gang Photo from former Event
Earthman’s James Gang Festival Logo