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Hotel Halbrook


  • Dickson began as a railroad town that was not in existence at the outbreak of the Civil War.  The railroad extended only as far West from Nashville as Kingston Springs - 23 miles away from where you stand now.  During the war, however, the Union army extended the railroad to the Tennessee River in order to facilitate transportation between Nashville and the river.  This enabled a community to grow around the Mile Post 42 watering stop for the trains.


  • In 1912 Joel T. Halbrook, a prominent local businessman, purchased the frame hotel that had been on this site, tore it down, and constructed a larger brick hotel with all of the modern conveniences.  The hotel was completed in 1913 and boasted steam radiator heat, electric lights, running water, and indoor bathrooms for patrons. 


  • During the 1920's the price of a room was 75 cents with a hot bath available for an extra 2 cents. 


  • Robert and Maybelle Clement were the hotel managers in 1920, and living in the Manager's Suite on the first floor when their first son, Frank Goad Clement, was born.  Frank G. Clement went on to become the longest-serving Governor in Tennessee's modern history.


  • Frank Clement was elected in 1952 and was the youngest Tennessee Governor in modern times.  He served three terms as governor of Tennessee.  He also delivered the keynote speech at the 1956 Democratic National Convention.  As governor he established the mental health system in Tennessee and initiated the program to provide all Tennessee school children with text books. 


  • One of Governor Clement's greatest achievements was to lead Tennessee peacefully through the process of integrating the public schools.


  • The building was placed on the National Register of Historic Places as a state-owned historic site in 1990, and the museum officially opened in June 2009.  This building is one of few remaining examples in Tennessee of a rural railroad hotel.



Ice Storm of 1951 - Hotel Halbrook is on the left across the train tracks

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