On a beautiful Fall afternoon of Sunday, October 4, 2015, I had a wonderful opportunity to be present for the dedication ceremony of a stone bench dedication at Two Rivers Mansion by the Two Rivers High School Class of 1965 on their 50th Anniversary. I was also beginning to put together my questions for my next Hearts of the People blog featuring Mrs. Annie Martin. “Ms. Annie” as most folks call her, is 92 and has seen more in Donelson than most. It struck me that Ms. Annie probably had great memories and stories of Two Rivers Mansion and this event would be a great time to do my interview before the event and invite her to come with me as it probably would trigger more memories. I arrived at Ms. Annie’s house about an hour before the bench dedication to interview her. As it turns out, Ms. Annie told me her son graduated in 1965 from Two Rivers High School rival Donelson High School. It did indeed trigger some great memories. She remembers Mrs. McGavock twice a year inviting kids in the neighborhood to come to her front porch and she would serve them fresh baked cookies.
Annie’s parents married in 1898. She recalled her days growing up in Gallatin in the 1920’s and 30’s. Her dad worked for the Corps of Engineers and was also a lock master at Lock Two at the end of Pennington Bend. (Just recently, Lock Two was one of the properties that received a historic overlay as proposed by Mayor Dean’s administration). Her mom was a teacher and Annie remembered stories of her Mom recalling riding their horse and buggy every day to the school where she taught, going through the Toll Gate, which was near one of the Donelson Gateway Project sites at the intersection of Stewart’s Ferry Pike and Lebanon Pike. Today that site has a small toll gate acknowledging that site’s history. Annie also remembered stories of her Mom recalling riding by McGavock Pike while it was still an unpaved road. Mrs. McGavock would refer to it as “her road”.