GREENEVILLE, Tenn. (WJHL) — Since its re-opening in 1996, the General Morgan Inn has become the place to stay for anyone passing through Greeneville.
It’s become the crown jewel of the downtown area and a hub for events, shopping and fine dining.
General Morgan Inn Marketing Coordinator Jessy Boswell said it is the combination of history and modern amenities that makes the hotel special.
“It has a very unique design,” Boswell said. “The architecture that we have here is unlike anything else that you’ll see in town.”
Upon entry, guests take in the beautiful lobby complete with a warm fireplace, 35-foot ceilings, a hand-painted canopy and ornate chandeliers.
“The chandeliers that are in the lobby were actually re-created to have that 1880s feel,” Boswell said. “They were shipped in from New York.”
The inn gets its name from Confederate General John Hunt Morgan, who was killed by Union troops during the Civil War in what is now the inn’s back parking lot.
What eventually became the General Morgan Inn got its start after the Civil War during Greeneville’s railroad boom in the 1880s.
Colonel John Doughty built the Grand Central Hotel to provide a place to stay for travelers coming through Greeneville.
“The Doughty family really wanted to make this a central location for celebrations, activities,” Boswell said. “There really wasn’t anything else like it at the time.”
Other hotels popped up next door during that time, and the buildings eventually merged into the Grand Central.
That’s why you’ll find uneven floors in some of General Morgan’s hallways.
After Doughty died, the Grand Central became the Brumley Hotel.
In the 1940s, the Brumley Hotel debuted the General Morgan Room, which is now occupied by Brumley’s Restaurant and Lounge on the main floor.
The addition of the General Morgan Room cemented the hotel as a place of gathering.
Operations continued up to the 1980s when downtown Greeneville entered a period of decline.
The hotel shut down and fell into disrepair until the community came together to bring it back, resulting in a grand re-opening in 1996.
“The Town of Greeneville, the Main Street program really came together and bought the hotel,” Boswell said. “With the help of Scott Niswonger, he eventually took over and made it into what it is today.”
Now, guests are welcomed to comfortable rooms and great hospitality.
Guest Relations Manager Rebekah Foster said she is happy to talk with guests and continue the inn’s tradition as a place of gathering.
“Even your ordinary people have extraordinary stories,” Foster said. “Getting to share those and getting to be a part of those for even a minute is amazing.”
The hotel has seen its rebirth, but Boswell said downtown Greeneville has followed in its place.
“I think it’s really been a leader in the revitalization project here in downtown,” Boswell said. “We had re-done our building in 1996, but you can see Depot Street’s done a complete 180.”
For more information, you can visit the General Morgan Inn’s website.