Fort Donelson National Battlefield

battlefield_signDuring the Civil War of the 1860s, the Union forces were heading south to fight the Confederacy. Fort Donelson was key because of its location on the Cumberland River. When Fort Donelson was captured by the Union in February 1862, it was their first major victory for the Civil War. With the fort under Union control, they now had the door open to the Confederacy. At Fort Donelson, visitors can learn about the battle, view the earthworks and cannons, and take a walk through the area on one of two trails. There also are areas for picnics, parking, and strolls along the Cumberland River.

nat_battlefieldAt Fort Donelson, you can also visit the Fort Donelson National Cemetery and the Dover Hotel, a historic building where the Confederate surrender took place on February 16, 1862. You can contact the Fort Donelson National Battlefield Visitor's Center at (931) 232-5706. The visitor's center is located off Highway 79 just west of the heart of Dover. Read more about Fort Donelson in Explorations.

Fort Donelson National Cemetery

nat_cemetaryIn July 1862, Congress passed legislation giving the President of the United States the authority to purchase land for the establishment of cemeteries “for soldiers who shall die in the service of their country”. The legislation effectively began the National Cemetery system. In 1867, Fort Donelson Cemetery was established as the final resting for Union soldiers and sailors initially buried in the Fort Donelson area. Visitor Information, P.O. Box 434, Dover, TN 37058-0434 (931)232-5706

Surrender House/Dover Hotel

dover_hotelThe Dover Hotel was the site of the "unconditional surrender" of General Buckner to General Grant, on February 16, 1862. Grant's terms of "unconditional and immediate surrender" were described by Buckner as "ungenerous and unchivalrous". This was the Union Army's first major victory of the the Civil War, setting the stage for invasion of the south and eventual capture of the Mississippi River Valley.

The structure was originally built in 1851, and still stands in the heart of Dover. The structure had served as General Buckner's headquarters during the battle. The Fort Donelson House Historical Association and the National Park Service restored the house in the 1970's, and today the exterior looks much as it did at the time of the surrender. 101 Petty St. Dover, TN 37058 (931) 232-5706, fax: 931-232-4085

Cross Creeks National Wildlife Refuge

ccThe Refuge has 8,862 acres administered by the U.S. Department of the Interior, Fish and Wildlife Service, for the purpose of wildlife management and preservation, particularly migratory waterfowl. Services include wildlife protection and management recreation, such as fishing, hiking, limited hunting, bird viewing, environmental education, and more. For more information, contact the Cross Creeks National Wildlife Refuge Visitor's Center at (931) 232-7477. 643 Wildlife Road, Dover, TN 37058 (931) 232-7477 fax: (931) 232-5958, Send E-mail

Kentucky Lake

kl184 miles long, over 2,300 miles of shoreline, 160,000 acres of water - is one of the world's largest man-made lakes. Kentucky Lake was built when a dam was constructed in Gilbertsville, KY, on the Tennessee River, beginning in the late 1930s. Kentucky Dam was completed in 1944; it began holding back the waters of the mighty Tennessee. The flood waters from the river is now known as Kentucky Lake.

Today, Kentucky Lake serves many purposes. Kentucky Dam, operated by the TVA, generates electricity for the region. Kentucky Lake also provides flood control on the lower Tennessee River, as well as the Ohio and Mississippi rivers. Kentucky Lake provides navigable waterways for shipping of materials. Kentucky Lake also provides tourism to west Kentucky and northwest Tennessee with its beautiful waters, gorgeous sunsets, and endless family fun. Find more about Kentucky Lake here.

Paris Landing State Park
Paris Landing State Park is an 841 acre park located on the western shore of the Tennessee River, which is dammed to form Kentucky Lake (160,000 acres).  The park sits on the widest part of the lake making it the perfect location for all water sports such as fishing, boating, swimming and water skiing.  The park also offers a beautiful and challenging Par 72, 18-hole golf course.  The park pro shop provides golfing supplies, lessons, rental clubs and carts.
TVA Cumberland Fossil Plant

fossil_plantCumberland Fossil Plant is located northwest of Nashville on the shores of Barkley Reservoir on the Cumberland River. It produces more power than any other plant in the TVA system. In fiscal year 2004, its two generating units turned out over 18.5 million megawatt-hours, more than any other TVA fossil or nuclear plant.

Cumberland City Ferry

The Cumberland City Ferry is one of four remaining ferries in Tennessee. (931) 827-2322.

Lake Barkley

The Cumberland River was dammed near Grand Rivers, KY in 1964 to form Lake Barkley. The flood waters of Lake Barkley create an interesting landscape for Stewart County. At summer pool, Lake Barkley seems to be everywhere, especially in the areas east of the river. At winter pool, when the elevation is four to five feet less than normal, most of the lake is marsh-like and very shallow in the Dover area. Nevertheless, Lake Barkley is great for fishing, boating, and other recreational activities.

Land Between the Lakes

lblLand Between the Lakes National Recreation Area (LBL) is located in southwest Kentucky and northwest Tennessee. It is comprised of 170,000 acres and has 16 developed campgrounds all of which meet the selection criteria.

Land Between the Lakes National Recreation Area is a newly designated Forest Service holding. The 170,000 acres of beauty, history, and adventure was part of the Tennessee Valley Authority (TVA) efforts until October 1999. The Forest Service now has responsibility for managing the land and recreation opportunities. Sandwiched between two magnificent bodies of water, Kentucky Lake and Lake Barkley, the LBL is a place of beauty and widely varied recreation opportunities. Whether looking for a camp site with full-hook-ups or nothing more than a level, cleared area with the whispers of wind through old-growth oak or something in between, you'll find it at LBL. While the campgrounds with water play recreation and hook-ups, such as Piney and Hillman Ferry, fill up most weekends, smaller, less well-known campgrounds with their superior fishing and wildlife viewing opportunities, are just as popular. 100 Van Morgan Dr. Golden Pond, KY 42211-9001, (270) 924-2000
Land Between the Lakes Recreational Area. Dover serves as the southern entrance of The Land Between The Lakes. Administered by the U.S. Forest Service since October of 1999, the agency took control after TVA was denied appropriations by Congress for the upcoming fiscal year. The LBL Protection Act was passed in 1998 by Congress to shift control of the massive peninsula from the TVA to the U.S. Forest Service. LBL was created in the late 1960s after Lake Barkley was formed. Today LBL features hiking trails, backpacking, camping, hunting, fishing, wildlife viewing, horseback riding, historical attractions, biking, an off-road vehicle area, swimming, environmental education programs, indoor educational facilities, and so much more. LBL boasts over one million visitors each year. 100 Van Morgan Drive, Golden Pond, KY 42211, (270) 924-2000. Send E-Mail

The Homeplace 1850

1850-_houseThe Homeplace at Land Between the Lakes recreates a working farm operated by a "family" living an authentic 19th century lifestyle. Open daily in summer. (270) 924-2000