William Blount chose to build his mansion in Knoxville after signing the Treaty of the Holston just a few yards away from the Mansion's location. Blount's Knoxville mansion would serve as the territorial capitol, as well as a family home. The care in construction, and the size and shape of Blount Mansion reflects Blount's position as a political figure, head of a prominent family, and influential businessman.
The house was made of sawn lumber to meet Mary Blount's requirement of "a proper wooden house." The lumber was brought from North Carolina, since most of the area's residents built log cabins and log houses in the 1790s. Nails were brought from the Blount family's naillery near Tarboro, North Carolina, and glass was brought from near Richmond, Virginia. The Mansion was a hall-parlor type house with a hall, the main room for family activity, and a parlor, for more formal activities. Upstairs there was a single sleeping chamber.
Research on the historic structure and archaeology evidence suggests that the west wing was added to the Mansion first. It was most likely an outbuilding, pulled from its foundation and drug to the Mansion wall, where it was added in. Blue beads and other artifacts recovered during archaeological investigations of the site, suggest that the west wing may have been Slaves' quarters when still detached from the Mansion. The east wing was added last, perhaps as late as 1820.
The kitchen is a recreation of an eighteenth-century kitchen, but is located on the site of the original kitchen. The Governor's Office was a typical "law office" of the 1790s, built right on the edge of State Street. The cooling shed, was excavated during an archaeological dig in the 1950s, and the shed roof was rebuilt under the supervision of the National Park Service at that time.
In Person · 200 W. Hill Avenue, Knoxville, TN 37902
By Mail · Blount Mansion Association, P.O. Box 1703, Knoxville, TN 37901
By Telephone · 865-525-2375