The forces of nature

We always go for the things that are the most-est, the tallest, the biggest, so we naturally had to go see the highest waterfall east of the Rockies. Here, in a wonderful gorge in the Tennessee mountains, we got to marvel at this site.

Nature had a big place in a story that unfolded in nearby Dayton, Tennessee. In 1925, it was the scene of the dramatic Scopes trial that pitted William Jennings Bryan against Clarence Darrow, in what became a debate over the origins of man.  Amazingly, they have completely preserved the courtroom, and have lots of artifacts in the basement museum.  However, I didn’t sense a great deal of sympathy for the losing side – or even much ambiguity in the local attitude, judging from Bryan’s statue outside the courthouse, and the local college bearing his name following his creationist point of view.

So Bryan won that round, a literal reading of the Bible prevailed, and you sense that things haven’t changed much in Dayton.

Don checked out a yoga class at the local Y, which proclaims on its web site:  “The Rhea Family YMCA has totally divorced any Eastern Religion from this class.’

Oh boy.  But it sure is pretty here.

6 thoughts on “The forces of nature

  1. When my father took a engineering job with TVA in the early 1950’s we left New York behind and moved to Tennessee just about right where you are now. My brother and I went to a four room school house that went up to the eighth grade called Wolfe Creek Elementary. A couple of times during the school year Baptist missionaries would come to the school and we would have an assembly. They would preach Bible stories to us using puppets or cut out figures they stuck on a felt board. I am sure at the time no one ever raised the question of separation of church and state. Being a Catholic family we were regarded by some as being some sort of devils who spoke in Yankee.

    On your way back to Knoxville if you take I40 you will see an exit sign for Watts Bar Dam. Just keep right on going, but that’s the place.

  2. I was just a little eight year old kid. School was school and kids were kids. However, it was one of those life experiences that you don’t forget.

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