This location has been the site of a public house since Daniel Hamblen, Jr. (uncle of Hezekiah Hamblen) purchased the lot in 1790 after helping Joseph Rogers lay out the town. On it, he built a home, which also served the fledgling town as a tavern. In October 1827, John A. McKinney purchased the property and built a large brick building designed by John Dameron (also the architect of the Courthouse), which included both a store and a hotel. The property became known as McKinney’s Tavern.
In 1869, Samuel Neill purchased the property and operated it as The Rogersville House. In 1876, Sam P. Powell took over the hotel, renaming it the Sam Powel House. George A. Murray purchased the hotel in 1882 and changed the name to Hale’s Springs House to advertise its connection with the Hale’s Springs spa operation at what was to become Pressmen’s Home. The Inn changed hands a number of times in the 20th century. Carl and Janet Netherland-Brown purchased it in 1982 and spent two years renovating the historic structure. Before it closed in 1999, it was the oldest continuously run Inn in Tennessee. In 2003, the Rogersville Heritage Association bought the hotel.
Rogersville was a convenient stop for the stagecoach line from Atlanta to Washington and the Inn housed many dignitaries in its time. Andrew Jackson stayed in a room at the Inn in 1832 and practiced law for a time here. Andrew Johnson and James K. Polk were also guests here.
This handsome building, federal in architecture, is furnished with colonial and American empire furnishings, some original to the Inn, some donated by local families and many carefully collected by the Netherland-Browns. Each spacious room is furnished with distinctive period pieces. The floor throughout the Inn is the original heart pine.
The Inn is located at 110 East Main Street, adjacent to the lovely Town Square. Attractions include a walking tour of Rogersville’s beautiful Historic District, the Tennessee Newspaper and Printing Museum, located in the old Southern Depot, and the Local Artists’ Gallery, a stunning collection of items for sale produced by area artists and craft artists.
The Inn recently underwent a complete renovation with a grand re-opening in the summer of 2009. Mckinney's by Troutdale, the Inn's dining room, serves contemporary southern cuisine and is open to the public for fine dining Tuesday through Saturday for lunch and dinner. Sunday Brunch on holidays. The Inn and courtyard are available for your special events. Visit the Hale Springs Inn website for more information. www.halespringsinn.com or call 423-272-5171.
To view photos of the renovation progress, please visit the Inn Restoration Gallery. Photos courtesy of Joel Spears, The Rogersville Review.