West of the Great Smoky Mountains and East of Nashville, the Cumberland Plateau is nothing less than the most ideal destination for recreation, rich in history from pre-settler Native American to railroad to Civil War and more.

Civil War Trail

Civil War Trails® has been working with communities since 1994 to share their stories and connect visitors with small towns and big stories across a network that now spans six states. Travelers look to Trails to put them in the footsteps of the generals, soldiers, citizens, and the enslaved who found themselves in the midst of this Civil War.

Civil War Trails began with a group of historians whose efforts linked together the sites of Robert E. Lee’s retreat from Petersburg to his surrender at Appomattox. Today the program guides visitors to more than 1,200 sites, over 700 of which we are proud to interpret to the public for the first time.

Each and every site on the Trail is generated at the grass roots level, where local interest begins our process. When communities approach Civil War Trails, we start our work by bringing in local historians and descendants. This community-driven approach allows us to tell history and share stories that oftentimes have not been heard before. This approach allows us to interpret—not commemorate or memorialize—the events, people, and places of the most pivotal time in our nation’s history.

The Lake at Meadow Creek Park

19195 Clarkrange Hwy,
Monterey, TN 38574

Only five miles east of Monterey’s charming downtown on Highway 62, The Lake at Meadow Creek Park offers fishing and non-motorized boating opportunities.


Cummins Falls State Park

19195 Clarkrange Hwy,
Monterey, TN 38574

Cummins Falls State Park is a 282-acre state park located northwest of Cookeville in Jackson County in the U.S. state of Tennessee. Its namesake, Cummins Falls, is a 75-foot waterfall, which is located on the Blackburn Fork State Scenic River.

Burgess Falls State Park

4000 Burgess Falls Dr,
Sparta, TN 38583

Located on the Falling Water River, this day-use park is noted for its natural beauty and four waterfalls that cascade down from over 250 feet in elevation. The last of these falls is the most spectacular, plunging more than 130 feet into the gorge. The area was originally populated by Native Americans of the Cherokee, Creek and Chickasaw tribes. These tribes used the land as a hunting ground until the late 19th century when a gristmill and sawmill began operating on the river. The Falling Water River was used to generate hydroelectric power for the city of Cookeville from 1928-1944. In 1973, the territory became a designated Tennessee State Natural Area, protecting the diverse forest and aquatic habitats.