Tracking Tina Turner Through Brownsville, TN

2018 TN Brownsville Tina Turner Hwy Shay

When I heard about the Tina Turner Museum in Brownsville, TN I knew I’d make it out here.

We booked a hotel in Bells, TN that had nothing around it. I didn’t know that when i booked it, but the only thing here is the hotel and a little gas station/convenience store next door. The owner/,manager has TERRIBLE customer service skills but the rooms are cheap and clean, the flat screen tv and cable work well, the internet is sufficient, and there is a minifridge and microwave in the room. What more could you want for $50 per night?

2018 TN Brownsville Delta Heritage Center - Tina Turner Museum

The next morning we got up and headed out to the Delta Heritage Center. I really only cared about the one room schoolhouse that had been moved to the center and turned into the Tina Turner Museum. I was surprised to find that the Delta Heritage Center had lots more to offer. There are several mini museums in the building including the small aquariums with fish and an animatronic fisher with hip boots on that tells you stories about the local wetlands. Outside, next to the Tina Turner Museum is a small house that used to belong to Sleepy Joe Estes (outhouse and all). The kids really enjoyed the center. The only downside was in the cotton museum there was a “plantation bell” as part of the exhibit with no mention of those that were enslaved or those that enslaved them. Once again, it seemed that Black folks were enslaved but no one enslaved them. *side eye*

2018 TN Brownsville Delta Heritage Center Cotton Museum weigh bale of cotton

2018 TN Brownsville Delta Heritage Center Cotton Museum plantation bell

After that, we visited the Dunbar carver Museum. It’s a small museum that commemorates the local, Black history of Brownsville. The museum talked about picking cotton, how the community came together to build a school for the Black kids, how it was closed once integration happened, local folks that were killed and had their homes bombed for trying to get people to vote, and the amazing staff and students that made the community great. Tina Turner attended that high school for a while. The lady docent told me folks thought she was fast. It seemed like she just knew she didn’t wanna stay in that little town all her life and went after what she wanted.

2018 TN Brownsville Dunbar Carver Museum Tina Turner wall

After that, we drove over to Nutbush, TN. It’s not even a town …  there are tons of fields and only three buildings in the center. We drove passed it and had to turn around when we realized we’d driven through it! Lol

It was a cool little free day.

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