Wednesday, May 18, 2011

Rugby Colony

Nestled in the hills of the Cumberland Plateau in Tennessee is a town that flourished and then almost died. It is a fascinating place to visit and there are several activities each month.

Rugby was founded by Thomas Hughes, famous for his classic, Tom Brown's Schooldays, on October 5, 1880. His main purpose was to have a Christian based agriculture commune for the second sons of British gentry. They built beautiful Victorian houses, farmed the land, and had a surviving community. There was a library filled with books from publishers and friends.

In 1881, seven people died from typhoid fever. That was very discouraging to the colonists. Financial problems began to loom and the settlement began to falter. In 1884, The Tabard Inn, a classic Victorian hotel burned to the ground.

By 1900, most of the settlers had moved back to England or to other parts of the country. Today, it is a historical community. There is a Bed and Breakfast, a restaurant, gift shop, and other things of interest to see. It is beautifully situated in the mountains and is a peaceful place to visit. You can get more information by visiting

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