Mission of the Doak House Museum

The Doak House Museum is a non-profit, educational institution, established as a museum in 1975.

Its mission is collecting, interpreting, researching, preserving, and exhibiting the original Doak House, college related artifacts (since 1794), Doak family artifacts (1830-1860), and educational and religious artifacts and documents from Northeast Tennessee.

The museum uses its collections and resources to promote the study and research of history, education, religion, and cultural heritage of the people of Northeast Tennessee and the state.

History of the Doak House and Tusculum College

The Doak House Museum is a part of the Dept. of Museum Program and Studies of Tusculum College. Historic Tusculum College is the oldest college in the state of Tennessee, the 23rd oldest in operation in the country and the oldest co-educational college related to the Presbyterian Church(USA).

Founded in 1794, Tusculum was the first college west of the Allegheny Mountains and the 28th college founded in the United States.

Tusculum traces its origins to the founding of Greeneville College by the Reverend Hezekiah Balch, a graduate of Princeton and a Presbyterian minister. The Territorial Legislature chartered the college, and its stated purpose was to provide a liberal arts education for a new generation of civic leaders on the frontier.

In 1818, Rev. Samuel Doak and his son, Rev. Samuel Witherspoon Doak, started Tusculum Academy. Around 1830, the son built the current home on the site. By 1841, Rev. Samuel W. Doak built a new academy building, the current "Old College." Tusculum Academy became a full College in 1844. In 1868, Greeneville College and Tusculum College merged forming G&T College. Then in 1908, the college merged with Washington College, also founded by Rev. Samuel Doak. At that time the name Greeneville was dropped resulting in Washington and Tusculum College. In 1912, the merger ended, and Tusculum College moved into the 20th century.

Doak descendants continued to live in the house on Frank Creek from 1830 to the 1970's. In the mid- 1970's the house was donated to Tusculum College. At that time a local preservation group, The Greene County Heritage Trust, undertook the job of restoration with the help of a grant from the American Revolution Bicentennial Administration. This restoration preserved the Doak House at Tusculum College and was accomplished under direction of the noted architect, Everette Fauber.

Currently, the Doak House Museum is operated by the Department of Museum Program and Studies at Tusculum College.

More Information About

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Fun Educational Resources

Inflation Calculator
In 1830, students at Tusculum Academy were allowed to bid on duties such as cleaning the blackboard for a session. The lowest bid was 50 cents. Access the Inflation Calculator and cast a bid to see how much it is worth today!

Farms & Farming
When you visit the Doak House Museum or if you have already been, try to remember what the surrounding area looked like. Then, access this webpage to learn about the important characteristics of farming and farmland that the Doak family and other settlers may have considered when making the decision to settle here.

U.S. Census Homepage
A census is a complete, periodic count or tally of a population, usually completed by a government. Samuel Witherspoon Doak was listed in census records. Go to the U.S. Census Bureau webpage and learn how census information is organized and used.

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