Andrew Johnson's Birthplace.

Andrew Johnson's Backwards Birthplace

Field review by the editors.

Greeneville, Tennessee

In 1808 Andrew Johnson, future 17th President of the United States, was born in the loft of a detached kitchen in Raleigh, North Carolina. Somehow the tiny building survived in Raleigh until 1974 when it was moved to a historic park, preserved, and restored.

Seven years later Margaret Johnson Patterson Bartlett, Johnson's last surviving direct descendent, funded construction of a replica of the birthplace for the grounds of her alma mater, Tusculum College. The birthplace was a faithful copy -- except that for some reason it was placed in reverse, with the back of the house facing front. No one apparently noticed or cared about the flip-flop, and the replica was dedicated on November 24, 1981.

Andrew Johnson's Birthplace.

In 1999 the replica was moved into downtown Greeneville, Tennessee. It stands just across the street from the Andrew Johnson National Historic Site -- but not on its grounds since the birthplace isn't authentic and it commemorates something that happened nearly 300 miles away in another state.

And it's still in reverse.

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Also see: Tributes to a Traitor President

Andrew Johnson's Backwards Birthplace

Address:
220 E. Depot St., Greeneville, TN
Directions:
East side of downtown, at the east end of E. Depot St., on its south side, just past its intersection with S. College St.
Hours:
Building open daily 9-5.
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Nearby Offbeat Places

Andrew Johnson National Historic SiteAndrew Johnson National Historic Site, Greeneville, TN - < 1 mi.
Bronze Andrew JohnsonBronze Andrew Johnson, Greeneville, TN - < 1 mi.
Marble Andrew JohnsonMarble Andrew Johnson, Greeneville, TN - < 1 mi.
In the region:
Death Spot of the Thunderbolt of the Confederacy, Greeneville, TN - < 1 mi.

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December 7, 2019

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