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Pigeon Forge, Tennessee: Rebel Railroad - Goldrush Junction - Silver Dollar City (Closed)

Three theme park attractions, long defunct, were in the spot now inhabited by Dollywood.


Visitor Tips and News About Rebel Railroad - Goldrush Junction - Silver Dollar City

Reports and tips from visitors and Roadside America mobile tipsters. Some tips may not be verified. Submit your own tip.

Goldrush Junction

I remember when Dollywood was Goldrush Junction. I still have a horseshoe with my name on it from the souvenir shop. I also have my brother's horseshoe, but it says Rebel Railroad. Then, around the time I was in 5th or 6th grade, it became Silver Dollar City (the TV commercials had spiff, I'll give 'em that). Now it's Dollywood. I enjoy going now, as much as anxiety will allow, but I do miss Goldrush Junction. A couple of times a summer we would spend Saturday there, stay the night in Pigeon Forge somewhere, then drive into North Carolina on Sunday and spend the morning and early afternoon in Cherokee at the Native American village. I'm pretty sure it's still there, and downtown has a wonderful Cherokee Museum.

[Dale Ashley Clark, 12/24/2017]

Oconaluftee Indian Village is still in business. And here's the Dollywood timeline: Rebel Railroad (1961-1965), then Goldrush Junction (1966-1977), then Silver Dollar City (1977-1986), then Dollywood (1986-today).

Goldrush Junction

In 1961, "Rebel Railroad" opened in Pigeon Forge, Tennessee. It featured a steam train, general store, blacksmith shop, and saloon. In 1966, it was renamed "Goldrush Junction" and in 1970, the Cleveland Browns football team purchased "Goldrush Junction." In 1976, Jack and Pete Herschend bought Goldrush Junction, and in 1977, renamed it "Silver Dollar City Tennessee" as a sister park to their original Silver Dollar City near Branson, Missouri. In 1986, Dolly Parton became a co-owner, and the park was renamed "Dollywood."

[Bob, 11/12/2008]
Gold Rush Junction - Vague Recollections

Gold Rush Junction was indeed in Pigeon Forge, TN. It began as Rebel Railroad, then it was Gold Rush Junction, then it was Silver Dollar City, and now it is Dollywood.

The tipster that says it was in Maggie Valley, NC is either thinking of Ghost Town in the Sky or the Maggie Valley Railroad (another train ride type tourist attraction that is now gone) back in the 60s/70s.

Source: "The Land of the Smokies" book by Tim Hollis

[Rusty, 10/20/2008]
Gold Rush Junction - Vague Recollections

I visited many times as a child, and continue to visit the area with my family. It was originally "Rebel Railroad", and I still have pics and souvenirs from that time; then became Gold Rush Junction, Silver Dollar City, then Dollywood. When it was Rebel Railroad, all I remember was the train ride, a small gift shop, and a snack bar. If I am not mistaken, the train at Dollywood is still the same train?

[Twila, 07/31/2008]
Gold Rush Junction

My Granny and Papaw used to take us there in the 1960s. And they [lived in the area] before Gold Rush Junction was there. Got one great picture of me and my little brothers. It is now Dollywood. Granny and Papaw are related to her somehow or 'nother. I liked it better the old way.

[Catherine, 07/12/2008]

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