This story first appeared in the KCWRT monthly newsletter, The Scout, in February 2014. Because of the time of year connected to the story below, it is timely to republish this fascinating piece of local history which may not be known to the average area resident. Additional information has been updated and added to the original article.
In talking with (one of our older members) before the last meeting about the Raby families in Roane County during the late war, I mentioned that I recently learned about the Loveville community that was near the intersection of Kingston Pike and the current Lovell Road. The gentleman knew of the community and later sent me this photo of the historic marker noting a short history of the community.
The marker reads, “Robertus Love, a companion of Gen. James White, who founded Knoxville, established the village in this area in 1797 where he built a fulling mill in 1792. Several of the early buildings still exist a short distance from the highway. The name of the village has been corrupted to Lovell.” The marker is long gone and my contact was unable to find out what happened to it. Several things are interesting about the photo. The Oak Ridge sign in the left background appears to be a mileage marker to the town. So the sign dates to after the Oak Ridge town was common knowledge. Also the car to the left of the sign appears to be late 1940s or early 1950s; so the sign is probably early 1950s.
Loveville is seen on an 1850 area map just east of Campbell’s Station along the Kingston Road. I could not resist thinking that this Loveville community must have
some relation to the Mary Love family of Kingston. The same Mary Love, who in early December 1863, volunteered to carry a message from General Grant to General Burnside at Knoxville. She began her perilous journey in Kingston and reached Louisville, TN. At that point a 13-year-old boy completed the trip to Knoxville and the message reached Burnside. The story is related in gre
ater detail in the book, The Knoxville Campaign, by Earl J. Hess, on page 181. I write about this because I continue to be fascinated by the early history our region. Loveville and its buildings are gone forever. Many area residents don’t know that Loveville became the Lovell area and a road was given the corrupted name. I can only wonder what other intriguing details or even photographs of this Loveville community exist. If you can contribute to this story, let me know.