May 25 2006
08:37 pm

Millennium ManorMillennium Manor - the odd stone castle in Alcoa - has its annual open house on Memorial Day.

The stone and cement house was constructed using Roman techniques, and was meant to last 1000 years to coincide with the builder's religious beliefs.

Visit the owner's BlountWeb page for more information. This 1957 Maryville-Alcoa Daily Times story interviews builder and original owner W.A. Nicholson, and is the best source for understanding his religious motivations. Nicholson was 61 when he began construction, and worked on it with his wife, Fair, in his spare time while working a full-time job at the nearby ALCOA aluminum plant.

This Oak Ridger story interviews the current owner, Knoxville firefighter and paramedic Dean Fontaine.

The manor is also known as Darby's Castle, after a Kris Kristofferson song. The Knoxville Grass re-recorded the song on their album of the same name, and used a picture of the manor for the album cover.

I went to the castle as a kid when the JayCees used it as a haunted house. Melissa and I toured it Memorial Day a couple of years ago and met the current owners. Admission was free, with donations encouraged. The manor is at 500 North Wright Road, not far from the Alcoa duck pond.

R. Neal's picture

Thanks for that post, Les.

Thanks for that post, Les. That place has always fascinated me but we've never taken a tour. We'll have to try to get over there this weekend.

Les Jones's picture

Take your camera

There are great pictures to be had.

I'm curious how it's coming along. When we were there the electrical system and kitchen were still in the scary phase.

Gnaw Parker's picture

Cool. I didn't know it had a

Cool. I didn't know it had a name. When I was about 4 or 5, a friend of my dad's was the realtor for this place and let us poke around. He said the couple thought they would live forever and built everything from stone. I even remember stone furniture. At some point I wandered off and when my parents found me, I had fresh blood all over me (not Carrie style, but enough for concern). They washed it all off and couldn't find any injuries. We still don't know where it came from, and I don't remember anything. I went back there about 8 years ago when the building was occupied by some cultish religious organization. They let me look around a bit, but kept me on a short leash, so I didn't stay long.

Anonymous's picture

Open House

Please note that the open house is on Memorial Day OBSERVED, every year. (That will be Monday, this year.) It's open noon to dark.

smalc's picture

Isn't Memorial Day observed

Isn't Memorial Day observed on Monday every year?

Memorial Day traditional and unobserved is May 30.

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