Historic Markers Across Tennessee

Battle of Franklin, Eastern Flank / Carnton

Marker ID:  
Location: 1345 Eastern Flank Cir, Franklin, TN
County: Williamson
Coordinates: N 35° 54.301    W 086° 51.531
  35.90501666    -86.85885
Waymark: None


Battle of Franklin, Eastern Flank

Today’s Carnton presents a quiet pastoral setting, but before the Civil War, John and Carrie McGavock’s farm would have looked more like a bustling agricultural factory.

Their plantation encompassed 700 acres, more than three times the amount of open land you see here. Around you were scores of grazing cattle, hops, and sheep. Behind you, there stood a steam-powered sawmill and gristmill, processing the hardwood timber and grains that grew here in abundance. To your front, in the 1850s work was being completed on the mansion’s two-story back porch, which demonstrated the family’s growing size and wealth.

Although some nearby farms raised cotton and tobacco, this plantation produced and grew mostly wheat, corn, and fruit. In addition, much of the McGavock’s “property,” and most of their work force, consisted of 39 slaves. Most of the time, the majority of the people seen at Carnton were slaves.

In 1860, the value of McGavock’s property at Carnton alone exceeded $350,000, when the average free family in Middle Tennessee owned less than $9,000 in property. By today’s standards, the McGavocks would have been multimillionaires.

Erected Tennessee Civil War Trails.

[This marker may also be found on HMDB.org]