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Liberty Pole Raisingforweb


Museum of Appalachia Independence Day Celebration

& Anvil Shoot

July 4, 2017

Anvil shooting used to be a fairly common way that rural folks celebrated special events--they "shot the anvil" to celebrate the nation’s Independence, Christmas, and even Davy Crockett’s election to the U.S. Congress. Some years ago, two men, each more than 100 years old, watched the Museum’s anvil shoot and recalled this tradition from their early boyhood.

Now, shooting the anvil has come to be the highlight of the Museum's fabulous July 4th Celebration. Folks as far as 15 miles away have reported hearing the blast, and certainly everyone gathered for the excitement feels the earth shake under their feet. Anvil shoots will take place at 10am, 11:30am, 1:00pm and 2:30pm on July 4th. 

Along with the big boom several times during the day, there are patriotic ceremonies and lots of music—the old-time mountain music of the Southern Appalachian Mountains.


 A bell-ringing ceremony will occur at precisely 2:00 p.m. coinciding with the National Bell Ringing Ceremony when more than 10,000 bells across the country are rung in unison. Thirteen youngsters will be selected from the audience to ring the bell in honor of the thirteen original states.

Flag Procession for webThe Liberty Pole raising at 2:15 p.m. will commemorate a Colonial American practice signifying dissatisfaction with the English government. It illustrates the spirit of liberty among colonists in the early days of the War for Independence.

Wander the Museum's Village and see demonstrations of spinning, weaving, blacksmithing, old-fashioned games for kids, cross cut sawing, sassafras tea brewing and cedar rail splitting. 

Tasty summertime treats will be available, including grilled hamburgers and hot dogs, homemade ice cream, cakes, pies and cookies.

Close up lighting anvil July 4th WebThe Museum is open from 9 a.m. to 6 p.m., so July 4th visitors will have ample time to tour. The extensive village ~ farm complex includes dozens of historic log structures, display buildings filled with authentic Appalachian artifacts, gardens surrounded by split rail fences, and farm animals in a traditional setting. The Hall of Fame offers a portrait of the Appalachian people, both famous and not-so famous- and these exhibits may be enjoyed in air-conditioned comfort.

Tickets may be be purchased the day of the event. Prices are $20 for Adults, $15 for Military, $10 for Youth (13-17), $6 for Children (5-12), and Family Rate is $35. 

This is a free event for Museum members. Memberships provide a year of Museum visits. As an official affiliate of the Smithsonian institution, the Museum provides Smithsonian memberships in conjunction with its own membership program.

For more information please contact the Museum at (865) 494-7680 or email us at 

Videos Courtesy of Stephanie Richer