Description - The Narrows of the Harpeth Historic Area is the site of one of the oldest man-made tunnels in the United States. Around 1818, Montgomery Bell, one of Tennessee's earliest and foremost captains of industry, planned and constructed the 290 foot long tunnel through the limestone ridge at the Narrows to provide sufficient fall of water to operate an iron manufacturing operation at the tunnel's downstream side. Dug by slaves using black powder and hand tools, the tunnel at the Narrows is both a National Historic Landmark site and National Historic Engineering Landmark site. Of Bell's holdings there, the tunnel, forge, mill and homesite, the tunnel is the most visible remnant. He was so proud of his steel mill that he lived within sound of his waterfall and is buried across the river.
Copyright: Tennessee State Parks
Harpeth Scenic River and Narrow Historic Park
- The Harpeth Scenic River Complex in Davidson County includes the canoe accesses at the U.S. Hwy. 100 Bridge, the 1862 Newsom's Mill ruins, and at the McCrory Lane Bridge at Hidden Lake.
Downstream, the Narrows of the Harpeth provides an upstream and downstream access, the Bell's Bend five mile float and a unique 1/4-mile portage. A mile upstream, Mound Bottom preserves an ancient Indian ceremonial center.
Recreation - Group tours, hiking and other activities are available at Harpeth Scenic River and Narrows Historic Area.
Climate - Tennessee has a temperate climate with short, mild winters. The average annual snowfall for the state is 12 inches. Spring comes in early March bringing flowering trees and shrubs, and warmer weather. Spring temperatures average between 45 and 70 degrees. Summer's full force arrives in the region by mid May, bringing warm weather and higher humidity. The mountains of eastern Tennessee are a great place to escape the hot summer temperatures as the higher elevation cools the air slightly. Cool fall temperatures bring crisp air and brilliant fall colors. Mid to late October is a good time to visit the region to experience the fall foliage.
Travel west on I-40 and turn west on Hwy. 70. The park is located off U.S. Hwy. 70