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Tennessee State Jamboree and Crafts Festival

Smithville Fiddlers' Jamboree and Crafts Festival   Adopted: May 14, 1997

House Joint Resolution No. 24 was introduced on February 5, 1997 and signed by Governor Don Sundquist on May 14, 1997.

Filed for intro on 02/04/97

By Buck

A RESOLUTION to designate the Smithville Fiddlers' Jamboree and Crafts Festival as the official jamboree and crafts festival of the State of Tennessee.

WHEREAS, it is fitting that this General Assembly should honor and congratulate those institutions and events that have been sources of great civic pride to their community and that seek to make the community a better place to live; and

WHEREAS, July 5, 1996, marked the 25th Anniversary of the Smithville Fiddlers' Jamboree and Crafts Festival; and

WHEREAS, the late Congressman Joe L. Evins, conceived of a gathering of a group of area musicians to stage an Old-Time Appalachian Country Music Show in Smithville, Tennessee and suggested the same to the late Barry C. Williams; and

WHEREAS, Congressman Evins, Barry C. Williams along with the late J.G. "Bobo" Driver, the late Charles Gentry, Ralph Vaughn, Neil Dudney, and Linda Pack formed a committee to organize such an event; and

WHEREAS, on July 1, 1972, 714 musicians representing sixteen states delighted an audience of 8,000 people; and

WHEREAS, this exemplary event has grown so that it is now estimated that 110,000 people attended the two day event in 1996, with over 650 contestants representing forty-four states and four foreign countries; and

WHEREAS, the 1996 Jamboree lived up to the high standard of excellence that the event has established for music, crafts, hospitality and fellowship; and

WHEREAS, the event is televised each year and broadcast worldwide and has been featured in the National Geographic Traveler, Southern Living, as well as numerous other nationally known publications; and

WHEREAS, news of the Smithville Jamboree's accomplished musicians and inspiring music, skilled artisans and authentic crafts and overall excitement has reached the four corners of the globe, and videos of this exemplary event have been distributed all around the world; and

WHEREAS, in 1974, as a tribute to the Appalachian art and culture, 100 artisans and craftsmen were invited to sell and display authentic pioneer and contemporary crafts; and

WHEREAS, this aspect of the Jamboree has grown to over two hundred fifty participants; and

WHEREAS, the Smithville Fiddlers' Jamboree and Crafts Festival is dedicated to the furtherance and preservation of Old-Time Appalachian country music, dance, and authentic Appalachian art and culture and this body wishes to take the opportunity to recognize the Smithville Fiddlers' Jamboree and Crafts Festival organizers, committees, volunteers and the people of Smithville and DeKalb County, Tennessee; and

WHEREAS, the growing popularity and prominence of this outstanding event suggests to this General Assembly that it should be designated as an official function of the State of Tennessee; now, therefore,

SECTION 1. Tennessee Code Annotated, Title 4, Chapter 1, Part 3, is amended by adding the following language as a new, appropriately designated section:

BE IT RESOLVED BY THE HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES OF THE ONE HUNDREDTH GENERAL ASSEMBLY OF THE STATE OF TENNESSEE, THE SENATE CONCURRING, That we hereby designate the Smithville Fiddlers' Jamboree and Crafts Festival as the official jamboree and crafts festival of the State of Tennessee.

BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED, That an appropriate copy of this resolution be prepared for presentation to the Board of Directors of the Smithville Fiddlers' Jamboree and Crafts Festival with this final clause omitted from such copy.

Smithville Fiddlers' Jamboree and Craft Festival
Smithville Fiddlers' Jamboree and Craft Festival
Photograph: Tennessee Department of Tourist Development

Since its beginning in 1972, the old-time Smithville Fiddlers' Jamboree and Crafts Festival has grown into a major event, drawing hundreds of musicians and crafts people, as well as many thousands of spectators from throughout the world.

The festival began as a small town event, as a way to celebrate the Independence Holiday, just as generations before had done on the Court Square. It continues that tradition today – a throwback to days gone by – paying homage to the music and art of our ancestors, reminding us of the simple pleasures to be had from gathering together and enjoying the pure, unadulterated sound of live Appalachian music.

The energy of these timeless bluegrass tunes can't be denied as they ring through the streets and bounce off the downtown buildings of Smithville, pop. 4,305.

This small southern town is as friendly as it gets and proudly welcomes the visitors that swell its population many times over each July.

You're specially invited to come and experience this unforgettable event. Peruse the wide variety of crafts booths, grab a barbecue sandwich or a corn dog and an ice cold lemonade, find a seat near the stage, and sit back and enjoy one of the best free shows around…we guarantee your toes will be tappin' in no time!

("Smithville Fiddlers' Jamboree and Crafts Festival")


The State of Tennessee. House Joint Resolution No. 24. Nashville:The State of Tennessee. Web. 18 August 2011
"The Festival." Smithville Fiddlers' Jamboree and Crafts Festival. N.p., n.d. Web. 18 Aug 2011. .
Shearer, Benjamin F. and Barbara S. State Names, Seals, Flags and Symbols: A Historical Guide Third Edition, Revised and Expanded. Westport, Conn: Greenwood Press, 3 Sub edition, 2001.

Additional Information

Smithville Fiddlers' Jamboree and Crafts Festival: Official website of the official state jamboree and crafts festival.

Smithville, Tenn.: A little bit of information about Smithville from the Tennessee Department of Tourist Development.

More symbols & emblems: Complete list of official Tennessee state symbols from NETSTATE.COM.