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Memories of a 1958 Honeymoon

Dr. Tom and Mrs. Mary Kollie reflect on their memories of Buckhorn Inn, beginning in 1958.

Congratulations to Buckhorn Inn on the occasion of its 75th Anniversary! It is most
exciting to be a tiny part of the Inn’s remarkable history, as the following story is shared
with great delight.

It all began on August 23, 1958, when newlyweds of a few hours embarked toward
Gatlinburg for the first night of their honeymoon. Their naiveté in not making reservations
came through when they reached this popular Tennessee resort town to realize that of the
numerous advertised accommodations, there were none available on that hot summer
night. Seeking other options, the young groom in this story took the fork in the road toward
Cosby that turned out to be most serendipitous!

Traveling along the Cosby highway, there shortly appeared a small, shingled sign reading
“Buckhorn Inn,” which pointed to a road to the left. Having nothing to lose and with hope
in the unknown, the 1955 red-and-white Ford made the turn and carried the now
suspenseful newlyweds up the steep, graveled road where they followed the signs to a
charming inn on the mountain side.

Upon arriving at the Buckhorn Inn, a lovely lady approached their car when they pulled into
the parking lot in front of the Inn. She peered into the car and saw the bride with her
corsage still pinned to her going-away outfit. Her heart must have taken hold of her head as
she kindly explained the situation at the Inn to the seeking couple. The Inn could not
accommodate them for dinner, but there was a small cabin on a little path on the hillside
that she would have available for them if they dined elsewhere. Upon being shown Cabin
#1, the couple decided it was the perfect honeymoon cottage; and they could not have found
a better place had they searched the region over! If that were not enough, they were offered
breakfast to be delivered to their cabin the next morning. As promised, neatly uniformed
young ladies came to the door with two trays of delicious breakfast fare and carafes of
coffee to fortify their wedded journey.

Good fortune continued to follow their lives as they made their home in Oak Ridge, TN,
where they have lived for 53 years and where they reared their three children. During this
half-century plus, they have had the pleasure of returning to “Buckhorn” a number of times.
Most recently, they celebrated their 55th Wedding Anniversary in Cabin #1. Innkeeper, Lee
Mellor, who greeted them warmly, appeared to be as excited as they were on their return to
the Inn for this anniversary celebration. The moment was strongly reminiscent of the day
55 years ago when another kind lady, Mrs. June Bebb, did so as well. It was an especially
happy occasion for the couple as they received e-mails from their children telling them they
were sharing in their day with their well wishes; and greetings from family and friends
congratulating them on their milestone.

So joyfully, please join the grateful couple in raising a glass to the Buckhorn Inn as it
continues, with both vision and grace, the tradition of hospitality begun 75 years ago. This
couple feels very enriched to have had the experience of the Inn and to foresee its promising
future toward its century mark! 

Top photo shows Cottage 1 in August 1955 when the Kollies first visited and in August 2013.

Top photo shows Cottage 1 in August 1955 when the Kollies first visited and in August 2013.


Dr. Thomas Kollie on his honeymoon at Buckhorn in 1955 and on his 55th wedding anniversary in 2013.

Dr. Thomas Kollie on his honeymoon at Buckhorn in 1958 and on his 55th wedding anniversary in 2013.


Just married Mary Kollie in 1955 and on her 55th wedding anniversary in Cottage 1.

Just married Mary Kollie in 1958 and on her 55th wedding anniversary in Cottage 1.