The Lotz House Museum is located in Franklin, Tennessee. Visitors to the museum will enjoy learning about the Civil War from “ground zero” of the Battle of Franklin, a pivotal battle during the war. Johann Albert Lotz came to Tennessee in 1855 as a German immigrant and purchased five acres of land from Fountain Branch Carter.
Lotz was a master woodworker that was classically trained. He constructed his home in three years. He was skilled at carpentry and piano making as well as repairing guitars and violins. Lotz used his house to show off his carpentry skills to potential clients that might employ his services.
The Lotz House was “ground zero” of the Battle of Franklin. This was a pivotal battle in the Civil War. On the evening of November 29, 1864 about twenty-five thousand Union Soldiers retreated from Spring Hill to Franklin. They dug their trenches south of Lotz’s house and waited for the confederate army to attack.
By the morning of November 30th, the Union Line was established in the Lotz front yard. Lotz and his family sought refuge across the street at the Carter house and survived the seventeen-hour battle. The next morning the family came out of the basement to the sight of dead soldiers six feet deep between their house and the Carter House. Ten thousand were killed, missing, or injured. The Lotz house was commandeered as a hospital for injured soldiers on both the Union and Confederate sides until the next summer.
Today, the Lotz House still retains the evidence of the horrific scene. Blood stains can still be seen in all of the rooms. The house was severely damaged in battle but was quickly repaired. Some of the scars of battle were irreparable and can be still be viewed today.
Exhibits and Services
The Lotz House Museum offers tours of the house and battlefield and also offers appraisal services.
Tours- There are two types of tours offered.
· House Tour- The Lotz House tour includes every room in the Civil War House Museum. Visitors will learn house’s history, and the heritage of the fine arts, antiques, historic furnishings and the Lotz family history.
· Thomas Cartwright Tour- Thomas Y Cartwright is one of the country’s foremost authorities on the Battle of Franklin. He offers visitors personalized “Battlefield Tours” starting from the Lotz House. Cartwright will take visitors on a tour in he steps of soldiers telling their stories and informing on their lifestyle. The Battlefield Tours require a reservation.
Decorative Fine Arts- The tour of the Lotz House teaches visitors about the history of numerous furnishings and antiques found within the house. Some of the most superb examples of furniture designed by John Henry Belter and Prudent Mallard in the 1820s through the 1860s can be found in the house. The tour also offers visitors the chance to examine some of the furnishings Lotz himself made. Each room boasts extraordinary pieces of Old Paris Porcelain that was created for numerous uses.
The Lotz House also boasts several rare porcelain pieces that include tea sets, a rare Old Paris water chiller, and Veilleuses. The house also boasts the stuffed birds that John James Audubon captured and taxidermied to study their natural form and paint them.
Appraisal Services- The Lotz House offers Personal Property Appraisals. It specializes in decorative, fine art, and antique appraisals. These appraisals are used for several purposes including insurance, estates, divorce, donations tax liability, buying/selling, casualty claims and bankruptcy.
Appraisal staff has experience in antiques, fine arts, decorative arts, silver, residential contents, books, rugs, collection value, and military items. The written appraisal report provided to the client includes two copies of the report with detailed ID, photos, explanation for report basis, explanation of conditions that affect value, summary of the property value, and confidential storage of report for five years. Smaller items can be dealt with in the office or for households and larger items an on-site inspection can be scheduled.
Online Photo Gallery- The Lotz House online photo gallery contains pictures of the house rooms that visitors see on the tour for the public to peruse regardless of location.
The Lotz House contains the Museum Shop. The gift shop offers unique, interesting gifts and souvenirs for visitors. It provides a wide selection of mementos to remember the visit by as well as rare antiques, collectibles and items crafted by local artists. The shop also has a variety of DVDs, books and prints related to the Battle of Nashville and Franklin, the Civil War, and general history. The shop also offers gift certificates.
1111 Colombia Avenue, Franklin, TN 37064, Phone: 615-790-7190