PHOTO: Guests gathered on the lawn and on the porch at Carnton for a cocktail reception before dinner at Friday’s Battle of Franklin Trust Legacy Dinner. / Photos by John McBryde except where noted
By JOHN McBRYDE
In one way, the two individuals who were honored with Legacy Awards at the Battle of Franklin Trust Legacy Dinner at Carnton Friday night couldn’t be further apart.
Greg Wade, who was first recognized by BOFT CEO Eric Jacobson after dinner had ended, is a veritable encyclopedia on history and especially all the details of the Battle of Franklin. The other recipient, Tim Hearns, admits his knowledge of history and the details surrounding the Battle of Franklin is a bit on the vague side.
But any difference they may have in their grasp on the past is offset by their shared passion for Carnton, the Carter House and all other aspects of the Battle of Franklin.
“I’m very humbled by this recognition,” said Wade, who founded the Civil War Round Table in 2008 and has served on several preservation boards. “People ask me why I got involved in historic preservation — it’s frustrating, it’s aggravating, it gets contentious sometimes, you fuss and fight. But it’s really been worth it. You look at what we have here that’s so magnificent that we didn’t have 15-20 years ago.
“One word I can think of on why we have historic preservation is remembrance. … What we do here is about memory.”
Kearns, who serves on the BOFT board and has been a donor and contributor to historic preservation for years, said his passion for preservation outweighs whatever historical knowledge he may lack.
“I love this place,” he said. “I was fortunate in 1995 to buy a house 200 yards [from the boundary of Carnton]. That house introduced me to this property. … It has become part of my heart.”
“I love everything that goes on here in history, and I’m not a historian. I can’t tell you the names of the generals that died here. But passion for a property and passion for history is important.”
“I will be here to support and do whatever needs to be done on a day-to-day basis to make sure it continues for future generations.”
As part of their recognition, Wade received a framed print of local reclaimed battlefield to which he contributed, and Hearns received a framed print of Carnton’s interior from the 19th century.
Prior to the dinner and awards ceremony, as well as updates from Jacobson on Carnton and the Carter House, guests enjoyed a cocktail reception that included the signature drink known as a Strawberry Moscow Mule that draws inspiration from the Carter and Carnton farms in the 1800s.