Falcon Rest Mansion and Gardens, McMinnville, TN.  Where history is fun.
  Guided tours offered seven days a week, 9 to 5 Central time year round
  Three interactive shows combine history-based entertainment with meals and mansion tours.

Area Step-on Tour
School Groups
Scout Groups

  Victorian Gift Shop filled with unique 1800s treasures -- called "an attraction in itself"
  Charming Victorian Tea Room serving daily 9 to 5
  Falcon Manor B&B: Romantic bed & breakfast guest suites on grounds of Falcon Rest Mansion
  Storybook location for your Victorian Tennessee wedding: outdoor and indoor venues
  Delicious food in beautiful surroundings

Class Reunions
Christmas Parties
Business Events

Bridal Teas
Anniversary Parties
Red Hat Groups




The Victorian Gentleman as Gen. John Hunt MorganThe Honeymoon Ball of Gen. John Hunt Morgan: Civil War Group Show at Falcon Rest

"The Honeymoon Ball of General John Hunt Morgan" is Falcon Rest's newest group entertainment. An interactive show in the spirit of the popular "Murder at the Mansion," it is based on real historical events here in McMinnville, Tenn., during the Civil War.

The show takes place at a banquet and ball, given by local poetess Lucy Virginia French, welcoming the celebrated Confederate general and his new bride to McMinnville. The festivities are interrupted with the April 1863 invasion of Federal troops attempting to capture them.

The story is based on entries from Virginia French's Civil War diary and three other local first-person accounts. Falcon Rest's actors portray Virginia and Morgan, but audience members themselves are the stars of the show. As in Falcon Rest's popular "Murder at the Mansion," guests are given information about their characters but no lines to remember. With no pressure to participate, they're free to interact as much or as little as they like in character.

Morgan spent a three-month honeymoon in downtown McMinnville.

Audience members with two left feet don't have to worry, either.
The setting is a ball, but this is a show -- not a dance -- and no one will be called on to waltz. Period costumes are welcome but entirely optional. (Warn us if you'll be wearing a hoop skirt!) Casual dress is fine as long as it has the right accessories: a sense of humor and a good imagination.

Even in the midst of a war, the Morgans' days in McMinnville were happy ones, so the show weaves humor in with history. A delicious meal is included, inspired by Virginia French's description of the menu for the ball in her famous diary.

A performance can be scheduled any time at your convenience for a group or 20 or more. (We'll bring the Civil War to life at breakfast, lunch or dinner, seven days a week.) Call 931-668-4444 or e-mail for information or to make reservations.


Gen. John Hunt MorganWho was John Hunt Morgan?

A dashing Confederate cavalry officer from Kentucky, John Hunt Morgan was famous on both sides of the Mason-Dixon Line for lightning raids against Union supplies and forces that earned him the nicknames, "Thunderbolt of the Confederacy" and "Swamp Fox of the South." In mid-1863, he began a raid that would take his troops into Indiana and Ohio, farther north than any other Confederate force would advance during the Civil War.

He wrpte that happiest days of his life were those he spent in McMinnville in the early months of 1863. Morgan was promoted to Brigadier General in December 1862 in Murfreesboro, and the next day the 37-year-old general married 21-year-old Mattie Ready of that city. When Federal troops took over Murfreesboro a few weeks after the wedding, Morgan and his young bride took up residence at the downtown McMinnville home of her relative, Dr. J.B. Armstrong.

During an idyllic three months of relative calm, the young couple enjoyed riding in Warren County's mountains and visiting with the locals, most notably famous poetess Lucy Virginia French and her husband John. Virginia even threw a ball that winter to welcome the Morgans to town.

The honeymoon ended in mid-April 1863 when Union troops invaded McMinnville to capture the elusive Morgan, but he and Mattie managed to escape. That summer, Morgan's Raiders started their sweep through Union territory conceived during his stay in McMinnville. It was designed to divert Federal troops in Tennessee, enlist recruits in Kentucky, and take the war to the North in an effort to erode the citizens' will to continue. In 24 days, Morgan passed through 52 towns in Kentucky, Indiana and Ohio, captured nearly 6,000 prisoners, and damaged 10 million dollars worth of public property before being captured.

Lucy Virginia FrenchLucy Virginia French

Writing under the name of "L'Inconnue," Virginia was already a famous authoress when one of her stories so intrigued Col. John French that he married her and brought her to his McMinnville plantation, "Forest Home."

Virginia kept an eloquent diary from 1861-1865, chronicling civilian life during the war as well as her encounters with generals from both the Union and Confederate armies.

Download our Group Tour Profile Sheet for Details on all Four "Faces of Fun" at Falcon Rest

    Group Tour Profile Sheet

  • Daytime Show, Meal and Tour:
    $32 per person
  • Evening Show, Meal and Tour:
    $34 per person
  • Add an area step-on tour for even more fun: $2 per person

Sales tax additional 9.75%

All shows include a delicious three-course meal, the interactive history show, a "no-ropes or barriers" tour of Falcon Rest Mansion, and shopping in the Victorian Gift Shop.
Allow about three hours for a leisurely visit.

Everything you need to plan and promote your trip

Authentic Civil War Menu

From Virginia French's diary: chicken salad appetizer, ham in cranberry orange sauce, Southern green beans, corn pudding, lemon snow cake, biscuits, and tea or lemonade.

Itinerary Suggestions

Want to do more in the area? Check out our itinerary suggestions to add fun Tennessee stops to a day trip or multi-day tour.


McMinnville is on your way to anywhere through Middle Tennessee.

"Morgan Ball" Flyer

Publicity poster for "Murder at the Mansion" to present to your group as they plan their schedule.

Fill-in "Morgan Ball" Poster

Download your preferred version of this document and fill in the blanks with your date, time, and contact info to publicize your trip.
PDF | MS Word

"Morgan Ball" Photo

Print-quality version of the photo above of Falcon Rest's John Hunt Morgan

"Morgan Ball" News Release

Edit this article however you like and run it in your local paper.

"Morgan Ball" Text Block

Don't worry about summarizing information for your trip publicity. Just use this text block for your article, newsletter, tour catalog, etc.

"Morgan Ball" Logo

Print-quality version of the "Murder at the Mansion" logo


2645 Faulkner Springs Rd. | McMinnville, TN 37110 | 931-668-4444 | falconrest@falconrest.com

Last Modified March 2017. Falcon Rest Mansion and Gardens.