A Small Town with lots of History

Pleasant View, Tennessee

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Living in a small town between to larger municipalities means your little town often gets glossed over. When someone asks where you live, it’s often followed by “Where’s Pleasant View?”

I get a little nostalgic when describing my home town.  Often I’ll explain to those who ask Pleasant View is a small town located in the northern sector of Cheatham County, Tennessee with only one stop light.  It’s a cozy town and so quiet at night, especially in the country away from the few city lights we have, the melody of frogs croaking and crickets chirping lulls you to sleep at night.

 It’s narrow curvy roads will lead to farms with acres and acres of tobacco local farmers set in the fields in the spring, cut in late summer and stoke in smoky tobacco barns throughout the fall.

It’s a town consisting of residents who’ve been raised here coexisting with those who’ve moved here yearning for small town living.  Residents who’ve moved into Pleasant View are often known, to many ole’ time locals, as “foreigners”.  Understand it’s not meant to be disrespectful, more of an inside joke amongst those who’ve witnessed the growth of living in this small town.  The’ve witnessed its changes good and bad and they hold locked within their memories stories of the past only they hold the key.

I grew up within the county, on the other side of Sycamore Creek, so to say, in Ashland City, off Highway 12 on Macon Wall Road but have lived in Pleasant View ‘only’ twenty-one years and I’ve just recently been, it seems, considered a ‘local’ rather than a so-called ‘foreigner’.

Pleasant View will be celebrating a milestone in October.  The city will have been incorporated for twenty-years.  To celebrate the small town is holding a Birthday Bash to honor the city’s milestone.  In light of the upcoming event I’ve decided to enlighten those of us who weren’t raised in this little town with a little history. Who knows, I may even share a bit the locales may have forgotten.

INCORPORATION OF PLEASANT VIEW

  1.  In 1921 Pleasant View was incorporated under a House Bill.  The small town at this time  was approximately 105 acres.

2.  The local government in 1921 consisted of the mayor and six alderman divided into            three Wards.

3.  In 1931 Pleasant View was unincorporated but sixty-five years later, in 1996, Pleasant        View was re-incorporated o Incorporated under a public act Mayor/Aldermanic Charter.

4.   The local government in 1996 consisted of the mayor and two alderman.

5.   The local government in 1998 consisted of the mayor and had grown to have four               alderman.

FIRST MAYOR AND ALDERMAN AFTER RE-INCORPORATED

After re-incorporation in 1996 Mayor David Davis held office from October 10, 1996 until December of 1998.  The Vice Mayor/Alderman was Morris Bidwell seated along with on additional Alderman Don Worrell.

POSTAL SERVICE

The first postal service was established in 1880 but mail was not delivered to rural areas until 1909, almost twenty-years after being established.  In 1880 the Postmaster made approximately $12 dollars a year.  By 1911 the postmaster’s salary had increased to $300 dollars per year.

POPULATION

In 1886 population in Pleasant View approximately 300 increasing steadily to an estimated population of 2,150 by 1996.  According to the 2010 census the population had increased to 4,149 and 4,218 by 2013.

Pleasant View had become the seat of the tobacco factories and a large loose-leaf tobacco market attracting growth to the town in 1886.

Today there are still many local farmers growing and selling their farm raised tobacco to the market. Pleasant View is no longer the seat of tobacco factories or market. Springfield in Robertson County, Tennessee and Nashville, Tennessee hold the title now.

EDUCATION

Children prior to 1850 were educated at home.  The estimated time period between 1850-1870 two local homes schooled children.  In 1870 the first school was built upon 5 acres and dedicated to Pleasant View Academy, more commonly known as “The Highland Institute”.

Parents were allowed to send their children to the school, better known as the institute in those days, free of charge for five-months each year.

If parents chose to continue sending their children to the institute after the five-month time period, they were charged $3 dollars each month per child.

FINANCIAL INSTITUTIONS

The Citizens Bank was operational by 1905 and by 1920 held undivided profits of approximately $22 thousand dollars.  The Citizens Bank was operational in Pleasant View until 1958.

COMMUNICATIONS

A local drug store in 1910 had the one and only telephone.  It wouldn’t be until 1936 that residents were offered the first dial system.  The charge for the home system cost approximately $1.50 per month for the private sector telephone service. Story has it they were told it would never change.

ELECTRICITY

Tennessee Light and Power Company powered the first electric lights in 1930.

WATER

Mill Springs was the first drop off water supply spot in the ares.  A public well was later used for citizens to draw well water by a hand pump. It was located at the center of what is known today as Main Street. Eventually private wells and cisterns became the main source of water supply. Today Pleasant View Utilities District provides local water service.

FIRE SERVICES

Prior to 2001 firemen in the area were strictly volunteers.  It wasn’t until 2001 that Pleasant View offered a paid fireman position.  Chief PJ Duncan was the first paid firefighter in the area.  Today many firemen are still volunteers working to protect its community with the Pleasant View Volunteer Fire Department.

Living in a small town is ‘home’ to me as living in a city is home to others. Each has it’s history, locals and ‘foreigners’ coming together to build communities where with each year that passes, another piece of history is written and is meant to be remembered.

I will continue to add additional information to this page and additional posts will be added to this site under Pleasant View History. You may also find more at www.townofpleasantview.com, www.cheathamchamber.org and Cheatham Genealogy.

If you have any former or local stories, facts, statistics or memories you’d like to share, I’d love to include them on www.cheathamnews.com. To submit an entry review ‘how to submit submissions’ below then send to www.tonyasteele3239@gmail.com.

Entries received not abiding by the submission requests will not be published so take a moment to review, it isn’t complicated and I look forward to seeing the pieces of Pleasant View’s history unfold.

-Tonya Steele

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