Abel Barn South Dayton-Then and Now

Abel Barn South Dayton-Then and Now

The feature photo above shows the dairy barn located on the Abel farm in south Dayton. While the exact date of construction is unknown, we do know that it was built by John R. Abel, Jr., the grandson of Cain Abel who settled here in 1807 and began farming this property. When the railroad came through Smith Crossroads, the track was laid right through the Abel family’s farm. Throughout the years, the descendants have been parting with portions of the property for the sake of progress.

In January of 1954, engineers employed by the Tennessee Highway Department began studying the survey for a bypass route which would take US HWY 27 traffic around the Market Street bottleneck. The proposed new route would leave the present highway south of Dayton and cross the Abel farm and move through the suburbs of the city toward Bryan Hill., veering back towards the present route and rejoining it near the north gates of the city. During this time of 1954, Dayton had two sets of stone gates welcoming people into the town. The gates were located on US HWY 27, which is now known as Market Street. Each gate marked the locations of the city limits along the highway. The northern gate was located near the present-day 11th Ave crossing and the southern gates were located just south of the current day Food City Shopping Center near the car wash. (2023).

The talk of this bypass had been in the works for several years due to the fact that Market Street, the main throughfare through Dayton and traffic, was hindered with the parked cars in downtown and the pedestrians crossing the streets. The new US HWY 27 bypass was completed in 1960.

Cain Abel was the first Abel to settle here, his property stretched from Richland Creek down to the vicinity of where 84 Lumber is today. There are small portions of land in south Dayton that are still owned by descendants of the Abel family. The most recent portion of Abel property sold was near the Hwy 27 and Hiwassee Highway Bypass. According to management of the Food City, they will in the future be constructing a new Food City grocery store facility at that location.

Abel Barn Burns
This view of the remnants of the barn was taken from across Hwy 27, when it burned to the ground in the early 1970’s. The photo shows its location to be where the present-day Food City is located.
Aerial View of South Dayton
This is a current day aerial view of the shopping center where the old Abel barn was located. It was situated about where the current day Food City is located in this photo.

Other Related Articles Can Be Seen at The Links Below

Abel Town and Bypass Then and Now

Market Street Main Throughfare Before Bypass

Hwy 27 Bypass Constructed in 1960



(Abel Barn Photo Courtesy of Abel Family Collection)

(Aerial Photo Taken by Dean Wilson)

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Published byDean

Born and raised in Dayton Tennessee, I have served in various public service positions in the past. I have a great interest in the History of our town. This site is a way for me to share some of the great history of the area.

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