Wednesday, March 23, 2011

Martinis and Murders

My friend Justin recently mentioned the astounding amount of Civil War Ghost stories floating around our area and I was reminded of my favorite martini, the Lemon Drop with Chambord Kiss from the Baker Peters Steak Mansion and Jazz Club.
Now most everyone in Knoxville knows the restaurant.  It sits right behind a gas station just off of Kingston Pike and Peters Road in West Knoxville.  If you are lucky, you will be able to have a martini there soon.  And if you are really lucky, the host/hostess will unlock the door to the dental office on the first floor and let you in to see the bullet hole made when Union soldiers entered the home of Dr. Baker in 1864. 
Dr. Baker was treating wounded Confederate soldiers when the Union soldiers shot and killed him.  When his son, Abner came home from the war, he was heartbroken about his father's murder.  He discovered evidence that suggested that the Knoxville Postmaster William Hall was the one who informed the Union troops of Dr. Baker's aid to the enemy.  Abner proceeded to shoot and kill William Hall to revenge his father's death.  Now, there is a marker in front of the house to honor Abner and his love of family.
Oh, and if you are really, really lucky, the host/hostess may show you a photograph where you just can make out a ghostly face looking through the window.  A ghost and a martini?  What more could you ask for?