Chattanooga Choo Choo unveils Tennessee Music Pathways Marker

CHATTANOOGA, Tenn (WDEF) – The Chattanooga Choo Choo announced the unveiling of a Tennessee Music Pathways marker.

Tennessee Music Pathways is an online planning guide that connects visitors to the state’s rich musical heritage by the awarding of markers. 

“Our goal isn’t just to connect the fans to the music but also to have them come  stay longer. This is a historic destination that blends our past into our future, so we celebrate the contributions of the Chattanooga Choo Choo,” says Commissioner Mark Ezell, Tn Department of tourist development. 

Written in 1941 as a song for the musical film “Sun Valley Serenade” — the “Chattanooga Choo-Choo” became a top-selling pop hit during the early years of World War II.

Granddaughter of songwriter Mack Gordon says this is a proud moment for their family and for musical history.

“It’s one of those songs that when it goes into your head you cannot forget. It’s an honor. It’s amazing how the marker has really done him justice,” says Millie Dewitz, Granddaughter of Mack Gordon. 

Adam Kinsey, the current president of the Choo Choo, says he doesn’t believe the Choo Choo would still be here today without the song. 

 “This building was built in 1909. It was going to be demolished in 1970.A group of developers in Chattanooga at the time chose to try to restore this building and bring it back to life. They chose the Chattanooga Choo Choo song to really be the beacon to help make that happen,” says Adam Kinsey, President of Chattanooga Choo Choo. 

For most Chattanoogans, the restored Chattanooga Choo Choo is a staple of the downtown area –  and like the song says “it carries me home”. 


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