Shaping a Nation: Tennessee Volunteers & the Mexican-American War

From the White House to the volunteer infantry, Tennesseans played a pivotal role in the Mexican-American War, which redefined the boundaries of the United States. “Shaping a Nation: Tennessee Volunteers & the Mexican-American War” explores the causes and impact of the Mexican-American War with an emphasis on the experiences of Tennesseans. This exhibit brings together artifacts from the Polk Home’s collection, along with artifacts and documents from the Tennessee State Museum, Tennessee State Library & Archives, and private collections. Admission to the exhibit is included in regular Polk Home admission prices or can be purchased on its own for $5 per person. Please email to schedule group tours and field trips.

Curated by Dr. Timothy Johnson, Lipscomb University

Tim Johnson earned his PhD in history in 1989.  In 1991 he joined the faculty at Lipscomb University where he is currently the University Research Professor of History.  He has authored or edited two dozen articles and seven books on 19th century military history, dealing primarily with the Mexican-American War.  The University of Tennessee Press published his latest book, For Duty and Honor: Tennessee’s Mexican War Experience, which deals with Tennessee’s role in the Mexican-American War.

Professor Johnson is the recipient of Lipscomb’s Outstanding Teacher Award, and he has been a Research Fellow at the Virginia Historical Society (2002) and at Yale University (2005)  In 2010 he was a visiting professor at Pepperdine University in California.  In 2019 he was a finalist for the Army Historical Foundation’s “Distinguished Writing Award.”  Professor Johnson has appeared on C-SPAN, The History Channel, and Public Television.

He has been married to his wife, Jayne, for 44 years.  They have three sons and six grandchildren.

This exhibition is funded by the Tennessee Wars Commission and the Tennessee Historical Commission

Tennessee Wars Commission Logo
Tennessee Historical Commission Logo

New for educators!

Polk Home staff have designed pre- and post-visit classroom activities for elementary and middle school classrooms specifically focused on the Shaping a Nation exhibition.

© 2024 President James K. Polk Home and Museum

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