Representative Travis & Senator Yager Announce Grant Funding For Rhea County Courthouse Renovations

(NASHVILLE) — State Representative Ron Travis (R-Dayton) and State Senator Ken Yager (R-Kingston) announced today that the State Building Commission has officially approved funding for renovations to the Rhea County Courthouse.

The $200,000 grant was officially approved today by the State Building Commission which oversees construction of all public state buildings and structures. In recent years, the Commission’s responsibility has been expanded to include authority over most improvement and demolition projects of property owned by the state.

Built in 1891, the Rhea County Courthouse — located in Dayton — is famously known as the site of the Scopes Trial in July 1925. During the proceedings, county high school teacher John T. Scopes faced charges for including Charles Darwin’s theory of evolution in his public school lesson. The 126 year-old facility now houses a museum devoted to the trial. It was designated as a National Historic Landmark in 1976.

“These funds will help modernize our courthouse and also preserve its rich history,” said Representative Travis. “I am pleased that the State Building Commission has made this important investment in Rhea County, and I am thankful for the Commission’s support.”

“This is an important investment in this historic courthouse,” said Senator Yager. “I appreciate the leadership of Representative Ron Travis who worked hard to secure these funds. I was happy to support his efforts.”

Ron Travis serves as the Chairman of the House Insurance & Banking Committee. He is also a member of the House Transportation, House Calendar & Rules and Joint Fiscal Review Committee, as well as the House Insurance & Banking Subcommittee. Travis lives in Dayton and represents House District 31, which includes Bledsoe, Sequatchie, Rhea and part of Roane County. He can be reached by email at: or by calling (615) 741-1450.

Ken Yager serves as the Chairman of the Senate State & Local Government Committee. He is also a member of the Senate Commerce & Labor, Senate Energy, Agriculture, & Natural Resources, and Joint Fiscal Review Committees. Yager lives in Kingston and represents Senate District 12, which includes Campbell, Fentress, Morgan, Rhea, Roane, Pickett, and Scott Counties. He can be reached by email at: or by calling (615) 741-1449.