ANTIOCH, Tenn. (WKRN) – Behind the Connexus off of Hickory Hollow, past all the traffic, you’ll find a piece of history waiting to be unlocked.

“While we’re surrounded by the progress, we have this moment to acknowledge the history,” said Councilwoman Joy Styles.

Hidden behind a gate sits the cemetery of Alice Thompson Collinsworth. Alice married Revolutionary War veteran Edward Collinsworth after spending two years as a captive at the Muscogee (Creek) tribal town in present-day Alabama. Alice and Edward’s son, James, signed the Texas Declaration of Independence, but it was their daughter Parmelia that sparked so much change in the Antioch area.

“So, Parmelia was captured by the Creeks, held for two years, finally someone buys her freedom for $250, and she comes back and lived on this very piece of property. Antioch goes back a long time,” said John Taylor, a historian. “Thirty-two Union soldiers were buried right there. They have since been moved, but what I have to say about Parmelia is how magnanimous this woman was. She didn’t want them buried on the side of the railroad track like they were going to do, she said that’s not the Christian thing to do.”

It’s stories like this one, that are why Styles is working to preserve historic cemeteries in the area.

“This is a real place and real people. The stories are real, and it’s where Antioch really began,” explained Taylor.

Styles is pushing for more historical markers to go up, as big companies look to buy land. She is hoping they will do their research.

“So, it’s really about having those community conversations before you just buy a piece of land and decide you want to build a hotel or an apartment complex on it. You need to understand the history. We have been here for a long time,” said Styles. “There’s history to be found.”

History found throughout Antioch and Cane Ridge can be seen in the cemeteries that tell a story of the past.

“There’s no telling how many slaves cemeteries we have in Cane Ridge and Antioch, and so even the cemetery we are sitting in right now? In addition to the Collinsworth family, there are also slave graves here, but that’s history,” said Styles. “There are ways you can become a positive part of the community, versus someone whose concerned about your own bottom line and do now acknowledge what has taken place before.”

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As she works to bring together the past, present and future of Antioch.