Lutts, Tennessee

by Timothy Lutts, CEO Cabot Wealth Network

2020 Update: Lutts, Tennessee is still around, although the post office was destroyed by a tornado in 2015.

There was no logical reason to visit Lutts, Tennessee.

With a population of just 530 people, it has no tourist attractions.

We didn’t know anyone there.

And, it was in the middle of nowhere, 149 miles east of Memphis (where we were) and 127 miles south of Nashville (where we were booked that night). In fact, it was almost in Alabama!  The detour would add 64 miles (much of it on back roads) to our day’s drive, and necessitate a brief mid-day charge of the Tesla so we could reach Nashville.

But ever since I learned about the existence of Lutts, Tennessee a few years ago (thanks to Google Maps) I’d wanted to go there.

First, because it’s the only community named Lutts in the U.S. (there are a couple of roads named Lutts in other states).

And second because it might not be named Lutts much longer (more about that later).

So it was an easy choice to opt for the beautiful back roads in and out of Lutts over the direct and less scenic Route 40 that could have taken us directly to Nashville.

The first sign of the community was this.

Welcome to Lutts Community

Then came a small cemetery, followed by a handful of houses—well spread out, a small gravel pit, a small auto body business, a church, and the post office.

Here’s the post office.

United States Post Office Lutts, Tennessee

The post office was interesting to me because it was the postal service that “created” the community of Lutts.

According to what I found online a few years ago, when the U.S. postal authorities first established a post office there in 1888, they asked the first postmaster, John D. Stricklin, to come up with a name for the location, and suggested that it be a short one. So Stricklin suggested his physician and friend, Dr. Alexander Lutts.

No, Dr. Lutts was not related to me (except in the sense that we are probably all related to each other if you go back far enough).

But I spent quite a bit of time on genealogy databases a few years back looking at Dr. Lutts’ genealogy (looking to prove or disprove that) and here’s what I found.

Alexander Lutts was born in 1828 in North Carolina, he married a Tennessee girl named Margaret Weatherford when she was about 17, and they had five children.

His great-grandfather, Johannes George Lutz, was born in Germany (near Stuttgart), and immigrated to North Carolina, where he married twice, had at least six children and was killed in the Battle of Ramsour’s Mill in 1780—part of the American Revolution.

The switch in spelling from Lutz to Lutts was part of the process of Americanization, which also yielded Leutes and Lutes among Johannes’ descendants.

My ancestors traveled a parallel path, with my great-great-great grandfather John Lutts born in Philadelphia in 1764, to a man who was almost certainly named Lutz in Germany.

Back in the present, as we were taking photos outside the Lutts post office, the door opened and out popped the postmistress, Pam Warrington, as she was closing for the day!

It was about ten past noon, and she explained that the post office hours had recently been cut to four hours a day, four days a week (thus my speculation that if the trend continues, the community may cease to exist—at least as an official entity.)

She also revealed that the pronunciation there is Loots, as in lutes, and that there are no remaining members of the family left. The last to live there, Elmer Lutts, had two daughters, but they both married, took their husbands’ names, and moved to the east and west parts of the state.

The whole time we were talking, I don’t believe one car passed by.

So we said our good-byes to Pam.

We took a picture by the church next door (this was just after Mother’s Day.)

A mother's steadfast love was fashioned by the angels and sent from god above

And we drove out of Lutts, stopping to take one more picture at the final official sign.

Lutts Unincorporated

If you ever find yourself there, let me know!

 

26 thoughts on “Lutts, Tennessee

  1. Great post, Tim!

    My wife, Lisa, and I spent five years in Tennessee. We always intended to visit Lutts, but a few months after we arrived in Tennessee we acquired a rescue dog (well, the dog acquired us by showing up at our doorstep starving) and we couldn’t leave it for an overnight trip.

    Not visiting Lutts has always been a disappointment, especially since we returned North a few years ago. So we both appreciate your post.

  2. I have lived in Lutts my entire life. It is peaceful, quiet, scenic, seemingly untouched by the crazy world around it. I cannot imagine trying to raise our family anywhere else. Lutts is definitly one of those unnoticed blessings!

  3. Hello Timothy, I was watching a news show which had an item about ‘Made in America’ & I saw a truck from Scott Trucking of Lutts Tennessee in the vision. I googled the town to see its location & then searched to find out it’s origin / when it was settled & came across your site.

    Thank you for the information.

    My late husband’s sister has done extensive family history research & the ancestors are English. I know that there are ‘Lutt’s’ in Germany & suspected that Lutt could be an anglicised version of Lutz.

    Oh, by the way, the ancestors emigrated to Australia. I believe that my grandson & great nephew are the only ones to carry on the name in Australia.

    Regards,

    Jane Lutt

  4. Hi! Enjoyed reading your story. My mother was born and raised in Lutts. My grandparents had a farm there, and my happiest memories come from there. Although I was raised in Nashville and now live in Kentucky, Lutts will always be home to me. It is a special place like no other.

  5. Thanks for posting! My maternal grandfather, George Washington Hall, operated a small lumber mill in Lutts during the late 1920s and the early 1930s. My mom, Mary Pearl (Hall) Berg, was born there (at home, I believe) in 1932 and lived there for several years before my grandfather got in trouble with the law and took his family in the road (they eventually landed in Wardell, MO). The Sherrills also lived in the Collinwood area—my grandmother was Sally Emoline (Sherrill) Hall—and I’ve traced the Sherrills all the way back to Devon, England in the early 1600s. I’ve never visited Lutts, but hope to get there someday.

  6. Hi Timothy, I am actually on my way now to Lutts to visit my Granny’s gravesite at the Lutts cemetary. My Daddy was born in Savannah, TN and they lived in Lutts. I should be arriving sometime tomorrow. My Daddy said when he was a boy the roads around there were not even paved but it was a nice little community. His Aunt and Uncle owned a little store there. He has very fond memories of his Aunt Effie! Just thought I would share that with you.

  7. I have been dateing a woman from Lutts, it is a peaceful place . I couldn’t find a Cell signal
    So while searching i was on the side of the road near a church . The only place i could make a call.. So many people stopped to ask if i need help. I was surprised by the generosity and kind words and offers to help me…

  8. Hi Miss Kim……… my great grandmother was Amanda Callie Lutts from Savannah, Tennessee. My grandmother was the daughter of Amanda Callie Lutts. My grandpa married LeAnder Jackson Bennett who was first cousins to the Stricklin brothers. I was born either in Savannah area or Waynesboro area and taken to the hospital in Lawrenceburg, so my birth certificate says I was born in Lawrenceburg……… I now live in Arkansas, but was raised in Michigan.

  9. I grew up in Lutts. I was the daughter of Robert Doyle Morris and Martha Morris. I when to the Pinhook school there and remember when we had a few store and it was a small town. My Dad was also a school bus driver and janitor at the school. My Grandparents Willie Morris used to sell pumpkin and watermelon. Plus remember the big strawberry farm. I had 4 brothers which 3 of them still lives close by. My parents and 1 brother and niece and more family are buried in the cemetery in Lutts. I always drive to Lutts and stop by the cemetery and visit where I grew up. I been gone from lutts over 40 years now. But I have lots of happy memories of living in Lutts Tennessee. Hugs from Edwardsburg Michigan. Rose Marie Morris (Gragg)

  10. My husband, Donald Ray Morris, grew up in Lutts. His older brother still lives there. Don tells marvelous stories of growing up in Lutts, and of the people there. A couple years ago there was a devastating tornado that essentially wiped out the community, but not the people! The Post Office was completely lost, as was the Methodist church next door, the garage, and many homes. The church has built back, as has the garage, and most of the homes. Although the Post Office was started, it has not been finished. When I was a young girl, my family and I visited one of my daddy’s customers in Lutts. It was one of my favorite days. I never forgot the house with the barn across the street, feeding the cows, the spring where they kept the cold food, or all the fun I had there. It turns out it was just down the road from Donald Ray’s grandparents! We often laugh and wonder what would have happened if we had met then! We live in a small community near there now, and Donald Ray frequently makes the trip over to help his brother on the farm. I am glad for every day he gets to go spend the day in Lutts, as I know it will always be “home”, and dear to his heart.

    • It was so sad when the tornado went thru there and wiped out most everything. I do find it odd that it did not touch the old school house. My Daddy went there and I go to Lutts every year for family reunion. There is still tin and stuff in the trees from the tornado. My grandsons love to play in the creek. Beautiful country to ride thru and enjoy.

  11. My stepdad and mom moved myself and five siblings to Lutts from Hardin County when I was eleven years old. I lived there until I was seventeen. My twin sister and her family live in the white two story house just off the hill from the cemetery. My grandparents, my mother and my only son are buried in the Lutts cemetary along with a lot of other family members on my mom’s side. I’ve always loved the Lutts Community and it’s people. The people have always been so friendly and welcoming. Thank you for writing this article about a wonderful little place that is so dear to me.

  12. I beg to differ with you about not much cause to go to Lutts TN. for many people.
    The Brewer family has a family reunion every 1st Sunday in July and my self and 8 or 9 children (most related) flock to Howard and Jeanie Brewer ‘s house in Lutts
    Sometimes there will be 30 to 50 people at they’re small house off 206.
    Cousin s and friends enjoy Aunt Jeanie and Uncle Haward’s company as often as possible.
    Lutts TN has been a special place in our family for generations.
    Check out Piney Grove Cemitary and find many relitives.

  13. I grew up in outside of Savannah and we always drove through lutts on our way to visit family in collinwood. They used to have a strawberry field sign right by the sign for lutts and the little store off Weatherford rd. Always felt so homey and welcoming. Small communities like lutts warm my heart and remind me why I call tennessee my home, and why despite travelling all over, I believe Tennessee is the most beautiful.

  14. I’ve been to Lutts many times! Great little town full of friendly people, my moms sister and their kids all lived around there for a long time ! Vernice and Lucille Balentine

  15. I’m just across the state line (Al) and be going up there Spence I was 7years old now 43! It is the most relaxing, peaceful and nicest people you will ever meet! We hunt there in Lutts and done it for all these years!! The store there ( Warrantors) was amazing! My dad would stop there after every morning hunt and just set around to just watch deer being checked in! We would get a Bigg ol bologna sandwich and RC and just have a blast seating there listening to all the stories! This is the best community I have ever seen and love them all ! It’s an amazing small town with great bigg hearts!!

  16. I am 61 years old and I have been hunting since I was 16 years old in luttsTennessee The people live there are unbelievable people makes you feel right at home will help you in a heartbeat if you need help Very peaceful I absolutely love the place just to get away

  17. I remember as a child my mother taking us to Lutts to pick the best strawberries. Some of the best ever. When I grew up and moved away and then when I would come back and ride those country roads. I only knew one person with an actual Lutts address. Very sweet lady named Joyce. I heard she passed away several years ago.

  18. I grew up just about 10 minutes from Lutts and grew up in that Methodist Church you took a picture of. When Sunday School was over and the adults were still in class we would all go outside and play in the parking lot of the post office since there wasn’t much to do.
    My mother’s family still lives in Lutts and she still goes to that church.
    I don’t live near there anymore and don’t come home very often but I always drive through Lutts when I do and am always thankful to have grown up where I did.

  19. In the 60’s my mother and I used to drive to Lutts to pick strawberries, about 20 miles there and 20 miles back to Clifton, Tn. (beautiful little town on the banks of the Tennessee River). These were the biggest fields of the best strawberries I had ever seen or tasted. Several of the ladies in Lutts worked at the garment factory in Clifton. Nicer, hard working, braver women (I say brave because of the roads they had to drive over twice daily to get to work) you would never met elsewhere.Mr. and Mrs. Elmer Lutts were a family that just about everyone in the county knew or knew of them. I believe he held a county office in the court house at Waynesboro, Tn., the county seat of Wayne Co.. If you ever get this way again, there are two really nice Bed and Breakfast places established in older homes in Clifton. You might like going to Waynesboro which is 14 miles east of Clifton where they have recently started a museum on the history of Wayne Co.. The family that owns a farm with a Lutts, Tn. address can be found on Facebook under ‘Spring Valley Family Farms’. I did enjoy reading your post and all of the comments.

  20. Being raised in Lutts/Cypress Inn I have never wanted anything more than to leave and never come back. I like to see how other people get so amused by it. Everyone is so different. Maybe one day you will return and maybe one day I never will. But small towns have a way of sucking you in and keeping you, even when you do not want to stay.

  21. Hi Tim,
    My Grandfather Claude Ayers and my Grandma Goldie Holt have a long history in Lutts…I still have a lot of family that live there. I get as often as I can to visit with them.

  22. I hear they are going to build a McDonalds. & a Super Walmart in Lutts Tn. Plans are to have both open before the Krispy Kreme donut shop opens in late December 2020

  23. Timothy,
    I enjoyed your article and photos very much! While attending Union University in Jackson, TN, I became the pastor of Lutts Baptist Church around 1979.This was a weekend pastorate for I only preached on Sunday mornings. The church owned a parsonage up the road by the old post office and store. We would travel to Lutts on Saturday mornings, spend the night, go to church on Sunday morning, and usually eat lunch with some of the church folk. David and Johnnie Morgan fed us many great meals. On several Sunday afternoons, we enjoyed hand-cranked ice cream. David and Glenda Daniel invited us to eat with them on a number of occasions. We have stayed in touch with these families through the years and have traveled back several times. Lutts still has a soft spot in our hearts due to meeting the wonderful people in this peaceful valley.

    Thanks for the memories!

    Ron and Yvonne Hale

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