Listed on the National Register of Historic Places, The Venue at Twin Oaks is full of Southern charm and rich with history dating back to the earliest days of Gibson County. This antebellum home is truly a hidden gem, unknown even to many locals. The mansion is located on a sprawling estate that takes you back in time. The name Twin Oaks was given to the home because of the massive white oak trees that are over 300 years old and perfectly frame the estate. Construction on the home began in 1853 by J.N. Lannom. It remained unfinished until 1860 when Rev. Moses E. Senter purchased it, completed construction, and moved his large family into the home. Twin Oaks is rich with Civil War history. The home was used as a hospital during the Battle of Humboldt on December 20, 1862, when General Nathan B. Forrest’s Calvary units met Union forces while destroying the train depot. Two of Moses Senter’s sons served under General Nathan B. Forrest.
The original property consists of several hundred acres located from Central Avenue in Humboldt beyond where the Highway 45 By-Pass is now located. Rev. Moses E. Senter was Humboldt’s first mayor, a farmer, and one of the best known Baptist ministers in the area. Rev. and Mrs. Senter raised eleven children in the home. In 1915, Moses Senter’s granddaughter, Kate, and her husband, Mr. C.W. Rooks, purchased the home. Mr. Rooks was also Mayor of Humboldt, a Congressman, and owned the local newspaper. The home remained in the Senter/Rooks family until 2011 when it was purchased by Keith and Terrie Hopper to preserve this beautiful place of small town Southern history and open it to the public. The Hoppers’ vision and hard work created the beautiful beginnings of a luxury wedding and event venue.
In March, 2017, Twin Oaks was purchased by Karl and Angela Snider. The Sniders fell in love with the history and legacy of the home, as they are both Civil War buffs and wanted to further the home’s preservation and community involvement. The Sniders also were intrigued by the idea of furthering their successful wedding and event venue business. The Sniders own The Barn at Snider Farms in Madison County where they have hosted hundreds of weddings and events since it first opened in 2013. The Sniders attribute their success to always focusing on their brides and going above and beyond to create their dream wedding. Karl uses his knowledge and experience from a lifetime in construction to create a blank canvas for each bride. His expertise in designing events and weddings is invaluable as they dream, plan and experience their own fairy tale become a reality.
The Sniders have performed extensive renovations on the home and love welcoming the community into Twin Oaks, opening the doors at any possible opportunity. Their children, Kaylee and Cole, especially love serving as tour guides and are quick to point out the underground tunnels and hidden passageways. Visitors are always intrigued by the spacious rooms and the home’s ability to take you back in time. The mansion has original hardwood pine floors, antique chandeliers, and six marble fireplaces. The downstairs includes three large entertaining rooms and a full catering kitchen. The upstairs features a newly renovated bridal suite, with crisp white walls and floor, gorgeous custom draperies resembling the back of a wedding gown, plush furniture, a stunning floor length antique mirror that belonged to the original homeowners, a dressing room equipped for hair/makeup styling, and two private bathrooms. The courtyard behind the home is newly remodeled with fresh zoysia grass and is ideal for dining and dancing under the stars. The Hall at Twin Oaks is adjacent to the courtyard and is also newly remodeled with white shiplap walls and ceiling, dark stained wood beams, elegant chandeliers, and beautiful options for an indoor ceremony. Although many brides prefer the sprawling front porch, the property now offers a variety of wedding ceremony locations. The front lawn has been completely remade with a newly laid carpet of zoysia grass, over 150 new hydrangeas and hundreds of other plants, flowers and grasses added to the existing lush landscaping. Brides now have multiple options regardless of weather and can achieve just the right look they want to achieve for their special day.
Although weddings are held on most weekends, the Snider family is passionate about giving back to the community, and they love being part of the Humboldt and Gibson County, where they have felt welcome from the start. “The community has welcomed us with open arms, and we couldn’t be happier to be part of Humboldt, Tennessee! John Blankenship and the Humboldt Historical Society have been so gracious with teaching us the history of this property. We love hosting their meetings here and learning all we can about the area. Christine Warrington invited us to join the Humboldt Rotary Club and it has been a wonderful experience making new friends there. I highly recommend joining the Rotary Club if you want to get to know your town and find ways to get involved. Amanda Love at the Humboldt Chamber of Commerce has been invaluable and has helped us get connected,” Angela said. “We love hosting the West Tennessee Strawberry Festival Queens’ Luncheon each year, and we just recently hosted both the Humboldt Chamber of Commerce Annual Membership Banquet and the Rotary District Governor Joint Meeting for all of Gibson County. We regularly host an outreach of First Methodist Humboldt called “The Bridge” with free community concerts on Sunday evenings by Paula Bridges McGill and The Bridge Band. This has been a great way for people to come and get to know their neighbors.”
Mayor Marvin Sikes has done an incredible job leading the Humboldt community, and his love for his town is evident. “If you haven’t been to Humboldt lately, we would love for you to come visit, shop, eat, and see why it’s the best kept secret around,” Sikes said. “I just wish people knew all the incredible things that I know about the future of this town. Humboldt is the place to be! We have wonderful people and so much to see and do here. We love our veterans and have one of just three Tennessee State Veteran’s Homes in our state.”
“There are some exciting things happening in our town,” Amanda Love added. “We were recently awarded a $15,000 grant from Tennessee Downtowns – a part of Main Street USA. We have several additional projects in the works including a Farmers’ Market and more downtown activities for 2018. We expect the 81st Strawberry Festival to be bigger and better than ever – it grows every year!”
Come visit Humboldt and be sure to contact the Sniders for a tour of The Venue at Twin Oaks while you are there!