• Elena Cawley

Sit a spell at the Blue Victorian in Wartrace and find respite, history, good spirits


Leave your errands and cares behind and head to Wartrace to find tranquility, history and relaxation. The Blue Victorian Bed and Breakfast will welcome you with hospitality and friendliness. Owners Yvonne Moore Moon and David Latimer invite you to experience the peace and harmony of the Blue Victorian and of Wartrace.

The Blue Victorian offers respite and creates memorable experiences for guests. It’s a place inviting visitors to unwind.


For Yvonne, the Blue Victorian was a dream come true. It brought peace and hope for the future.


“I am originally from the Memphis area but moved to Middle Tennessee with my husband and two young children in 1993,” Yvonne said. “I became fascinated with the house at Wartrace after discovering it on a day trip to Wartrace and nearby Bell Buckle back in 2009.

“In the summer of 2009, I went driving in the country to keep my mind busy. My husband of almost 29 years had died a few months before after a long battle with cancer.”


During this period of sorrow and hopelessness, she “ran across the house for sale in the tiny railroad town of Wartrace.”


“I pulled into the driveway and the owner who was having to sell due to job loss was moving items out,” Yvonne said. The owner offered to show the house.


“I jumped at the chance,” Yvonne said. “It was a beautiful home, but it needed lots of repair.”

The house brought hope and motivation to Yvonne, and the Blue Victorian became her home in 2017.


“My boyfriend of 10 years (David Latimer) and I purchased the home in December of 2017,” Yvonne said. “David is a very important part of the success of the Blue Victorian. His hard work and gardening skills make this a beautiful retreat. We met in 2010. We bought the Blue Victorian to be our residence. After realizing we don't need all this room to ourselves, we decided to offer our beautiful home as a B&B.”

The 1880s house came with its challenges, and Yvonne and David had to work hard to bring it to today’s condition.


“Although the house was renovated in stages by several previous owners, we definitely had our own challenges with the property. Our first utility bill for January 2018 was $700 for one month, and the house was too cold to occupy parts of it. We have since installed insulation and upgraded the HVAC systems. Homes of this period (1885 or 1886) usually had no insulation in the walls as the fireplaces provided heat.”


The three remaining fireplaces of several fireplaces that were originally in the home couldn’t be used as the chimneys were crumbling from age, added Yvonne.

“Another interesting story is how the ‘new’ bathroom installed just six months prior to the sale had a major plumbing leak that almost caused the bathtub to fall from the second story into the living room directly below. Thankfully, that issue was detected before a major catastrophe occurred when water stains suddenly appeared on the ceiling of the living room and a small waterfall gushed out when the spots were punched with a screwdriver. It made for an exciting time with our first group of 10 B&B guests due to arrive in less than a week.”


Fortunately, repairmen completed the work quickly.


“Today, the Blue Victorian is a place of respite and rest,” Yvonne said. “It’s a place for people to come and unwind. The Blue Victorian is a place for families and friends to gather on the porch and share stories, laughter and, sometimes, tears. It is a refuge for those needing a break from the chaos of life.”

Life is slower in Wartrace – a welcome change for so many, said Yvonne. Wartrace and the Blue Victorian have brought happiness to Yvonne, and she wants to share the joy with visitors.


“As I drive around the corner and see the house sitting majestically on the hill, I am in awe that it is ours,” Yvonne said. “It’s a dream come true – the ‘dollhouse’ of every little girl's dream. I still can't believe it is ours. But it is so much more. I want it to be enjoyed by others who can marvel at its beauty and wonder at the history contained in these walls. It is a testament to the ways of old.”


The Blue Victorian proves that time and imperfections don't diminish value but rather enhance it and make the experience more precious, said Yvonne.


“It is a ‘livable’ home and place of comfort,” Yvonne said. “It’s furnished with a mixture of antiques, contemporary furniture and thrift store finds. I actually take pride in my bargain Goodwill goodies. Every item contained in these walls has its own story, from the stained-glass window in the utility room – yes, odd choice of placement – to the antique bed in Grandma's bedroom and the huge armoire donated from a friend that left scars in the aged oak floor.”


Yvonne invites you to visit the Blue Victorian and explore Wartrace.


“You’ll find peace and quiet, a time to reflect among the beauty of the quaint homes and lush scenery,” she said. “Downtown Wartrace is like a modern-day Mayberry – we still actually swap stories and fresh vegetables from the garden and eggs with the neighbors. Kids play outdoors – a throwback to the time before electronic devices became a child's best friend. We care about each other and look out for our own and our neighbors. We are truly a community – we have 4th of July parades, festivals, fun shops and restaurants and lots of rocking chairs on the porches. We are also home to the Tennessee Walking Horse National Museum.


Yvonne will greet you with a smile and tasty treats.


“The Blue Victorian is not fancy – we don't have a library of leather-bound books,” she said. “We don't have a wine-and-cheese hour. Instead, we have fresh peach or blueberry scones from the fantastic cook next door, icy lemonade on a sultry summer day, and breakfast banana splits. A few guests have heard ghosts – but no evil spirits are allowed here. Love reigns along with laughter and good times. Our porch with its soothing shade and the idyllic view are priceless. Come sit a spell and see what I mean.”


The Blue Victorian is located at 124 College St., Wartrace. Book a night at the Blue Victorian on airbnb.com.