The American south possesses a history unlike anywhere else in the country. Some would say the region has a checkered pasted. However, when you look at it more closely, you’ll see that it’s a story of people who staked a claim on land that was nearly untamable. The people of the south shaped that land. At the same time, the land shaped them. As a result, several cultures converge into one overarching way of life south of the Mason-Dixon. That way of life has been the butt of countless jokes. However, those who live it know that there’s something special about it. Mike Wolfe is one of those people.
Mike Wolfe was born and raised in Le Claire, Iowa. However, he moved to Tennessee about a decade ago. Like many people who move to the Volunteer State, he almost immediately felt right at home. The state offers all of the things that Wolfe is looking for in his life. The history is deep and colorful. Additionally, Mike is a fan of country music. Tennessee is the birthplace of the genre and holds the genre’s beating heart in Nashville. Most importantly, the state is the home of some of the best southern hospitality you’d ever hope to find.
Recently, Mike Wolfe told Tennessean why he loves being in the south and Tennessee in particular.
Mike Wolfe on Being a “Southerner by Choice”
Mike Wolfe started his chat with the Tennessee-based publication by saying, “I’m a southerner by choice.” He went on to explain that he moved to the Volunteer State ten years ago and immediately fell in love with Middle Tennessee. For Wolfe, there’s plenty to love in his new home state. “I’m a huge fan of country music. I love the collaborative atmosphere that’s here, in this community.” Those would be enough, but there’s more. “I also love the way people hold on to history here, more than anywhere else in this country that I’ve ever been.”
Additionally, Wolfe said that the people make it even better. In his new home state, he witnessed, “Family, community, and respect for each other in a way that’s different from anywhere else I’ve ever experienced in America.”
However, Wolfe said that he does have a favorite place in Tennessee. It is, unsurprisingly, Columbia. That’s where he opened the second Antique Archeology store. Having a store there isn’t what makes the town special, though. Mike said it’s the, “Tremendous amount of history, incredible architecture, and just so many nooks and crannies that will surprise the heck out of you,” that make him come back time and again.
Summing up his favorite Tennessee town, Wolfe said, “It’s deep-rooted in Southern history and charm and I find it fascinating no matter how many times I go there.”