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The Parton Family was raised in a two-room cabin with no running water or electricity. The home, on Locust Ridge Rd. in Sevierville, Tennessee still stands. There were 12 children. Her father farmed tobacco.
These days there is a full-scale replica of the house, furnished as it was when Dolly was growing up, in nearby Pigeon Ridge, where the Dollywood Theme Park is located. (Not open as of this writing.) That Dolly has been responsible for the economic revival of this chronically depressed area is apparent from the town’s self-description: Pigeon Forge, a mountain town and vacation area in eastern Tennessee, is the home of Dollywood, country singer Dolly Parton’s Appalachian-themed park consisting of rides, an adjoining water park and a museum of her costumes and memorabilia. The city’s other attractions include country music revues like the Smoky Mountain Opry, dinner theaters such as Dolly Parton’s Dixie Stampede and outlet malls.
Dolly’s Imagination Library was inspired by the fact that her own father could neither read nor write. Over 1.7 million 5 and younger are registered and over 147 million free books have been distributed.
Dolly’s net worth is estimated to be over $600 million, and it’s thought that she would be worth over a billion were it not for her charitable donations.
Is it any surprise that there’s a statue of Dolly in downtown Sevierville?