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Oliver Springs, Tennessee

Filming location of many of the scenes for the movie Rocket Boys/October Sky.


This is the 400 block of Main Street in Oliver Springs, Tennessee.  This picture was taken in October 2005.  Notice the words "Olga Coal Company" painted on the building.  Shots along this street became downtown Coalwood in the movie.  The building shown was the Coalwood Big Store during the movie.  The interior of the store was decorated to look like a real 1950s store.  The movie contains shots filmed both inside and outside this building.

 

Oliver Springs Filming Locations

Charles R. Tichy is a retired archeologist with the Tennessee Valley Authority (TVA) in Knoxville.  Charles is a long-term resident of Oliver Springs, Tennessee.  He was also in the movie as an extra and played both a townsperson and a miner.  Mr. Tichy has collected a wealth of information about the filming of the movie October Sky.  We have created a walking/driving tour map that shows the filming locations in the town of Oliver Springs, Tennessee. (See box below.)

Mr. Tichy has also assembled a large collection of October Sky movie props and photographs.  Some of these can be seen through the storefront window at 107 Roane Street in Oliver Springs.  (This is a temporary location.)

Click here for
Walking/Driving Map of
The Filming Locations
of the movie
Rocket Boys / October Sky
in Oliver Springs, Tennessee

 

This is 430 Main Street in Oliver Springs.  Today, the building is home to an antique store.  (None of the set decorations from the movie remain inside the store.)  The store is:
Sienknecht's Antiques
430 Main Street
P.O. Box 89
Oliver Springs, TN 37840
(865) 435-5775
Near the beginning of October Sky, there is a shot of two men sitting on a bench outside the Big Store as a steam locomotive rushes by.  The men would have been sitting on a bench outside the building shown, and the train would have been on these railroad tracks.

 


This is a photo of the interior of Sienknecht's Antique Store.

 

 

Remember when the miners voted to go on strike and came rushing out of the Union Hall into the rain?  Here is the building -- at 410 Main Street.

This is the inside of the building at 410 Main Street.  In the movie, this is where the miners were meeting when they voted to go out on strike.  Today the shop is a sewing shop.  (Notice that they also sell copies of the movie October Sky.  You can see one on the counter in the lower right of the photo!)   None of the set decorations from the movie remain inside the store.

 

 

This photo was taken through the store window at 107 Roane Street in Oliver Springs.  These are some of of the October Sky props from Charles Tichy's collection.  In this picture, we can see the final rocket shot off in the movie, a United Mine Workers seal, Miss Riley's hospital bed, a display used in a science fair and more.

 


107 Roane Street is the store on the right.  You can see a "Rocket Boys" sign in the window.

 

 

 


This house is at 110 Roane Street in Oliver Springs.  The interior shots of Homer's house were filmed here.  (The exterior shots of Homer's house were filmed in Petros, Tennessee.)

 

 

 
This photo was taken on Roane Street.  You can see the railroad track at the end of the street.  That's where Main Street and Roane Street intersect.  For a film crew, it's always best to get filming locations as close as possible.  Sometimes they can film one scene and turn around and shoot an entirely different scene.  The less they have to move cast, crew and equipment, the better.  For example, within 200 yards of this spot, these scenes were filmed:
Interior Big Store [Main Street]
Exterior Big Store [Main Street]
Coal Train Passing Downtown Coalwood [Main Street]
Union Hall [Main Street]
Boys pushing disabled car [Roane street]
Interior of Homer's House [Roane Street]
Exterior of Miss Riley's House [Roane Street]
Homer's looking for Quentin's House [Stone Alley off of Roane Street]

 

 

Other buildings Main Street were also painted for the movie.

 

 

 


The 400 block of Main Street looking towards the railroad tracks.  The Union Hall is the building behind the billboard.  The Big Store is the big brick building next to the railroad track.

 

Links

Anderson County, Tennessee, Community Welcome Center
www.yallcome.org

 

Oliver Springs Historical Society
www.oshistorical.com