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Nestled in the buckle of the Bible Belt sits a little town called Crossville, Tennessee, home to the world's largest treehouse, a towering 10-sto… Read More
Nestled in the buckle of the Bible Belt sits a little town called Crossville, Tennessee, home to the world's largest treehouse, a towering 10-storey monument constructed for God. Read Less
Published:
The Minister's Treehouse
The World's Largest Treehouse in Crossville, TN -- a monument built for God.
Nestled in the buckle of the Bible Belt sits a little town called Crossville, Tennessee, home to the world's largest treehouse, a towering 10-storey monument constructed for God.

Built around a foundation 80-foot white oak tree and 6 other trees that act as natural pillars, the work-in-progress is a lifelong project for landscape architect and the Treehouse's minister, Horace Burgess.
"I was sitting up there one Sunday afternoon, just me out here on the steps up there praying for everything but a treehouse, and the Spirit of God spoke to me and said, 'If you'll build me a treehouse, I'll never let you run out of material.' It was almost audible. It was so audible that I spent the next 11 years building it." - Horace Burgess
"I was sitting right there on the chapel level. There were, like, 23 pair or 24 pair of bluebirds. I think there were more than that, but I counted them sitting around me in that tree, and they just all flew in. It was just the most peaceful time that I've ever felt, you know, when God spoke to me. And about 2 weeks later -- I agreed to build it that day. I said, 'I will. I will, Lord.' And about 2 weeks later, me and my wife had been praying. I was laying on my bed. She went in the kitchen. The ceiling on my bedroom became that treehouse. It wasn't a picture of it. It was the treehouse. I got to be inside it...

"I saw the whole thing. I saw it inside-out with it finished, you know, with everything working. It has a water cistern through it that something moves on every level when it rains, you know? I've got that in my head, you know? Chickens pecking corn... And when it rains, rushing from the top to the bottom. It's got a waterfall on the backside that I've got to build out of copper from the top to the bottom that, when it rains, it'll fall, be all real pretty all the way down." - Horace Burgess
"I've just now got it where it's safe enough to get people in. For 11 years while I was building it, you could fall off... I wouldn't let no one be on the top when I put the roof on it." - Horace Burgess
"On Sundays at 1, I speak to everybody who wants to come and sit down. We have the dogs in the sanctuary and everything, with the barking." - Horace Burgess
"[People from Crossville come here] all the time. They'll come and bring their food from their house out here to eat, you know, to have a picnic. I have churches that bring their whole church out here and have devotion, you know, stuff like that. It's crazy, all day...  It just comes and goes like ants all day long, because it only takes you about an hour and a half to see it. So it's all day long just coming and going, all week, all year. I never close it. It's open every day of the year." - Horace Burgess
"I don't ever want to charge for it, because it is my ministry. I don't even like it when they pass the plate at church. I think just a penny from your heart is better than that..." - Horace Burgess
"You keep praying, all right?" - Visitor
"Oh, I will. Pray for me. Just keep me lifted up, because I've got much stuff to do." - Horace
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"It's unreal how many blessings I would've missed if I hadn't built this. I mean, there would be no way to meet as many wonderful people doing anything, you know? And who would've ever thought, you know? I mean, in the Bible it says, 'He uses the foolish things in life to confound the wise.' That's kind of the way I look at it, you know? Who would've ever thought that a treehouse would've been a blessing to so many people, you know?" - Horace Burgess
"I really haven't opened this to the public. [The No Trespassing sign] is the only insurance I can get right now. I'm working on a $2 million policy where I can have horseback riding and stuff, and then I'll be able to invite you. But I can't invite anyone, or I'll have to make you sign a waiver... because of liability, people suing. But it's God's, and He's watched over it for 18 years, and no one's even offered to try and sue it." - Horace Burgess
"Yeah, [it's a work in progress], probably until the day I die, you know? He's preserving it right now. If He always wants it there, well, he'll preserve it. If not, well, I'll have to put a fence around it and let you just come and gaze on it, you know?" - Horace Burgess
"I'm trying, this year, I'm going to dedicate my whole life to [the Treehouse] this year, be out here every day and making it my business, and I'm going to build a little gift town right down there, and have a concession stand and a little shop, so that if you have something that you, some art that you do, you could come and set up for the day..." - Horace Burgess
"[I go up every day.] I have to. There's a window right there underneath where that roof comes down. It's the best seat in the house. You can see everybody coming and going and everything going on in the sanctuary. It's just the best place in the world." - Horace Burgess