In 1947, bonds were approved for the construction of a new athletic field and stadium at Greeneville High School. At the time, it was expected that a new Greeneville High would be built in conjunction at the same time. Plans for the entire site were drawn up and by May it was determined that the new field would have an entrance fromPalmer Street, lie approximately north-south with bleachers on the east and west sides. A track would surround the field.
Business leaders came together to ensure there would be plenty of funding. It was estimated that grading would cost $3,000 and another $2,000 for fencing. The Greeneville Stadium Association was formed and grading began on Friday, June 6, 1947. With temporary bleachers and moving some lights, the total cost was projected to be around $8,000.
Season tickets were sold for the first time, with the threat that if not enough tickets were sold, donations might be requested. Concrete bleachers, instead of temporary bleachers, were being installed. GHS girls entered a ticket selling competition, with "She Who Sells The Most" receiving the title of Football Queen of the Year. Sally Anne Haynes sold 210 tickets and was declared the winner, with Wanda Pierce coming in second and Sarah Jean Brooks in third.
Stair Tech was the first opponent in a game played on Friday, September 26, 1947. A pep rally was held in front of the Courthouse at 7PM followed by a parade down Main Street to the new stadium with kickoff set for 7:30 PM. Captain Copper Pierce predicted a win!
The first win would have to wait, as Stair Tech got a 20-13 win. Keith Pierce scored the first touchdown of the season and the first in the new stadium, slipping through the defense for a short-yard score. The first win came the next week as the Devils shut out Farragut 57-0.
In 1948, just prior to the start of the season, the Greeneville Stadium Association met to consider a new name. After much debate, the group settled on Burley Stadium, to honor the state's largest tobacco market in Greene County. Individual ticket prices were set at $1.20 at the gate and $5 for a season reserved seat Both Tusculum and George Clem played their games at the stadium.
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