In 1996 I spent time in Nashville Tennessee doing forensic training. I decided to post some photos from that time. Most photos are of the Opryland Hotel, which the next post talks about.

I was in Tennessee in February; so, being Canadian I packed for February weather. When I arrived it was a balmy 86 degrees Fahrenheit (30 degrees Celsius). Needless to say I was a little overdressed for the humid Tennessee weather. I wonder if people in Tennessee have ever seen snow. Luckily, all my workshops were inside the Opryland Hotel – which is a climate controlled environment.

The history of Nashville is pretty typical to North America. The Cumberland River runs through the city and it was this river that attracted the first trading settlements in 1717. The first settlement was named Fort Nashborough after General Francis Nash – a hero from the Revolutionary War. It was a crude settlement that was constantly being moved or destroyed over the 50 odd years the traders occupied the area. The first known permanent settlement was established in Nashville in 1779.

In 1784, the name of the settlement was changed from Nashborough to Nashville and roughly ten years later Tennessee became the sixteenth state. True to American history there was a fair bit of fighting over which town would be the state capital and at some point Nashville, Knoxville and Murfreesboro all achieved this goal. In 1843, Nashville finally won out and became the official state capital. Just as an aside (and perhaps could be the reason why Nashville was named capital) this date is sandwiched by the presidencies of Andrew Jackson and James K. Polk who both resided in Nashville and whom were very politically active (and no doubt connected).

During the Civil War, Nashville played a key strategic role to the Confederate Army. I don’t know too much about the Civil War though I do know that the Battle of Nashville was a particularly bloody battle between the Confederate and the Union.

In the years following the Civil War, Nashville became what it is now: the heart of country music. In the area I stayed in there were various museums and tributes to the artists that lived and worked in Nashville; I don’t think I have ever seen so many museums dedicated to one specific industry.