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Nashville,city (1990 pop. 487,969), state capital, coextensive with Davidson co., central Tenn., on the Cumberland River, in a fertile farm area; inc. as a city 1806, merged with Davidson co. 1963. It is a port of entry and an important commercial and industrial center. The city has railroad shops and diverse manufacturing, including wood, glass, and rubber products; shoes; aircraft parts; and steel. Nashville is noted for its music industry; it is a major recording center, especially for country music. It also has many publishing houses producing religious materials, school annuals, magazines, and telephone directories. Large health-care, insurance, and finance companies have their headquarters in Nashville.
The city was founded (1779) by a group of pioneers under James Robertson (who is buried there). Fort Nashborough was built on the banks of the river, and the next year 60 families arrived to settle the area. As the northern terminus of the Natchez TraceNatchez Trace,
road, from Natchez, Miss., to Nashville, Tenn., of great commercial and military importance from the 1780s to the 1830s. It grew from a series of Native American trails used in the 18th cent. by the French, English, and Spanish.
..... Click the link for more information. , the settlement developed early as a cotton center and river port and later as a railroad hub. It became the permanent capital of the state in 1843. After the fall of Fort DonelsonFort Donelson
, Confederate fortification in the Civil War, on the Cumberland River at Dover, Tenn., commanding the river approach to Nashville, Tenn. After capturing Fort Henry, on the Tennessee River (Feb. 6, 1862), General Ulysses S. Grant, on Feb.
..... Click the link for more information. in Feb., 1862, Nashville was abandoned to Union troops under D. C. Buell and became an important Union base for the remainder of the Civil War. Union Gen. G. H. Thomas won a decisive victory (Dec. 15–16, 1864) over J. B. Hood there.
Sometimes called the "Athens of the South," Nashville has many buildings of classical design, including a replica of the Parthenon, built in 1897. Among its many institutions of higher education are Vanderbilt Univ., Fisk Univ., Tennessee State Univ., Meharry Medical College, American Baptist College, Lipscomb Univ., and Belmont Univ. Points of interest include the capitol (completed 1855), with the tomb of James K. PolkPolk, James Knox
, 1795–1849, 11th President of the United States (1845–49), b. Mecklenburg co., N.C. Early Career
His family moved (1806) to the Duck River valley in Tennessee and there, after graduating from the Univ.
..... Click the link for more information. ; the War Memorial Building; Ryman Auditorium, the home of country music's Grand Ole OpryGrand Ole Opry,
weekly American radio program featuring live country and western music. The nation's oldest continuous radio show, it was first broadcast in 1925 on Nashville's WSM as an amateur showcase.
..... Click the link for more information. from 1943 to 1974; the Country Music Hall of Fame and Museum; the Bluebird Cafe, drawing songwriters and new and established performers; the Schermerhorm Symphony Center; a replica of Fort Nashborough; and several old churches and antebellum homes. The Predators (hockey) and Tennessee Titans (football) are the city's professional sports teams. Nearby is the Hermitage, home of Andrew JacksonJackson, Andrew,
1767–1845, 7th President of the United States (1829–37), b. Waxhaw settlement on the border of South Carolina and North Carolina (both states claim him). Early Career
A child of the backwoods, he was left an orphan at 14.
..... Click the link for more information. .
a city in the southern USA, the capital of the state of Tennessee. Population, 448,000 (1970; metropolitan area, 541,000). Nashville is a port on the canalized Cumberland River and a railroad and highway junction. The city’s industries employ 60,000 persons. The leading branches are the chemical, metalworking, leather footwear, printing and publishing, glass and ceramics, and food-processing industries. Vanderbilt and Fisk universities are located in the city.