Trivia Thursday: 20 Fun Facts About Nashville

  1. On Christmas Eve 1779, this famous city was founded.

  2. Some argue that Davy Crockett, famous for his fiddling and buck dancing, became the area’s first star when he moved to Middle Tennessee in 1811.

  3. Captain William Driver, Nashville native, nicknamed the U.S. flag “Old Glory” in 1837.

  4. Talk-show host Oprah Winfrey, actress Reese Witherspoon, Desperate Housewives star James Denton and former U.S. Vice President Al Gore all grew up in Nashville.

  5. Oprah Winfrey’s path to pop culture world domination started in Nashville TV when she became the first female and African American news anchor while attending Tennessee State University.

  6. Jazz, R&B, and blues filled Jefferson Street between the 1940s and 60s. Some famous faces seen playing during that time were Etta Jones, Duke Ellington, and Jimi Hendrix.

  7. One of the most visible buildings downtown, the AT&T Building, is called “Batman” because the two towers look like the caped crusader’s ears.

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  8. U.S. President Andrew Jackson’s Nashville home, The Hermitage, has a driveway shaped like a guitar.

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  9. The late U.S. President Teddy Roosevelt, upon drinking a cup of Maxwell House Coffee, pronounced it “good to the last drop” — the slogan the company still uses today. Who knew Theodore Roosevelt was a copywriter? Roosevelt’s proclamation took place in the Maxwell House Hotel, so you can probably guess how the name of that coffee originated. Joel Owsley Cheek invented the special blend in 1892 and sold it just to the hotel. Apparently his selective business plan worked.

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  10. Country music star Keith Urban and his wife, actress Nicole Kidman, are often spotted around town; Urban often eats breakfast at the Pancake Pantry — standing in line like everyone else.

  11. The 175,000-sq-ft/16,258-sq-m green roof of Nashville’s new Music City Center is meant to emulate the hills of Tennessee.

  12. In 1928, blind Vanderbilt University student Morris Frank decided to look into a rumor about using seeing-eye dogs as guides. He brought the very first dog back to the U.S. and started The Seeing Eye Inc. in Nashville.

    In February, 1929, the first class graduated from The Seeing Eye. Shown left to right are chief instructor Jack Humphrey; graduate Dr. Raymond Harris with Tartar; instructor Adelaide Clifford; graduate Dr. Howard Buchanan with Gala; and instructor Willi Ebeling.
    In February, 1929, the first class graduated from The Seeing Eye. Shown left to right are chief instructor Jack Humphrey; graduate Dr. Raymond Harris with Tartar; instructor Adelaide Clifford; graduate Dr. Howard Buchanan with Gala; and instructor Willi Ebeling.
  13. There is still a string of red, blue, and green lights at RCA Studio B from when Elvis couldn’t get into the Christmas spirit while recording his Christmas album, so they put up some lights, and left them.

  14. Nashville native William Walker became the president of Nicaragua in 1856. No other American has become president of another country since.

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  15. It’s safe to say Nashvillians are somewhat obsessed with the Grand Ole Opry. So much so that it’s rumored the famous Nashville candy the Goo Goo (G for GRand, O for Ole, O for Opry) stands for the city’s claim to fame.

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  16. The Grand Ole Opry had a special guest for its opening show at the new Opry House in 1974: President Richard Nixon. He entertained everyone by playing a presidential appropriate tune of “God Bless America” on the piano.

  17. The WSM Barn Dance doesn’t have nearly the same ring to it as Grand Ole Opry, but it was in fact the original name.

  18. Nashville’s Centennial Park is home to the only exact replica of the Greek Parthenon. Inside the Nashville Parthenon there is a statue of Athena Parthenos standing at 42-feet-tall. She is the largest indoor statue in the Western Hemisphere. Nothing says Nashville like Greek mythology.

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  19. On an average 1950s day, WSM radio announcer David Cobb called Nashville “Music City” and changed their image in history forever.

  20. The Country Music Hall of Fame had someone creative designing their building because the windows are actually made to look like piano keys.

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