If you’ve ever wondered which historic events and people emerged from Nashville, these must-see landmarks will provide more than enough knowledge to feed your curious mind.
Located 10 miles (16 kilometers) east of downtown Nashville, Andrew Jackson’s Hermitage was a plantation owned by President Andrew Jackson. His wife, Rachel Jackson, chose the homesite, and from 1804 to 1821, the Jacksons lived in a log cabin on the property, along with slaves who occupied two additional log structures. Now a National Historic Landmark, The Hermitage is where both Andrew and Rachel Jackson are buried. When Rachel died in 1828, Jackson laid her to rest in the garden of The Hermitage, which was her favorite place. Today, he occupies the space next to her in the tomb.
Andrew Jackson’s Hermitage, 4580 Rachel’s Ln., Hermitage, TN, USA, +1 615 889 2941
Originally built for Tennessee’s 1897 Centennial Exposition, the Parthenon now stands as the centerpiece of Centennial Park in Nashville. The design of the monument is considered the pinnacle of classical architecture, and the interior of the structure features a 42-foot (12.2-meter) replica of the Athena statue found in ancient Greece. It serves as an art museum and is home to a permanent exhibit displaying 63 paintings by 19th- and 20th-century American artists, donated by James M. Cowan. There are also plaster replicas of the Parthenon Marbles, found in the naos (the east room of the main hall), which are direct casts of the original Parthenon’s sculptures, whose fragments are now housed in the British Museum in London. The Acropolis Museum in Athens also has some.
The Parthenon, 2500 West End Ave., Nashville, TN, USA, +1 615 862 8431
Once among Nashville’s richest residents, Adelicia and Joseph Acklen built the Italian Villa-style Belmont Mansion in 1853. It was part of a country estate created as a summer getaway. In 1864, the 4th Corps of the Union Army occupied the house before The Battle of Nashville. Now the 19,000-square-foot (1,765-square-meter) mansion, located on the campus of Belmont University, offers personalized docent tours. Visitors can admire the 19th-century architecture, explore the home’s 36 rooms, as well as learn about the life of the home’s original builder, Adelicia Acklen. The majority of the rooms in the Belmont Mansion have been restored.
Belmont Mansion, 1900 Belmont Blvd., Nashville, TN, USA, +1 615 460 5459
Situated on the bottom floors of the James K. Polk building downtown is the Tennessee State Museum. It depicts the history of the state of Tennessee, starting from pre-colonization and going into the 20th century. With more than 120,000 square feet (11,148 square meters) of space among three floors, the museum includes both permanent and changing exhibits that display paintings, weapons, furniture, uniforms, and battle flags from the Civil War. Larger exhibits include a painting gallery, a reproduction of a historic print shop, and a grist mill. There’s also a museum store where visitors can purchase handmade crafts and Tennessee memorabilia.
Tennessee State Museum, 505 Deaderick St., Nashville, TN, USA, +1 615 741 2692