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41 Nashville Facts They Never Taught You In School

 

Movoto curated a list of 41 Nashville facts. Some of these you might know, but there are some that you probably have never heard of! Check them out!

1. Jack White of the White Stripes—and a dozen other creative endeavors—owns the Third Man Records studio in Nashville, where live shows are turned into records on the spot and sold only to the present listeners.

2. The AT&T Tower is the largest building in Tennessee and since its highest points resemble bat ears, it’s been nicknamed the “Batman building.”

3. Nashville’s Centennial Park is home to the only exact replica of the Greek Parthenon. Just standing in the middle of the park, there it is.

39 Things You Probably Didn’t Know About Nashville

Source: Flickr user Powellizer

4. It’s illegal to keep a cheetah as a pet in Nashville—if you could even catch one.

5. There used to be a “Nashville Curse.” It started in the ’80s when a band you’ve probably never heard of (because you know, curse) called Jason & the Nashville Scorchers, removed “Nashville” from their name. The Rock gods frowned on this and no Nashville rock band sold a million records until Paramore broke it with their second album “Riot!” in 2007.

6. 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.

39 Things You Probably Didn’t Know About Nashville

Source: Wikimedia user PersianDutchNetwork

7. 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.

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

9. 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 GooGoo (G for GRand, O for Ole, O for Opry) stands for the city’s claim to fame.

39 Things You Probably Didn’t Know About Nashville

Source: Flickr user Joelk75

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

11. 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.

39 Things You Probably Didn’t Know About Nashville

Source: Wikimedia user Laurence Jackson

12. Who knew Theodore Roosevelt was a copywriter? Not exactly, but he did proclaim the local coffee to be “good to the last drop.”

39 Things You Probably Didn’t Know About Nashville

Source: Wikimedia user Jbarta

13. Roosevelt’s proclamation took place in the Maxwell House Hotel, so you can probably guess what the name of that coffee is. Joel Owsley Cheek invented the special blend in 1892 and sold it just to the hotel. Apparently his selective business plan worked.

14. 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.

39 Things You Probably Didn’t Know About Nashville

Source: Wikimedia user Tallentanut Thuresson

15. 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.

16. Even homes are an homage to Music City with President Andrew Jackson’s guitar shaped driveway as a shining example.

17. Webb Pierce, a legendary honky tonk vocalist, had a swimming pool also shaped like a guitar.

39 Things You Probably Didn’t Know About Nashville

Source: Flickr user Ron Cogswell

18. But Chet Atkins, another Nashvillian, takes the ultimate instrument reverence with the nickname Mr. Guitar.

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

20. 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.

21. It wouldn’t be Nashville without Dolly Parton. Her claim to fame was on Porter Wagoner’s Show as the lead female singer, but now people know her from the theme park Dolly World.

39 Things You Probably Didn’t Know About Nashville

Source: Flickr user pipilongstockings

22. Nashville native Bill Monroe is noted as being the Father of Bluegrass.

23. 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.

39 Things You Probably Didn’t Know About Nashville

Source: Wikimedia user Clausule

24. United Record Pressing has been around since 1949 pressing records for artists from Elvis Presley all the way to N’Sync. Now it’s only one of four vinyl manufacturers left in the country.

25. Nashville has wildlife, not just wild music. Nashville Zoo has two extraordinary exhibits, Gibbon Island and Meerkat Habitats that the Animal Planet network recognized as the best in the country.

39 Things You Probably Didn’t Know About Nashville

Source: Flickr user amandarichard421

26. Segregation in Nashville was very real, but when John Lewis proposed a sit-in movement in February 1960 he successfully changed history. The commemorative black and white stools in Bicentennial Mall serve as a reminder of this brave act to defend human rights.

27. Printer’s Alley was speakin’ easy during prohibition as many of the printers started bootlegging in the basements. Even though alcohol was legalized shortly thereafter, these bars are still there today.

28. Nashville is home to the first thoroughbred horse to ever have won the English Derby. His name was Iroquois.

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

30. Not to get these stuck in your head, but “Jingle Bell Rock,” “The Bunny Hop,” and “Hokey Pokey” were all recorded in Nashville. You do the Hokey Pokey and you turn yourself… Sorry.

39 Things You Probably Didn’t Know About Nashville

Source: giphy.com

31. Nashville native William Edmondson became the first African American to display his solo art exhibition at New York’s Museum of Modern Art.

32. The only Five-Star, Five Diamond hotel in Tennessee is the Hermitage Hotel in Nashville. Since opening in 1910, this swanky establishment has been host to famed elite like John F. Kennedy and even Al Capone.

33. 1941 was just the beginning when Nashville got the country’s first license to air on the FM radio waves. The rest is static-free history.

39 Things You Probably Didn’t Know About Nashville

Source: Flickr user jdn

34. Not the most scandalous of all the presidents, but at one point Andrew Jackson, Andrew Johnson, and James Polk all called Nashville home.

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

36. In 1961, an original Mom and Pop restaurant took over the Nashville breakfast scene. The Pancake Pantry has been serving up flapjacks ever since and still have lines going down the block almost every day.

39 Things You Probably Didn’t Know About Nashville

Source: Flickr user jbcurio

37. Nashville is kicking all kinds of green living butt by creating an entire community of LEED Certified buildings in the area known as The Gulch.

38. Nashville had another Al Capone sighting when he stopped by train at the then active Union Station as he was ushered through to the Georgia penitentiary.

39. Nashville has the largest population of Kurdish people in America.

40. In Nashville, Christmas can be felt all year long at Santa’s Pub. This dive bar is a local favorite with a holiday themed exterior and cheerful bartenders, who will turn away anyone wanting to pay with a card. Santa only takes cash.

39 Things You Probably Didn’t Know About Nashville

Source: Wikimedia user Evan-Amos

41. In 2013, Hatch Show Print relocated to the brand new Omni hotel. The print shop originally opened in 1879 and is one of the oldest and most famous in the country.

 

Thanks again to Movoto for this fun list!

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