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This Used to Be Nashville

Historian James Hoobler Uncovers the Lost Buildings of Nashville

First settled in 1779, Nashville has grown into what the New York Times calls America’s “It City.” From frontier outpost to cosmopolitan city of today, Nashville has a rich history to celebrate. Have you ever wandered through Nashville and wondered about the stories of the different buildings? This Used to Be Nashville is your photographic journey into the past to learn the histories behind the places.

Learn about the Ryman Auditorium, which started as a religious revival hall, and the seamy Climax Saloon, which is now a boutique hotel. Greenbrier Distillery, once the very dominant Tennessee whiskey brand, closed in 1908 due to state prohibition, but it was reborn when descendants of the original family found their roots and relaunched the brand with the original formula. Visit Belmont Mansion, the home of one of the country’s wealthiest women and now the crown jewel of a university campus.

Local historian and retired curator James Hoobler brings together an impressive collection of stories of the highs and lows of the past in what is now one of the country’s most visited tourist destinations. You’ll never look at a building in Nashville the same way again. 


Visit Belmont Mansion on August 21, 2022, and learn more about the city’s hidden architectural stories when Mr. Hoobler presents his discoveries during a free book signing event from 4 – 5:30 pm. Directions to Belmont Mansion can be found on the website,

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