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John H. Harriman

1884 – December – John was working at Belmont as a gardener after Adelicia leaves for Florida.

1885 - The following spring, Adelicia and three of her children move to Washington D. C while Joseph H. Acklen remained in Nashville, splitting his time between living at Belmont and in downtown Nashville. An article published on August 31st made it clear that John was leasing part of the Belmont estate and has opened it to the public. His lease likely included the greenhouses and the gardener’s cottage so he could raise plants to sell to the public. “(T)he place in various ways has been beautified. The toll-gate having been moved out several miles Belmont can be reached by a pleasant drive without expense.”

1886 – March 31st – A notice appeared in the Nashville Banner from Joseph H. Acklen (then living in the Mansion) who stated that the gates at Belmont “will be locked each Sunday, and persons breaking into the premises will be prosecuted as trespassers. During the week persons are privileged to visit the green-houses which are under the control of Mr. John Harriman, but the place is not open to the public as a park”.

1889 – The Nashville City Directory listed John as a florist (a term often used for someone selling plants) and as living 2 ½ miles out on Hillsboro Pike, usually given as the location for Belmont. By October of that year he was the landscape gardener for the Nashville, Chattanooga & St. Louis Railway. While working for the Railroad he was listed as boarding at several locations in Nashville, therefore most likely he was not married.

1890 – March 26 – The Nashville Banner wrote that “Mr. Harriman spent over a month in Florida last fall gathering up palms and other semi-tropical plants, which will also be used in the flower gardens. The company will likely build a large hot-house at the new shops this year, so that next winter they will have a place to keep the flowers. This winter a great many trees have been set out by the landscape gardener at the stations and in the yard of the new section houses, which will be graded and seeded to bluegrass. The trees are mostly maple and are obtained in the mountains…. “

1896 – He likely continued working for the railroad through this year.
He cannot be found in the 1897 Nashville City Directory or the 1880 US Census for Davidson County. The information from the 1890 Census does not survive.
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