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Nashville Fun Facts: 10 Things You Probably Didn't Know About Nashville

Updated: Mar 24, 2023

Ready to explore everything Nashville has to offer? This city is full of surprises! From its rich history and musical roots to its fantastic food scene and Southern hospitality, there is something for everyone in Nashville. Let's take a closer look at some of the most interesting facts about this vibrant city. So put on your cowboy boots, and let's get started!

The Francis Nash History Marker in Germantown, Nashville, TN
The Francis Nash History Marker in Germantown, Nashville, TN

1. Nashville was named after Francis Nash.

Francis Nash was a brigadier general of the North Carolina Continental troops under George Washington in the American Revolution. Unfortunately, He was hit just two years into the war by a cannonball in the Battle of Germantown. Nash was carried off the battlefield and cared for by Washington's personal doctor but died a few days later. His final words were said to have been, "From the first dawn of the Revolution, I have been ever on the side of liberty and my country."

Printers Alley sign in Nashville, TN
Printers Alley, Nashville, Tn

2. During Prohibition, Printer's Ally was home to many Speakeasies.

In the early 19th century, Printer's Ally was the center of Nashville's printing industry. But, by prohibition, it was full of hotels, restaurants, and some not-so-secret speakeasies. By the 1940s, the alley became a showcase for up-and-coming performers, including Hank Williams, The Supremes, and Jimi Hendrix. Today, Printer's Alley is home to some of the best bars and clubs in Nashville. If you're looking for a night out on the town, this is the place to be!

3. Legend says the famous Maxwell House Coffee slogan, "Good to the last drop!" was declared by Theodore Rosevelt while in Nashville.

While touring Andrew Jackson's home, Rosevelt asked for a cup of coffee, saying, "I must have the privilege of saying that I have eaten at Gen. Jackson's table." After he finished his cup, legend says he was quoted saying, "Good to the last drop!" after downing his coffee. But, the Nashville Banner actually quoted him saying, "This is the kind of stuff I like to drink, by George, when I hunt bears." No one is really sure how the "Good to the last drop" slogan came about, but Maxwell House Coffee decided it was good marketing and ran with it!

RCA Studio B

4. Elvis Presley's Christmas lights still hang in RCA Studio B.

In 1957, Elvis recorded his first holiday album at RCA Studio B in Nashville. The album was recorded in July. Christmas lights were hung around the studio to help him get into the Christmas spirit. The tradition continued for years, and the lights remained even after Elvis left the studio. Today, they still hang in RCA Studio B as a reminder of the King's love of Christmas. Visitors to the studio can't help but smile when they see the glittering lights, and it's easy to imagine Elvis himself standing beneath them, singing his heart out.

The Grand Old Opry

5. The Grand Ole Opry was originally called WSM Barn Dance.

The Opry's origins can be traced back to 1925 when radio station WSM began broadcasting a live music show called the WSM Barn Dance. The show quickly became popular, and in 1927 it was renamed the Grand Ole Opry. Since then, the Opry has played host to countless country legends, and its weekly radio show has remained a vital part of the genre. Today, the Grand Ole Opry is essential to Nashville's musical heritage, and its legacy as the "home of country music" is secure.

Nashville Hot Chicken
Nashville Hot Chicken

6. A jealous girlfriend originally created Nashville Hot Chicken to get revenge on her cheating boyfriend.

Nashville is known for its hot chicken, a dish that packs a fiery punch. The story goes that hot chicken was created by Thorton Prince's girlfriend, who was looking for a way to get revenge on him after she caught him cheating. She cooked his favorite chicken dish but added so much cayenne pepper that it made his eyes water and his face turn red. Prince loved it so much that he decided to open his own restaurant, serving hot chicken to the people of Nashville. Today, hot chicken is one of the city's most beloved dishes, and dozens of restaurants specialize in serving this spicy treat. If you're feeling brave, order a plate of hot chicken the next time you're in Nashville - just be sure to have a glass of milk on hand to cool your taste buds!

Ray Price WSM Broadcaster

7. Nashville was the first city nationwide to be granted an FM-broadcasting license.

In the early days of radio, most stations were limited to AM broadcasting, which suffered from static and other interference. However, in the late 1930s, engineers began experimenting with FM broadcasting, which promised to provide a clearer signal. In 1941, Nashville became the first city nationwide to be granted an FM-broadcasting license. Over the next few years, several other Nashville stations followed suit, and the town soon became known as a haven for quality radio programming. Today, Nashville is still home to a number of popular radio stations, and its reputation as a music city is still going strong.

Morris Frank seen crossing the street with his seeing eye dog.
Morris Frank seen crossing the street with his seeing eye dog.

8. Nashville was home to the first seeing-eye dog training school in the country.

"The Seeing Eye" was the country's first seeing-eye dog training school. The school was founded by Moris Frank, who was inspired to start the program after reading an article about the training of German Shephard dogs for blinded veterans of World War I. Later, The Seeing Eye relocated to Whippany, N.J., because the climate in the northeast was more suitable for training dogs.

Ryman Auditorium
Ryman Auditorium

9. The Ryman Auditorium was originally built as a church.

The Ryman Auditorium is one of the most iconic music venues in Nashville, Tennessee. But did you know that it wasn't originally built as a concert hall? The Ryman was originally constructed as the Union Gospel Tabernacle in 1892. It wasn't until 1904 that the venue was renamed the Ryman Auditorium after its builder, Thomas Ryman. Over the years, the Ryman has hosted a wide variety of events. But it is best known as the home of the Grand Ole Opry, the long-running country music radio show. Today, the Ryman Auditorium is still a popular destination for music lovers from all over the world.

Goo Goo Cluster
Goo Goo Cluster

10. The Goo Goo Cluster was created in Nashville by The Standard Candy Company.

The Goo Goo Cluster is an American candy bar created in 1912 by Howell Campbell and the Standard Candy Company in Nashville, Tennessee. The bar consists of marshmallows, nougat, caramel, and peanuts covered in chocolate. It was one of the first candies to combine chocolate with other flavors, and it remains popular to this day. In fact, the Goo Goo Cluster is so iconic that it was inducted into the National Confectioners Association's Hall of Fame in 2001. So if you're ever in the mood for a delicious treat steeped in history, be sure to pick up a Goo Goo Cluster. You won't be disappointed.

So there you have it - 10 fun facts about Nashville that you probably didn't know. We hope you enjoyed learning about our city! Did we miss any fun facts about Nashville? Let us know in the comments below! And be sure to share this article with your friends if you found it interesting. Thanks for reading!


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