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Wednesday, January 5, 2011

Bird's eye view of the 1896 TN Centennial Exposition

Bird's eye view of the 1896 TN Centennial Exposition

This painting depicts what the famous Tennessee Centennial Exposition would have looked like from above. (from A hot air balloon perhaps?) If you are not familiar with the area, this is what is now Centennial Park today, but little has remained the same.

Although we hear it still today, "Athens of the South" was a more prominent nickname for Nashville at the time, so to represent Nashville, a replica of Athens most prominent building was constructed. The Parthenon is around today, but it is a rebuilt parthenon. Lake Watauga is still around, but is not as large now as it was then. (side note: in the 1920's park officials thought it would be a good idea to put crocodiles in the lake, but people complained when they killed all the ducks.) To the right oif the parthenon is a pyramid representing the city of Memphis.

The exposition lasted over a year and had large crowds. When it was over, the land was sold at a discounted rate to the city of Nashville, and the city's park department was created.

I've seen this image in several places, but this particular reproduction is in the downtown Nashville Library.

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