Nashville is the capital of Tennessee and the country of Davidson county. It is located on the Cumberland River in Davidson County, in the central part of the state. The city is a center for the music, health care, publishing, banking and transportation industries, and is home to a large number of colleges and universities. It is most notably known as a center of themusic industry, earning it the nickname “Music City”.
Nashville has aconsolidated city-county government which includes seven smaller municipalities in a two-tier system. The population of Nashville-Davidson County stood at 626,681 as of the 2010 census, according to United States Census Bureau. This makes it the second most populous city in the state after Memphis. However, the 2010 population of the entire 13-county Nashville Metropolitan Statistical Area was 1,589,935, making it the largest metropolitan area in the state. The 2010 population of the Nashville-Davidson–Murfreesboro–Columbia combined statistical area was estimated at 1,670,891.
Nashville was founded by in 1779, and was originally called Fort Nashborough, after the American Revolutionary War hero Francis Nash. Nashville quickly grew because of its strategic location, accessibility as a river port, and its later status as a major railroad center. In 1806, Nashville was incorporated as a city and became the county seat of Davidson County, Tennessee. In 1843, the city was named NASHVILLE permanently and made the capital of the state of Tennessee.
Entertainment and performing arts:
Nashville has a vibrant music and entertainment scene spanning a variety of genres. The Tenessee Performing Arts Center is the major performing arts center of the city. It is the home of the Tennessee Repertory Theatre, the Nashville Opera and the Nashville ballet. In September 2006, Nashville opened the Schermerhorn Symphony Center as the home of the Nashville Symphony Orchestra.
As the city’s name itself is a metonym for the country music industry, many popular tourist sites involve country misuc, including the Country Music Hall of Fame and Museum, Belcourt Theatre, and Ryman Auditorium. Ryman was home to the Grand Ole Opry until 1974 when the show moved to the Grand Ole Opry House nine miles (14 km) east of downtown. The Opry plays there several times a week, except for an annual winter run at the Ryman.
Numerous music clubs and honky tonks bars can be found in downtown Nashville, especially the area encompassing lower Broadway, Second Avenue, and Printer’s Alley, which is often referred to as “the District”.
Each year, the CMA Music Festifval (formerly known as Fan Fair) brings thousands of country fans to the city.
As the “home of country music”, Nashville has become a major music recording and production center. All of the Big Four Record labels, as well as numerous independent labels, have offices in Nashville, mostly in the Music Row area. Since the 1960s, Nashville has been the second biggest music production center (after New York) in the U.S. As of 2006, Nashville’s music industry is estimated to have a total economic impact of $6.4 billion per year and to contribute 19,000 jobs to the Nashville area.
Although Nashville is renowned as a music recording center and tourist destination, its largest industry is actually health care. Nashville is home to more than 250 health care companies, including HCA ( Hospital Corporation of America), the largest private operator of hospitals in the world. As of 2006, it is estimated that the health care industry contributes $18.3 billion per year and 94,000 jobs to the Nashville-area economy. The automotive industry is also becoming increasingly important for the entire Middle Tennessee region. Nissan Nort America moved its corporate headquarters in 2006 from California to Franklin TN. Nissan also has its largest North American manufacturing plant in Smyrna, TN. Largely as a result of the increased development of Nissan and other Japanese economic interests in the region, Japan moved its New Orleans Consulate-general to Nashville’s Palmer Plaza.
Other major industries in Nashville include insurance, finance, and publishing (especially religious publishing). The city hosts headquarters operations for several Protestant denominations, including the United Methodist Church, Southern baptist Convention, Nathinal Baptist Conventions, and the National Association of Free Will Baptists.
Fortunre 500 companies within Nashville include Dell, HCA Inc, Dollar Genral Corporation and Franklin American Mortgage.
Nashville lies on the Cumberland River in the northwestern portion of the Nashville Basin. Nashville’s topography ranges from 385 feet (117 m) above sea level at the Cumberland River to 1,160 feet (350 m) above sea level at its highest point. According to the Census Bureau, the city has a total area of 526.1 square miles (1,363 km2), of which, 502.3 square miles (1,301 km2) of it is land and 23.9 square miles (62 km2) of it (4.53%) is water.
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