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Nashville Family Collection - Can you locate where these pictures were taken?

October 22, 2016

Metro Archives recently received a small donation of documents/photographs/clippings for a couple of local Nashville families' vertical files. The families that are related by marriage are the McClanahans and the Weakley - 2 families that I found after a little research, have prominent roots in Nashville. The photographs donated date to around the early 20th century and are without doubt, very remarkable. However, many came without a caption or any identifiers at all, and they're not all in Nashville. The families appeared to have traveled a lot. Can you help us out and help identify a few of these locations?  

UPDATED 11/15/16

I recently processed a collection we have in Metro Archives that covers two prominent Nashville families - the McClanahan's and the Weakley's. After a little research, I discovered how both of these families were related and how they both made their mark on the city. The collection is a healthy assortment of documents (mostly genealogical), news clippings, correspondence, and best of all - photographs. I say best of all because the two large photo albums donated include quite a few photographs from family travels around the country. But it has also been a crux because most if not all, are not captioned or dated. So while I am able to identify a few, there are several I cannot. 

So along with the slideshow I'm providing of several of the identified photographs, I'm also going to include a few that we cannot locate. On top of that, check out a few highlights about the family:

  • Arch Erwin McClanahan spent most of his life working in the dairy farm business, and that included being the president of the Davidson County Farm Bureau (served for 51 years) and VP of the former Nashville Milk Producers Association. His father helped establish the Davidson County Farm Bureau in the early1920's. He was also dean of the State Fair Commission, a Master Mason of the McWhirtersville Lodge (No. 375), and a long-time member of the local Farmers Club...among many other responsibilities.  
  • One of his most notable charitable achievements was his donation of 189 acres of land (valued at $500,000) in Southeast Nashville, to the University of Tennessee-Knoxville. At that time (1970), this was the largest gift received by the university. The article below discusses the donation and references former UT president, the late Edward J. Boling - the partial namesake for the university's basketball arena, Thompson-Boling Arena.
  • The genealogical research that the family has already conducted includes relatives that have served in various wars, including: World War I, the Civil War, the War of 1812, and the Revolutionary War. 
  • The Weakley side of the family has held their own as well. Coming to Tennessee from North Carolina (as many families did during this time) in 1785. Col. Robert Weakley purchased 640-acreas of land in what is now East Nashville for $4,080 (still a considerable amount of money back then). He built the Lockeland Mansion in 1810 (named for his wife, Jane, the daughter of Gen. Matthew Locke). 
  • Weakley was elected to Congress in 1809 and was Speaker of the Senate twice. And also a member of the constitutional convention, also twice. Weakley County in Tennessee is named for him since this is where he was granted large tracts of land for Revolutionary War services.

There's quite a bit more information about both families, but in lieu of making this post impossibly long. My suggestion is to just come up to visit us in Metro Archives, I'd be happy to let you view the recently-processed collection.  

What we can identify:

These images in the slideshow predominantly make up the photographs we were able to identify. If the caption-title is incorrect and you know the correct location/time period/individual, definitely let us know. Otherwise, enjoy! There are some unique photographs in this collection.

Travel Photos from Nashville Family Collection


What we can't identify: Do you know where these photos were taken or who they may include? I'VE BEEN ABLE TO IDENTIFY A FEW OF THESE PHOTOGRAPHS THANKS TO HELP FROM NATIONAL ARCHIVES AND NY ARCHIVES -

Identified as view of Lower Manhattan from pier near South Street seaport (most likely from Pier 13). building on the right is the Singer Building, demolished in 1968. Photo most likely taken before 1910.




Identified as possibly being Pier 17 near South Street seaport

lucille ball


Sarah is a Program Coordinator with Metro Archives. Her interests and areas of expertise are history, reading books (of any kind), music, travel, Harry Potter, and bingeing a good comedy series. When not in Archives, she is either nose-deep in a book or planning her next trip. Learn more about the fascinating materials found at Metro Archives through their website.