Ninety-seven years after it was constructed, the Tennessee War Memorial Building in Nashville has been added to the National Register of Historic Places.
The War Memorial building was one of eight properties across Tennessee added to the National Register of Historic Places, the Tennessee Historical Commission announced last week. Others included the Black Creek Fire Lookout Tower, as well as a fire lookout tower in Carroll County, the Mt. Zion Negro School in Gibson County,the Blue Springs Lutheran Church and Cemetery in Greene County, the Farmers and Merchants Bank in Lawrence County, the Harrison Mill Farm in Maury County and Pottsville General Store in Maury County.
Completed in 1925, the building includes a pedimented entry into the courtyard.
In the courtyard is the bronze statue of Victory, designed by prominent sculptors Leopold and Belle Kinney Scholz. The statue and memorial plaques with the names of 3,400 WWI dead were an integral part of the design. A focus of the interior of the building is the auditorium built to seat 2,500. At the end of WWI, the US experienced great interest in commemorating the “War to End all Wars.” Starting in 1919 with the passage of the Tennessee Memorial Act, the state, Davidson County and city of Nashville worked together to complete a memorial to WWI. Since it opened in 1925, the Tennessee War Memorial has been used for offices, commemorative events and as an entertainment venue.
The National Register of Historic Places is the nation’s official list of cultural resources worthy of preservation. It is part of a nationwide program that coordinates and supports efforts to identify, evaluate and protect historic resources. The Tennessee Historical Commission, as the State Historic Preservation Office, administers the program in Tennessee.
For more information, visit tnhistoricalcommission.org