Curious Nashville: How We Got Left With A Nice Station And No Passenger Train

floridian_in_1978_by_robert_thompson
The Floridian passes through Union Station in 1978, the year before the line was cut as part of an Amtrak reorganization. Credit: Jay T. Thomson / Courtesy Robert W. Thomson

The Curious Nashville inbox has received several variations on the same question: What happened to passenger rail service in Nashville? Residents are right to be curious. Nashville is one of the largest cities in the country to have no rail connection to another city.

So here’s the inquiry from retired school teacher Sharon Lorenz of Gallatin:

Nashville used to be an Amtrak destination. It is a perfect central location between many cities. Why did that end?

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Curious Nashville: Tunnels That Live Up To The Legends, And Some That Don’t

There's a tunnel beneath downtown Nashville that opens to the Cumberland River, but what was it for? Curious Nashville sought to find out. Credit: Tony Gonzalez / WPLN
There’s a tunnel beneath downtown Nashville that opens to the Cumberland River, but what was it for? Curious Nashville sought to find out. Credit: Tony Gonzalez / WPLN

We spent quite a bit of time shining flashlights around dark, cobwebby places over the past few weeks — because of Curious Nashville, a project in which we answer your questions about the city.

The winning question from our last round of voting came from veteran Nashville record producer Mitch Dane.

I’ve heard rumors of a mysterious tunnel system winding beneath downtown Nashville. Is this true?

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Movers & Thinkers #6: The Fine Art And Vague Science Of Keeping History Alive

Bradley Hanson, David Ewing and Jennifer Justus at Movers & Thinkers: Guardians of the Past. Credit: Tony Gonzalez / WPLN
Bradley Hanson, David Ewing and Jennifer Justus at Movers & Thinkers: Guardians of the Past. Credit: Tony Gonzalez / WPLN

These people are guardians of the past: They explore kitchens, living rooms and attics, tracking down the recipes, stories and artifacts that tell us who we are and where we came from. Featuring David Ewing and Bradley Hanson and Jennifer Justus. 

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