Thursday, August 9, 2018
Tennessee State Capitol in Nashville
There was an event going on on the grounds while we were there, and there were security and others walking around.
This is Tennessee though, and everyone was pleasant and helpful. I asked a guy in a suite about touring the Capitol. He very politely pointed to an officer who he said could help me with that.
That officer pointed out an entrance and another officer. He also advised me to "smack the hat" off of the other officer at the Capitol entrance. I assured him that I would. The other officer asked me if the first officer told me to smack his hat off. I told him that the first officer did suggest that I do that, but I assured the second officer that I would not have dreamed of doing it. It was great seeing the officers having a good time at their job.
There was a brief security process with a metal detector and all, it took less than a minute. The officer here was very friendly too. We actually had a great time talking and joking with the officers and other security at the Capitol.
The Capitol is pretty open and accessible. There are free self guided tour guide books at a help desk. It did not seem that a tour would be going out immediately when we arrived, so we did our own tour. We did piggy back onto a couple of other tours at times to hear a bit more about some of the rooms and history.
I found myself most interested in some busts we saw, all of significant Tennesseans. BOTH sides of the Civil War were represented here by Naval legend David Farragut and Confederate General Nathan Bedford Forrest.
The Forrest bust was literally roped off. I asked a staff person here about this and they told me the rope is for Bedford's own protection; it is there to discourage vandals.
One of the more interesting features of the Capitol, is the fact that James K. Polk, President #11 is buried on the grounds, along with his wife Sarah.