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Overview

Escape to Belle Meade Plantation during our Nashville Show Trip bus tour. Located just outside the city of Nashville, this 19th century home sits on 30 acres of scenic land. Explore the rich history of the plantation, delight in its picturesque scenery and experience the exciting activities taking place throughout the plantation. 

Tour the Belle Meade Plantation in Nashville, TN Tour the Belle Meade Plantation in Nashville
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What to Expect at Belle Meade Plantation

Uncover the secrets of Belle Meade Plantation and embrace southern hospitality with samples of specialty wine. At the end of your experience at Belle Meade Plantation, you’ll understand why it is one of America’s leading historic properties.

 

Your Tour of Belle Meade Mansion

Upon arriving at Belle Meade Plantation, you will enter the Visitors Center. From the structural makeup of the home to the collections inside, your tour guide will lead you on an exciting adventure that explores the past and present of the Belle Meade Mansion.

 

History of Belle Meade Plantation

Belle Meade Plantation was founded in 1807 by John Harding, a prominent man in thoroughbred industry. Belle Meade Mansion was built in 1853 by John Harding’s son, William Giles Harding. Used as a breeding ground for thoroughbreds, Belle Meade Plantation served as a home to three generations of Hardings and Jacksons. It wasn’t until 1906 that a weak economy forced the families to sell the entire Belle Meade Plantation.

 

Architectural Features of Belle Meade Mansion

While the original Belle Meade house was designed as a two story home, later additions to the property expanded the house and introduced the Greek-revival style, giving the Mansion its signature Southern Mansion exterior. Admire the architectural styles of the 19th century; General Harding took pride in ensuring the latest architectural trends were incorporated into his house.

 

The People

Discover the many cultures and people who lived, worked and visited Belle Meade Plantation throughout its 200 years of existence.

 

Harding and Jackson Families

The Harding and Jackson Families were the original owners and managers of Belle Meade Plantation from the early 1800s until 1906.

 

Later Inhabitants at Belle Meade Plantation

After the death of General Jackson in 1903 and the financial problems among the remaining Hardings and Jacksons, the land that made up the Belle Meade Plantation was divided into different sections and sold off to various buyers.

 

African Americans

African Americans worked as slaves for the owners of Belle Meade Plantation and were responsible for the construction and the profitability of the plantation for nearly 100 years.

 

Notable Visitors

The 19th century mansion has seen many distinguished guests over the years; President Grover, Robert Todd Lincoln, T. Sherman, General Winfield Scott Hancock and Adlai E Stevenson are just some of the individuals known to pass through the southern home.

 

A Look Inside the Home

From personal letters and photographs to paintings and furniture, descendants of the Harding-Jackson family have returned authentic pieces to Belle Meade Plantation for the past 50 years. Explore the Harding-Jackson families’ remarkable collection of beloved items that once made their house a home.

 

Personal Belongings

From old family photographs to notes written in engraved paper booklets, pieces of coin silver to trophies, priceless personal belongings can be seen throughout your tour of Belle Meade that will give you a personal look into the lives of the Harding-Jackson families.

 

Paintings

Paintings of the Harding-Jackson families’ most prized thoroughbreds can be found hanging on the walls of the main entryway. Painted by renowned 19th century artists including, Edward Troye, Harry Hall and Henry Strull, take the time to appreciate the intricate details that can be found in each painting.

 

Furniture

Authentic Southern pieces of handcrafted furniture complete the Belle Meade collection. Admire the craftsmanship of the cherry, federal secretary style bookcase located in the library and the sugar chest from the 1820s found in the family dining room. Rocco furniture can also be found throughout the mansion, acquired by Mrs. Harding from top manufactures of the time like Charles Lee and John Henry Belter.

 

Equestrian Horses

Belle Meade Plantation plays a significant role in the thoroughbred industry and the American scene to this day. Learn about equine operations of the plantation’s past and the bloodlines that have made the Belle Meade Plantation highly regarded among equine enthusiasts.

 

The Winery and Shopping at Belle Meade Plantation

The Winery

Leading the thoroughbred racing and breeding scene, Belle Meade Plantation has welcomed many guest into its home and demonstrated its hospitality by sharing homemade wine. In 2009, the Winery at Belle Meade Plantation was opened to uphold the longstanding tradition of Southern hospitality. Visit the winery and sample Blackberry Wine made just like it was in the Old South, or the Red Muscadine, a true traditional Tennessee wine made with American grapes.

 

Shopping

Whether you want to take something special home to remember your time at Belle Meade Plantation, or something for a loved one, you’ll find the perfect gifts and souvenirs at the Belle Meade Plantation Gift Shop. Take home a tasty bottle of wine made at the Belle Meade Winery, or thoroughbred paraphernalia for the home.

They also have an outstanding ice cream and home made fudge shop on site! 

Note: This attraction is wheelchair accessible.