“Jim Hardaway is fantastic…informed, professional, captivating, fun, and entertaining…”says Terri Watson of Newport Beach, California*


TO SCHEDULE A TOUR CALL: 615-406-8939 or contact by E-mail Captainjimhardaway@gmail.com


A four hour private tour for small groups of 1-6 persons is offered by longtime Nashville native and history buff Jim Hardaway covering Battle of Nashville sites and much more. The tour is a sampling of eight to ten historic sites that will  leave the traveler wanting more! It is also a great introduction to the Nashville of today. Jim points out lots of things to do and places to eat as well as giving out a map and brochures and making suggestions for things to do beyond his tour. Since he is a big Tennessee Titans fan, excuse him if he gets carried away during football season!

Here are a few of the sites you will visit in a tour entitled:


The first tour stop is our wonderful OLD CITY CEMETERY (1822). You’ll hear aqbout the original native inhabitants, English-speaking settlers who arrived in 1780 and much more.

battle of nashville

Visit key sites relating to the decisive Battle of Nashville, December 15-16, 1864: Fort Negley, Belmont Mansion, the “Peace” monument, and Shy’s Hill, where the decisive encounter of the battle occurred. Mr. Hardaway has studied this battle for many years and has walked the battlefield more times than he can count. He will also display relics of the battle he and others pulled from the ground.

chat with pres

Jim Hardaway has a chat with the president at Fort Negley in Dec 2014 during the 150th anniversary commemoration of the Battle of Nashville.

After Fort Negley you’ll visit the grounds of the magnificent Belmont Mansion, located in the heart of Belmont University, the former centerpiece of a 177 acre ante-bellum estate. You’ll hear stories of the amazing Adelicia Acklen, once the wealthiest woman in the South, often called the “real Scarlett O’Hara.”


Along the way we’ll drive through MUSIC ROW* and talk about Nashville’s astounding music legacy. Just why is Nashville called Music City? You might be surprised at the answer!  Along the way you may hear a few “songwriter/musician jokes.”

If time permits  we might visit “Dutchman’s Curve” in West Nashville, site of the worst train wreck in US history occurring on July 9, 1918 and see stunning photos of the disaster. Mr. Hardaway will also speak from his own experience of other Nashville disasters: the tornado of 1998 and the Great Flood of 2010.


Along the way we’ll travel through some of Nashville’s finest and most picturesque residential areas including Belle Meade and the Belle Meade mansion. If you love a good neighborhood home tour, you’ll love this!

We always stop at the Parthenon at Centennial Park– centerpiece of the 1897 Centennial Exposition, a “world’s fair” type of event celebrating one hundred years of Tennessee statehood. Today our best loved city park marks the site. Of the many buildings and structures featured in the Exposition, only the Parthenon survives,a full scale replica of the original in Athens, Greece. Mr. Hardaway will tell the story of the constructionof the original structure and show photos of the 1897 event.


As a graduate of this fine school himself, Mr. Hardaway will also talk about the founding of Vanderbilt University.  We’ll drive by Kirkland Hall, the original administration building, constructed in 1877 and view a statue of the “commodore”marathonf time permits the final stop of the tour will be the old Marathon Motor Car factory building that functioned from 1910-1914, now a major event/destination center featuring  a car museum , an art museum, a distillery, a live music venue,and various gift shops including  the “American Pickers” Antique Archeology store.


*I don’t usually visit any “homes of the Stars.” Why? very few current big stars live in the Nashville area. Most big stars these days live faraway in Williamson County or in high security unapproachable gated communities. Many dont live in Tennessee at all! The home of Emmylou Harris IS along my route but its not (IMHO) any more impressive than other homes along Graycroft Ave. And not nearly as impressive as most homes in Belle Meade. Wanna see the home of Alison Krauss? Sure. But its no more impressive than the other homes in the Richland-Central Ave area. Nevertheless…we can drive by such places on special request. They ARE along the tour route.

RATES: basic rate is  $175 per tour. The tour guide and driver will pick up tourists, take them in his van (a Chrysler Town and Country) and return them to the place of their choice. This is not a rate per person but that of the tour itself-1 to 6 persons.

For scheduling call Jim Hardaway @: 615-406-8939, tours are offered in morning or afternoon time slots- 8:30-12:30 or 1:30 to 5:30.

Here’s what one recent visitor to Nashville  said of his Nov. 2014 tour of Fort Negley with Jim Hardaway:

“I spent a wonderful afternoon in Nashville with Jim and discussed everything from music to military manoeuvres  and found him immensely entertaining and informative his knowledge at times encyclopaedicall shared with humor and enthusiasm. I look forward to spending more time in his company next time I’m in ‘Music City.”

Bill Shaw,  Belfast,  N. Ireland

“Hardaway is a great storyteller and a serious student of history. Whether a first time visitor or a local, you will have a good time and learn something new with him. He loves Nashville and he loves people. His enthusiasm is infectious, Some local guides merely like to entertain. A few know enough to explain our history. Jim is that rare person who can do both.

Roger Conner, Nashville, TN

Do you enjoy history  but your eyes glaze over when you hear a recitation of names, dates, and places?  Would you rather hear stories that come alive and even surprise, entertain, and delight you?  Jim Hardaway’s tours of Nashville do all this and more. I spent two hours  with my husband in the back seat of a car with Jim and a sidekick in the front,, learning, laughing, and asking many questions, seeing Nashville with new eyes wanting to know more and more. Jim knows the back stories as well as the “party line.” When I heard he was offering these tours to others all I could say was SIGN UP!    

Mary Louise McCullough, Nashville, TN

“Our day with Jim was one we will always remember. His knowledge and insight into the history and battle of Nashville made us feel like we were right there. By the end of the day we felt we had known him for years. In addition to all of that his Southern charm and “love of the subject” was infectious. We would recommend this tour to anyone.”

George and Susan Sugarman, Los Angeles, CA

“jim went way above and beyond to make our tour enjoyable and informative…I would give him six stars if available.”   Dennis Devany of New Jersey


*For other reviews visit Trip Advisor .com

You may also visit Mr. Hardaway’s online history magazine/blog. Nearly sixty articles featured here cover a wide range of historical subjects:



6 comments on “

  1. This was the most wonderful time that I spent in Nashville. Jim was charming, knowledgeable and very easy to talk with. He had a great insight to all things Nashville. He made a special note to take us to a monument on a Civil War battlefield dedicated to soldiers from our home state, Minnesota, among other stops. A must do if you are ever in Nashville!


  2. I was in Nashville with 5 high school friends (class of ’70) and we contacted Jim Hardaway for a private tour. He is fantastic!! His knowledge of the city and all the history is amazing, He is personable, professional, fun, interesting and very entertaining. It was a big high-light of our trip!!! Highly recommend him!


  3. Hi Jim, my name is Ron westad my wife , sister,brother inlaw and myself will be in Nashville for few day’s in june [16th-19th], we would love to take a tour with you. could please check your calendar and email me. thanks have a nice day.


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