With more than 30 walking and driving tours, Nashville Sites is an academic entrepreneurial venture. As the executive director, Mary Ellen Pethel supervises and manages tour content, editing, production, and affiliated faculty, students, and community leaders.
Launched in 2019, Nashville Sites is thematic, mobile friendly, free and ad free, credibly curated, and most of all accessible. Tours can be taken in-person or virtually from any device at any time in the world. QR codes throughout the city attract users in real-time, and lesson plans have been written for 15 tours for grades 5-12. Digital advertising and social media continues to increase usage–with more than 1,000 users per month.
In addition, Pethel has created sustainable relationships with a wide range of community stakeholders, which have yielded $500,000 in direct and in-kind funding. Significant partners and sponsors include: Mike Curb Foundation, Steve and Judy Turner Foundation, Humanities Tennessee, Andrew W. Mellon Foundation’s Partners for Humanities Education, and the National Trust for Historic Preservation.
Several universities are also a major part of the project: MTSU’s Center for Historic Preservation, Vanderbilt University’s Center for Digital Humanities, Belmont University’s Interdisciplinary Studies and Global Education, Fisk University’s John Hope and Aurelia E. Franklin Library, and Tennessee State University Department of History.
Learn more and take a tour! Follow on social media and consider making a gift as we continue to promote and create tours on Nashville Sites.