Riverwood Mansion History FEATURE


Continuing a legacy of entertaining in the south

Having created magnificent wedding experiences for almost 20 years, Riverwood Mansion is regarded as one of the top event venues in Nashville. The mansion itself is stunning, while its manicured gardens and grounds work in unison to complete the southern wedding style you are looking for. Its location is secluded enough to transport you to another time, but is also just minutes from the heart of Nashville. Our professional staff is warm, helpful and knowledgeable about all things wedding related, from trends to vendors. Our detailed process focuses on making your wedding experience as enjoyable and worry-free as possible.

Riverwood’s rich history

Riverwood Mansion is one of Nashville’s historical treasures. The Metropolitan Historical Commission has identified it as one of Nashville’s most significant historic structures. Built in the late 1790′s among its original 2,500 acres, Riverwood is one of Nashville’s oldest homes, and at 9,200 square feet, it is one of the largest. Known for its lavish parties, with famous guests including presidents Jackson, Polk, Pierce, Johnson, Cleveland, Roosevelt, and Taft, we continue the tradition of making unforgettable memories.

Alexander Porter and his family are responsible for the original buildings that make up Riverwood Mansion today. Born in Ireland, he became a powerful member of the Nashville community by owning considerable commercial property in the area. Originally named Tammany Woods after his family home in Northern Ireland, Riverwood underwent several renovations while he owned it. Many experts attribute the Greek revival influences to architect William Strickland, who also designed the Tennessee State Capitol.

In 1859 the house was sold to William Frierson Cooper of the influential Cooper family of Columbia, Tennessee. Eventually becoming Chief Justice of the Supreme Court of Tennessee, Mr. Cooper renamed the mansion Riverwood because of its proximity to the Cumberland River and its forests. It remained in the Cooper family for decades, switching hands from William to his brother Duncan Brown Cooper, then to Duncan’s daughter Sarah Polk Burch. Eventually marrying Lucius Burch, a surgeon and dean at Vanderbilt University Medical School, Sarah lived in the mansion until her death in 1975 at age 98. Riverwood was sold in 1978 to Dr. James M. High, a physician to Mrs. Burch. The current owners, Joe and Jackie Glynn, bought Riverwood in 1994 to restore the once magnificent home and share it with visitors for years to come.