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Nashville

Nashville was first settled in 1779 as Fort Nashborough and developed quickly. This was due mainly to its prime location and easy accessibility as a river port and, later, as a railroad center. It was little surprise therefore when, in 1843, it became the capital of Tennessee. The city is the main financial hub and insurance center of the mid-South, but it is easily best known for its musical heritage.

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Country Museum Hall of Fame

Since the 1940s Nashville has been synonymous with country music, and it is home to a number of famous record labels and recording studios associated with the genre. Sony, Warner Bros. and Mercury all have a presence in the city. One of Nashville's main tourist highlights is a celebration and commemoration of this. The Country Music Hall of Fame is the largest music museum anywhere in the world. It was created in 1961 by the Country Music Association, and was originally housed in a section of the Tennessee State Museum.

The museum display was very popular, and it soon became clear that a larger building was needed to house the growing display. In 1967 the collection was transferred to a building on Music Row, amongst the recording studios. The number of visitors - and the range of exhibits - continued to grow, as by now the museum was featuring historic video clips and audio recordings to illustrate the story of country music. The Music Row building was eventually deemed to be too small for the burgeoning amount of memorabilia, and so in 2001 the museum was again relocated to a larger place. The current Country Music Hall of Fame is enormous, and includes performance venues for popular acts in the world of country music.