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Brentvale Farm: Ties to Meharry Medical College

Brentvale Farm was established originally in 1830 by William Temple Sneed (1801-1869) on Old Smyrna Road in the Brentwood area. William’s parents were James and Bethenia Sneed of Sneed Acres. William married Elizabeth Guinn Crichlow (1811-1905) in 1831. During the Civil War, the Sneed’s son, Dr. William Joseph Sneed (1835-1907), conversed with Dr. George W. Hubbard, who was from New England, about the need for medical education for freedmen.

In 1875, Samuel Meharry, who had been helped years prior by a freedman family and vowed to return the favor someday, and his brothers were made aware of Dr. Hubbard’s dream and searched for underwriters. That led to the formation of a medical department at Central Tennessee College in 1876. Dr. Sneed served as a teacher there. Eventually, Meharry Medical College was chartered in 1915 in Nashville.

In the 1930s, the home was moved from its original location on a nearby rise to its present location and expanded with logs from another nearby home. In 1957, the Thomas Weissinger Schlater family owned Brentvale.

In 1989, it was owned by Larry W. and Janis G. Gatlin. Larry is a country and gospel singer who formed the Larry Gatlin and the Gatlin Brothers Band and enjoyed a number of hit songs. He was also an investor in the Nashville Sounds minor league baseball team in 1978. In 1993, Roger and Barbara Mick purchased the Brentvale Farm and its 70 acres for $900,000. He was the former Chief Financial Officer of Hospital Corporation of America (HCA). The Micks wished to build a new home on the property so they made arrangements with the City of Brentwood. The Micks donated the original log home to the City of Brentwood and moved it to Crockett Park.

In May 2020, the City of Brentwood has learned that Brentvale has deteriorated to the point of being unsafe. The Brentwood Historic Commission is evaluating how to disassemble the building to make use of the historic materials. See also Meeting of the Waters, Montpier, Poplar Grove, Sneed Acres, Windy Hill, Foxview


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