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Hillcrest: Businessmen & Doctors (Davidson Co.)

Updated: Feb 9

Hillcrest was built in 1916 for I.C. Pendleton.

Photo from Tom Brothers

This immense 3 story brick mansion and estate is located at 320 Lynwood Blvd with nearly 6 acres. Hillcrest sits at the top of the hill rising from Lynnwood Terrace. In 1919, Robert S. Lyles purchased it.

In the early 1920s, John Hickman "Jack" Whaley (1884-1962) and Julia Farnsworth Lyon Whaley (1887-1969) owned the estate. Whaley was owner, president and treasurer of Southern Lumberman with partner Stanley Horn. In 1908, he was a vice president with Cumberland Building & Loan and a director with Dixie Silo & Cutter Co. They moved first to Belle Meade BL by 1940, and ended up on Enquirer Ave. in Belle Meade in the 1960s.

Major Edward Bushrod Stahlman, Sr. (1843-1930) and Sarah Virginia Shelton Stahlman (1887-1955) owned Hillcrest in 1926. Edward and Sarah married in 1920. Stahlman moved from Bristol, TN to Nashville in 1866. (Stahlman married his first wife, Mary “Mollie” Tanner Claiborne Stahlman, in 1866; she died in 1915.) Stahlman moved his way up the railroad corporate ladder from auditor to vice-president of the Louisville, New Albany and Chicago Railroad. Stahlman invested in Nashville real estate including purchasing the Nashville Union Stockyards in 1881. He purchased the Nashville Banner in 1885 and was publisher for 44 years. He built the second skyscraper in Nashville, the Stahlman Building in 1906, and it remained in Stahlman family ownership until the 1950s. From 1906-1957, the Stahlman was the tallest building in Nashville (and for a time period, the Southeast) until the Life & Casualty Tower surpassed it. Stahlman was one of the founders of the Associated Press (AP).

In 1944, Mack Prater Brothers, Jr. (1911-1984) and Sarah White Cunningham Brothers (1913-1980) bought the house. ( My paternal grandparents) They added a back porch, a pool house and a large pool. Mack’s father, M.P. Brothers and Charles W. Read had purchased control of the W.A. Chambers Co. wholesale grocers in Nashville in 1922. The business had branches in several Tennessee cities. Mack’s family owned a wholesale grocery business, M.P. Brothers Co. and retail stores, Brothers Stores, of which Mack, Jr. was president and chairman for more than 3 decades. M.P. Brothers office and warehouse had been located for years near the current I-440 and I-65 interchange cloverleaf. He moved into varied investments including Big Brothers Aircraft, Fuller Market convenience stores, and cattle raising. Mack, Jr. was a world class amateur golfer and founded the Tennessee State Open golf tournament in 1949 and for many years was the primary financial backer. After the death of Sarah White, Mack, Jr. purchased several farms in the Fairview and Dickson areas and lived on one of them.

Dr. and Mrs Bobby G. Rouse purchased Hillcrest in 1982 and renovated it. He is a clinical psychologist. The next owners were Michael and Joanne Fleming Hayes who owned the property a short time. Hayes was very involved in his family business of C.B. Ragland Co. owned the property. Joanne is the daughter the Flemings of Boxwood.

In 1993, Dr. J. Scott and Sue Rankin bought the home with almost 6 acres. He is a cardiothoracic surgeon. He was an attending surgeon with Centennial Medical Center from 1993-2015, and has since moved to West Virginia University as Professor of Surgery. In 2019, Hillcrest continues to be listed as Dr. Rankin’s residence. See Boxwood


Nashville Pikes Vol. 3 150 Years Along Harding Pike, p. 191

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