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Mooreland: Still a Centerpiece in Brentwood

Updated: May 7

Photo by Skye Marthaler

Mooreland, started in 1838 but never fully completed by Robert Irwin Moore (1791-1848) and Martha Clay Moore (1809-1835), is located on Franklin Pike (Hwy 31) in Brentwood.They wed in 1832. [Moore was married thrice: first to Isabella Caldwell Harlan Moore (1801-1831) in 1823; third to Jane Bell McKissick Moore (1811-1874) in 1835.] He started with a 275 acre land grant.

Moore constructed a 2 story brick home in Greek Revival style originally on 320 acres. Moore was one of the earliest settlers in northern Williamson county. He had become a prosperous merchant, home builder and was involved in real estate in downtown Nashville. When he started a family, he elected to build a country house on his family’s property. Robert died prior to completion of the mansion.

One of Robert’s sons, Dr. James McKissick Moore (1848-1936) married Sarah Rush “Sallie” Cheairs Moore (1855-1940) of Rippavilla in 1874 and resided in Spring Hill. She was part of the Maury Co. Cheairs clan. After Sarah died, Mooreland remained in family hands with James' brother Hugh Campbell Moore (1846-1946) and Catherine Jones "Kate" Greer Moore (1852-1958). They wed in 1872. The property remained in the family until 1944. The Moore family were great supporters of Brentwood United Methodist Church, donated a church organ, and later Hugh C. donated the Franklin Rd. land on which the current church is located.

Then Hugh's sons, Robert Irvin IV, Hugh C. and Allen Moore, who had remained bachelors, sold the property to Dr. Oscar French Noel, Jr.(1914-1991 about 1937). His parents Oscar and Jeannette Noel owned Noelton and grandparents were the Acklen clan of Belmont and Acklen Park. Dr. Noel was married (1) Lattie Miller Graves Noel (1914-1956) and (2) Eleanor Cary Crawford Noel (1916-1993). In 1903, Dr. Noel and his family donated adjoining land when Nashville Bible College moved out to Granny White Pike and soon after, was renamed David Lipscomb College. Dr. Noel led the sale of the Noel Hotel in downtown Nashville in 1972 - it had been in the Noel family since 1929.

Just four years later, in 1948, the Noels sold to Albert B. Maloney (1907-1988) and Ethel Louise Wilkins Maloney (1909-2001). They were the last private owners of the historic property which still sat on about 60 acres. Albert is a CPA and Harriette is a nurse and traveled to New York with a group to assist after the 9/11 tragedy. He was a board trustee of Belmont College & Baptist Hospital. They sold in 1968 to Brentwood Mall, Inc. The investors planned the new commercial area with the historic home being called The Steeplechase Club. The idea did not pan out. In 1974, Brentwood Mall and Maloney sold to J-Bird Company. Corp., subsidiary of Mercantile Stores, Inc.

Several times, the home has been threatened with demolition but it has been protected. In 1983, Koger Properties, Inc. bought the property from Mercantile. Kroger spent one million dollars to renovate the building, and it hosted multiple tenants including law firms. In 2001 Kroger sold the office park to Harbor Group International. They rebranded as Synergy Business Park. Boyle Investments purchased the property in 2012 in order to build a hotel beside Mooreland. In 2018, it sat in the midst of development beside the Hilton Garden hotel at 217 Centerview Dr. NRHP 1975 See Acklen Park, Belmont, Noelton, Rippavilla, Ferguson Hall


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