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Sherrod Bryant Farm/ Bryant's Grove

The Sherrod Bryant Home was on the Bryant Plantation east of town and now submerged under Percy Priest Lake waters. Sherrod Bryant (1787-1854) and his White wife Mary "Polly" Cole Bryant (1780-1825) ran a large plantation of over 700 acres.

Bryant was a special person as a Free Black in Tennessee. It is likely that Bryant’s father was White, and he had documents to introduce himself. Per records, he was surprisingly treated as a White equal in TN society and business community.

Bryant arrived in Tennessee from North Carolina in 1806 and purchased seven different parcels of land including 300 acres in 1844-45 in Bryant Grove in Rutherford Co. (by the current Long Hunter State Park) and in Nashville near 3rd Ave. North where the Schermerhorn Symphony Center is. In 1844-45, he purchased more Rutherford Co. land. The family raised crops and hogs. By 1850, he was one of the wealthiest Free Black men in TN. Starting with 700 acres in the Donelson/ Hermitage area, the land was fertile and productive. Bryant eventually amassed over 1,000 acres along Lebanon Pike, on the current Davidson/ Wilson County line and lots in downtown Nashville.

The downtown Nashville real estate was on the north side of Broadway that was called Black Bottom in part because it flooded regularly and left the soil fertile. Sadly, Bryant’s sons lost most of the land during the Civil War and then later during the creation of Percy Priest Lake. Henderson Bryant (1808-1877) inherited the land.

Bryant is buried in the Bryanttown Cemetery in Donelson. He is remembered through Bryant Creek, Bryant Grove Recreational Area & Trail on the east portion of Percy Priest Lake. A relative has written a book, Bryant Acres, and his life and his marriage.


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