About This Place
Nashville is a town in Washington Township, Brown County, Indiana, United States. The population was 803 at the 2010 census. The town is the county seat of Brown County and is the county's only incorporated town. The town is best known as the center of the Brown County Art Colony and as a tourist destination.
Settlement of land in and around Nashville began with the acquisition of land from native populations under the 1809 Treaty of Fort Wayne. This was expanded with more acquisitions under the 1818 Treaty of St. Mary's. Founded in 1836 by county agent Banner C. Brummet, it was first named Jacksonburg. The population of the entire county was estimated to be 150 in 1830. The first Nashville courthouse was constructed in 1837 and a jail was added in the same year. By 1840, area population had grown to 2,364. The town was officially incorporated in 1872. By the turn of the century, heavy logging in the area had caused significant deforestation which resulted in dramatic erosion problems. The population shrunk over the span of several decades and did not recover to 1890 levels until 90 years later in 1980.
In the early twentieth century, a number of artists settled in the area, most notably T. C. Steele, the American Impressionist painter. These artists were the basis for the Brown County Art Colony, which continues to this day as the Brown County Art Guild.