Listed in the National Register of Historic Places
Constructed in 1952-1953, in part as a memorial to Tennesseeans who gave the supreme sacrifice during World War II, the Tennessee State Library and Archives (TSLA) was the first permanent home for the state’s government documents, and allowed the collections of the State Library to move from their haphazard storage in the State Capitol and other government buildings. Designed by architect Clinton Parrent, a Nashville architect who had worked on several academic libraries (including those at Vanderbilt, Fisk, University of Tulsa, University of South Carolina, and Davidson College), TSLA’s Neoclassical design with restrained Art Deco detailing intentionally drew inspiration from the Tennessee State Capitol, the State Supreme Court Building and the War Memorial Building. Several panels along the exterior feature quotations and inscriptions from notable Tennesseans, including Governors Alfred Taylor, Robert Taylor, Isham Harris, Austin Peay, and Gordon Browning, and others from the Tennessee presidents, Andrew Jackson, James K. Polk, and Andrew Johnson. The interior of the building features terrazzo marble floors, brass light fixtures, marble wainscoating, and wood paneled offices. The terrazzo floor in the vestibule features a map of Tennessee.