Murfreesboro is a city in the Nashville metropolitan area of Middle Tennessee. It is the largest suburb of Nashville and the sixth largest city in Tennessee. Since the 1990s, Murfreesboro has been Tennessee's fastest growing major city and one of the fastest growing cities in the country. Murfreesboro is home to Middle Tennessee State University, the second largest undergraduate university in the state of Tennessee, with almost 23,000 students in 2014.
The city is home to the center of population of Tennessee and the geographic center of Tennessee.
The new county seat for Rutherford County was founded in 1811, and named after Revolutionary War hero Colonel Hardy Murfree. As Tennessee settlement expanded to the west, the location of the state capital in Knoxville became inconvenient for most newcomers. In 1818, Murfreesboro was designated as the capital of Tennessee and its population boomed. Eight years later, however, it was replaced by Nashville.
During the American Civil War, at the very end of 1862, the Battle of Stones River, also called the Battle of Murfreesboro, was fought near the city. This was a major engagement between December 31 and January 2, 1863, the rival armies suffered 23,515 casualties. It was one of the bloodiest battles of the war. The Stones River National Battlefield is now a national historical site.
Union General William Rosecrans chose Murfreesboro to become his supply depot. Fortress Rosecrans, 2 miles (3.2 km) northwest of the town, had fortifications covered about 225 acres (0.91 km²). They were the largest built during the war. The fort's interior was a huge logistical resource center, including sawmills, warehouses, quartermaster maintenance depots, ammunition magazines, and living quarters for the 2,000 men who handled the operations and defended the post. The fortress was completed in June 1863. Major portions of the earthworks still exist and have been incorporated into the battlefield site.
After the war, Murfreesboro, which had been a mainly agricultural community, became home to several colleges and academies, gaining it the nickname the "Athens of Tennessee". World War II resulted in Murfreesboro diversifying into industry, manufacturing, and education. Growth has been steady since that time, creating a stable economy.
Murfreesboro has enjoyed substantial residential and commercial growth, with its population more than doubling between 1990 and 2010. The city has been a destination for many immigrants leaving areas affected by warfare; since 1990 numerous Somalis and Kurds from Iraq have settled here.
Being in the Sun Belt, Murfreesboro's climate is humid subtropical, with mild winters and hot, humid summers.
Murfreesboro has been in the path of destructive tornados several times. IN 2009, an EF4 tornado struck the fringes of Murfreesboro. As a result, two people were killed and 41 others injured. 117 homes were totally destroyed, and 292 had major damage.
It is 34 miles (55 km) southeast of downtown Nashville.
Murfreesboro is served by Nashville International Airport (IATA code BNA), Smyrna Airport (MQY) and Murfreesboro Municipal Airport (MBT).
There are several highways running through the city, including Interstates 24 and 840; U.S. Routes 41, 70S, and 231; and State Routes 1, 2, 10, 96, 99, and 268.
- From the Airport - Follow the signs to Interstate 24 East then follow the directions from Nashville below.
- From Nashville (Interstate 24 East) - Take Exit 76 and turn left onto Medical Center Parkway. Turn left onto Thompson Lane. Turn left at the park entrance at 1563 N. Thompson Lane. Follow the tour road to the visitor center.
- From Chattanooga (Interstate 24 West) - Take Exit 76 and turn right onto Medical Center Parkway. Turn left onto Thompson Lane. Turn left at the park entrance at 1563 N. Thompson Lane. Follow the tour road to the visitor center.
- From Knoxville (Interstate 40) - Take Exit 235 onto TN 840. Take Exit 55 onto US 41/TN 70 and follow the signs for Murfreesboro. Turn right onto Thompson Lane at the first traffic light. Turn right at the park entrance at 1563 N. Thompson Lane. Follow the tour road to the visitor center.
Murfreesboro's public transportation system has 9 small buses, each capable of holding 16 people and including two spaces for wheelchairs. The system is called Rover; the buses are bright green with Rover and a cartoon dog painted on the side. As of 2019, buses operate in seven major corridors: Memorial Boulevard, Gateway, Old Fort Parkway, South Church Street, Mercury Boulevard, Highland Avenue and Westside Loop.
A one-way fare is $1.00 for adults, $0.50 for children 6–16 and seniors 65 and over, and free for children under 6. The system operates M-F 6AM-6PM.
- The town square and old courthouse, which is only one of six pre-Civil War government buildings still in use.
- 1 Cannonsburgh Village, 312 S. Front Street, ☏ . Historic Cannonsburgh Village represents approximately 100 years of early Tennessee life from the 1830s to the 1930s. Within the village is a gristmill, school house, telephone operator's house, the University House, the Leeman House, a museum, a caboose, the Wedding Chapel, a doctor's office, a general store, a blacksmith's shop, a well, and other points of pioneering interest. Self-guided tours are free, and guided tours are available for a small fee. The Visitor Center has a variety of items for sale including post cards, t-shirts, snacks, drinks, and souvenirs. Free.
- 2 Stones River National Battlefield, 1563 North Thompson Lane, ☏ . Sunrise–sunset, open to vehicles 8AM–5PM. The Stones River National Battlefield is a national park which memorializes the Battle of Stones River, which took place during the American Civil War during December 31, 1862, to January 3, 1863. The grounds include a museum, a national cemetery, monuments, and the remains of a large earthen fortification called Fortress Rosecrans.
- The Murfreesboro Center for the Arts, close to the Square, entertains with a variety of exhibits, theatre arts, concerts, dances, and magic shows.
- Murfreesboro Little Theatre provides the community with popular and alternative forms of theatre arts.
- Murfreesboro's International FolkFest is held annually during the second week in June. Groups from countries spanning the globe participate in the festival, performing traditional songs and dances while attired in regional apparel.
- The Discovery Center at Murfree Spring is a nature center and interactive museum focusing on children and families. The facility includes 20 acres (8 ha) of wetlands with a variety of animals.
- Bradley Academy Museum contains collectibles and exhibits of the first school in Rutherford County. This school became the only African American school in Murfreesboro, which closed in 1955.
- Oaklands Historic House Museum is a 19th-century mansion which became involved in the Civil War.
- Earth Experience: The Middle Tennessee Museum of Natural History is the only natural history museum in Middle Tennessee. The museum features more than 2,000 items on display, including a complete replica Tyrannosaurus rex skeleton.
- The Main Street Jazzfest each May.
- A not-for-profit music festival called Boro Fondo, which is also a bike tour and local artist feature.
- Middle Tennessee Blue Raiders, ☏ . Aug-Apr: M–F 8AM–5:30PM; May-Jul: 8AM–4:30PM. Middle Tennessee State University sports are one of the city's most prominent diversions. The Blue Raiders compete in 17 NCAA Division I sports (8 men's, 9 women's) in Conference USA. As with most major universities, football and men's basketball are the most popular sports. All of the most significant venues are on campus, most notably Floyd Stadium (football, and also home to the central MT ticket office) and Murphy Center (basketball).
- Uncle Dave Macon Days celebrates the musical tradition of Uncle Dave Macon. This annual July event includes national competitions for old-time music and dancing.
- Old Fort Park is a 50-acre (200,000 m2) park which includes baseball fields, tennis courts, children's playground, an 18-hole championship golf course, picnic shelters and bike trail.
- Barfield Crescent Park is a 430-acre (1,700,000 m2) facility with eight baseball fields, 7 miles (11 km) of biking/running trails, an 18-hole championship disc golf course, and ten picnic shelters.
- Murfreesboro Greenway System is a system of greenways with 12 miles (19 km) of paved paths and 11 trail heads.
- Stones River Mall. I-24 East exit 78b. A traditional enclosed mall, featuring stores and restaurants such as Forever 21, Aéropostale, Journey's, Hot Topic, Agaci, Dillard's, Buckle, Books-A-Million, Olive Garden, and Miller's Ale House.
- The Avenue Murfreesboro is an outdoor lifestyle center with such shops as American Eagle, Hollister, Best Buy, Belk, Petco, Dick's Sporting Goods, Express, Mimi's Cafe, Romano's Macaroni Grill, and LongHorn Steakhouse.
- The Historic Downtown Murfreesboro district offers a wide variety of shopping and dining experiences that encircle the pre-Civil War Courthouse.
- The Chop House, 541 North Thompson Lane, ☏ . A Murfreesboro favorite for great steaks and chops in a warm, friendly environment.
- Donut Country, 1311 Memorial Blvd. Murfreesboro, TN, ☏ . A mom-and-pop doughnut restaurant open 24 hours.
- Gentlemen Jim's (also known as redneck Jim's) on East Main Street where you can drink an Eight Liquor Ass Kicker.
- The Slick Pig, 1920 E. Main St (from Nashville exit onto exit 81 towards Murfreesboro, not Shelbyville; go straight until you hit the town square; enter the square, go around the roundabout until you get to E. Main St.; go down E. Main ; it's on your right), ☏ . An old time barbecue restaurant with excellent food for those who like meat. Right down the road is Clean/Redneck Jim's, so eat BBQ then get tanked on the aforementioned Ass Kicker or $3 pitchers.
- Ramada Limited, 1855 S. Church St, ☏ .
- Vista Inn Suites, 118 Westgate Blvd, ☏ .
- Select Inn, 2424 S. Church St., ☏ , firstname.lastname@example.org. Check-in: 3PM, check-out: 11AM.
Most telephone numbers in Murfreesboro consist of +1 615 plus a seven-digit number, but the region is now served by an overlay complex of two area codes, with +1 629 being the second. A local or in-state telephone call now requires all 10 digits of the local number be dialed (omitting just the leading +1 from a local landline call).
Signage on many established businesses may still display the original seven-digit numbers; dial 615 before these if no area code is indicated.
|Routes through Murfreesboro|
|Nashville ← Antioch ←||W E||→ Manchester → Chattanooga|
|Hopkinsville ← Nashville ←||N S||→ Manchester → Chattanooga|
|Bowling Green ← Lebanon ←||N S||→ Fayetteville → Huntsville|