History of Kingston Springs
About 1200 years ago, historic records disclose that indigenous American people
migrated into the Kingston Springs area and settled near the banks of the Harpeth river
and Turnbull Creek. It may be that the various sulphur springs located throughout the
region drew these early residents to the area, which in future years would be known as
Kingston Springs. These indians of the Mississipian Era hunted, made pottery and buried
their dead in slate lined graves, creating mounds that continue to sculpt the cheatham
The oldest known settler in Kingston Springs was Lewis Dunn. He and his family settled
on the harpeth river in 1807. An advertisement in the Nashville Union and American in 1855
announced that the sulphur springs in Kingston Springs were ready to accomodate visitors.
These mineral springs produced white, black and red sulphur water. A large inn or tavern
which was constructed in 1819 near these springs to serve those taking advantage of their
healing qualities, continued to be the primary local attraction throughout the next
decade. In 1860, the railroad was extended from Nashville to Kingston Springs.
Subsequently, in 1862 the railroad was further extended from Kingston Springs to Waverly,
TN. These actions encouraged a substantial amount of growth within the community. From
1880 to the beginning of the 20th century, a commuter train named "the
Accomodation" ran short hops to and from Nashville bringing a multitude of guests to
"the Springs". Timber was the primary cash crop for many years, with trains
carrying timber from the lumber mill within the community to consumers in Nashville. At
one time this local lumber mill covered up to five acres of land. In 1865, the Kingston
Springs Post Office opened, and by 1886 there were two general stores operating within the
Town. The Vanderbilt Preparatory School, which opened its doors in the early 1900's,
became the first private educational facility within the community. Accordingly, the first
public school in Kingston Springs opened in 1915.
The advent of the automobile in the early 1900's gradually led Kingston Springs into
becoming a residential community rather than the resort spot for which it was once famous.
Kingston Springs was legally incorporated in 1965. In 1970, the Town had a total
population of 312. Since then it has largely become a "bedroom community" for
the City of Nashville. As of 1997, the Town has become one of the ten fastest growing
communities in Tennessee.