Biographical Materials

Online exhibit featuring portraits of President Abraham Lincoln.
In celebration of the bicentennial of Andrew Johnson’s birth and to commemorate his legacy, the images exhibited in this collection attempt to examine Johnson’s controversial political career and, at the same time, provide a glimpse at his personal life and humble beginnings. Despite his mixed reputation among scholars, the arc of Johnson’s political life remains unparalleled in American history. He is the only politician who has held all of the following offices: city alderman, mayor, state representative, state senator, governor, military governor, U. S. Representative, U.S. Senator, and President of the United States.
William Henry Fort, Jr.’s Fisk University scrapbook comprises part of the Ambrose A. Bennett Family Papers. This scrapbook consists of nineteen pages of images, among these are photographs of various campus buildings, numerous students and significant figures at Fisk, including a photograph of Langston Hughes and a photograph of past Fisk president, Thomas E. Jones. The Tennessee State Library and Archives has chosen to display portions of this scrapbook in order to highlight the contributions of Fisk University, especially the historically significant role that the university played during a time of great social upheaval in the South.
Online exhibit highlighting the life of William Walker (1824–1860). Walker, a physician, lawyer, newspaper editor, and President of Nicaragua, was born in Nashville and died before a firing squad in Honduras. He was an idealist devoted to fulfilling America’s role in “Manifest Destiny” which envisioned U.S. dominion over North America.
This page is the introduction to an alphabetical listing of names that appear in "The History of Tennessee" by Goodspeed.
This page is the introduction of brief biographical sketches of 30,000 Tennesseans. The index was compiled from over 90 books held by the Tennessee State Library and Archives.
Online exhibit profiling University of Tennessee football legend, John T. Majors. The exhibit features photographs, videos, clippings, and documents from the John T. Majors Papers, held by the Tennessee State Library and Archives.
Online exhibit featuring native Tennessean and major league pitching star John Andrew Beazley, Jr. The exhibit offers baseball researchers and fans alike a rare opportunity to follow the brief career of a major league player, local business owner, and civic leader.
This page has instructions for ordering copies of brief biographical sketches collected from over 90 sources.
This page has instructions for ordering copies of biographical sketches from Goodspeed's "History of Tennessee".
Robert H. Cartmell (1828-1915), a Madison County, Tennessee farmer, documented the nature of his farm operation beginning in 1853. There are thirty-three volumes of diaries that contain full commentaries related to the running of his farm, the weather, and the fluctuations of the cotton market.
When Ed Temple headed off to college at what was then called Tennessee Agricultural and Industrial State University, he didn’t know what to expect. A Pennsylvania native, he had never before experienced life in the segregated South. Nevertheless, he stayed in Nashville following his graduation, landing a job as women’s track coach at his alma mater, now known as Tennessee State University. In a career lasting more than four decades, his Tigerbelle teams won 34 national titles. Forty of those women he coached competed in the Olympics, winning 23 medals. Looking back on his life and career, he said: “In the end, it turned out all right. I have no regrets.”