Carriage ride in front of Acme Feed & Seed

photo by: Joe Buglewicz

October 1, 2015

More Photos from Nashville's Acme Feed & Seed

  • By: Katherine Flynn
  • Photography: Joe Buglewicz

In the Fall 2015 issue of Preservation magazine, we explore the restored Acme Feed & Seed in the heart of downtown Nashville, a former farm supply store that is now a flourishing restaurant and community gathering spot. Photographer Joe Buglewicz brilliantly captures just what it is, exactly, that makes this 125-year-old space so unique.

Scroll down to see more of his vibrant photos that weren't featured in our print story, and be sure to check out the newly reopened Acme Feed & Seed restaurant and concert venue firsthand if you’re ever in Music City.

Acme Feed & Seed owner Tom Morales knew that he wanted to stay true to the store’s agricultural history, while at the same time providing an of-the-moment feel to patrons. The larger company that Morales owns, TomKats, includes a movie set catering service with credits on 330 films and TV shows to date, as well as three additional restaurants in the Nashville area.

Acme Feed & Seed regularly hosts live bands, including official house band the Music City Toppers, in its first-floor dining space, which retains its original flooring and support beams.

Busy interior

photo by: Joe Buglewicz

It ultimately took Morales about two years and $6.5 million to restore the circa-1890 structure.

A black-and-white photo depicting a 1949 Ford flatbed truck serving as a makeshift stage hangs on a first-floor wall. Morales was able to find an identical truck in North Dakota, and plans to keep the tradition alive by inviting bands to play in the truck’s bed at store events.

Memorabilia and staff behind

photo by: Joe Buglewicz

When Morales first gained ownership of the building in 2012, it had sat vacant for over a decade. During that time, downtown Nashville transitioned into the country music-centric tourist hub that it is today. Acme Feed & Seed sits in an enviable spot on Lower Broadway, right across the street from the former Phillips and Quarles Hardware Store (now a Hard Rock Cafe.)

Busy interior with customers and wait staff

photo by: Joe Buglewicz

Country music star Alan Jackson was one of the initial investors in the restoration project, which ultimately cost about $6.5 million. Morales and his partners decided to let the building’s exterior retain its weathered appearance.

Carriage ride directly in front of entrance

photo by: Joe Buglewicz

Sign at Acme Feed & Seed

photo by: Joe Buglewicz

Customers dining in front of Acme Feed & Seed

photo by: Joe Buglewicz

"It was the Home Depot of the time, but with a whole social setting," Morales says of the Acme's historic. "Part of our business plan was to revive that community."

Katherine Flynn is a former assistant editor at Preservation magazine. She enjoys coffee, record stores, and uncovering the stories behind historic places.

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