Printer’s Alley took its name from its early connection to Nashville’s printing and publishing industry.
At the time this industry was located in the area where Printer’s Alley is located today. The Alley, as it is so aptly called, is the center of the city’s nightlife. Businesses include hotels, restaurants, saloons and other entertainment venues. In the late nineteenth century this area was known as the “Men’s Quarter”.
In the 1940’s nightclubs starting opening and the Alley became an area that attracted performers of the likes of Boots Randolph, Chet Atkins, Waylon Jennings, Hank Williams and Dottie West. The architecture has remained in tact and is Victorian. Also in the area is Nashville’s first automobile parking garage and the city’s first “skyscraper”.
Many have compared the Alley to that of Bourbon Street. The Alley is located between Third and Fourth Avenue and stretches from Union to Church streets. If this area and other Nashville area would not have flourished under Country Western music, then Nashville may have been recognized first for its printing and publishing industry.
David Schullman was known as one of the stars of the Alley. He owned and operated the Rainbow Room on the Alley and was honored as the “Mayor of Printer’s Alley”. His club was an exotic dance club and what set it apart from his competition was that a live band played the music for the dancers. His club was eventually converted to a bar and Schullman appeared in many episodes of the Hee Haw television series with his close friends Roy Clark and Buck Owens.
The Alley thrives today and is a great place to go and enjoy live music and good times.
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