Sign up for an Interview

To schedule an interview, please contact:

Susannah Gibbons
Special Collections Digital Librarian
615.862.5804 ext. 6226
Susannah(dot)Gibbons(at)nashville.gov

You may request to be interviewed at the Main Library's Oral History Center or at a satellite site (certain partner organizations). When you arrive for the interview, you will need to fill out an interview release form and your interview will take from 30 minutes to an hour. A copy of your interview will be mailed to you after the interview.

Share your Photos: Nashville Flood Flickr Pool

The Nashville Public Library Special Collections Division, in partnership with institutions throughout the city, will collect oral histories, still images, text, audio, video and documents relating to the May 2010 flood. We cannot add everything to our permanent collection, so we invite you to share photos from your experience of the May 2010 flood.

Below are the most recent uploads to the Flickr Pool >> View all photos in the Nashville Flood Digital History Project Flickr Pool

Share your Story

Was your home or business impacted by the flood? Share your story with us in the comments.

12 Responses to “Share your Story”

  1. jenny says:

    I was at Kroger in Belle Meade just two hours before the flooding started. I can’t believe that road was under water.

    • Jenny says:

      Wow. I hadn’t seen that picture. Was that taken before the water levels peaked? So crazy.

    • Susannah says:

      Thanks for sharing, Jenny! Have you seen the photo of the Belle Meade Kroger in the project’s Flickr page? You should check it out! There are other photos of Belle Meade as well.

  2. Darla Tanner says:

    Our business on Cowan St (down the street from Sound Check) and I’d love to share photos of the damage we incurred. The website I’ve included contains pictures I made when we first were allowed into our building. I would be happy to give you more information.

    • Susannah says:

      Thanks for sharing, Darla! One of our library staff will contact you soon to learn more about your experience and photos.

  3. Teresa Cartwright says:

    Our home home in Somerset Farms Subdivision was flooded. We were out of our home for about 5 months while repairs were being completed. Many people lost their entire home and some people lost their life. We have digital pictures from the rebuilding, etc if these are needed. The morning of the flooding, a neighbor came and told us that we had about 2 minutes to move our cars to “higher ground”. I had already packed my “portable” musical instruments in the car. My 1910 Starr Piano had to stay in the piano. It was difficult to watch as the flood waters came into house because I thought that I would lose that piano. Good news! We were able to get the piano restored by Seale Keyworks in Franklin. They did an awesome job!! I did lose most of my clothing and jewelery, including my Grandmother Braclet which was over 100 years old.
    We are thankful for the many folks that came to help us as we “gutted” the first floor and contents of the house. We moved back home 09-01-10. It has almost been a year since the floor and as 05-01-2011 approached our family members are a bit anxious. However, with the good Lord’s assistance we will get thru this.

  4. Allison W. Chrzan says:

    My story isn’t as devistating as others but my daughter and son in law were married on May 1, 2010, at Cenntenial Park in Nashville. She was set to get married in the garden area in the park, but at the last moment on the Friday afternoon before her wedding she went and reserved the pavilion at the park instead. It’s a good thing she did becaused it rained and rained and thundered (sometimes at the perfect time during her vowes) and lightening all day. It didn’t let up at all. She only had a handful of guest present due to the heavy rains so the limo with her in it drove around for an extra hour hoping more guest would show up or that the rain would ease up to get her out of the limo. We finally got her out of the limo and into the pavilion with a very large umbrella and married. Then to top it all off they recieved a wedding gift of a honeymoon suite at Opryland Hotel! Needless to say they got an early wake up call to evacuate the hotel. We will never forget!

  5. Wayne Mathis says:

    Sunday May 2 2010:
    Wow, it’s been 2 years!! I’ll never forget this time in our lives. Me, my wife, and 9 month old son woke, (actually had been awake, at least I had been since I’m a light sleeper and the storm was violent and loud!) and were getting ready for church but we opted to stay home on this Sunday May 2nd 2010. We live in the River Glen subdivision off Pennington Bend Road, I couldn’t believe how much and how hard it was raining. I walked down (yes like an idiot) to Lock Two Park to see how high the river had come and it was half way up the 40 – 50 ft hill, I was stunned, this was around 9 o’clock in the morning. We were watching the news and the flood happen right before us. Then around 11:30 I went back down to the park to check the water level and it had risen another 10 feet or more! I freaked out, came back home and told my wife Katherine to pack a bag for us and Elliot and go to her parent’s house in Goodlettsville. Needless to say we couldn’t go there either because their exit was flooded! So we drove up to White House and had lunch with the in laws at Cracker Barrel and then took the back way into Goodlettsville to reach their house.

    Monday May 3 2010:
    We got up to a beautiful Monday morning, sun out birds singing, it was like nothing had happen until I hit the road trying to make it to my house in River Glen. I was driving over the river on Briely Pkwy and could see the smoke rising from the house that had caught fire on Miami Ave, it was crazy. When I pulled onto Lock Two from Pennington Bend the cops had it blocked off about 150 feet down and all I could see was water and boats in the road, my heart sank and I began to tear up. I couldn’t believe this had happened. When we purchased our home I asked if it was in a flood plain and was told no, which keep running through my mind as I wondered how on earth we would be able to handle the financial impact of our house being flooded. The police wouldn’t let me wade down Lock Two so I had to find another way. I went up to Abbington Park and went to Frost St and parked in front of someone’s house. People were out everywhere. Frost St wasn’t completely flooded but as I began to walk the road was covered and the water was close to people’s garage doors, one guy was drinking a beer and had his fishing pole in hand. So I continued to Cain Harbor Dr and this is where I saw water up to porches and even higher on some houses. I tried to walk to River Glen but at one point the water was up to my chest and was being sucked back towards the river at pretty fast speed so I decided to call it a day and try again on Tuesday.
    Tuesday May 4:
    Once again I woke up to another beautiful day, today would be different, long and exhausting. After sleepless, anxiety filled night I headed back but this time was able to walk down Riverbend Dr to Cain Harbor Dr, up Lock Two a few steps then onto Penn Meade. Finally I made it to our neighborhood! The lay of the land changes so much, one minute it was up to my waist and then to my ankles and even some dry spots as I walked down Riverbend. When I got into River Glen the roads were pretty much dry except where the storm drains were still backed up. As I turned onto Penn Meade Way to our house I noticed so many things…it was peaceful, beautiful, and the most quiet I have ever heard my neighborhood. I know some people stayed throughout the flood but it felt as if I was the only there. I could feel the soreness of my leg muscles from walking through all that very cold, very dirty water.
    My mind was racing with thoughts of what I would find as I opened the front door to our first house were had made so many memories.

    I stopped before I opened the door, said a prayer, and tried to prepare myself for the unknown. I’ll never forget the stench that filled my nose as I stepped inside. There wasn’t much standing water except a puddle in the kitchen and some in the backyard. All the carpet was soaked and I could see the water line about 6 inches up the wall. I thought 6 inches isn’t bad we won’t need to do replace drywall, wrong! We were really fortunate; we lost a lot less than thousands throughout the county. We only had to replace 4 foot of drywall all the way around, the dishwasher, and of course the flooring. We were even lucky enough to be able to keep most of our furniture!

    All in all as I look back it was a learning experience and a good one at that. So many came and helped us put our house back together. Grace Church of the Nazarene on Pennington Bend and the Red Cross keep us full of food and gave us plenty of water. I love River Glen and my neighbors! It’s nice to live in such a great place!

  6. Celia Martins says:

    It was around 9 pm.My daughter,Virginia and I just finished to prepare Brazilian sweets for my granddaughter ‘school party,when my neighbor nocked at the door. Something was happened because it was too late to visit us. Mr.Herauf ( we are grateful him) adviced us that the Cumberland river was full and we had only 30 minutes to scape.It was a critical moment to decide quickly what we had to do. Two women , a little girl ( she was 3 years old)and a cat.We had a lot of recycle bags and I put food and clothes enough inside them.My daughter took our document’s drawer , some boxes with pictures , go to the garage to turn off the electricy and take the car.While she was going there, I hold Isabella, the cat and some bags.In this moment, my daughter scrimed.I put all things, the cat and Isabella on the floor and run to the garage.I was thinking that my daughter was in danger situation,but she was affraid because the river’s water was bitting our door.It was time to run.Some minutes before the flood to come until our home. We didn’t know where to go, when we could come back, what will happen with our lives.
    In bad situation, we can know how strong you are and how many friends you have.
    We received help from several friends, communities and government.
    We rebuilt our home,rebuilt our lives and made new friends in this place.
    Now, exactly 2 years after, we are writting a new page in our life: we just moved to a new home!
    I would like to say that we are grateful to God, our friends ( Charley Ashton,Sandro Daidjo, Claudia Yamamoto and family, Ben Sting and family, Elza takano, Wise’s family,Grace Church of Nazarenes, Hands of Nashville, American Red Cross, Virginia’s co-workers from Bridgestone and all people that spent some time of their lives to help us.

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