Around 1900, the developing Wedgewood/Houston Neighborhood saw the construction of two factories side by side. The brick and heavy timber factory at 434 Houston Street was home to the American Syrup Company, where syrups, jams, and jellies were made under a variety of labels, including Bagwell Preserves, featuring Jambo the Bear as its mascot. Upstairs, tobacco was brought by local farmers for processing and distribution across the country by rail. Our sister building at 438 Houston Street was the original home of the May Hosiery Mill, where socks and ladies’ stockings were primary products. Bomb fuses were produced during the war years, and parachutes of silk during WWI, and of nylon during WWII. The May Hosiery Company also sponsored numerous Jewish refugees who survived by fleeing Hitler’s Germany to Nashville where they were guaranteed employment and residency required by the U.S. for emigration.
Over the second half of the twentieth century, the Wedgewood/Houston neighborhood declined. Factories closed and many buildings became vacant. A resurgence began to build momentum around 2010, and today the area is seeing a vibrant and energetic redevelopment. Houston Station has been an integral part of this story.
Today Houston Station is home to two restaurants, a coffee house, and twenty other assorted retail and office businesses spanning creative music, art, and entertainment genres. Houston Station is truly one of Nashville’s most happening and energized communities, in the midst of one of Nashville’s most vibrant and evolving neighborhoods.