In 1959 Herschel Lynn Greer, Sr. was instrumental in forming Vols, Inc. and served as the first president of the organization, established to keep professional baseball in Nashville as support of the historic Nashville Vols club was waning.
When Nashville’s baseball stadium was built to house the Southern League Nashville Sounds in 1978, Larry Schmittou and the Sounds ownership posthumously honored Greer by naming the facility after him. An avid baseball fan, Herschel Greer, Sr. passed away in 1976.
The ballpark has been home to the Nashville Sounds, Nashville Xpress, Belmont University, and numerous amateur and high school games. Stadium capacity is 10,139.
The Nashville Sounds have continued the heritage begun by the Nashville Vols, Nashville Elite Giants, and Nashville Xpress, and although Greer Stadium has served baseball fans well, those fans can look forward to a convenient state-of-the-art ballpark that will give the hometown team an exciting place to play.
When the 2015 season begins Nashville will celebrate a new downtown ballpark at the old Sulphur Dell site and will be a footprint to development of Jefferson Street beginning at the Cumberland River.
Greer Stadium was built in 1978 as the home park of the Nashville Sounds and named for local businessman Herschel Lynn Greer, Sr. whose family donated $25,000 to begin stadium construction. Herschel Greer was on the board of Vols, Inc., serving as president. Vols, Inc. was formed to keep the Nashville Vols intact during the late 1950s when attendance and interest in Nashville was waning.
Built at the foot of St. Cloud Hll near Fort Negley, a Civil War battle encampment site, the stadium has a seating capacity of 10,700. In early years of the ball club it was not unusual for a section of the outfield to be roped off to allow overflow crowds to enjoy a game.
In 1992 and 1993 when the Nashville Xpress, a Double-A team in the Southern League which had no home, Larry Schmittou and the Sounds owners allowed the team to call Nashville its home. The Xpress played home games at Greer Stadium when the Sounds were on the road, which meant there was minor league baseball for nearly 144 consecutive games during two seasons.
The Sounds now plan to leave Greer Stadium after the completion of the 2014 season as a new stadium is to be constructed downtown at the old Sulphur Dell location. It should be ready for Opening Day in 2015. With a new stadium becoming a reality, an interesting question arises: What will become of Greer?
What do you think?