The Union Gospel Tabernacle, as it was originally named, was built in 1892 by Nashville businessman Thomas Ryman. After attending a revival in 1885 Ryman became so moved by Reverend Sam Jones' preaching that he vowed to built a permanent structure for Nashvillians to attend the reverend's revivals. It took 7 years to complete and finally in 1892 the first revival was held. In 1904, at the funeral of Ryman, Rev. Jones suggested the building be called Ryman Auditorium and has been ever since.
Through the first half of the 20th century the Ryman Auditorium became a venue for worship, music, opera, theater, guest speakers and many other event. From 1943 until 1974 it was the home of the Grand Ole Opry and today is considered the Mother Church of Country Music.