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Historic Tennessee State Prison damaged in Nashville tornadoes

Tennessee Department of Correction Commissioner Tony Parker said the damage to the historic site was extensive, but no one in the area was injured.

NASHVILLE, Tenn. — The Tennessee State Prison and its grounds were heavily damaged during the tornado that struck Nashville overnight.

Tennessee Department of Correction Commissioner Tony Parker said the damage to the historic site was extensive, but no one in the area was injured.

The prison building took major structural damage. The Cook Chill Building was practically destroyed, and the strike force building was damaged, according to Parker.

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An aerial video posted by TDOC shows the exterior wall of the prison's right-wing nearly sheared off, exposing the cell blocks inside.

Photos posted by the department show bricks covering the prison's courtyard and debris scattered across the grounds.

"We're right now assessing those facilities to make sure they're safe to enter and recover the property," Parker said in a video on TDOC's Facebook page.

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The Tennessee State Prison has more than 120 years of history in Middle Tennessee. 

NOVEMBER 2018: Abandoned Places: Tennessee State Prison

Though it was forced to close in June 1992 after a federal lawsuit and court ruling found it to be overcrowded and unsanitary, it left its mark on song and film. 

It was the setting of several movies like “The Green Mile” and “Walk The Line,” and a number of singers, like Eric Church, have filmed music videos at the site.

A LOOK AT THE PRISON FROM NOVEMBER 2018