Tennessee State Songs and Anthems
"When It's Iris Time in Tennessee"
Newspaper clipping of
Willa Mae Waid from
the Nashville Banner
April 25, 1935
Tennessee’s penchant for having multiple state songs got off to an early start when Willa Mae Waid’s ode to the state flower was adopted in 1935 by the 69th General Assembly as a “Tennessee State Song.” The iris had only been designated the state flower of Tennessee in 1933, apparently in ignorance of a similar action in 1919 that had named the the passion flower as the state’s sanctioned bloom. Ms. Waid, already a published songwriter living in Nashville, composed “Iris Time” in 1935 while working on her PhD. The Nashville Banner featured a photograph of Ms. Waid and a short description about the adoption of “Iris Time” as a state song in April, 1935.
Listen to “When It’s Iris Time in Tennessee” performed by Nashville in Harmony
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