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Related to Tennessee: Tennessee State University

See also: National Parks and Monuments (table)National Parks and Monuments

National Parks
Name Type1 Location Year authorized Size
acres (hectares)
Acadia NP SE Maine 1919 49,075 (19,868) Mountain and coast scenery.
..... Click the link for more information.


(tĕn`əsē', tĕn'əsē`), state in the SE central United States. It is bordered by Kentucky and Virginia (N), North Carolina (E), Georgia, Alabama, and Mississippi (S), and, across the Mississippi River, Arkansas and Missouri (W).

Facts and Figures

Area, 42,244 sq mi (109,412 sq km). Pop. (2010) 6,346,105, an 11.5% increase since the 2000 census. Capital, Nashville. Largest city, Memphis. Statehood, June 1, 1796 (16th state). Highest pt., Clingmans Dome, 6,643 ft (2,025 m); lowest pt., Mississippi River, 182 ft (56 m). Nickname, Volunteer State. Motto, Agriculture and Commerce. State bird, mockingbird. State flower, iris. State tree, tulip poplar. Abbr., Tenn.; TN


The state has three sharply defined regions: East Tennessee, Middle Tennessee, and West Tennessee. In East Tennessee the Great Smoky Mts., Cumberland Plateau, and the narrow river valleys and heavily forested foothills generally restrict farming there to the subsistence level; but this region has two of the state's most industrialized cities, Chattanooga (fourth largest) and Knoxville (third largest). Middle Tennessee is hemmed in by the Tennessee River, which flows SW through East Tennessee into Alabama, looping back up into West Tennessee in its circuitous route to the Ohio. Gently rolling, fertile, bluegrass country, it is ideal for livestock raising and dairy farming. Middle Tennessee is still noted for its fine horses and mules, e.g., the Tennessee walking horse.

West Tennessee, with its rich river-bottom lands, on which most of the state's cotton is grown, lies between the Tennessee and the Mississippi rivers. The average annual rainfall ranges from 40 to 50 in. (101.6–127 cm), and the climate ranges from humid continental in the north of the state to humid subtropical in the south; the rigors of a northern winter usually affect only the most mountainous parts of East Tennessee.

Twenty-three state parks, covering some 132,000 acres (53,420 hectares) as well as parts of the Great Smoky Mountains National Park, Cherokee National Forest, and Cumberland Gap National Historical Park are in Tennessee. Sportsmen and visitors are attracted to Reelfoot Lake, originally formed by an earthquake; stumps and other remains of a once dense forest, together with the lotus bed covering the shallow waters, give the lake an eerie beauty.

The state also has many sites of historic interest, including the Hermitage, home of Andrew Jackson; the Andrew Johnson National Historic Site; Shiloh National Military Park; and Fort Donelson and Stones River national battlefields. Part of the Chickamauga and Chattanooga National Military Park is also in Tennessee (see National Parks and MonumentsNational Parks and Monuments

National Parks
Name Type1 Location Year authorized Size
acres (hectares)
Acadia NP SE Maine 1919 49,075 (19,868) Mountain and coast scenery.
..... Click the link for more information.
, table). The Natchez Trace National Parkway generally follows the old Natchez TraceNatchez Trace,
road, from Natchez, Miss., to Nashville, Tenn., of great commercial and military importance from the 1780s to the 1830s. It grew from a series of Native American trails used in the 18th cent. by the French, English, and Spanish.
..... Click the link for more information.
. NashvilleNashville,
city (1990 pop. 487,969), state capital, coextensive with Davidson co., central Tenn., on the Cumberland River, in a fertile farm area; inc. as a city 1806, merged with Davidson co. 1963. It is a port of entry and an important commercial and industrial center.
..... Click the link for more information.
 is the capital and the second largest city. The largest city is MemphisMemphis
, city (1990 pop. 610,337), seat of Shelby co., SW Tenn., on the Fourth, or Lower, Chickasaw Bluff above the Mississippi, at the mouth of the Wolf River; inc. 1826.
..... Click the link for more information.


Although Tennessee is now primarily industrial, with most of its people residing in urban areas, many Tennesseans still derive their livelihood from the land. The state's leading crops are cotton, soybeans, and tobacco; cattle, dairy products, and hogs are also principal farm commodities. Tennessee's leading mineral, in dollar value, is stone; zinc ranks second (Tennessee leads the nation in its production). Industry is being continually diversified; the state's leading manufactures are chemicals and related products, foods, electrical machinery, primary metals, automobiles, textiles and apparel, and stone, clay, and glass items. Aluminum production has been important since World War I.

Tennessee has long been a major tourist destination, owing largely to its beautiful scenery. Many lakes were built here by the Tennessee Valley AuthorityTennessee Valley Authority
(TVA), independent U.S. government corporate agency, created in 1933 by act of Congress; it is responsible for the integrated development of the Tennessee River basin.
..... Click the link for more information.
 (TVA) and the Army Corps of Engineers. The TVA also developed the Land Between the Lakes, an enormous Kentucky-Tennessee recreation area. Visitors are also drawn by Tennessee's famed music capitals, the country-music mecca of Nashville and the blues and jazz hub of Memphis.

Government, Politics, and Higher Education

Tennessee has had three constitutions, drafted in 1796, 1834, and the present one in 1870. Its executive branch is headed by a governor, elected for a four-year term. The state's legislature has a senate with 33 members and a house with 99. The state elects 2 senators and 9 representatives to the U.S. Congress and has 11 electoral votes.

Democrats dominated Tennessee politics from the Civil War onward, but their power has declined in recent years. Republican Don Sundquist, elected governor in 1994, was reelected in 1998. In 2002 a Democrat, Phil Bredesen, was elected to the office; he was reelected in 2006. Republican Bill Haslam was elected governor in 2010 and 2014, and fellow Republican Bill Lee was elected in 2018.

Among the state's many institutions of higher learning are the Univ. of Tennessee, chiefly at Knoxville; East Tennessee State Univ., at Johnson City; Fisk Univ. and Vanderbilt Univ., at Nashville; Tennessee Technological Univ., at Cookeville; Univ. of Memphis, at Memphis; and the Univ. of the South, at Sewanee.


Early History

W Tennessee abounds with artifacts of the prehistoric Mound BuildersMound Builders,
in North American archaeology, name given to those people who built mounds in a large area from the Great Lakes to the Gulf of Mexico and from the Mississippi River to the Appalachian Mts.
..... Click the link for more information.
, who were the earliest inhabitants of the area. Cherokee, Chickasaw, Shawnee, and Creek were in the region when it was first visited by a European expedition under De SotoDe Soto, Hernando
, c.1500–1542, Spanish explorer. After serving under Pedro Arias de Ávila in Central America and under Francisco Pizarro in Peru, the dashing young conquistador was made governor of Cuba by Emperor Charles V, with the right to conquer Florida
..... Click the link for more information.
 in 1540. French explorers came down the Mississippi River, claiming both sides for France, and c.1682 La SalleLa Salle, Robert Cavelier, sieur de
, 1643–87, French explorer in North America, one of the most celebrated explorers and builders of New France.

He entered a Jesuit novitiate as a boy but later left the religious life.
..... Click the link for more information.
 built Fort Prudhomme, possibly on the site of present-day Memphis. The French established additional trading posts in the area, but they suffered continual harassment from the Chickasaw. Meanwhile, English fur traders and long hunters (frontiersmen who spent long periods hunting in this area) came over the mountains from the Carolinas and Virginia, prevailed over the Cherokee, and made ineffectual the French claims to the area, which in any event was lost (1763) by the French in the French and Indian Wars.

The first permanent settlement was made (1769) in the Watauga River valley of E Tennessee by Virginians; they were soon joined by North Carolinians, including perhaps a few refugees of the Regulator movement. In 1772 these hardy settlers living beyond the frontier formed the Watauga AssociationWatauga Association,
government (1772–75) formed by settlers along the Watauga River in present E Tennessee. Virginians made the first settlements in 1769, and after the collapse of the Regulator movement in North Carolina, citizens from that colony under James Robertson
..... Click the link for more information.
, the first attempt at government in Tennessee, and in 1777, at their request, North Carolina organized those settlements into Washington co.; Jonesboro, the county seat and oldest town in Tennessee, was founded two years later.

The American Revolution and Statehood

In the American Revolution, John Sevier was among the notable Tennesseans who served with distinction. When, after the war, North Carolina ceded its western lands to the federal government, the E Tennessee settlers, incensed at being transferred without their consent, formed a short-lived independent government (1784–88) under Sevier (see Franklin, State ofFranklin, State of,
government (1784–88) formed by the inhabitants of Washington, Sullivan, and Greene counties in present-day E Tennessee after North Carolina ceded (June, 1784) its western lands to the United States. Following preliminary conventions at Jonesboro (Aug.
..... Click the link for more information.
). The cession was reenacted in 1789, and in 1790 the federal government created the Territory of the United States South of the River Ohio (Southwest Territory), with William Blount as governor. This act disposed of various schemes to place the area under the control of Spanish Louisiana. In 1796 Tennessee, with substantially its present boundaries, was admitted to the Union as a slave state, with its capital at Knoxville. It was the first state to be carved out of national territory.

Tennessee's constitution, which provided for universal male suffrage (that is, including free blacks), was described by Thomas Jefferson as "the least imperfect and most republican" of any state. Armed with land grants awarded for service in the American Revolution, veterans and speculators (who had acquired the grants from veterans, sometimes fraudulently) swarmed in from the Carolinas, Virginia, Pennsylvania, and even from New England via such overland routes as the Wilderness Road and Cumberland Gap. Others poled keelboats from the Ohio up the Cumberland and Tennessee rivers.

The Early Nineteenth Century

For the most part a rough and ready people, numbering over 100,000 by 1800, the settlers of Tennessee were nevertheless strongly influenced by the Great Revival, a wave of religious hysteria that swept the state that year. The virtues and vices of their strongly egalitarian society were exemplified by Andrew Jackson, who was prominent in the faction-ridden politics of Tennessee. By 1829 when Jackson became president, the state was prospering. The first steamboat had reached Nashville in 1819, the year in which Memphis, soon to become the metropolis of a fast-growing cotton kingdom, was platted.

Internal improvement projects—canals and then railroads—were pushed, and a new, smaller wave of immigrants (predominantly Irish and German) arrived after the Cherokee and the Chickasaw were banished West in the late 1830s. Insatiable land hunger, the spirit of adventure, and personal considerations carried many white Tennesseans beyond the state; among them were Gov. Samuel Houston and David Crockett, both of whom had been conspicuous in the fight for Texan independence. A decade later the response of Tennessee to the request for volunteers to fight in the Mexican War was so overwhelming that it has since been known as the Volunteer State. Tennessee's James K. Polk, a Jackson protégé, was the President of the United States during that war.

The Civil War and Reconstruction

Although slaves were numerous in W Tennessee, and to a lesser extent in Middle Tennessee, and free blacks were subjected to a series of discriminatory regulations, the state was pro-Union; it voted in the presidential election of 1860 for its own John Bell, candidate of the moderate Constitutional Union partyConstitutional Union party,
in U.S. history, formed when the conflict between North and South broke down the older parties. The Constitutional Union group, composed of former Whigs and remnants of the Know-Nothings and other groups in the South, was organized just before the
..... Click the link for more information.
. Secession was rejected in a popular referendum on Feb. 9, 1861. However, after the firing on Fort Sumter and Lincoln's call for troops, the pro-Confederate element, led by Gov. Isham G. Harris, canvassed the state, and on June 8, 1861, a second referendum approved secession by a two-thirds majority. The one third opposed represented mainly E Tennessee, where slavery was a negligible factor and where Andrew Johnson (then U.S. Senator) and William G. Brownlow had strengthened the natural Union loyalties of the people.

In the Civil War Tennessee was, after Virginia, the biggest and bloodiest battleground. The rivers served as Union invasion routes. Nashville was occupied by Gen. D. C. Buell in Feb., 1862, after the victories of Gen. Ulysses S. Grant on the lower Tennessee and Cumberland rivers (see Fort HenryFort Henry,
Confederate fortification on the Tennessee River, S of the Ky.-Tenn. line; site of the first major Union victory of the Civil War (Feb. 6, 1862). The fort was attacked and reduced by Union gunboats commanded by Commodore Andrew Foote. Confederate commander Gen.
..... Click the link for more information.
 and Fort DonelsonFort Donelson
, Confederate fortification in the Civil War, on the Cumberland River at Dover, Tenn., commanding the river approach to Nashville, Tenn. After capturing Fort Henry, on the Tennessee River (Feb. 6, 1862), General Ulysses S. Grant, on Feb.
..... Click the link for more information.
). In April one of the bloodiest battles of the war was fought near the Mississippi state line (see Shiloh, battle ofShiloh, battle of,
Apr. 6–7, 1862, one of the great battles of the American Civil War. The battle took its name from Shiloh Church, a meetinghouse c.3 mi (5 km) SSW of Pittsburg Landing, which was a community in Hardin co., Tenn., 9 mi (14.
..... Click the link for more information.
), and Memphis fell to a Union fleet in June. Confederate Gen. Braxton Bragg, defeated at Perryville, Ky. in Oct., 1862, retreated further in Jan., 1863, after the battle of MurfreesboroMurfreesboro
, city (1990 pop. 44,922), seat of Rutherford co., central Tenn., on Stones River; inc. 1817. It is the processing center of a dairy, livestock, and farm area. Manufactures include appliance motors, packaged foods, boats, and outdoor furniture.
..... Click the link for more information.
, and Grant, successful in the Vicksburg campaignVicksburg campaign,
in the American Civil War, the fighting (Nov., 1862–July, 1863) for control of the Mississippi River. The Union wanted such control in order to split the Confederacy and to restore free commerce to the politically important Northwest.
..... Click the link for more information.
, completely routed him (Nov., 1863) in the Chattanooga campaignChattanooga campaign,
Aug.-Nov., 1863, military encounter in the American Civil War. Chattanooga, Tenn., which commanded Confederate communications between the East and the Mississippi River and was also the key to loyal E Tennessee, had been an important Union objective as
..... Click the link for more information.

The Confederates did manage to hold on to Knoxville until Sept., 1863, and their cavalry, particularly the forces of Gen. N. B. Forrest and Gen. J. H. Morgan, remained active. An army under Gen. J. B. Hood made a last desperate attempt to regain the state late in 1864 but was defeated at FranklinFranklin.
1 City (1990 pop. 12,907), seat of Johnson co., S central Ind., inc. 1823. It is a farm trade center. Manufactures include auto parts, aluminum doors and windows, and copper panels. Franklin College of Indiana is there. 2 City (1990 pop.
..... Click the link for more information.
 (Nov. 30) and annihilated at Nashville (Dec. 15–16) by federal troops under G. H. Thomas. The Union military government that had been set up under Andrew Johnson in 1862 was succeeded in Apr., 1865, by a civil government headed by Brownlow. An amendment to the state constitution of 1834 freed the slaves, and, with ex-Confederates disfranchised and radical Republicans in control, the state was readmitted to the Union in Mar., 1866.

As the first Confederate state to be readmitted, Tennessee was spared the worst aspects of Congressional ReconstructionReconstruction,
1865–77, in U.S. history, the period of readjustment following the Civil War. At the end of the Civil War, the defeated South was a ruined land. The physical destruction wrought by the invading Union forces was enormous, and the old social and economic
..... Click the link for more information.
, but the postwar years were nonetheless bitter. The organization formed largely to reestablish "white supremacy" in the South, the Ku Klux KlanKu Klux Klan
, designation mainly given to two distinct secret societies that played a part in American history, although other less important groups have also used the name.
..... Click the link for more information.
, was founded (1866) in Tennessee, at Pulaski. The situation improved after Brownlow left (1869) the governorship for the U.S. Senate, to which the state also returned (1875) Andrew Johnson in vindication of his record as Lincoln's successor in the presidency. Brownlow's successor, Gov. De Witt C. Senter, although nominally a Republican, encouraged the calling of a new state constitutional convention. In 1870 the delegates drew up a constitution that rejected the reforms of the radical Republicans; African-American suffrage was limited by means of the poll tax and former Confederates were reenfranchised.

Industrialization, Prohibition, and the Scopes Trial

Economically, the farm-tenancy system, which had replaced the plantation system, brought much misery; industry, however, made advances after the Civil War. The iron- and steelworks of E Tennessee were unable to meet the competition of Birmingham, Ala., but coal mining continued and textile production increased. The use of convict labor in the mines precipitated the state's first major labor disturbance (1891–92), but not until 1936 was the convict-leasing system abolished.

A statewide Prohibition bill (not repealed until 1939) was passed over a governor's veto in 1909, and this question so divided the Democratic party that in 1910 a Republican was elected governor for the first time since 1880. In World War I the thousands of Tennessean volunteers in the U.S. armed forces included Sgt. Alvin C. York, who became one of the nation's most highly publicized heroes. In 1925 the state attracted international attention with the famous Scopes trialScopes trial,
Tennessee legal case involving the teaching of evolution in public schools. A statute was passed (Mar., 1925) in Tennessee that prohibited the teaching in public schools of theories contrary to accepted interpretation of the biblical account of human creation.
..... Click the link for more information.
 at Dayton. The fact that the state law banning the teaching of evolution was not repealed until 1967 is indicative of the strong role that Protestant fundamentalism played in the lives of many Tennesseans. Its further influence was reflected in the passing of a 1973 bill prohibiting the teaching of evolution as a fact rather than a theory.

The TVA and an Expanded Economy

One of the most important events in Tennessee since the Civil War was the establishment of the Tennessee Valley Authority (TVA) in 1933. Although opposed by private power companies, the TVA succeeded in providing hydroelectric power cheaply and in abundance, bringing modern comforts to thousands. Over the years its programs expanded and were supplemented by other projects for water-resources development. Most important, the TVA was chiefly responsible for the basic change in the state's economy from agriculture to industry and for the significant growth and diversification of industry, especially during and after World War II. The TVA also came to be associated with atomic energy, for it provides the power for Oak RidgeOak Ridge,
city (1990 pop. 27,310), Anderson and Roane counties, E Tenn., on Black Oak Ridge and the Clinch River; founded by the U.S. government 1942, inc. as an independent city 1959.
..... Click the link for more information.
, one of the sources of production of the constituents for the first atomic bombs.

Since the late 1970s there has been significant growth in the service, trade, and finance sectors of the state economy and Tennessee has been very aggressive in attracting new industry. Many of the firms that have been setting up new factories and distribution centers in Tennessee come from America's northern industrial states and from Japan.


See S. J. Folmsbee et al., History of Tennessee (1961, repr. 1969); J. Clark, Tennessee Hill Folk (1972); Federal Writers' Project, Tennessee: A Guide to the State (1939, repr. 1972); R. E. Corlew, Tennessee: A Short History (2d ed. 1981); J. Cimprich, Slavery's End in Tennessee, Eighteen Sixty-One to Eighteen Sixty-Five (1985); R. E. Corlew, Tennessee: The Volunteer State: An Illustrated History (1989).


river, c.650 mi (1,050 km) long, the principal tributary of the Ohio River. It is formed by the confluence of the Holston and French Broad rivers near Knoxville, Tenn., and follows a U-shaped course to enter the Ohio River at Paducah, Ky. Its drainage basin covers c.41,000 sq mi (106,200 sq km) and includes parts of seven states. Navigation was long impeded by variations in channel depths and by rapids, such as Muscle Shoals. However, the Tennessee Valley AuthorityTennessee Valley Authority
(TVA), independent U.S. government corporate agency, created in 1933 by act of Congress; it is responsible for the integrated development of the Tennessee River basin.
..... Click the link for more information.
 (est. 1933) has converted the river into a chain of lakes held back by nine major dams (Kentucky, Pickwick Landing, Wilson, Wheeler, Guntersville, Nickajack, Chickamauga, Watts Bar, and Fort Loudoun). As a result of these improvements, river traffic increased; flooding was controlled; a water-oriented recreation industry was established; and hydroelectric power generated at the dams attracted new industries to the region. The Tennessee-Tombigbee WaterwayTennessee-Tombigbee Waterway,
system of navigation channels, 234 mi (377 km) long, Ala. and Miss., connecting the Tennessee River with the Tombigbee River and, via the Mobile River, with the Gulf of Mexico.
..... Click the link for more information.
, opened in 1985, links the Tennessee with the Gulf of Mexico by way of the Tombigbee and Mobile rivers. During the Civil War, the Tennessee River was a prime approach for a Union invasion of the South; several great battles were fought there (see Fort HenryFort Henry,
Confederate fortification on the Tennessee River, S of the Ky.-Tenn. line; site of the first major Union victory of the Civil War (Feb. 6, 1862). The fort was attacked and reduced by Union gunboats commanded by Commodore Andrew Foote. Confederate commander Gen.
..... Click the link for more information.
; Shiloh, battle ofShiloh, battle of,
Apr. 6–7, 1862, one of the great battles of the American Civil War. The battle took its name from Shiloh Church, a meetinghouse c.3 mi (5 km) SSW of Pittsburg Landing, which was a community in Hardin co., Tenn., 9 mi (14.
..... Click the link for more information.
; Chattanooga campaignChattanooga campaign,
Aug.-Nov., 1863, military encounter in the American Civil War. Chattanooga, Tenn., which commanded Confederate communications between the East and the Mississippi River and was also the key to loyal E Tennessee, had been an important Union objective as
..... Click the link for more information.
The Columbia Electronic Encyclopedia™ Copyright © 2013, Columbia University Press. Licensed from Columbia University Press. All rights reserved. www.cc.columbia.edu/cu/cup/

Tennessee State Information

Phone: (615) 741-3011

Area (sq mi):: 42143.27 (land 41217.12; water 926.15) Population per square mile: 144.70
Population 2005: 5,962,959 State rank: 0 Population change: 2000-20005 4.80%; 1990-2000 16.70% Population 2000: 5,689,283 (White 79.20%; Black or African American 16.40%; Hispanic or Latino 2.20%; Asian 1.00%; Other 2.40%). Foreign born: 2.80%. Median age: 35.90
Income 2000: per capita $19,393; median household $36,360; Population below poverty level: 13.50% Personal per capita income (2000-2003): $26,097-$28,641
Unemployment (2004): 5.50% Unemployment change (from 2000): 1.50% Median travel time to work: 24.50 minutes Working outside county of residence: 26.60%

List of Tennessee counties:

  • Anderson County
  • Bedford County
  • Benton County
  • Bledsoe County
  • Blount County
  • Bradley County
  • Campbell County
  • Cannon County
  • Carroll County
  • Carter County
  • Cheatham County
  • Chester County
  • Claiborne County
  • Clay County
  • Cocke County
  • Coffee County
  • Crockett County
  • Cumberland County
  • Davidson County
  • Decatur County
  • DeKalb County
  • Dickson County
  • Dyer County
  • Fayette County
  • Fentress County
  • Franklin County
  • Gibson County
  • Giles County
  • Grainger County
  • Greene County
  • Grundy County
  • Hamblen County
  • Hamilton County
  • Hancock County
  • Hardeman County
  • Hardin County
  • Hawkins County
  • Haywood County
  • Henderson County
  • Henry County
  • Hickman County
  • Houston County
  • Humphreys County
  • Jackson County
  • Jefferson County
  • Johnson County
  • Knox County
  • Lake County
  • Lauderdale County
  • Lawrence County
  • Lewis County
  • Lincoln County
  • Loudon County
  • Macon County
  • Madison County
  • Marion County
  • Marshall County
  • Maury County
  • McMinn County
  • McNairy County
  • Meigs County
  • Monroe County
  • Montgomery County
  • Moore County
  • Morgan County
  • Obion County
  • Overton County
  • Perry County
  • Pickett County
  • Polk County
  • Putnam County
  • Rhea County
  • Roane County
  • Robertson County
  • Rutherford County
  • Scott County
  • Sequatchie County
  • Sevier County
  • Shelby County
  • Smith County
  • Stewart County
  • Sullivan County
  • Sumner County
  • Tipton County
  • Trousdale County
  • Unicoi County
  • Union County
  • Van Buren County
  • Warren County
  • Washington County
  • Wayne County
  • Weakley County
  • White County
  • Williamson County
  • Wilson County
  • Counties USA: A Directory of United States Counties, 3rd Edition. © 2006 by Omnigraphics, Inc.

    Tennessee Parks

    Parks Directory of the United States, 5th Edition. © 2007 by Omnigraphics, Inc.
    The following article is from The Great Soviet Encyclopedia (1979). It might be outdated or ideologically biased.



    a state in the southern USA. Area, 109,400 sq km. Population, 4.1 million (1974; 58.8 percent urban). The capital is Nashville. Other important cities are Memphis, Knoxville, and Chattanooga.

    The eastern part of the state is occupied by the Appalachian Mountains, and the western part by the Mississippi Alluvial Plain. The climate is subtropical continental, with average January temperatures of 3.5°–5°C and average July temperatures of 25°C. Annual precipitation is 1,100–1,200 mm. The main rivers are the Tennessee and the Cumberland. The soils are mainly of the brown forest type. Deciduous trees, such as oak, hickory, and tulip tree, grow on the mountain slopes. The Great Smoky Mountains National Park is located in Tennessee.

    Tennessee is an industrial-agrarian state. The Tennessee River valley has a complex of hydroelectric, thermal, and nuclear power plants, with a rated power of 13 gigawatts (GW; 1974); the hydroelectric power plants have a capacity of 2 GW. Among the leading industries are the chemical industry, which produces fertilizers and synthetic fibers, the nuclear-related industries at Oak Ridge, and nonferrous metallurgy, represented by the smelting of aluminum in Alcoa. Other industries include machine building, represented by the manufacture of electrical equipment, agricultural equipment, and motor vehicles, as well as woodworking, textiles, food processing, and printing. Manufacturing employs 522,000 persons (1973); 7,000 are engaged in the mining of coal, phosphorites, and zinc and the quarrying of marble.

    In agriculture, two-thirds of the commodity production is provided by stock raising; the livestock population numbers 2.7 million head of cattle and 900,000 hogs (1972). Tennessee’s main crops are tobacco and soybeans. Other crops include corn, wheat, cotton, and forage grasses. There is shipping on the Mississippi and Tennessee rivers.




    a river in the eastern USA; a left tributary of the Ohio River (Mississippi River basin) and the Ohio’s largest tributary.

    The Tennessee River is formed by the confluence near Knoxville of the Holston and French Broad rivers, which flow down the western slopes of the Appalachian Mountains. Its length from the confluence is 1,050 km (from the source of the Holston, 1,470 km). The Tennessee drains an area of 104,000 sq km. High water occurs in late winter and in spring, and low water in summer. The mean flow rate at the mouth is 1,800 cu m per sec.

    The flow of the Tennessee is almost completely regulated by a system of multipurpose reservoirs. Nine of the reservoirs —including the Kentucky Reservoir, the largest at 1,100 sq km—are on the Tennessee itself, and 22 are on the river’s tributaries. A system of bypass canals (near the rapids at Chattanooga, Tenn., and Florence, Ala.) and locks makes the Tennessee navigable for its entire length, from the confluence of the Holston and French Broad rivers. The total generating capacity of the hydroelectric power plants in the Tennessee River basin is approximately 4 gigawatts. The cities of Knoxville and Chattanooga, Tenn., and Florence, Ala., are on the Tennessee River.

    The Great Soviet Encyclopedia, 3rd Edition (1970-1979). © 2010 The Gale Group, Inc. All rights reserved.


    Sixteenth state; admitted on June 1, 1796 (seceded on June 8, 1861, and was readmitted on July 24, 1866)

    In 1929, the state legislature designated June 1 as Statehood Day in Tennessee.

    State capital: Nashville Nicknames: The Volunteer State; The Big Bend State; The

    Mother of Southwestern Statesmen State motto: Agriculture and Commerce State agricultural insect: Honeybee (Apis mellifera) State amphibian: Tennessee cave salamander (Gyrinophilu

    palleucus) State animal: Raccoon (Procyon lotor) State aviation hall of fame: Tennessee Aviation Hall of

    Fame State bird: Mockingbird (Mimus polyglottos) State butterfly: Zebra swallowtail (Eurytides marcellus) State commercial fish: Channel catfish (Ictalurus lacustris);

    game fish: Largemouth bass (Micropterus salmoides) State declamation: “I am Tennessee” State flower: cultivated: Purple iris (Genus Iridaceae); wild:

    Passion flower (Passiflora incarnata) State folk dance: Square dance State fossil: Pterotrigonia (Scabrotrigonia) thoracica State fruit: Tomato (Lycopersicon lycopersicum) State game bird: Bobwhite quail (Colinus virginianus) State gem: Tennessee pearl State horse: Tennessee Walking Horse State insects: Ladybug (Hippodamia convergens); firefly

    (Photinus pyralls) State jamboree and crafts festival: Smithville Fiddlers’­Jamboree and Crafts Festival

    State paintings: Tennessee Treasures; Tennessee Treasures Too State poem: “Oh Tennessee, My Tennessee” State reptile: Eastern box turtle (Terrapene carolina) State rocks: Limestone; agate State slogan: Tennessee—America at Its Best

    State songs: “When It’s Iris Time in Tennessee”; “Tennessee Waltz”; “My Homeland, Tennessee”; “My Tennessee”; “Rocky Top”; “Tennessee”; “The Pride of Tennessee”

    State tree: Tulip poplar (Liriodendron tulipifera) State wild animal: Raccoon (Procyon lotor)

    More about state symbols at:


    More about the state at:



    AmerBkDays-2000, p. 413 AnnivHol-2000, p. 94 DictDays-1988, p. 113


    State web site: www.tennessee.gov

    Office of the Governor State Capitol 1st Fl Nashville, TN 37243 615-741-2001 fax: 615-532-9711 www.tennessee.gov/governor

    Secretary of State State Capitol 1st Fl Nashville, TN 37243 615-741-2819 fax: 615-532-9547 www.state.tn.us/sos

    Tennessee State Library & Archives 403 7th Ave N Nashville , TN 37243 615-741-2764 fax: 615-741-6471 state.tn.us/tsla

    Legal Holidays:

    Good FridayApr 22, 2011; Apr 6, 2012; Mar 29, 2013; Apr 18, 2014; Apr 3, 2015; Mar 25, 2016; Apr 14, 2017; Mar 30, 2018; Apr 19, 2019; Apr 10, 2020; Apr 2, 2021; Apr 15, 2022; Apr 7, 2023
    Holidays, Festivals, and Celebrations of the World Dictionary, Fourth Edition. © 2010 by Omnigraphics, Inc.


    1. a state of the E central US: consists of a plain in the west, rising to the Appalachians and the Cumberland Plateau in the east. Capital: Nashville. Pop.: 5 841 748 (2003 est.). Area: 109 412 sq. km (42 244 sq. miles)
    2. a river in the E central US, flowing southwest from E Tennessee into N Alabama, then west and north to the Ohio River at Paducah: the longest tributary of the Ohio; includes a series of dams and reservoirs under the Tennessee Valley Authority. Length: 1049 km (652 miles)
    Collins Discovery Encyclopedia, 1st edition © HarperCollins Publishers 2005
    References in periodicals archive ?
    Source: Tennessee Department of Commerce & Insurance
    Bank of Tennessee is a USD 1.3 billion-asset bank headquartered in Kingsport, Tennessee.
    Prevalence of lineage formation in the raccoon, Procyon lotor, over space and time in varied habitats in Southwestern Tennessee. Lee University, Cleveland, Tennessee.
    He received his professional education from the University of Tennessee, University of Pennsylvania, and Ecole des Beaux-Arts.
    Tennessee was defeated at home 27-23 by the Los Angeles Rams in Week 16, marking the Titans' third straight defeat by five points or fewer.
    SmartBank has more than USD 1.6bn in assets and operates 22 branches and three loan production offices spanning Tennessee Southwest Alabama and Florida.
    "I want to thank Tennessee Tool and Fixture for locating its first U.S.
    Tennessee estimates that 900,000 adults in the state have some college but no degree.
    The beginning of the end for Tennessee's jock tax came during NHL collective bargaining negotiations.
    'We expect this move to appear seamless and at the same time allow us to establish new, innovative product platforms for our present and future clients in the middle Tennessee area,' stated Dan Andrews, Jr., president of Tennessee Bank & Trust.
    "The addition of Chris Payne is part of our strategy to focus our mortgage operations in Middle Tennessee," stated DeVan Ard, President and Chief Executive Officer of Reliant Bank and President of Commerce Union Bancshares, Inc.

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