Statehood: June 1, 1796
Nickname: The Volunteer State
Stretching 440 miles from east to west, Tennessee characterized by 6 main land regions; The Blue Ridge, the Appalachian Ridge and Valley Region, the Appalachian Plateau, the Highland Rim, the Nashville Basin, and the Gulf Coastal Plain.
Blue Ridge: The Blue Ridge area lies on the eastern edge of Tennessee, on the border of North Carolina. This region of Tennessee is characterized by high mountains, including the Great Smoky Mountains, the Chilhowee Mountains, and the Snowbird Mountains. The average elevation of the Blue Ridge area is 5,000 feet above sea level. Tennessee's highest point, Clingman's Dome, at 6,643 feet above see level, is found in the Great Smoky Mountains.
Appalachian Ridge and Valley Region: Stretching west from the Blue Ridge for approximately 55 miles is the Appalachian Ridge and Valley Region. This area of Tennessee is covered by fertile valleys separated by wooded ridges. The western section of the Appalachian Ridge and Valley Region, where the valleys become broader and the ridges become lower, is called The Great Valley.
Appalachian Plateau: To the west of the Appalachian Ridge and Valley Region lies the Appalachian Platieau. Also called the Cumberland Plateau, this area is covered with flat-topped mountains separated by sharp valleys. The elevation of the Appalachian Plateau rises to 1,500 to 1,800 feet above sea level. Lookout Mountain, southwest of Chattanooga and in the southern section or the Appalachian Plateau, provides views of seven states.
Highland Rim: To the west of the Appalachian Plateau lies the Highland Rim, an elevated plain that surrounds the Nashville Basin. The northern section of the Highland Rim is sometimes called the Pennyroyal Region.
Nashville Basin: Surrounded by the steep slopes of the Highland Rim is the Nashville Basin. The Nashville Basin is characterized by rich, fertile farm country.
Gulf Coastal Plain: West of the Highland Rim and Nashville Basin lies the Gulf Coastal Plain. The Gulf Coastal Plain is the predominant land region in Tennessee. It is part of the large geographic land area that begins at the Gulf of Mexico and extends north into southern Illinois. In Tennessee, the Gulf Coastal Plain is divided into three sections that extend from the Tennessee River, in the east, to the Mississippi River in the west.
The easternmost section consists of hilly land that runs along the western bank of the Tennessee River. This section of the Gulf Coastal Plain is about 10 miles wide.
To the west of this narrow strip of land is a wide area of rolling hills and streams that stretches all the way to Memphis in western Tennessee. This area is called the Tennessee bottoms or bottom land. In Memphis, the Tennessee Bottoms end in steep bluffs overlooking the Mississippi River.
To the west of the Tennessee Bottoms, is the Mississippi Alluvial Plain, less than 300 feet above sea level. This area of lowlands, flood plains, and swamp land is sometimes referred to as The Delta region.
Rugged country in the east; Great Smokey Mountains of the Uankas; low ridges in the Applachian Valley; the flat Cumberland Plateau; slightly rolling terrain and knobs of the interior low plateau, the largest region; Eastern Gulf coastal plain to the west, laced with meandering streams; Mississippi alluvial plain, a narrow strip of swamp and flood plain in the extream west.
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Land Area: 41,217 square miles - ranked 36th in total area
Number of counties:95
The Civil War and Reconstruction left Tennessee struggling economically. However, by the early 1900s, Tennessee was growing again. Manufacturing and mining industries increased greatly, providing jobs for some of the unemployed. During the Great Depression (1929-1939) the economy dropped dramatically, closing factories and making thousands unemployed. In 1933, the Tennessee Valley Authority (TVA) was organized to conserve and develop natural resources. Many found jobs building dams on Tennessee rivers.
The state's leading crops are cotton, soybeans, and tobacco; cattle, dairy products, and hogs are also principal farm commodities.
Tennessee's leading mineral is stone and zinc ranks second .
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.
Visitors are also drawn by Tennessee's music capitals, Nashville for country-music lovers and Memphis for jazz. Elvis’ home Graceland has become the most visited celebrity museum in the country.
Nashville became the capital of Tennessee in 1843.
The city is a port of entry and an important industrial and commercial center serving the Upper South.
Its economy is based on a number of industries, including automobiles, apparel, publishing, insurance, and banking.
Health care services are the largest sector, but Nashville is best known for its music industry. It is a major recording center, especially for country music and is home to the Grand Ole Opry.
Nashville is home to several religious organizations and is a major tourist attraction and convention center.
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