Tennessee History | HISTORY: Latin America & Tennessee (2022)

3000-900BCE

Tennessee History | HISTORY: Latin America & Tennessee (1)

Photo courtesy of TN4me.org

Tennessee History | HISTORY: Latin America & Tennessee (2)Specifically in the territory of Tennessee, evidence exists of primitive people dating back to 12,000 to 15,000 years with the retreating glaciers during the Ice Age. The Paleo-indians were nomadic people that lived in caves and rock shelters, hunting mastodons and caribou. As the climate temperatures warmed, vegetation changed which attracted large quantities of moose and deer.

Tennessee History | HISTORY: Latin America & Tennessee (3)Between 3,000 and 900 BCearly evidence shows examples of the cultivation of agriculture creating a secure food supply and the groups began combining to form villages.

900-1600 CE

Tennessee History | HISTORY: Latin America & Tennessee (4)The peak of prehistoric cultural development occurred during the Mississippian Culture (900-1600 Current Era). New strains of corn and beans were cultivated for the increase in the population. Ceremonial mounds were built. The sophisticated production of personal items and pottery are indicators of the complex society of the last prehistoric inhabitants of Tennessee.

1539

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Hernando de Soto. Photo Courtesy of Biography.com

Hernando De Soto was born in Spain to a noble but poor family. From a very young age, he learned the strategies of the explorers of the Caribbean and Central America (plundering and seizure of slaves), and then as a captain under Francisco Pizarro, he engaged in the conquest of Peru.

De Soto landed at what is known today as Charlotte Harbor, Florida (Gulf Coast), with a military detachment of 640 volunteers, an average age of twenty-four years old, selected to establish a Spanish colony near the Mississippi River. Along with the men, he brought 200 horses, many dogs, various weaponry and sufficient supplies for the project. Ideally, the location like Mexico City would provide the opportunity to pillage silver and gold. Many Europeans had already tried a similar settlement but none on such a large scale and none had succeeded.

1540

After the spending the winter in northern Florida and with news of gold in the direction of the rising sun, he headed northeast in the Spring of 1540, crossing Alabama, Georgia and the Carolinas. With no success of finding gold, he returned to the west, entering Tennessee, Georgia and Alabama while trying to return to Mobile Bay to meet his ships. However, in October of 1540, the chief of the Tuscaloosa tribe ambushed De Soto’s army one hundred miles from the port. In spite of the leaving victorious, De Soto withdrew to the the north, past the Tennessee River so his men would be isolated and unable to escape to the ships. http://discoverkingsport.com/h-Cherokee-early.shtml

Photo Courtesy of the Heritage Foundation

The first contacts with the Europeans with Native American societies had a devastating effect due to the pillaging and the introduction of diseases to which the indigenous population lacked immunity. The social order of the native societies suffered an irreversible change. Those that survived, little by little reorganized into tribes that today we know was Creek, Choctaw, Chicaksaw, Cherokee and Catawba.

During the 150 years after De Soto, these new tribes moved to distinct regions of Tennessee. The powerful Cherokees settled on the banks of the Hiwassee River and the Little Tennessee River. The Chickasaw ruled the lands west of the Tennessee River. The Shawnee settled to the south near the Cumberland River.

1542

Hernando De Soto dies of a fever in Louisiana

1567

The Spanish explorer Captain Juan Pardo was the first to use the word Tennessee during an expedition during the summer of 1567.

1673

The Europeans resumedexploration of the region. The English merchants James Needham and Gabriel Arthur from Charles Town, South Carolina, crossed the Appalachian mountains to establish trade with the Cherokee in eastern Tennessee. The French progressed from the west lead by Father Jacques Marquette and the fur trader Louis Jolet, came down the Mississippi River. Both constructed strong arguments claiming the right to lands to the west of the Appalachian mountains.

Tennessee History | HISTORY: Latin America & Tennessee (7)

Photo Courtesy of TN History for Kids

1682

The French General La Salle built Fort Prudhomme (near Memphis), the first structure by a white man in Tennessee.

1714

M. Charleville, a French trader from New Orleans, established a trading post in gorge called French Lick (today’s Nashville).

1730

Sir Alexander Cummings, sent by the British Government, negotiated the first treaty between the English and the Cherokee. A group of seven Cherokee chiefs traveled with him to England to declare loyalty to the king.

Another explorer, Dr. Thomas Wather, was sent by the Loyal Land Company of Virginia and named the Cumberland Mountains and the Cumberland river in honor of the Duke of Cumberland, then Prime Minister of England.

1750

History tells us that the first person to use the world Tennessee with the current spelling was the Governor of South Carolina (1750), James Glen. Also, it is believed that Andrew Jackson was the one who proposed the name Tennessee when it joined the Union. However, public records indicate that Daniel Smith, secretary of the old Southwest Territory, proposed the first draft of the constitution for the formation of the new state, called, “the name of the New State of Tennessee.” http://www.tngenweb.org/campbell/hist-bogan/tennessee.html

1756

The Mayor Andrew Lewis built Fort Virginia near Echota, on Cherokee land, 25 miles southwest of Knoxville. Not much time passed before the Native Americans destroyed the fort.

The English built Fort Loudon (in what now is Vonore, Tennessee), with the intention of keeping the Cherokee loyalty divided. The plan failed and in 1760, the Cherokee surrounded the fort and finally assassinated most of the captives. In spite of that English disaster, the French lost the war and all of the their leverage in North America and ceded to the English who claimed the right to all the lands east of the Mississippi River.

1761

Peace was established between the English and Cherokee.

The Long Hunters explored eastern Tennessee and the Cumberland Gap, contracted by the Henderson Company of North Carolina. They are called the Long Hunters because of the long period of time of their hunting expeditions up to two years.

1763

Proclamation of 1763 forbade all settlement to the west of the Appalachians.

1769

The first settler in Tennessee. William Bean, supposedly the first permanent settler in Tennessee built a cabin on Boone’s Creek near the Watauga River.

1770

Tennessee History | HISTORY: Latin America & Tennessee (8)

Photo Courtesey of the North Carolina Office of Archives and History, Raleigh, NC.

The seizure of Native American lands.

Ignoring the British prohibition against settling on Indian lands, back-country Virginians and North Carolinians built four different communities in northeastern Tennessee: on the Watauga River, in North Holston, in Nolichucky and Carter Valley. The white man’s goal was no longer to have trading privileges but to take possession of land.

These are the beginnings of the race to grab western lands. One standout is the most ambitious speculators was Richard Henderson of Hillsborough, North Carolina. He managed to organize a treaty with the Cherokee for the purchase of a vast tract of land (much of Kentucky and Tennessee: close to 20 million acres), in exchange for six wagons filled with products with a value of 10,000 British pounds. One Cherokee Chief, Dragging Canoe, opposed the sale of the ancestral lands and established the Chickamauga tribe that harassed the settlements for twenty years.http://sos.tn.gov/sites/default/files/Pgs.%20499-555%20State%20History.pdf

1772

The Watauga Association. A manifesto of self-government (one of the first constitutions written in North America) for those who had moved to the area outside of the reach of organized government.

The aggressiveness of the settlers in the taking Native American lands created indigenous hostility so that the Native Americans sided with the British in the settlement conflict.

1775

The Transylvania Company, of North Carolina, bought a large tract of land from the Cherokee. Daniel Boone, who worked for the company, traced a path from Virginia (passing through Cumberland Gap) called “wilderness road” that was transformed into the principal road for the new settlements.

1776

The Beginning of the American Revolution

The Cherokee offensive was well-coordinated against the settlements of eastern Tennessee (the Battle of Island Flats and the attack of Fort Caswell). John Sevier, famous for his experience against Native Americans, led the Watauga settlers, resisted the attack and with the help of the militia from Virginia and North Carolina, invaded the Cherokee National, burning their villages.

Siding with the British during the American Revolution was disastrous for the Native Americans because it served the Americans as a pretext for reducing the tribe’s military power and encroach further on their land. In 1777, commissioners of Virginia and North Carolina negotiated the Long Island Treaty with the Cherokee.

1777-78

First six counties of the territory.

(Video) History of Tennessee

The territory, before becoming a state, fought to have a political voice and suffered without protection afforded by an organized government. The territory was formed by six counties from the west of North Carolina: Washington, Sullivan, and Green and East Tennessee and from the east; Davidson, Sumner and Tennessee in the Middle district.

After the Revolution, North Carolina did not want the expense of maintaining such distant settlements, as they were fighting with hostile tribesmen and needing roads, forts, and open waterways.

1779

Jonesboro was founded, the first town founded in Tennessee.

Coronal Shelby defeated the Chickamaugas near now Chattanooga.

Henderson, after having acquired his vast property, contracted Robertson and others to investigate the possibility of colonizing it. At the beginning of this year, approximately 300 white pioneers and blacks traveled to the place known as French Lick what today is known as Nashville. The men were guided by Robertson, while Donelson lead a fleet with women and children down river by the Tennessee y then up river by the Cumberland.

This first group of settlers scattered in the central basin in search of land that could be cultivated. For fourteen years they resisted violent attacks by the Creek and Chickamauga warriors from the villages on the Tennessee River, but they persevered to become the seeds of future communities.

After the disappearance of the indigenous threat, the explorers, hunters, land speculators and traders arrived, but it was the farmers who would finance the new population.

1783

The counties of Davidson and Greene were established in April 18th, 1783.

1784

The State of Frankland (later called The State of Franklin in honor of Benjamin Franklin) was established.

Tennessee History | HISTORY: Latin America & Tennessee (9)

Photo Courtesy of Tennessee History for Kids

The western settlers were not recognized until this year, frustrated by the insensibility of North Carolina, and so they formed a dissident state, the state of Franklin, in the area of Jonesboro. John Sevier was named the first governor. Although being recognized officially, the new state started to function like an independent government. The restlessness of the Tennesseans to achieve independence did not escape the attention of North Carolina that reaffirmed control of the distant counties to the west. The State of Franklin failed politically and by internal divisions between Tennesseans from the east and in 1788, ceased to exist. One of the events that precipitated the dissolution of the State of Franklin happened in February of this year. John Sevier, incredibly infuriated by an order of the North Carolina Courts where some of his slaves were seized, stormed the house of Colonel Tipton (official of North Carolina) with 150 of his supporters, Tipton had given refuge to a group of slaves. Reinforcements from Sullivan County arrived to resolve the situation, but not before gunfight erupted and left two men dead and others injured. This armed confrontation of Sevier against the authority of North Carolina cost Sevier his reputation.

This story shows how far the leaders of eastern Tennessee settlements were willing to go to achieve independence. The fame of Sevier, for his great military feats and his courageous attempt to achieve independence, were known abroad. One of the most interested observers in the State of Franklin was Don Diego de Gardoqui who had come to America in 1785, commissioned by Spain as a diplomat in the United States and with the American Congress. (Spain then controlled, from Louisiana, the waterways of the Mississippi and the land to the west of the river). Soon Gardoqui discovered violent resentment from the frontiersmen caused by the a proposition of the American Republic to transfer the rights of the free navigation of the Mississippi for 25 years in exchange for reciprocal advantages abroad offered by Spain.

The traders of Cumberland and across the region were unhappy and worried, they were equally concerned with their dissatisfaction with the central government that allowed absolute control of trade and with the resentment against the Spanish domination. When Gardoqui found out of the armed uprising of Sevier against North Carolina’s authority, he dispatched an emissary to sound the leading men of the communities of Franklin and Cumberland looking for the possibility of an alliance. The secret emissary was Dr. James White who had been appointment by the U.S. Government as the Superintendent of Indian Affairs in the south. White passed information to don Esteban Miro, Governor of Louisiana, that the leaders of “Frankland” and “Cumberland” had accepted enthusiastically the proposals by Gardoqui: pledge loyalty to Spain and renounce loyalty to other sovereignty or power. Satisfied with the secret communication that was received, Gardoqui informed his government that the settlers, addressed diplomatically, would be part of Spain in the action.

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John Sevier

Renewed attacks by the Native Americans in various counties and on the path to Kentucky, gave an opportunity for Sevier to recuperate his lost popularity with a great victory over the Native Americans in his village of Hiwassee. It was a common suspicion that the indigenous violence was incited by the Spanish (One Alexander Mcgillivray, mestizo, that acted as a representative for the Creek Indians put his tribes under the protection of the Spanish in 1784). In response to letters by Gardoqui requesting the application of pressure to prevent barbaric acts, Sevier and Robertson read between the lines evoked reaffirmations of the secret Spanish proposals.
With new inspiration, Sevier responded to the propositions of Dr. White.
A series of events truly cloak and dagger theater, have concluded when North Carolina relinquishes the southwest territory to the Federal Government, eliminating all possibilities of materializing the intentions of Spanish domination.

1788

The State of Franklin ceases to exist.

1789

North Carolina ratified a new Constitution of the United States.

George Washington was named to political prominence and landowner William Blount as territorial governor.

North Carolina, relinquished the western lands, the future Tennessee, to the federal government.

North Carolina had used these lands to compensate revolutionary soldiers and the in the Acceptance of Cession (1789), it reserved the right to continue transferring land to its’ veterans in the territory of Tennessee. William Blount was name the only governor of the Territory of the United States south of the Ohio River. This territory was divided in three districts: two for eastern Tennessee and the district around Cumberland. Each one with its own court, military and administration.

In spite of the prohibition of the federal government to occupy native lands, it produced a rise in land speculation and a race to amass and claim rights to large pieces of land to the west of North Carolina. The first political leaders of Tennessee-Blount, Sevier, Henderson and Andrew Jackson-were dedicated to land speculation.

1792

The Indian Ravages.

The continued illegal occupation of Native American lands by the settlers resulted in the Indian War of 1792. Cherokee and Creek warriors launched violent and repeated attacks on the Cumberland villages.

The counties of Jefferson and Knox were established on June 11, 1792.

1794

James Robertson, a leader in the Cumberland military, invaded the land of the Chickamauga (Nickajack expedition), burned the villages and eliminated the threat in this region. Other tribes ended the attacks based on the warning of the same consequences as the Cherokee and the Creek.

The county of Sevier was established on September 10th, 1794.

1795

Territorial census: Governor Blount organized a constitutional convention in Knoxville. Delegates from all counties prepared a State Constitution and Declaration of Democratic rights with the intent of proposing the application before the Congress to be admitted to the Union.

In the region of Memphis: During the summer of 1795, the Spanish governor of Louisiana, Manual Gayoso de Lemos, acquired Chickasaw Indian lands. On Chickasaw hill, to the south of Wolf River, he constructed Fort San Fernando of the Barrancas, giving Spain control of the waterways of the Mississippi river until 1797 when it was abandoned according to the Treaty of Pinckney. The Spanish dismantled the fort, removing the iron. The ruins passed unnoticed when the city of Memphis was designed twenty years later.

1796

Tennessee became the 16th State of the Union. Blount and William Cocke were named senators and Andrew Jackson was named representative.

The metallurgical industry of Tennessee was founded with the Smelting of Cumberland of James Robertson.

The counties of Montgomery and Robertson were established on April 9th, Grainger on April 22nd, Cocke and Union on October 9th.

1798 – 1806

The migration increased from the east with the diminished indigenous dangers. Treaties with the Cherokee and the Chickasaw opened fertile land for settlers in central Tennessee and the plateau of Cumberland. Tennessee became a door to the west.

Between 1790 and 1800 the population of Tennessee tripled. In 1800, Tennessee had a population of 105,602.

1799

The counties of Smith, Williamson and Wilson were established on October 26th, 1799.

1801

The county of Clayborne was established on October 29th, Anderson, Jackson and Roane were established on November 6th.

1803

The counties of Dickson, Rutherford were established on October 25th and Stewart on November 1st.

1806

The counties of Campbell, Overton and White were established on September 11th.

1807

The county of Maury was established on November 16th, Warren on November 26th, Bledsoe and Rhea on November 30th, Bedford and Franklin on December 30th.

1809

William Blount was named governor of Tennessee from 1809 to 1815.

The county of Humphreys was established on October 19th, Giles and Lincoln on November 14th.

1810

The population of Tennessee increases (since 1800) by 250% from 85,000 to 250,000.

African-Americans now make up 20% of the general population.

1812

The relationships between the indigenous and the colonials begins to deteriorate (turn sour) due to the continue violation of treaties and the illegal capture of land. The Indigenous Confederation was headed by Tecumseh and his brother the Prophet. The prophecy was that the earth would tremble and announce the coming struggle that was hoped to have ended with the colonization of the whites and seemed to be confirmed when there was an intense earthquake that impacted Tennessee from the west. The violent seismic event reversed the waters of the Mississippi, creating Reelfoot Lake.

The British government encourages and supplies the Indigenous uprising.

In June of this year War is declared against Great Britain.

(Video) Historic American Indians in Tennessee

1813

The attack of the Creek Redsticks at Fort Mims (Alabama), where 240 men, women and children died.

Governor William Blount recruits 2500 volunteers that under the command of Andrew Jackson begin a campaign against the Creek. In the final battle at Horseshoe Bend Jackson finally defeats the powerful military of the Creek.

Andrew Jackson (now risen to the rank of Major General of the Army of the United States) and his lieutenants William Carrol and Sam Houston gain national prominence.

With the battles of Mobile and Pensacola Jackson succeeds in expelling the British and marches toward New Orleans.

The invention of the cotton gin during this period contributes to the increase of cotton plantations in central Tennessee. With crops that depended on a lot of manual labor, like cotton and tobacco, the demand for slaves increased and by 1830 there were 7 times more slaves west of the Cumberland Plateau than in East Tennessee.

1815

Battle of New Orleans. Jackson definitively defeats General Sir Edward Pakenham who dies on the battlefield along with hundreds of his troops.

1817

The counties of Morgan (Oct. 15), Lawrence (Oct. 21), Marion (Nov. 20) and Wayne (Nov. 24) are established..

1818

Jackson campaigns in Florida against the Seminoles.

Spain cedes the territory of Florida to the United States.

A treaty with the Chickasaw Indians by Jackson and Issac Shelby of Kentucky extends the demarcation line of Tennessee to the west until the Mississippi river.

1819

The panic of 1819. A violent economic depression ruins the majority of banks and individuals.

Elihu Ambree establishes in Jonesboro the first newspaper in the United States that is dedicated to the liberation of slaves. It is called the Manumission Intelligencer and later the “Emancipator.”

Of the 95 already established counties in Tennessee, 36 are formed between 1796 and 1819. Nashville is already one of the principal cities of the Upper South.

80% of the population of Tennessee works in agriculture.

The county of Hamilton (Oct. 25), Harding and Monroe (Nov. 13) and Shelby (Nov. 24) are established.

1820

The last Native-Americans are pushed into the south east of the state.

The east of Tennessee transforms into the center of abolition.

The first steam ships arrive in Nashville.

1824

Tennessee begins to emerge into the age of the cultural and intellectual frontier. Nashville transforms into a center of education and arts in the south. The publication of music collected in the period permits the conservation of traditional songs of America.

1826

Nashville becomes the state capital. Knoxville was the capital since 1796.

The general assembly that has met in Murfreesboro since 1812 moves definitively to its current seat in Nashville.

Agriculture continues to be in the predominant industry in Tennessee, contributing food down river to the southern states that were concentrating their production on cotton and had to import their food.

1828

Andrew Jackson is elected President of the United States. Jackson brings a fundamental change to the politics of the White House that had previously been dominated by the aristocracy of Virginia and New England. With Jackson the standard passed to the heroes of the common man. No candidate in the future would be able to be elected president without counting on the support of workers and farmers.

1834

The constitution of Tennessee is amended. Freed slaves are not allowed to vote.

1835

Jackson refuses to comply with the decision of the Supreme Court that protects the autonomy of the Cherokee. Georgia continues to allow the evictions and usurpation of their ancestral lands.

A group of Cherokee signs a treaty of extradition, but they oppose giving up their lands. In 1838 the army of the United States is dispatched to evict them. This results in the painful trek—“The Trail of Tears.” A small group of Cherokee refused to obey the forced eradication and escape into the Smoky Mountains. Their descendants still live there.

The trail of tears….

1836

David Crockett dies alongside 103 other men in the battle of the Alamo in Texas.

1840

In this decade, Tennessee becomes the main producer of corn and pigs in the country. The diversification in the agricultural production of Tennessee makes the state the principal provider of foods for the southern states that concentrated their agricultural economy in the production of cotton.

1845

The architect William Strickland of Philadelphia comes to Nashville to design and construct the new state capital.

James K. Polk is elected President of the United States.

1850

Nashville transforms into an important center of education and the arts in the south. Music was already an important field since 1824 that made it possible to converse the traditional songs of America and the University of Nashville is well known as one of the most prestigious colleges of medicine in the country.

Tennessee still doesn’t possess any railway mileage. The commerce of the state was transported principally by boat or land routes.

1860

More than 1,200 miles of rails had been laid, mainly in eastern Tennessee. The mining industry grows in this area thanks to the railroad that connects it to the east coast.

Abraham Lincoln is elected President. His anti-slavery position is seen in Tennessee as potentially disastrous, especially in West Tennessee where the large capitals had invested in the slave industry. The movement towards secession begins.

1861

Beginning of the American Civil War

The American Civil War began on April 12 or 13, 1861, when the Confederates in Charleston, South Carolina, bombed Fort Sumter that was occupied by Union forces commanded by Major Robert Anderson.

When Anderson saw that the Confederates exceeded them in number and arms he opted to surrender the Fort to the demands of the Confederates.

There was no loss of lives in the exchange of fire. But after the battle the general opinion was that of going to war. President Lincoln solicited 75,000 volunteers to contain the rebellion that caused four other states to unite in the secession from the Confederation. The Civil War had begun.

In the beginning, Tennesseans showed little enthusiasm for separating from the nation with which they had shared sacrifices for so long. In 1860, they had given their support to John Bell, of the Constitutional Union Party, one of the 3 candidates for the Presidency of the United States who were defeated by Abraham Lincoln

Tennessee was divided in 3 zones on the question of the emancipation of slaves: the east of the state with its center in Knoxville was Unionist and in favor of abolition; the west of Tennessee, with its center in Memphis, was Confederate and defended the right to slavery and the center of the state with its capital of Nashville was equally divided, preferring to find a solution through dialogue.

Isham G. Harris, then Governor(1857-1862) called the Assembly General of Tennessee to an emergency meeting in January of 1861, after the attack by the Union at Fort Sumter, denouncing the Union and President Lincoln for their warlike action. This time, the vote of Central Tennessee favored succession and the state joined with the Confederation.

Of the ten southern secessionist states, Tennessee was the last to withdraw from the Union. 11 States formed the Confederate States of America: South Carolina, Mississippi, Florida, Alabama, Georgia, Louisiana, Texas, Virginia, Arkansas, Tennessee and North Carolina.

1862

The Battle of Donelson

The Battle at Fort Donelson, the 11th to 16th of February, 1862, was fought shortly after the capture of Fort Henry on the 6th of February.

Grant, after capturing Fort Henry (on the Tennessee River) marched his troops overland 12 miles to Fort Donelson (on the Cumberland River) and the battle was fought from the 11th to the 16th of February, 1862. This victory opened the Cumberland River as an avenue for the invasion of the south by the Union forces, and also elevated Brigadier General Ulysses S. Grant to a position of notoriety with the rank of Major General and earning him the nickname “Unconditional Surrender” (Unconditional Surrender—using his first two initials U.S).

On the morning of the 15th of February, the fort was surrounded by the Unionist forces and Brigadier General John B. Floyd who was in command of the Confederates, launched a surprise attack against Grant’s army searching for an escape route. Despite obtaining a good advantage he ordered his troops to return to the fort.

Early on the 16th, Floyd and his second in command, Brigadier General Gideon J. Pillow, handed over command to Brigadier General Simon Bolivar Buckner who accepted the conditions of “Unconditional Surrender” from General Grant.

The Battle of Shiloh

(Video) Native American history of Tennessee Revised

Also called the Battle of Pittsburg Landing, it was an important battle in the western theater of the Civil War. This battle was fought the 6th and 7th of April, 1862, in the southeast of Tennessee.

An Union army under the command of Major General Ulysses S. Grant infiltrated Tennessee by way of the Tennessee River and camped on Pittsburg Landing on the west bank of the river. The Confederate forces under the command of Generals Albert Sidney Johnston and P.G.T Beauregard had considerable success on the first day but were defeated on the second day of the battle.

The first day the Confederates attacked with the objective of forcing the Union defenses to retreat to the river toward the marshes of Owl Creek, with the objective of defeating Grant’s Tennessee Army before the expected arrival of the Ohio Army of Major General Don Carlos Buell.

In a Confederate confusion during the battle, the Unionists retreated towards the northeast, toward Pittsburg Landing and regrouped in defensive positions under Brigadier Generals Benjamin M. Prentiss and W.H.L. Wallace.

General Johnston died the first day of the battle and Beauregard decided not to continue the offensive that night.

General Buell’s reinforcements and Grant’s army arrived that night and reversed the situation when the commanders of the Union launched a counterattack. The Confederates were forced to retreat from the bloodiest battle in the history of the United States and lost the hope of blocking the Union’s advance toward the north of Mississippi.

First Battle of Murfreesboro

The 10th of June, 1862, Major General Don Carlos Buell, at the head of the Army of Ohio, began a slow advance toward Chattanooga that had been under threat the 7th and 8th of June by the forces of Brigadier General James S. Negley. Responding to the threat, the Confederate government sent General Forrest to Chattanooga to organize a cavalry brigade. Then in the month of July the Confederate Cavalry under the command of Forrest and Colonel John Hunt Morgan made incursions and attacks on Central Tennessee and in Kentucky.

Forrrest departed from Chattanooga the 9th of June with two cavalry regiments and combining with other units on the way, created a force of 1400 men. The principal objective was to attack Murfreesboro, an important railroad resupply center for the Union railroad from Nashville to Chattanooga, at dawn on the 13th of July,

The garrison in Murfreesboro was camped in three locations around the city and included detachments of four units, infantry, cavalry and artillery, under the command of Brigadier General Thomas Turpin Crittenden, who had arrived the 12th of July. Between 4:15 and 4:30 in the morning of the 13th of July, Forrest surprised the Union squads at Woodbury, to the east of Murfreesboro and rapidly invaded a Federal hospital and the camp of a detachment of the 9th Regiment of Pennsylvania Cavalry. Other Confederate troops attacked the other camps of the Union command, the prison and Headquarters. When afternoon arrived all the units had surrendered to Forrest.

The Battle of Stone’s River

(In the South, simply the Battle of Murfreesboro) was fought the 31st of December, 1862, to the 2nd of January, 1863.

Major General William S. Rosencrans, at the head of the Cumberland Army, marched from Nashville to Murfreesboro the 26th of December to confront the Army of Tennessee, led by General Braxton Bragg. Of all the important battles of the Civil War, the one at Murfreesboro resulted in the highest percentage of fatalities on both sides.

Although the result of the battle was inconclusive, the Union Army drove back two Confederate attacks and the subsequent retreat of the Confederates was a very necessary incentive for the moral of the Union after the defeat at the Battle of Fredericksburg (Virginia, 1862) y denied the Confederate aspirations of controlling Central Tennessee.

The Chattanooga Campaign

The Chattanooga Campaign was a series of maneuvers and battles during October and November of 1863. After defeating General Rosencrans at the battle of Chickamauga in September, the Confederate Army under the command of General Braxton Bragg besieged the Rosencrans forces by occupying key high terrain around Chattanooga. Major General Ulysses S. Grant had been given the command of the Western Forces and considerable reinforcements arrived with him in Chattanooga from Mississippi and also from the East.

After opening a supply corridor for the troops and animals that had been deprived of supplies, Grant’s army repelled a Confederate counterattack at the Battle of Wauhathcie the 28th and 29th of October, 1863.

The 23rd of November the Army of the Cumberland under the command of Major General George H. Thomas managed to gain the high ground at Orchard Knob while part of the Tennessee Army under the command of Major General William T. Sherman maneuvered to launch a surprise attack on the right flank of Bragg at Missionary Ridge. The 24th of November troops arrived from the east under the command of Major General Joseph Hooker and defeated the Confederates in the battle of Lookout Mountain and began a maneuver toward Bragg’s left flank in Rossville.

The 25th of November Sherman’s attack on Bragg’s right flank made little progress. With the intention of distracting Bragg’s attention, Grant authorized Thomas’ troops to advance the center of the line to the base of Missionary Ridge. A combination of misunderstood orders and the pressure of the tactical situation resulted in Thomas’ troops gaining the top of Missionary Ridge, putting the Tennessee Army in flight and retreat to Dalton, Georgia. There, finally, the Confederates managed to successfully stop the Unionists at the Battle of Ringgold Gap.

Bragg’s defeat eliminated the last Confederate control in Tennessee and opened the doors to invasion of the Deep South and the Atlanta Campaign by General Sherman in 1864.

1864

The Battle of Fort Pillow

Fort Pillow was located 40 miles to the north of Memphis and had been constructed by Brigadier General Gideon Johnson Pillow in 1862. Both sides used it during the war and the Confederates had evacuated it during the fall of New Madrid and Island #10 to the Union who had occupied it since.

The 16th of March, 1864 Major General Nathan Bedford Forrest launched an offensive to the west of Tennessee and Kentucky. The objective was to destroy the Union waterway defenses from Paducah, Kentucky to south of Memphis.

The Battle of Paducah was the 25th of March and causes great losses to the city and to the military supplies of the Union. Then they set off to Fort Pillow in search of the provisions and horses they needed.

Fort Pillow was protected by a troop of 600 men, black and white, many of whom were liberated slaves. The attack by Forrest began at 10 am and was brutal and without cease. Close to 3:30 pm General Forrest ordered them to surrender but the response was negative and General Forrest ordered the final attack. It was at that moment that what is described as the Massacre of Fort Pillow began, in which soldiers, women and children were indiscriminately killed by bayonet, saber and gun.

From there the War cry “Remember Fort Pillow” was born for black soldiers, unifying them to struggle without cease against death.

The Battle of Nashville

The battle of Nashville was a two-day battle during the Franklin Campaign—Nashville represented the end of a great escalation in the conflict in the Western theater of the American Civil War. It took place in Nashville, Tennessee, the 15th and 16th of December, 1864, between the Confederate Army of Tennessee under Lieutenant General John Bell Hood and the Federal forces under the command of Major General George J. Thomas. In one of the largest victories achieved by theUnion Armyduring the war, Thomas attacked and routed Hood’s army, largely destroying its capacity as a battle force.

1865

The Civil War ends. Former Vice President Andrew Johnson is now President and it falls to him the difficult task of reunifying the North with the South.

The Ku Klux Klan forms in Pulaski with Confederate war veterans. General Nathan Bedford Forrest serves as the Grand Wizards of the vigilante organization that terrorizes the population with their extreme ideology.

Tennessee is the first of the Southern states to be readmitted to the Union on the 24th of July of that year.

Fisk University is founded in Nashville as a college of higher education principally for recently freed slaves

1868

The House of Representative (Congress) votes to denounce Andrew Jackson and challenge him in court. The following year Johnson resigns and retires to his house in Greenville.

1870

The state constitution is amended.

1873

Tennessee History | HISTORY: Latin America & Tennessee (11)

Daniel Dubois / Vanderbilt University

The University of Vanderbilt is founded in Nashville. It was named in honor of Cornelius Vanderbilt, a businessman who donated a million dollars to construct and maintain the institution.

Cornelius Vanderbilt was born in New York in 1794. He made his fortune in transport systems, first creating a service from State Island and later to California and France. Then he made a change to railroad and at the time of his death had created an important transportation system in America. He was one of the most successful American capitalists of the century. During the Civil War he donated a Vanderbilt steamboat to the government of the United States and then the funds for the foundation of Vanderbilt University.

Andrew Johnson dies of a heart attack, the only ex-presidente to have returned to serve in the US Senate.

1878

Of the 19, 600 residents of Memphis, 5200 of them die in a yellow fever epidemic.

1879

Blount College transforms into the University of Tennessee.

Blount College, the antecedent of the University of Tennessee, was established in Knoxville in 1794, two years before Tennessee became a state. Blount College was located close to what is today the commercial center of Knoxville and was characterized by being non-sectarian, which was a very uncommon for an institution of higher learning during that time. The University has continued to be non-denominational and is known as the being the oldest university to the west of the Appalachians.

From the beginning Blount College was only for men, as were the majority of college during those times. This restriction was eliminated in 1892 when the first women students were admitted. The University has been coeducational since then.

1897

The state of Tennessee celebrated its Centenary (although a year late) with a great exposition in Nashville.

The Centennial Exposition of Tennessee was the last expression of the Golden Age of the High South—a demonstration of industrial technology and papier-mâché versions of the world wonders. The Parthenon of Nashville was constructed of bone, wood and brick. Reconstructed in concrete after 1920, it remains still as an attraction in the city. During the six months that is was in Centennial Park, the Exposition attracted almost two million visitors to the spectacular monuments of the Southern recuperation.

Then Governor Robert Taylor said: “Some of those who saw the ruin of our land 30 years ago will appreciate the fact that we have built miracles.”

1909

Prohibition of alcohol production for one year.

1914

World War I begins.

(Video) Tennessee - The 10 Best Places To Live & Work - Family, Job, Retiree - Around The World

1916

The Invention of the Tow Truck

The tow truck industry had its beginning in 1916 in the city of Chattanooga, after Ernest Holmes, Sr., native of Chattanooga, helped a friend recover his automobile with three posts, a pulley and a chain hooked to the chassis of a 1913 Cadillac. After patenting his design, Holmes began the manufacture of tow trucks (called wreckers) and accessories for sale to mechanic garages for cars and whoever else had interest in recovering or towing crashed vehicles or with mechanical problems.

His first factory was a little local one on Market Street, a few blocks

With the expansion of the automobile industry Holmes’ business grew and eventually his products gained a world reputation for their quality and capacity. Ernest Holmes, Sr. died in 1943 and his son, Ernest Holmes, Jr. took charge of the company until he retired in 1973. That year the company was sold to the Dover Corporation. And that same year the grandson of the founder, Gerald Holmes, left the company and stated a new one named Century Wreckers. He constructed the factory in neighboring Ooltewah, Tennessee, and quickly it transformed into competition for the original company with its hydraulic system trucks.

1918

The 9th of July, in Nashville, 101 people died and 171 were wounded the worst train accident in the history of the United States.

Corporal Alvin C. York kills more than 20 Germans and forces 132 others to surrender the 8th of October in 1918, close to Chateau Chehery in France. This earns him the Congressional Medal of Honor.

1922

The first radio station in Tennessee, WNAV, begins to transmit from Knoxville.

1925

The radio transmission of the Grand Ole Opry begins in Nashville.

The 10th of June, Tennessee adopts a new book on the study of biology that denies the Theory of Evolution.

Professor John T. Scopes is declared guilty of violating the state law that prohibits the teaching of the Theory of Evolution. The “monkey trial” as it was called, attracts world attention when two celebrities, William Jennings Bryan and Clarence Darrow battled in court. They fined Scopes $100 in the end but the penalty was annulled due to a minor legal error.

1928

President Calvin Coolidge, the 26th of March, signs the legislation that creates the National military park “Fort Donelson National Battlefield” on the site of the first important victory of the Union in the Civil War. (February 1862)

1933

The Federal government establishes the Tennessee Valley Authority to conserve and develop the resources of the Tennessee River Valley.

1935

Elvis Presley is born the 8th of January in Tupelo, Mississippi.

1939

A network transmits for the first time from the “Grand Ole Opry.”

1941

Glenn Miller and his Orchestra record Chattanooga Choo Choo in Hollywood on the 6th of May and it is an immediate and tremendous success.

1942

The federal government begins to construct an atomic energy plant in Oak Ridge. They begin work to build an atom bomb.

Aretha Franklin, Queen of Soul, is born in Memphis.

1943

The 5th of June the Grand Ole Opry moves to the Ryman Auditorium, The “Mother Church” of country music.

1948

The first television station in the state: WMCT-TV in Memphis.

New state elections deny control to the political boss E.H. Crump.

1949

The American Museum of Atomic Energy is inaugurated in Oak Ridge on the 19th of March.

1950-53

10,500 Tennesseans volunteer to serve in the Korean War.

1952

Sun Studio in Memphis makes its first rock ‘n roll recording.

The state constitution is amended.

Elvis Presley graduates from L.C.Humes high school in Memphis the 14th of June.

1955

The Grand Ole Opry is transmitted on television for the first time.

The 1st of December of this year, Rosa Louise McCauley Parks, refuses to obey the bus driver who orders her to give up her seat to a white passenger. The defiant action of Rosa Parks triggered the bus boycott in Montgomery and transformed her into an icon of the resistance to racial segregation.

1956

The National Guard is called to control a racial disturbance when 12 African-American children were admitted to schools in Clinton, TN.

Elvis Presley appears for the second time on the Milton Berle show, the Texaco Star Theater, singing Heartbreak Hotel. The critics say that his act appears like an aboriginal dance.

1958

Elvis Presley presents himself for military service. Number US 53310761 is now a soldier in the army and Uncle Same will lose half a million dollars in taxes for each year of Elvis’ military service.

1960 and 1963

The constitution is amended two times.

1967

The law prohibiting the teaching of the theory of evolution is overturned.

The State Community College in Columbia is established.

1968

Having bought a rifle in Birmingham, Alabama, snipe Earl Ray assassinates the civil rights leader Martin Luther King Jr., on the balcony of a motel in Memphis, the 4th of April, provoking violent protests in many cities.

1970

The census indicates that the population of Tennessee is 3,926,018.

Winfield Dunn is the first republican elected Governor of Tennessee in 50 years.

1972

New amendment to the constitution.

1976

Alex Haley wins the Pulitzer Prize for Literature and international acclaim for his work “Roots,” that has been translated into more than 30 languages. Alex Haley is also the co-author of the “Autobiography of Malcolm X.”

1977

Elvis Presley dies in Memphis.

James Earl Ray, the assassin of Martin Luther King Jr., escapes from the Brushy Mountain State Prison on the 10th of June along with 6 other convicts, but is recaptured on the 13th of June.

1978

The constitution is amended.

1980

Tennessee reaches a population of 4,591,120 million. This is an increase of 17% above the census of 1970.

1982

“Energy makes the world go ‘round” is the theme of the World Fair in Knoxville.

1987

General Motors opens the new automobile plant for the Saturn Corporation in Springfield.

1991

The National Museum of Human Rights in Memphis is inaugurated in the same place as the Lorraine Motel where Martin Luther King was assassinated, the 4th of April of 1968.

1992

Albert Gore, Jr. is elected Vice-president of the United States.

1994

The population of Tennessee reaches 5,175,240 million; the 17th highest in the United States.

1996

Celebration year of the Bicentennial of Tennessee as a state in the Union since 1796.

1998

The University of Tennessee football team wins the National Championship.

(Video) Birth of Tennessee

2002

The National Museum of Civil Rights inaugurates its expansion that includes Bessie Brewer’s boarding house in front of the Lorraine Motel, where Earl Ray used a hunting rifle to assassinate Martin Luther King.

2010

Torrential rains on the 1st and 2nd of May cause the worst floods in the history of the state.

FAQs

Was Tennessee a Spanish colony? ›

In the 16th century, three Spanish expeditions passed through what is now Tennessee.

What historical events happened in Tennessee? ›

1541 - Spanish explorer Hernando de Soto is the first European to visit Tennessee. 1714 - Fort Lick is established near where Nashville will one day be located. 1763 - The British take control from the French after the French and Indian War. 1784 - The State of Franklin is established.

What are 3 historical facts about Tennessee? ›

Under the new federal constitution, the region was organized as the Territory South of the River Ohio. In 1796 Tennessee became a state, the first admitted from territorial status, with Knoxville as its first capital, John Sevier as its first governor, and Gen. Andrew Jackson as its first congressman.

Where did the original settlers of Tennessee come from? ›

Treaties with the Cherokee and the Chickasaw opened fertile land for settlers in central Tennessee and the plateau of Cumberland. Tennessee became a door to the west. Between 1790 and 1800 the population of Tennessee tripled.

Who lived in Tennessee first? ›

The Paleo-Indians (lived 15,000BCE to 8,000BCE) were the first known people to inhabit our state. They were considered nomadic people because they followed animals wherever they roamed and hardly ever stayed in one place.

Who were the first families to settle in Tennessee? ›

These pioneer settlers -- of largely Scots-Irish, German, English, French Huguenot, Cherokee, African, and Welsh origin -- were part of the first great westward movement. First Families of Tennessee is a tribute to those men and women who established the state.

What are 5 interesting facts about Tennessee? ›

10 weird things you probably don't know about Tennessee
  • Tennessee is tied for the state with the most borders. ...
  • A Tennessee lake was created by an earthquake. ...
  • Kingston was the state capital for one day. ...
  • Tennesee has 10 state songs. ...
  • Tennessee is the birthplace of the tow truck.
Jun 1, 2018

What is Tennessee famous for? ›

Tennessee is known for its music scene, high-quality whiskey, and home to the Great Smokies. Country music artists and singers such as Elvis Presley and Dolly Parton hail from Tennessee, and the state has been home to many other popular musicians over the years.

What was Tennessee originally called? ›

Called the "Volunteer State," Tennessee became the 16th state of the Union in 1796. It was the first territory admitted as a state under the federal Constitution. Before statehood, it was known as the Territory South of the River Ohio. The name Tennessee is derived from the name of a Cherokee village, Tanasi.

What is Tennessee's culture? ›

Its population has always been a diverse blend of English, Scotch-Irish, and, more recently, freed African-American slaves. All of this culture tossed together has created the amazing music and dining scene that is the backbone of Tennessee society.

Were there slaves in Tennessee? ›

As a result, slavery was more common in Middle and West Tennessee than mountainous East Tennessee. By 1830, there were seven times as many slaves west of the Cumberland Plateau as in East Tennessee. In addition to slaves, Tennessee had a fairly large population of free African Americans.

What part of Tennessee had the most slaves? ›

West Tennessee, the area between the Tennessee and Mississippi Rivers, ultimately the richest cotton producing section of the state, saw the greatest concentration of slaves.

Did Tennessee have plantations? ›

One of Nashville's well-known plantations is The Hermitage, President Andrew Jackson's home. Before it became Jackson's, the land was bought by Nathaniel Hays in 1780 then later sold to the future president.

What does Tennessee mean in Cherokee? ›

TENNESSEE: Name is of Cherokee origin from a tribe located at a village site called Tanasse (also spelled Tennese). The State is named for its principal river, which has been interpreted as meaning "bend in the river." However, this has not been substantiated, and the meaning is considered to be lost.

Did the Trail of Tears Go through Tennessee? ›

The Tennessee Trail of Tears story is one of removal camps and detachment routes. Cherokee driven from their homes in Georgia and North Carolina arrived in Tennessee, where they waited to be organized into “detachments” to take them to Indian Territory (present-day Oklahoma), a home they never wanted.

How old are arrowheads found in Tennessee? ›

It's a 10- to 12,000-year-old ceremonial arrowhead from what's called the Paleolithic period. Those qualities, though, bring out the biggest question about the Christmas Star and arrowheads like it.

What immigrants settled in Tennessee? ›

Most of these early settlers were of English and Ulster Scottish origin, although some were of German, Irish, and French ancestry. Tennessee continued to attract settlers from the Atlantic Coast into the 1830's and received Irish and German settlers during the European immigrations beginning at that time.

Who was the first white man born in Tennessee? ›

Shortly after the cabin's completion, Lydia Bean gave birth to a son, Russell Bean, who would be historically accepted as the first European-American born in present-day Tennessee.

Why is Tennessee so beautiful? ›

There is so much natural beauty in Tennessee, from locations in the Great Smoky Mountains to the quiet parks and streams nestled in pockets throughout the state. In contrast, the neon imagery in downtown Nashville and the lights of Chattanooga also have a vibrant appeal, especially through the lens of the camera.

What all was invented in Tennessee? ›

Here are six foods this part of the country has brought to the world – not counting those M&Ms.
  • Little Debbie. Based in Collegedale, a suburb of Chattanooga, Little Debbie is the No. ...
  • Krystal. ...
  • Mountain Dew. ...
  • MoonPies. ...
  • Mayfield Ice Cream. ...
  • Petro's.
Jan 25, 2019

Which Tennessee lake created earthquake? ›

Reelfoot Lake, shallow lake on the boundary between Lake and Obion counties in northwestern Tennessee, U.S., near Tiptonville. It was formed by the earthquakes that occurred along the New Madrid Fault in the winter of 1811–12.

What is the most famous food in Tennessee? ›

Country ham is arguably Tennessee's most famous delicacy. The hams are salt-cured and served boiled, broiled or fried, and give Virginia's Smithfield hams a run for their money.

What is the number 1 attraction in Tennessee? ›

Hello, Dollywood, Pigeon Forge

Named after country singer Dolly Parton, Dollywood has long been Tennessee's most popular ticketed attraction, luring more than three million visitors per year.

Why are there no Indian reservations in Tennessee? ›

There are no federally recognized Indian tribes in Tennessee today. Most Native Americans were forced to leave Tennessee during the Indian Removals of the 1800's.

Why are there no reservations in Tennessee? ›

The Revolutionary War marked the end of colonial treaties. The federal government became the authority to treat with the Indians. In the end, all the Native's land and reservations were ceded to Tennessee. Original map of Indian land transfers in Tennessee and portions of the surrounding states.

Where did the Shawnee tribe live in Tennessee? ›

Their primary village was near the present site of Nashville. This location placed them into direct conflict with the Cherokees on the east and the Chickasaws to the west.

Was Tennessee a Confederate state? ›

On June 8, 1861, Tennessee seceded from the Union, the 11th and final state to join the Confederacy.

What does the name Chattanooga mean? ›

The name “Chattanooga” is derived from a Creek Indian word meaning “rock coming to a point,” a reference to Lookout Mountain.

What do Tennessee mean? ›

Samuel Cole Williams, a great writer and historian of Tennessee, wrote that the word "Tennessee" translated into the word "the bends," which undeniably means the "bends" of a river.

What language is spoken in Tennessee? ›

Tennessee
Tennessee ᏔᎾᏏ (Cherokee) Tanasi
Demonym(s)Tennessean Big Bender (archaic) Volunteer (historical significance)
Language
• Official languageEnglish
• Spoken languageLanguage spoken at home English: 94.6% Spanish: 3.9% Other: 1.5%
50 more rows

What is the biggest religion in Tennessee? ›

Religion. Tennessee has always been, and remains, predominantly Christian. About 81% of the population identifies as Christian, with Protestants making up 73% of the population.

What is it like living in Tennessee? ›

You can head to a vibrant city like Memphis or Nashville, or opt for a quiet life in the Appalachian Mountains. Tennessee offers a rich culture, natural beauty and a low cost of living.

Can you turn right on red in TN? ›

Right-On-Red Rule

As long as there's no sign specifically restricting it, Tennessee law permits drivers to make a right turn after stopping at a red light. However, drivers need to use caution and follow the normal right-of-way rules when making the turn.

Why can't Tennessee sell hollow logs? ›

Selling hollow logs

In Tennessee, it is completely illegal to buy or sell hollow logs. This law was originally created to prevent harassment of innocent clients after several log sellers were allegedly manipulating and threatening community members into buying their product.

What is the craziest law in America? ›

In Alaska it is illegal to wake a sleeping bear to take a photo, while in Arizona keep your donkey awake near the bathtub, as it's illegal for a donkey to sleep in one. Still probably appropriate in today's terms, it is illegal to ride a horse while under the influence in Colorado.

What is the blackest city in Tennessee? ›

Now majority-black, the city of Memphis is home to more than four hundred thousand African Americans, making it one of the largest population centers of this ethnic group. At least eight other municipalities have African-American majorities: Bolivar, Brownsville, Gallaway, Gates, Henning, Mason, Stanton, Whiteville.

When did Tennessee end slavery? ›

On October 24, 1864, Johnson freed all the slaves in the state of Tennessee.

What was the last state to free slaves? ›

Mississippi Becomes Final State to Abolish Slavery.

Is Nashville a black city? ›

For decades, Blacks have made up more than one-quarter of Nashville's population. During our "it city" explosion in the last decade, many Asians, Latinos, Middle Easterners and others have been added to the mix. U.S. Census Bureau figures show non-Hispanic whites now make up only 55% of the city's population.

How white is Tennessee? ›

Table
Population
Persons 65 years and over, percent 17.0%
Female persons, percent 51.0%
Race and Hispanic Origin
White alone, percent 78.2%
54 more rows

Was there an underground railroad in Tennessee? ›

Former slaves passed down stories and information about the Underground Railroad to family and trusted friends. Few people who assisted escaping slaves kept anything in writing that could incriminate them during the actual days that the Underground Railroad operated in Tennessee.

What was the biggest plantation in Tennessee? ›

A year before the Civil War, Wessyngton became America's largest tobacco plantation and the world's largest single producer.

How many slaves did Tennessee have? ›

The Public Square
US Slave Census 1860-Tennessee
CountyTOTAL POPULATIONTotal Slaves
WILLIAMSON23,82712,367
WILSON26,0727,964
Tennessee TOTALS1,109,801275,719
4 more rows
Apr 2, 2022

What is the name of the plantation in Tennessee? ›

Belle Meade plantation is one of the premier plantations in Tennessee and one of the top attractions in the state. It once stretched over 5400 acres and hosted celebrities, presidents, and countless southern gentlemen. Even though it is now just 24 acres, many of the important elements remain.

Was Tennessee a Confederate state? ›

On June 8, 1861, Tennessee seceded from the Union, the 11th and final state to join the Confederacy.

What was Tennessee called before 1796? ›

Called the "Volunteer State," Tennessee became the 16th state of the Union in 1796. It was the first territory admitted as a state under the federal Constitution. Before statehood, it was known as the Territory South of the River Ohio. The name Tennessee is derived from the name of a Cherokee village, Tanasi.

How did Tennessee get its nickname? ›

Tennessee became known as the “Volunteer State” during the War of 1812 due to the key role played by volunteers from the Tennessee militia.

Why did Tennessee Burn in the 1800s? ›

The European settlers found fire to be useful for clearing "new ground" for cultivation. As time passed there became too many settlers to allow fires to burn uninterrupted. By the late 1800's "free ranging" cattle and hogs had somewhat replaced wild animals foraging in the grasslands and woodlands.

What was Tennessee's stance on slavery? ›

From the beginning slaves were among white Tennesseans' most valuable assets; in time, both Nashville and, most notably, Memphis established permanent slave markets. From 1826 until 1853, legislation outlawing interstate trade in slaves was ignored. East Tennessee manifested an early antislavery sentiment.

What side was TN in the Civil War? ›

Introduction. Tennessee joined the Confederacy in 1861, but Tennessee soldiers served in both the Union and Confederate armies. Tennessee was the last state to join the Confederacy. However people in some counties in the northeast section were very loyal to the Union.

Why was Tennessee important in the Civil War? ›

During the Civil War, Tennessee's rivers and rails were critical arteries to the Deep South, and both United States and Confederate forces fought hard to control them in major battles like Fort Donelson, Shiloh, Stones River, Chattanooga, Franklin, and Nashville.

What does Tennessee mean in Cherokee? ›

TENNESSEE: Name is of Cherokee origin from a tribe located at a village site called Tanasse (also spelled Tennese). The State is named for its principal river, which has been interpreted as meaning "bend in the river." However, this has not been substantiated, and the meaning is considered to be lost.

What makes Tennessee so special? ›

With its mild weather, vibrant cities and low cost of living, it's easy to see why Tennessee's population is on the rise. The state's world-class dining scene, famous Appalachian Mountain range and diverse cities also make it a particularly interesting place to call home.

What are 5 interesting facts about Tennessee? ›

10 weird things you probably don't know about Tennessee
  • Tennessee is tied for the state with the most borders. ...
  • A Tennessee lake was created by an earthquake. ...
  • Kingston was the state capital for one day. ...
  • Tennesee has 10 state songs. ...
  • Tennessee is the birthplace of the tow truck.
Jun 1, 2018

What is a person from Tennessee called? ›

Tennessee. People who live in Tennessee are called Tennesseans.

How was Tennessee involved in the War of 1812? ›

Introduction. During the War of 1812, Tennessee furnished 18,361 infantry men, 9,095 cavalry men, 110 artillery men, and 267 men in miscellaneous troops for a total of 27,833 men. The backwoods "hunters of Kentucky and Tennessee" took pride in defeating the professional British army at the Battle of New Orleans in 1815 ...

Why did Tennessee not go through reconstruction? ›

Congress placed much of the South under the control of the federal military in 1867. Tennessee did not share this fate since the state had rejoined the union. Tennesseans struggled to learn how to live and work with each other under new circumstances and to rebuild communities damaged by war.

Why were settlers attracted to the Tennessee territory? ›

The new state of Tennessee began to grow quickly once the threat of war with Native Americans declined. After 1806, the state began to sell public land for low prices, which attracted settlers from the East.

Why was Tennessee denied readmission to the Union in 1865? ›

Congress ordered that only states that extended citizenship and legal protection to freedmen and denied voting rights to former Confederates by ratifying the Fourteenth Amendment would be readmitted. Ultimately, Johnson's conflict with Congress would lead to his impeachment.

Videos

1. A Brief History of Tennessee
(Historycentral)
2. The Civil War in the Volunteer State (Tennessee)
(American Battlefield Trust)
3. Tennessee Williams documentary
(Write Like)
4. The History of Archaeology in Tennessee
(McClung Museum of Natural History and Culture)
5. Tennessee for Kids | US States Learning Video
(Homeschool Pop)
6. Tennessee - Geography & Counties | 50 States of America
(KLT)

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