31 Interesting Facts About Tennessee

Author: Jason Coles

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Updated On:

Tennessee is a totally landlocked state situated in the central-southeastern US. Covered in beautiful, rich forests, and breathtaking mountain ranges, there is a lot to do and see when visiting, relocating, or journeying your way through the state.

Interesting facts about Tennessee

Tennessee borders 8 other US states! Kentucky and Virginia to the north, North Carolina to the east, Mississippi, Alabama, and Georgia in the south, and Arkansas and Missouri along the Mississippi River in the west. Bordering so many states makes Tennessee extremely accessible as it acts as a central hub for a lot of different states.

Here Are 31 Interesting Facts About Tennessee

Tennessee’s beautiful cities, charming small towns, and amazing scenery make the Volunteer State extremely easy on the eye, and with its various iconic places, and unique culture comes a plethora of interesting facts about Tennessee that you may not have heard about.

1. Located in Greenville, Tennessee you will find the only monument in the US dedicated to both the Union and Confederate soldiers.

2. Tennessee’s capital city is Nashville and it boasts the highest population out of any other city within the state, with over 673,000 residents.

3. Speaking of Nashville, the iconic city is home to the longest-running live radio program in the world. The Grand Ole Opry has been broadcasting consistently every weekend since 1925.

4. Oak Ridge, Tennessee is known as the Energy Capital of the World for its work and influence on the creation of the atomic bomb, and continuing research into energy use.

5. Tennessee is home to many incredible places, and none come more iconic and aesthetically pleasing as the Great Smokey Mountains National Park, the country’s most frequently visited national park, averaging almost 10 million visitors per year!

6. The postal abbreviation for Tennessee is TN, and the four-letter state abbreviation is Tenn.

7. The brightly-colored soft drink, Mountain Dew was invented in Tennessee by two brothers, Ally and Barney Hartman as a drink mixer to help cut the acrid taste of homemade moonshine. The following years saw the brand take off and soon enough, Pepsi bought the company in 1964.

8. Tennessee’s aquarium is one of the world’s largest freshwater aquariums in the world and houses over 12,000 animals and 700 species! It is Chattanooga’s biggest attraction.

9. Nashville, TN is a place to appreciate for a multitude of different reasons, maybe with the most significant being that the capital city is the birthplace of cotton candy! In 1897, William Morrison and John C. Wharton found created what was then called “fairy floss”.

10. Tennessee’s state flower is the Iris and the state bird is the Mockingbird.

11. Here are some of the most famous people to come from Tennessee:

  • Miley Cyrus.
  • Justin Timberlake.
  • Morgan Freeman.
  • Megan Fox.
  • Dolly Parton.
  • Tina Turner.
  • Johnny Knoxville.

12. Paris, TN is home to a pretty awesome Eiffel Tower replica, standing at seven stories tall!

13. Shelby County has more horses per capita than any other county within the United States.

14. The Memphis Cotton Exchange handles around one-third of the United States’ entire cotton crop.

15.  The Tennessee native, Hettie Caraway was the first woman ever to be named a US Senator, a tremendous achievement for women, the US, and Tennessee!

16. The state capital city, Nashville is known as the Music City, and is considered to be the country music capital of the world.

17. In 1916, the grocery store, Piggly Wiggly opened in Memphis, TN, and became the first-ever store to be self-service, marking the birth of the modern Grocery Store.

18. Tennessee farmers produce roughly 323 million eggs per year!

19. The famous Lost Sea, located in Sweetwater, TN is the country’s largest underground lake.

20. Tennessee can boast many things, perhaps the most impressive, being the natural phenomenon, that Tennessee has more species of trees than any other state, and is home to over 3,800 documented caves!

More Fun Facts About Tennessee

21. Bristol, TN is considered by many to be the birthplace of country music.

22. Graceland, well known for being Elvis’s home in Memphis, is the second most visited home in the entire US!

23. If you’re planning on heading to the arcade in Nashville, you must be 18 years old or older, as it is illegal to play pinball and other coin-operated gaming machines if you are younger than 18 in Tennessee.

24. Another bizarre but fun fact about Tennessee is that the largest teapot collection in the world resides in the council chambers of the Trenton City Hall, with over 525 rare pots donated by Dr. Frederick C. Freed.

25. Columbia, TN is the mule capital of the world, with thousands upon thousands of our big-eared friends present at the Mule Day Parade!

26. The state rock for Tennessee is Limestone, due to it being a popular mining resource in the state’s early days.

27. Martin Luther King, Jr., was sadly assassinated at the Lorraine Motel, located in Memphis, TN. The site has now become a National Civil Rights Museum.

28. Did you know that Kingston, Tennessee, was the state capital for just a single day? The early settlers pulled a trick out of the hat with this one. In 1805 Cherokee agreed to a deal which consisted of transferring thousands of acres of land to Tennessee settlers, as long as the nearby area of Kingston was declared. This agreement lasted a total of 1 day, with Knoxville becoming the capital once again shortly after.

29. On June 1, 1796, Tennessee was admitted to the union, subsequently becoming the 16th state to form the United States we know today. Since this famous day the state has adopted many things that are used to represent the state past and present, state animal, state seal, nicknames, and more!

30. The speed limit in Tennessee is 70 MPH.

31. The last but certainly not least fun fact about Tennessee is that there is a bar named Patrick’s Bar & Grill, located on the bordering line between Tennessee and Georgia, with half of the bar being in Tennessee and the other half being in Georgia! It gets even more bizarre, the Georgia side of the establishment is in a dry county, meaning that you can only drink alcohol in the Tennessee area of the bar!

Economic Facts About Tennessee

There is a lot to think about when looking into the economic facts about Tennessee, the state has been observed by many over the years as being one of the most perfect environments for growth and development for businesses, entrepreneurs, and investors alike.

If you would like to learn how to register a business in Tennessee so you can start your entrepreneurial journey, we have created a checklist walking you through the process.
Tennessee Economic Facts

  • Tennessee’s GDP is around $330 billion!
  • Tennessee has a progressive income tax rate of 6%.
  • Tennessee ranks #1 out of all 50 states for fiscal stability (US News & World Report).
  • Tennessee ranks #12 for economic strength (US News & World Report).
  • Tennessee ranks #10 for business growth (US News & World Report).
  • Wallethub has put Tennessee 6th for their economic health rank.
  • The Tennessee minimum wage is $7.25 per hour.
  • Tennesee’s transportation ranks 10th according to the US News & World Report.
  • The average house price in Tennessee is
  • The average house price in Tennessee is $200,257, however, this number is seasonally adjusted, to keep updated, take a look at Zillow’s website.
  • There are over 620,000 small businesses operating out of Tennessee.
  • Small businesses make up over 99% of all Tennessee businesses.
  • There are over 1.1 million small business employees in Tennessee.
  • Over 42% of Tennessee employees work for small businesses.
  • Tennessee is home to over 5,725 small business exporters.
  • Firms with fewer than 100 employees have the largest share of small business employment in the Volunteer State.

All of these economic facts about Tennessee highlight the reasons people move to the state for business and work opportunities, and it’s hard to argue with any of them!

Thanks for taking a look at our 30+ interesting, weird, and wonderful facts about Tennessee! If you have some facts and interesting information regarding Tennessee’s past and present that we have not covered, make sure to add a comment below.

Interesting US State Facts


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Jason Coles

Jason Coles is the Founder of Foreign USA and its Chief Content Writer and Editor. Recognized as a prolific business plan writer by many prominent immigration attorneys in the U.S. who refer his services to their clients regularly, Jason has written over 1,350 business plans across the past 17+ years for start-up companies and franchises looking to expand their footprint in the United States. Jason is considered a seasoned expert in his field. He creates detailed business plans for his clients that include five-year financial projections, market and industry analysis reports, demographic studies, organizational charts, job descriptions, employee hiring plans, and more.