Tennessee is home to the Great Smoky Mountains National Park, one of the most visited national parks in the United States. The park covers over 500,000 acres and attracts millions of visitors each year.
Anderson County, Tennessee, has a rich and diverse history that dates back centuries. The area was originally inhabited by the Native American tribes, including the Cherokee and Shawnee. European settlers began to arrive in the late 18th century, with the establishment of the first permanent settlement in the area in 1791.

During the early 19th century, Anderson County experienced significant growth. The construction of the Tennessee River brought transportation opportunities, and the arrival of the railroad in the 1850s further fueled economic development. The county became a major agricultural center, with farming and logging being the primary industries. It also played a role in the Civil War, with both Union and Confederate forces occupying the region at different times.

In the early 20th century, Anderson County underwent industrialization, thanks to the Oak Ridge Reservation. Established in 1942 as part of the Manhattan Project, the reservation played a crucial role in developing the atomic bomb during World War II. The secret nature of the project resulted in the rapid growth of Oak Ridge, attracting thousands of workers from across the country. The impact of this scientific endeavor on the county's economy and population was significant.

In recent years, Anderson County has focused on diversifying its economy beyond industry and agriculture. It has developed a strong tourism industry, with attractions such as Norris Dam State Park and the Museum of Appalachia drawing visitors from all over. The county continues to embrace its history and natural beauty while also embracing new opportunities for growth and development.

This timeline provides a glimpse into the major events and milestones that have shaped the history of Anderson County, Tennessee.

  • 1801: Anderson County established
  • 1803: Norris Dam constructed
  • 1856: First railroad built in the county
  • 1861-1865: County impacted by the American Civil War
  • 1936: Oak Ridge established as part of the Manhattan Project
  • 1943: Clinton Engineer Works created in Oak Ridge
  • 1945: World War II ends and the Manhattan Project concludes
  • 1946: Oak Ridge becomes a city
  • 1956: Melton Hill Dam constructed on Clinch River
  • 1989: Anderson County Courthouse added to the National Register of Historic Places
  • 1996: American Museum of Science and Energy opens in Oak Ridge