Historical Markers in
Giles County, Tennessee

Aaron V. Brown Aaron Venable Brown Bodenham Mill Bridgeforth High School Church of the Messiah Civil War in Tennessee Col. Thomas Kennedy Gordon Confederate Retreat at Sugar Creek Count Casimir Pulaski (1747-1779) Donald Grady Davidson (1893~1966) John Crowe Ransom (1888~1974) Dr. William Albert Lewis Edward Everett Eslick (1872-1932) Elkton Bridge Establishment of Pulaski / Giles County First Presbyterian Church of Pulaski First Section of Tennessee Interstate Forrest's September Raid Gabriel McKissack General John Adams, CSA General John Calvin Brown Giles County / Marshall County Giles County Courthouses Giles County High School Ironwork Giles County Trail of Tears Memorial Giles County's First Courthouse Governor John C. Brown House Grissom Colonial Hall History of Colonial Hall James M. McCallum John Adams John Calvin Brown John Goff Ballentine Lairdland Farm House Lynnville Historic District Maplewood Cemetery Martin College Minor Hill War Memorial Native Americans in Giles County Neill S. Brown Neill Smith Brown Noblit-Lytle House Nunahi-Duna-Dlo-Hily-I Old Graveyard Professor John Thomas Bridgeforth Pulaski Academy Pulaski Cornerstone — Northeast Pulaski Cornerstone — Southeast Pulaski Courthouse Square Historic District Sam Davis Sam Davis Sam Davis Avenue Historic District Sam Davis Capture Site Samuel “Sam” Davis Schofield Schofield's Withdrawal Seventh Kentucky Mounted Infantry Memorial South Pulaski Historic District Tennessee AMVETS Veterans Memorial The Bell Route The Benge Route The Bridge The Trail of Tears Interpretive Center This Well Thomas Martin (1799-1870) Thomas McKissack Jones Trail of Tears United States Colored Infantry Walter Hershel Beech
Tennessee was the birthplace of the Ku Klux Klan, a notorious white supremacist organization that terrorized African Americans and other minority groups throughout the late 19th and early 20th centuries. The group was founded in Pulaski, Tennessee, in 1865.
Giles County, Tennessee, has a rich and diverse history that dates back to the early 1800s. The county was established in 1809, named after William Branch Giles, a prominent Virginia statesman. The region was initially home to Native American tribes, including the Cherokee and Chickasaw, who were later displaced through treaties and forced removal.

Like many areas in the South, Giles County's economy during the early years relied heavily on agriculture, particularly tobacco and cotton. The fertile soil and the slave labor system helped the county thrive, and plantations dotted the landscape. However, the Civil War brought significant changes to Giles County, as it became a battleground for the Union and Confederate forces. The county witnessed several skirmishes and notable engagements, leaving a lasting impact on the community.

Following the war, Giles County went through a period of reconstruction and struggled to recover from economic and social challenges. However, the 20th century saw the county's resurgence and diversification. The arrival of the railroad in the late 19th century facilitated transportation and stimulated industrial growth. The county experienced a shift from agrarian to industrial economy, with the establishment of a variety of industries, including textiles, mining, and manufacturing.

Over the years, Giles County has also made substantial contributions to education and civil rights. In the early 20th century, a number of private colleges were established in the county, providing access to higher education. The county also played a role in the Civil Rights Movement, with local activists advocating for racial equality and participating in demonstrations.

Today, Giles County preserves its history through various museums, landmarks, and festivals. The community continues to evolve and grow, blending its rich heritage with modern development.

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

  • 1809: Giles County is formed from parts of Maury, Robertson, and Indian lands.
  • 1836: Pulaski, the county seat, is incorporated.
  • 1860s: Giles County becomes a center for Confederate recruiting and manufacturing during the Civil War.
  • 1872: The first railroad is built in Giles County.
  • 1908: A new courthouse is constructed in Pulaski.
  • 1943: The Tennessee Walking Horse National Celebration, a major horse show, begins in Giles County and continues annually.
  • 1960s: The county experiences significant racial tensions and civil rights struggles.
  • 1993: A tornado hits Giles County, causing widespread damage.
  • 2001: The American Civil War Trails System designates Giles County as a participant in its heritage tourism program.
  • 2010s: Giles County continues to be a rural community with a mix of agricultural, industrial, and recreational activities.