of Loudon County
County, one of the youngest counties in Tennessee, was formed
on May 27, 1870 from portions of Roane, Monroe and Blount
Counties. Originally, it was named Christiana County, but
a few days later the name was changed to Loudon in honor
of nearby colonial Fort Loudoun. The fort was named for
John Campbell who was the 4th Earl of Loudoun
and a commander of the all British forces during the French
and Indian Wars. Several earlier attempts to form this county
failed due to the difficulty in satisfying the general provisions
of Tennessee's old constitution. The act to establish this
county was first act ever approved by a governor of Tennessee.
Governor D. W. C. Senter signed this act into legislation
on June 2, 1870, and Loudon County was born.
In August 1870, the county officers were chosen. On September
5, 1870, the county court was organized at the Baptist Church
in Loudon. This church became the temporary quarters of
the county court until the new building, built by J. W.
Clark & Brothers, was finished in 1872. The Loudon County
Court House is on the National Register of Historic Places
and is still in use today.
The first settlers of Loudon County were the Overhill Cherokee
Indians who built their villages along the banks of the
Tennessee and Little Tennessee Rivers. The first white settlers
were English soldiers, many of whom had families garrisoned
in Fort Loudoun. The white settlers built opposite to the
October 25, 1813, the Tennessee State Legislature passed
an act that established the town of Morganton on land owned
by Hugh and Charles Kelso. Originally named Portville, the
name of the town was later changed to Morganton to honor
the Revolutionary War soldier Gideon Morgan, Sr. Morganton
was the third incorporated town in Tennessee. The town was
thriving until the L&N Railroad came through in the
late 1800s and put an end to the river trade. The town eventually
of Greenback, Tennessee
the railroad came through Loudon County, the river city
Morganton faced economic decline and eventually died out.
Greenback, on the other hand, was born and began to flourish.
Originally, the site of Greenback was a field owned by Robert
Thompson and J. B. Hall. The residents wanted to name their
new community Alleghany Station or Thompson Station. However,
the Post Office Department refused their requests because
of other post offices with the same name. The name selection
process was then moved to the Senate, and the name Greenback
was chosen. The railroad was completed in 1889, and the
first passenger train service was established in 1890. A
second railroad depot, the L&N Depot was completed in
1914 (this building is now a warehouse). These two railroad
lines brought economical growth to the small community of
Greenback and helped to firmly establish Greenback as a
The first bank in Greenback opened for business on January
12, 1912 but closed in March 1931 due to the depression.
The Greenback Flour Mill was build in 1919, destroyed by
fire in 1929, and rebuilt later that year. The first school
opened in Greenback on August 7, 1921 and consisted of only
six rooms and an auditorium.
of Lenoir City, Tennessee
City originated from lands owned by General William Lenoir.
General Lenoir was born in Brunswick County, Virginia on
May 8, 1751 and moved to North Carolina in 1759. During
the Revolutionary War, he served as captain under Colonel
Cleveland in the Battle of King's Mountain. As a reward
for his services during the war, the state of North Carolina
awarded him 5000 acres located along the northern bank of
the Tennessee River. This tract of land, known as the Lenoir
tract, stretched a distance of two miles.
In September 1809, General Lenoir deeded his land to his
eldest son, Major William Ballard Lenoir. Major Lenoir named
the land Lenoir's Station (then located in Roane County)
and moved onto with his wife in 1810. Major Lenoir and his
family first moved into a log house built by Judge David
Campbell. By 1821, the farm had been cleared, and the Lenoirs
built and moved into a larger brick home. This property
remained in the Lenoir Family until 1876.
1890, the Lenoir City Company was formed by several prominent
businessmen in Knoxville and New York City in order design
and built the new town. They surveyed the land and divided
it into lots and streets. Many of the first homes were purchased
from the Lenoir City Company. In 1907, Lenoir City was incorporated
by an act of the state legislature. The first mayor was
F. A. Weiss, the town's first millionaire.
of Loudon, Tennessee
1790, families began settling on the northern bank of the
Tennessee river. A few of these settlers included the Tunnels,
the Carmichaels, and the Blairs. By 1835, James, John, and
Wiley Blair had built a steamboat landing, a store, and
several houses. They named their new settlement Blair's
Ferry. The first steamboat to pass up the river was the
Atlas in 1828. However, it was not until about 1835
that steamboats began regularly stopping at Blair's Ferry.
Standing on the waterfront was a storehouse built by James
Blair in 1834. Due to certain provisions in the Hiwassee
Purchase, a Cherokee Indian named Pathkiller claimed the
store, the ferry, and the land on which the town of Blair's
Ferry was located. Blair was ordered off the land, and Pathkiller
became its new owner. Blair filed suit in the Tennessee
Supreme Court, and a fifteen year court battle ensued. Blair
eventually won his lands back from Pathkiller but died shortly
after, leaving his entire estate to Wiley Blair. In 1851,
sensing an opportunity for profit, Wiley Blair laid out
a town and dubbed it Blairsville. Unfortunately, he failed
to sell any lots, and the next year he was forced to sell
the land to S. M. Johnson & Company.
the advent of the railroad in 1848, this small community
rapidly began to grow. Between the years of 1852 and 1856,
a railroad bridge was built across the Tennessee River.
The bridge opened for traffic on March 17, 1855. With both
a railroad terminus and a steamboat port, Blair's Ferry
became a popular site for transferring merchandise and produce
from the river to the railroad. In 1858, the name of the
town was changed to Loudon. Due to its quick economic growth
and central location within the county, Loudon was chosen
as the county seat.
of Philadelphia, Tennessee
is both one of the oldest and newest towns in Tennessee.
During the fall of 1821, William Knox and Jacob Pearson
laid out a town about six miles south of Blair's Ferry.
Originally, the town was located in Monroe County. Philadelphia
was not incorporated until April 28, 1968.
On February 17, 1836, the Tennessee General Assembly granted
the Hiwassee Railroad Company permission to build a road
from Blair's Ferry to the Tennessee-Georgia Line. Once the
construction of this road was announced, land speculators
began to visualize that Philadelphia would become the major
commercial center located enroute between Knoxville and
Chattanooga. To encourage growth, advertisements in publications
announced Philadelphia as a possible industrial center and
encouraged people to relocate to this town. In fact for
many years, the railroad served as a vital link in Philadelphia's
progress. Vast quantities of grain and livestock were shipped
from Philadelphia via the railroad. However, with the construction
of the railroad bridge at Loudon and improved transportation
routes, the use of the stockyard and depot declined steadily
until they closed in 1952.