Obion County, Tennessee

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Obion County, Tennessee
Obion County Court House Union City TN 2013-04-06 007.jpg
Obion County Courthouse
Map of Tennessee highlighting Obion County
Location in the state of Tennessee
Map of the United States highlighting Tennessee
Tennessee's location in the U.S.
Founded 1823[1]
Named for Obion River[1]
Seat Union City
Largest city Union City
 • Total 555 sq mi (1,438 km2)
 • Land 545 sq mi (1,411 km2)
 • Water 10 sq mi (27 km2), 1.88%
 • (2010) 31,807
 • Density 60/sq mi (23/km²)
Congressional district 8th
Time zone Central: UTC-6/-5
Reelfoot Lake

Obion County is a county located in the U.S. state of Tennessee. As of the 2010 census, the population was 31,807.[2] The county seat is Union City.[3] The county was formed in 1823 and was named after the Obion River.[1]

Obion County is part of the Union City, TN–KY Micropolitan Statistical Area, which is also included in the Martin-Union City, TN-KY Combined Statistical Area.


Obion was established in 1823 and organized the following year. It was named for the Obion River, which flows through the county and is a tributary of the nearby Mississippi River. The word "Obion" is believed to be derived from a Native American word meaning "many forks."[1]


According to the U.S. Census Bureau, the county has a total area of 556 square miles (1,440 km2), of which 545 square miles (1,410 km2) is land and 11 square miles (28 km2) (1.9%) is water.[4] It is located in the "rolling hills of northwest Tennessee",[1]

Adjacent counties[edit]

National protected area[edit]

State protected areas[edit]

  • Glover Wetland Wildlife Management Area
  • Gooch Wildlife Management Area
  • Hop-In Refuge
  • Obion River Wildlife Management Area (part)
  • Reelfoot Lake State Natural Area (part)
  • Reelfoot Lake State Park (part)
  • Three Rivers Wildlife Management Area


Historical population
Census Pop.
1830 2,099
1840 4,814 129.3%
1850 7,633 58.6%
1860 12,817 67.9%
1870 15,584 21.6%
1880 22,912 47.0%
1890 27,273 19.0%
1900 28,286 3.7%
1910 29,946 5.9%
1920 28,393 −5.2%
1930 29,086 2.4%
1940 30,978 6.5%
1950 29,056 −6.2%
1960 26,957 −7.2%
1970 29,936 11.1%
1980 32,781 9.5%
1990 31,717 −3.2%
2000 32,450 2.3%
2010 31,807 −2.0%
Est. 2012 31,340 −1.5%
U.S. Decennial Census[5]
2012 Estimate[2]
Age pyramid for Obion County[6]

As of the census[7] of 2000, there were 32,450 people, 13,182 households, and 9,398 families residing in the county. The population density was 60 people per square mile (23/km²). There were 14,489 housing units at an average density of 27 per square mile (10/km²). The racial makeup of the county was 88.16% White, 9.85% Black or African American, 0.19% Asian, 0.14% Native American, 0.05% Pacific Islander, 0.91% from other races, and 0.71% from two or more races. 1.90% of the population were Hispanic or Latino of any race.

There were 13,182 households out of which 31.00% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 56.40% were married couples living together, 11.10% had a female householder with no husband present, and 28.70% were non-families. 25.70% of all households were made up of individuals and 12.10% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.42 and the average family size was 2.89.

In the county, the population was spread out with 23.40% under the age of 18, 8.40% from 18 to 24, 27.70% from 25 to 44, 25.40% from 45 to 64, and 15.20% who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 39 years. For every 100 females there were 93.40 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 89.90 males.

The median income for a household in the county was $32,764, and the median income for a family was $40,533. Males had a median income of $32,963 versus $20,032 for females. The per capita income for the county was $17,409. About 10.10% of families and 13.30% of the population were below the poverty line, including 18.60% of those under age 18 and 15.10% of those age 65 or over.


The county is part of District 77 of the Tennessee House of Representatives, currently represented by Republican Bill Sanderson, and District 76, currently represented by Republican Andy Holt. The county is part of District 24 of the Tennessee Senate, currently represented by Democrat Roy Herron.[8] At the federal level, it is part of the state's 8th congressional district, currently represented by Republican Stephen Fincher.


Obion County Schools[edit]

School Name Team Mascot School Colors
Lake Road Elementary School Generals Blue/Orange
Hillcrest Elementary School Cougars Red/Navy Blue
Ridgemont Elementary School Mustangs Red/Yellow
Black Oak Elementary School Eagles Yellow/Blue
South Fulton Elementary School Red Devils Red/White
South Fulton Middle/High School Red Devils Red/White
Obion County Central High School Rebels Red/White/Blue

Union City Schools[edit]

School Name Team Mascot School Colors
Union City Elementary School Tornadoes Purple/Gold
Union City Middle School Tornadoes Purple/Gold
Union City High School Tornadoes Purple/Gold


Other services[edit]

Obion County has a public library, with a 30,000-square-foot (2,800 m2) building and a catalog of over 70,000 books, video and audio materials.[9]

Residents of the county's unincorporated communities have the option of paying $75 per year if they want firefighting services from the city of South Fulton.[10][11]


See also[edit]


  1. ^ a b c d e R.C. Forrester. "Obion County". Tennessee Encyclopedia of History and Culture. Retrieved 2010-10-10. 
  2. ^ a b "State & County QuickFacts". United States Census Bureau. Retrieved December 6, 2013. 
  3. ^ "Find a County". National Association of Counties. Retrieved 2011-06-07. 
  4. ^ "US Gazetteer files: 2010, 2000, and 1990". United States Census Bureau. 2011-02-12. Retrieved 2011-04-23. 
  5. ^ "U.S. Decennial Census". Retrieved December 6, 2013. 
  6. ^ Based on 2000 census data.
  7. ^ "American FactFinder". United States Census Bureau. Retrieved 2011-05-14. 
  8. ^ Senate District 24 from the website of the Tennessee General Assembly
  9. ^ "About". Obion County Public Library. Retrieved 2010-10-10. 
  10. ^ "Firefighters watch as home burns to the ground". WPSD-TV. September 30, 2010. Retrieved 2010-10-10. 
  11. ^ Jason Hibbs (December 5, 2011). "Home burns while firefighters watch, again". WPSD-TV. Retrieved 2011-12-06. 

External links[edit]

Coordinates: 36°22′N 89°09′W / 36.36°N 89.15°W / 36.36; -89.15