Tellico Plains, Tennessee
|Tellico Plains, Tennessee|
|Named for||Great Tellico|
|• Total||1.6 sq mi (4.0 km2)|
|• Land||1.6 sq mi (4.0 km2)|
|• Water||0.0 sq mi (0.0 km2)|
|Elevation||876 ft (267 m)|
|• Density||549.8/sq mi (212.3/km2)|
|Time zone||Eastern (EST) (UTC-5)|
|• Summer (DST)||EDT (UTC-4)|
|GNIS feature ID||1304037|
Tellico Plains is located at .(35.366575, -84.298955)
According to the United States Census Bureau, the town has a total area of 1.6 square miles (4.1 km2), all land.
The area was inhabited for thousands of years by indigenous peoples. The historic Muscogee settled here, before moving further south. They were followed by Cherokee displaced from the east and north by European colonial encroachment.
Tellico Plains occupies the former site of the Cherokee town of Great Tellico, which was one of the more important towns of the Overhill Cherokee during the late 18th century. Two traditional Native American paths met at Great Tellico, the Trading Path and the Warrior Path.
During the 1840s, Elisha Johnson, a former mayor of Rochester, New York, built the Tellico River Mansion on his plantation in Tellico Plains. With his brother Ebenezer, the former mayor of Buffalo, New York, he purchased the Tellico Iron and Manufacturing Company. During the Civil War, the Confederacy commandeered the iron works for production of munitions. General William Sherman's Union Army soldiers destroyed the Tellico Iron Works. Sherman pardoned Elisha Johnson for his part in supplying the Confederate Army because of Johnson's northern birth and sympathies. Johnson returned to the North, settling in Ithaca, New York, where he died in 1866.
The nearby Coker Creek was the site of a minor gold rush during the late 1800s. The small crossroads town of Coker Creek has a gold-panning tourist attraction. Visitors can rent pans and receive professional instructions from the proprietor of the souvenir shop. Visitors can also explore the old gold mines in the surrounding hills in the hopes of finding a nugget with some of the famous yellow ore, although the mines are in a state of disrepair.
Gold mining continues on at least one private plot located slightly to the southwest of the tourist attraction.
In the late 19th and early 20th centuries, Tellico Plains became the base of operations for the Babcock Lumber Company, which ran logging operations throughout the Tellico River basin. When it finished clearcutting, it sold its land to the US Forest Service, which has spent decades restoring the woods. Tellico Plains was incorporated in 1911. Its first mayor was Columbus Jenkins, father of prominent attorney Ray Jenkins.
As of the census of 2000, there were 859 people, 393 households, and 227 families residing in the town. The population density was 549.8 people per square mile (212.6/km²). There were 446 housing units at an average density of 285.5 per square mile (110.4/km²). The racial makeup of the town was 96.74% White, 0.81% Native American, 0.81% Asian, 0.12% from other races, and 1.51% from two or more races. Hispanic or Latino of any race were 1.75% of the population.
There were 393 households out of which 27.7% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 41.5% were married couples living together, 12.7% had a female householder with no husband present, and 42.2% were non-families. 39.7% of all households were made up of individuals and 17.3% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.19 and the average family size was 2.92.
In the town the population was spread out with 22.9% under the age of 18, 8.5% from 18 to 24, 26.7% from 25 to 44, 26.9% from 45 to 64, and 15.0% who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 39 years. For every 100 females there were 95.2 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 91.9 males.
The median income for a household in the town was $18,750, and the median income for a family was $31,087. Males had a median income of $27,045 versus $18,333 for females. The per capita income for the town was $13,234. About 19.2% of families and 24.4% of the population were below the poverty line, including 25.2% of those under age 18 and 38.9% of those age 65 or over.
- Ray Jenkins (1897–1980), defense attorney
- Ebenezer Johnson (1786–1849), first Mayor of Buffalo, New York
- Tellico Plains High School
- Tellico Plains Junior High School
- Tellico Plains Elementary School
- Rural Vale Elementary School
- Coker Creek Elementary School
- Tennessee Blue Book, 2005-2006, pp. 618-625.
- "American FactFinder". United States Census Bureau. Retrieved 2008-01-31.
- "US Board on Geographic Names". United States Geological Survey. 2007-10-25. Retrieved 2008-01-31.
- "US Gazetteer files: 2010, 2000, and 1990". United States Census Bureau. 2011-02-12. Retrieved 2011-04-23.
- Duncan, Barbara R. and Riggs, Brett H. Cherokee Heritage Trails Guidebook, Chapel Hill: University of North Carolina Press, 2003, p. 242
- "A History of the Mansion on Tellico River", The Tellico Plains Mountain Press, accessed 14 September 2011
- History of Tellico Plains, Tennessee. Retrieved: 30 October 2011.
- Ray H. Jenkins, The Terror of Tellico Plains (Knoxville, Tenn.: East Tennessee Historical Society, 1979), p. 9.
- Charles Hall Museum
- Transamerica Trail