Maynardville, Tennessee

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Maynardville, Tennessee
Union County Courthouse and old Maynardville State Bank
Union County Courthouse and old Maynardville State Bank
Location of Maynardville in Union County, Tennessee.
Location of Maynardville in Union County, Tennessee.
Coordinates: 36°14′45″N 83°48′26″W / 36.24583°N 83.80722°W / 36.24583; -83.80722Coordinates: 36°14′45″N 83°48′26″W / 36.24583°N 83.80722°W / 36.24583; -83.80722
CountryUnited States
Named forHorace Maynard
 • Total5.4 sq mi (14.0 km2)
 • Land5.4 sq mi (14.0 km2)
 • Water0.0 sq mi (0.0 km2)
1,207 ft (368 m)
 • Total2,413
 • Estimate 
 • Density330.1/sq mi (127.4/km2)
Time zoneUTC-5 (Eastern (EST))
 • Summer (DST)UTC-4 (EDT)
ZIP code
Area code(s)865
FIPS code47-46700[3]
GNIS feature ID1293022[4]

Maynardville is a city that is the county seat of Union County, Tennessee, United States.[5] The city was named to honor Horace Maynard, who successfully defended the creation of Union County from a challenge from Knox County. Its population was 2,413 at the 2010 census, up from 1,782 at the 2000 census. It is included in the Knoxville, Tennessee Metropolitan Statistical Area. Maynardville was the birthplace of country music singers Roy Acuff and Carl Smith.


What is now Maynardville began in the early 19th century as a small community known as Liberty. When Union County was created in the 1850s, Liberty, being nearest the center of the county, was chosen as the county seat. The land for the courthouse square was donated by Marcus Monroe (1793–1870), a local minister.[6]

Musicians playing in Maynardville in 1935

Shortly after the Tennessee General Assembly passed legislation authorizing the creation of Union County, Knox County secured an injunction blocking the creation of the new county, which would take some of its area from Knox County. To defend the new county, its supporters retained the services of Horace Maynard (1814–1882), a Knoxville-area attorney and later U.S. Postmaster General. After Maynard successfully defended the new county in litigation proceedings, Liberty was renamed "Maynardville" in his honor.[7][8] Union County was formally recognized in 1856.[9]

Country music singer Roy Acuff was born in Maynardville in 1903. The Acuff family had been well-established in Union County since the mid-19th century. When Goodspeed published its History of Tennessee in 1887, the Union County section included a brief biography of Roy's grandfather, Coram Acuff (1846–1931), who represented Union County in the state legislature.[10][11] Carl Smith was another notable country musician born in the Maynardville.


Maynardville is situated near the center of Raccoon Valley, a narrow valley stretching for roughly 15 miles (24 km) between Copper Ridge on the south and Hinds Ridge on the north. Like most mountains in the Ridge-and-Valley Appalachians, these two ridges are long and narrow, and often fractured into smaller hills and knobs. The Norris Lake impoundment of the Clinch River is located approximately 5 miles (8.0 km) north of Maynardville.

Maynardville is concentrated around a stretch of State Route 33, which connects the city to the suburbs of north Knoxville to the southwest and Tazewell to the northeast. State Route 61 connects Maynardville with Luttrell to the south, and State Route 144 connects Maynardville with Plainview to the southwest.

According to the United States Census Bureau, the city has a total area of 5.4 square miles (14 km2), all land.


Historical population
Census Pop.
Est. 20162,357[2]−2.3%

As of the census[3] of 2000, there were 1,782 people, 683 households, and 463 families residing in the city. The population density was 330.1 people per square mile (127.4/km²). There were 769 housing units at an average density of 142.4 per square mile (55.0/km²). The racial makeup of the city was 98.37% White, 0.17% African American, 0.06% Native American, 0.11% Asian, and 1.29% from two or more races. Hispanic or Latino of any race were 0.34% of the population.

The old Dr. Carr office building, now an art gallery, in Maynardville

There were 683 households out of which 37.0% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 49.9% were married couples living together, 14.9% had a female householder with no husband present, and 32.1% were non-families. 28.8% of all households were made up of individuals and 10.8% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.46 and the average family size was 3.03.

In the city, the population was spread out with 26.9% under the age of 18, 8.0% from 18 to 24, 32.7% from 25 to 44, 18.6% from 45 to 64, and 13.9% who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 34 years. For every 100 females, there were 93.1 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 90.1 males.

The median income for a household in the city was $23,077, and the median income for a family was $30,398. Males had a median income of $25,278 versus $18,603 for females. The per capita income for the city was $12,168. About 20.2% of families and 26.4% of the population were below the poverty line, including 34.8% of those under age 18 and 32.9% of those age 65 or over.

In popular culture[edit]

In the 2009 film Inglourious Basterds, the character of 1 SSF First Lieutenant Aldo Raine, portrayed by Brad Pitt, is said to be a moonshiner from Maynardville.[14]

In the 1958 film Thunder Road, the theme song "The Ballad of Thunder Road" says star Robert Mitchum "screamed by Maynardville."[15] Sections of old Highway 33 in Maynardville have historical signs marking "The Original Thunder Road".


  1. ^ Tennessee Blue Book, 2005-2006, pp. 618-625.
  2. ^ a b "Population and Housing Unit Estimates". Retrieved June 9, 2017.
  3. ^ a b "American FactFinder". United States Census Bureau. Archived from the original on September 11, 2013. Retrieved January 31, 2008.
  4. ^ "US Board on Geographic Names". United States Geological Survey. October 25, 2007. Retrieved January 31, 2008.
  5. ^ "Find a County". National Association of Counties. Archived from the original on May 31, 2011. Retrieved June 7, 2011.
  6. ^ "Goodspeed's History of Union County, Tennessee Archived July 6, 2008, at the Wayback Machine." Originally published in the History of Tennessee (Chicago and Nashville: Goodspeed Publishing Company, 1887), 850-853. Retrieved: February 20, 2008.
  7. ^ Kathleen Zebley, "Horace Maynard." The Tennessee Encyclopedia of History and Culture, 2002. Retrieved: February 20, 2008.
  8. ^ Jim Matheny, Why do they call it that? Maynardville in Union County,, June 4, 2011. Retrieved: June 8, 2011.
  9. ^ Bonnie Heiskell Peters, "Union County." The Tennessee Encyclopedia of History and Culture, 2002. Retrieved: February 20, 2008.
  10. ^ "Goodspeed's Union County, Tennessee Biographies." Originally published in the History of Tennessee (Chicago and Nashville: Goodspeed Publishing Company, 1887), 1146-1152. Retrieved: February 20, 2008.
  11. ^ "Acuff-Ecoff Family Archives." Retrieved: February 20, 2008.
  12. ^ "Census of Population and Housing: Decennial Censuses". United States Census Bureau. Archived from the original on February 8, 2006. Retrieved March 4, 2012.
  13. ^ "Incorporated Places and Minor Civil Divisions Datasets: Subcounty Resident Population Estimates: April 1, 2010 to July 1, 2012". Population Estimates. U.S. Census Bureau. Archived from the original on June 11, 2013. Retrieved December 11, 2013.
  14. ^ Betsy Pickle, Movie review: Tarantino, crew create a cool classic with 'Inglourious Basterds', Knoxville News Sentinel, August 20, 2009
  15. ^ The Ballad of Thunder Road lyrics. Retrieved: August 12, 2010.

External links[edit]