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The Tennessee Portal


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Map of Tennessee

Tennessee is a state located in the Southern United States. Tennessee borders eight other states: Kentucky and Virginia to the north; North Carolina to the east; Georgia, Alabama and Mississippi on the south; and Arkansas and Missouri on the Mississippi River to the west.

Tennessee attained statehood in 1796, becoming the sixteenth state to join the Union.

The state is divided geographically and by law into three Grand Divisions: East Tennessee, Middle Tennessee, and West Tennessee. Physiographically, East Tennessee includes the Blue Ridge area characterized by high mountains, including the Great Smoky Mountains and the Ridge and Valley region, in which numerous tributaries join to form the Tennessee River in the Tennessee Valley. The state's third- and fourth-largest cities, Knoxville and Chattanooga, are located in the Tennessee Valley.

To the west of East Tennessee lies the Cumberland Plateau, a region of flat-topped mountains separated by sharp valleys. West of the Cumberland Plateau in Middle Tennessee is the Highland Rim, an elevated plain that surrounds the Nashville Basin, characterized by rich, fertile farm country and high natural wildlife diversity. Nashville, the state's capital and second largest city, is in Middle Tennessee.

The landscape of West Tennessee is formed on the Gulf Coastal Plain, ranging from rolling hills just west of the Tennessee River to the region of lowlands, floodplains, and swamp land referred to as the Mississippi Delta region. Memphis, Tennessee's largest city, is on the banks of the Mississippi River in the southwestern corner of the state.

Tennessee is known as the "Volunteer State", a nickname earned during the War of 1812 because of the prominent role played by volunteer soldiers from Tennessee.

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FedEx Corporation is a leading logistics services company based in Memphis, Tennessee. The company was founded as Federal Express (FedEx is an abbreviation of the original name) in 1971 by Fred Smith in Little Rock, Arkansas. The company moved to Memphis in 1973 because Little Rock airport officials would not agree to provide facilities for the company's airplanes.

Federal Express began operations on April 17, 1973, as the first cargo airline that used only jet aircraft for its services. It expanded greatly after the deregulation of the cargo airlines sector.

FedEx operates much of its U.S. overnight freight through its Memphis hub. (Read more...)

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James Knox Polk (November 2, 1795 – June 15, 1849) was the eleventh President of the United States, serving from March 4, 1845 to March 4, 1849. Polk was born in Mecklenburg County, North Carolina, but mostly lived in and represented the state of Tennessee. A Democrat, Polk served as Speaker of the House (1835–1839) and Governor of Tennessee (1839–1841) prior to becoming president.

A firm supporter of Andrew Jackson, Polk was the last "strong" pre-Civil War president. He is noted for his foreign policy successes, particularly the successful Mexican–American War. Also, he threatened war with Britain, then backed away and split the ownership of the Pacific Northwest with Britain. He lowered the tariff and established a treasury system that lasted until 1913. A "dark horse" candidate in 1844, he was the first president to retire after one term without seeking re-election. He died three months after his term ended.

As a Democrat committed to geographic expansion (or "Manifest Destiny"), Polk was responsible for the largest expansion of the nation's territory, exceeding the Louisiana Purchase in total area. He secured the Oregon Territory (including Washington, Oregon and Idaho), then purchased 1.2 million square miles (3.1 million km²) through the Treaty of Guadalupe Hidalgo that ended the Mexican–American War. In the end, Polk completed the acquisition of most of the current contiguous 48 states.

The expansion re-opened a furious debate over allowing slavery in the new territories. The controversy was inadequately arbitrated by the Compromise of 1850, and only found its ultimate resolution in the Civil War. (Read more...)

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Downtown murfreesboro9741.JPG

Downtown Murfreesboro. The center of population of Tennessee is located in Murfreesboro.
Image credit: Pollinator (2006)

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