Talk:List of municipalities in Tennessee

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Former featured list List of municipalities in Tennessee is a former featured list. Please see the links under Article milestones below for its original nomination page and why it was removed. If it has improved again to featured list standard, you may renominate the article to become a featured list.
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December 2, 2007 Featured list candidate Promoted
December 28, 2014 Featured list removal candidate Demoted
Current status: Former featured list
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Palmersville Population[edit]

I recently added an article for Palmersville, Tennessee which I created, but I can't seem to find any info regarding the town's population as noted in the entry in this List article. Could someone please update that? --TommyBoy 20:10, 4 June 2006 (UTC)

See the discussion on this matter on Talk:Palmersville, Tennessee. --TommyBoy 22:33, 26 July 2006 (UTC)

Multi-county cities[edit]

Tennessee has some cities and towns that cross county lines (that is, the city is partially within 2 or more counties), but the table here identifies only one county for each city or town. For accuracy, Wikipedia needs to identify the additional counties for places that include (but are not limited to) the following:

Lake City
Oak Ridge
Oliver Springs
Spring Hill

--orlady 06:13, 10 December 2006 (UTC)

For each city we currently list the primary county, per census records. If you have a comprehensive list of all multi-county cities in Tennessee, feel free to update the table. Kaldari 09:05, 10 December 2006 (UTC)
The authoritative comprehensive list of incorporated municipalities is in the Tennessee Blue Book, specifically at (more authoritative than the Census Bureau). --orlady 16:33, 10 December 2006 (UTC)

Title of article[edit]

In the discussion at Wikipedia:Featured list candidates/List of cities and towns in Tennessee, a question was raised regarding the article title.

In a nutshell: Since there is no discernible difference between a "city" and a "town" in Tennessee and the scope of "cities and towns" boils down to "incorporated municipalities," why not call the article List of incorporated municipalities in Tennessee or even just List of municipalities in Tennessee (since municipalities are, by definition, incorporated)?

I can argue this one either way. On the one hand, these are most commonly known as "cities and towns" and are officially defined as "cities and towns" under state law, suggesting that the name should remain "cities and towns." On the other hand, a rose by any other name would smell as sweet, and "incorporated municipalities" is an accurate generic term for what these places are...

What do the rest of y'all think?

--Orlady (talk) 05:35, 26 November 2007 (UTC)

Keep it easy to understand[edit]

I very stongly oppose renaming the list. Hey, Wikipedia is meant to also make you learn something. If it is necessary to already know and use words like unincorporated, municipality or generic to find what you are looking for, then we are all in the wrong place here. "Cities and towns", everyone can understand that. "Municipalities and incorporated communies", that's expert words. The casual reader at Wikipedia should take something home from the visit: New words, new knowledge, a new view of the topic, maybe, more than they came with, in the ideal case. No-one should be excluded from that knowledge just because they searched for "towns", instead of "municipalities". If you search for "towns and cities" you should find them, keep every title as simple as possible and as elaborate a necessary. Mention and explain the expert words in the text, so we can learn and know more after the visit than we knew before. Establish a redirect from the expert words title, if you believe someone types it in to search for it.

If you are deep in the country and in need of fuel you don't ask the guy for the "least distant municipality in which a commercial gasoline dispenser is located", you ask for the "closest town with a gas station" Keep it easy! Keep it easy! That is more fun and more learning for everyone. That's what Wikipedia is about. doxTxob \ talk 06:57, 26 November 2007 (UTC)

Agreed. I think we need to avoid any jargon in article titles. I know a lot of people would not consider "incorporated municipalities" as jargon, but you would be surprised how many people have no idea what that means. Kaldari (talk) 18:25, 26 November 2007 (UTC)
For the record, I just now changed the header for the list part of the article from "Municipalities" (inserted by Circeus) back to "List of incorporated cities and towns". Among other things, this makes the TOC more useful to people. --Orlady (talk) 03:28, 27 November 2007 (UTC)
Agree with keeping the name as-is. There's plenty of precedent in the cities and towns category for naming as such. -- Huntster T@C 06:00, 27 November 2007 (UTC)

County Seats[edit]

Using both a background color and a footnote cross to indicate county seat status seems redundant to me. Why don't we go with one or the other. I would vote for background color. Kaldari (talk) 15:55, 28 November 2007 (UTC)

As it happens, the combination of background color and dagger to indicate county seats is a feature that was added by Circeus to enhance the list quality, as discussed at Wikipedia:Featured list candidates/List of cities and towns in Tennessee. I also found the combination odd, but since I am an outmoded old fogey who still finds words more meaningful than colors as a method for communication, I figured that my opinions on this matter probably are outmoded. {wink} (I also am conditioned to look for notes at the bottom of a table, not above the headings. On the whole, I prefer using asterisks, and placing notes at the bottom of the table.) More importantly, though, since Tennessee's county seats are one focus of another list and this list doesn't even have all of the county seats (Blountville being missing because it is unincorporated), I wonder if highlighting the county seats with color doesn't give undue emphasis to this characteristic. If I were choosing one thing in this table to highlight with color, I probably would choose to indicate the "tiny towns" whose charters were rescinded (Hickory Withe, Helenwood, Midtown, and Walnut Grove)... --Orlady (talk) 04:15, 29 November 2007 (UTC)


Sorry to throw this in there at the last minute, but I thought it would be nice to have the area of each town and city as well (to make the list even more comprehensive). I've reformatted the table and got the pump primed. I'm just copying and pasting from the city infoboxes for now. Once they are all copied, I'll probably do a search and replace to make "sq mi" into "mi²". Don't have time to finish the area list right now, but I'll be back later to help... Kaldari (talk) 17:39, 29 November 2007 (UTC)

I will complete the area list by noon Friday (tomorrow). Kaldari (talk) 00:44, 30 November 2007 (UTC)
Please don't convert "sq mi" to "mi²", as the former is prescribed by the MoS. -- Huntster T@C 01:14, 30 November 2007 (UTC)
Sorry, too late :( FWIW, "mi²" is what is used in the only other featured list of municipalities. It seems to work better in tables like this since it takes up less space. I can't imagine there would be any real confusion over what it means in this context. Kaldari (talk) 01:43, 30 November 2007 (UTC)
Oh no! I was born on the metric continent and grew up metric. Do not make a mistake here. That it is used in another list does not mean it's right. Metric length units allow the 2 for areas and 3 for volumes, non-metric units do not allow it. I love metric, because it is so easy to convert one unit into another. But I do not want to point out the countless advantages of the metric system. The superscript is used in the metric system only. 1 km2 = 1,000,000 m2. 1 mi2 = 27,878,400 ft2. Do you see why? The 27-something-million does not make sense, that's why it is not commonly (and hopefully never) used. It only does make sense in the metric system. However much I prefer the metric system over the non-metric does not count. Because here I argue for consistency. If you use non-metric units, do not use superscripts for area or volume. Go "sq mi" or metric! Whatever you use, use it consistently and correctly. doxTxob \ talk 05:03, 30 November 2007 (UTC)
Not to worry. In the world I inhabit, superscripted English units (such as mi2, ft2, in2, and ft3) are used routinely in books, reports and other publications. --Orlady (talk) 05:14, 30 November 2007 (UTC)
"1 mi2 = 27,878,400 ft2". Makes sense to me. 1 suare mile is equal to 28 million square feet, no? Am I missing something? Kaldari (talk) 05:36, 30 November 2007 (UTC)
I am not worried at all. Using superscript with non-metric units will boost mathematic abilities of children :
What is 27,878,400 ft2 in mi2?
What is 1,000,000 m2 in km2?
What is easier? The 28 million are approximately, the 1 Million is exact. Maybe using superscript is the first step of becoming metric? I just wanted to contribute an idea and support metric units. doxTxob \ talk 05:44, 30 November 2007 (UTC)
All I'm saying is that we should abide by WP:MOS. Even if it can be recognised, does not mean that it should be used. Whether or not to allow non MOS abbreviations is an ongoing debate over at {{Convert}}, and it always comes back to that we should use what is prescribed. It simply keeps a standard. It is simply correct to use X sq ft (X m²) -- Huntster T@C 06:55, 30 November 2007 (UTC)
Feel free to change it, if you feel inclined to do so. Kaldari 21:11, 30 November 2007 (UTC)

Data source for Areas for Tennessee cities and towns[edit]

Originally posted on Kaldari's user talk page: The area data are a nice addition, but what was your source for the area data? (Not only do we need a citation, but we need a date. Some of these places have grown through annexation since the 2000 census.) --Orlady (talk) 03:05, 30 November 2007 (UTC)

Originally posted on Orlady's user talk page: All the areas were taken from their respective Wikipedia articles. They all seem to have pretty much identical infoboxes so I imagine the data was imported by some bot a long time ago (2000 census?). Kaldari (talk) 05:31, 30 November 2007 (UTC)

Aha! These seem to be total areas (land and water) as used in the 2000 Census. [1] However, I am dismayed to see that some articles have been edited to use different data from other sources. For example, the Census gives Bartlett's area in 2000 as 19 mi2, but the Bartlett, Tennessee article gives it as 23.42 mi2 total, sourced to the City of Bartlett, including 19 sq mi of land, and no water.(!!!) The larger number apparently is the area after some major annexations. --Orlady (talk) 06:13, 30 November 2007 (UTC)

If you notice any discrepancies between these numbers and the census numbers, please change them to the census numbers. I wish I had known about that census page so I could have just copied it instead! :) Kaldari 21:08, 30 November 2007 (UTC)

The mystery of Hartsville[edit]

OK this makes no sense to me. It says that Hartsville shares a consolidated city-county government with Trousdale County. However the two entities have separate populations and areas (unlike the 2 other consolidated city-counties in Tennessee). Did Hartsville consolidate their government after the 2000 census or something? Kaldari (talk) 01:46, 30 November 2007 (UTC)

Apparently the consolidation was post-Census. The effective date mentioned in the consolidated charter (link to MTAS website; may or may not work) is January 1, 2001. However, the Blue Book shows the same population for Hartsville in 2000 and 2005.[2] It gives the city population in 2000 as 2,395 and the county population as 7,259. --Orlady (talk) 03:28, 30 November 2007 (UTC)
Do you think we should change it to the county area (which presumably would be the actual current area), or should we leave it at the 2000 figure to match the year of the population? Either way, we should probably add some kind of note to it. Kaldari (talk) 05:39, 30 November 2007 (UTC)
Thanks for adding the (as of 2000) note to the area column. I like the idea of keeping it consistent with the populations. Kaldari 20:44, 30 November 2007 (UTC)

Incorporations ruled invalid[edit]

I think we should provide a source for this statement. I seem to remember reading somewhere that the law allowing the incorporation was overturned, but that didn't necessarily mean that the incorporations themselves were overturned. It would be good to see a source that could clarify this. Kaldari 20:54, 30 November 2007 (UTC)

Here's what the state attorney general's office said about it in an opinion issued on April 6, 2004:

The cities of Hickory Withe and Midtown have been ordered to cease operating as municipalities. Oakland v. McCraw, Fayette County Chancery Court No. 122543 (final order entered February 27, 2004); State of Tennessee ex rel. Williams v. Midtown, Roane County Chancery Court No. 14,005 (order dissolving city entered December 3, 2003; motion to stay the order denied at hearing March 12, 2004; written order denying stay not yet entered). A suit challenging the corporate existence of Three-Way is still pending in Madison County Chancery Court. Humboldt v. Ballard, Madison County Chancery Court, No. 55416. As grounds, that action states that Three-Way falls within three miles of an existing city and has a population of less than 1,500 and, therefore, fails to meet the incorporation requirements under Tenn. Code Ann. § 6-1-201. These three cities were permitted to hold incorporation elections under Section 9(f)(3)(B) of 1998 Tenn.Pub.Acts Ch. 1101, which was held unconstitutional in Huntsville v. Duncan.

Huntsville v. Duncan is the decision that dissolved Helenwood's incorporation.

Question: Why does our list of dissolved municipalities not include Three Way? Was Three Way allowed to keep it's incorporation? Kaldari 21:31, 30 November 2007 (UTC)

I have not found any evidence that Three Way was dissolved. It still appears on the MTAS lists. --Orlady 21:51, 30 November 2007 (UTC) Also, there's a "City of Three Way" page on the county's website, at --Orlady 21:54, 30 November 2007 (UTC)

The case challenging Three Way's charter was City of Humboldt v. Ballard, filed in Madison County. Unfortunately, the Madison County Court website doesn't offer access to decisions, and there is no mention of "City of Humboldt v. Ballard" anywhere on the web according to Google! Is it possible the case is still pending 7 years later?? Very mysterious. Kaldari 22:03, 30 November 2007 (UTC)
According to the 2007 CERTIFIED POPULATION OF TENNESSEE INCORPORATED MUNICIPALITIES AND COUNTIES, all of the 5 "Tiny Towns" now have a population of 0 except for Three Way, which has a 2007 population of 1,675. Since it looks like Three Way passed the 1,500 person threshold, maybe they were allowed to keep their charter. Kaldari 22:09, 30 November 2007 (UTC)
The Blue Book for 2011-12 shows Three Way as a municipality, with population at 1,709. --Orlady (talk) 22:36, 19 February 2013 (UTC)

Census Bureau agrees with us[edit]

The 2007 Census of Governments was just published. They list 347 municipalities in Tennessee, same as us. Just wanted to let everyone know that there weren't any discrepancies. Kaldari (talk) 16:59, 23 November 2009 (UTC)

2010 update[edit]

I suppose this list needs to be updated for the 2010 census at some point. Kaldari (talk) 05:17, 19 April 2011 (UTC)

Yes, indeed. The individual articles also need to be updated. Tennessee was one of the very last states to have 2010 census data released. --Orlady (talk) 00:09, 20 April 2011 (UTC)
Some update resources: 2011-12 Blue Book list (scroll to the end of the file); two Census files (they are slightly different in scope, but they have the same data): [3] and [4] --Orlady (talk) 22:34, 19 February 2013 (UTC)

The elusive double triangles[edit]

"Click on the double triangles at the top of a column to sort the table by that column."

I spent several moments reading the above and, noting that I failed to see any double triangles despite my new eyewear, tried randomly clicking in the top columnar box. What did I find? That one can click anywhere within such a box and get the column to sort the table by that column. So, I have edited the instruction to read:

"Click on the title box at the top of a column to sort the table by that column."

It seemed like a better choice than editing it to read "Click on the invisible double triangles at the top of a column to sort the table by that column", which I briefly considered. Irish Melkite (talk) 04:26, 14 May 2012 (UTC)

LOL. Thanks! Kaldari (talk) 04:28, 14 May 2012 (UTC)

Cities and Towns[edit]

Would it be possible or appropriate to change the above template to show a list of "municipalities" or "incorporated municipalities" or a combined section of "cities and towns" rather than one section with cities and another section with towns.

A city is a special type of corporation established and operating

under state law. There are 348 cities in Tennessee and each is characterized as either a city or a town (in our state, there is no legal distinction between the two). These cities and towns range in size from Memphis (666,786), to Silerton (60), but three-fifths of them (209 cities) are below 2,500 population. About 59% of

the state’s residents live in a city.

ref-, pg xiv --- SLBohrman (talk) 00:35, 5 July 2013 (UTC)