Tennessee's 6th congressional district

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Tennessee's 6th congressional district
Tennessee US Congressional District 6 (since 2013).tif
Tennessee's 6th congressional district – since January 3, 2013.
U.S. RepresentativeDiane Black (RGallatin)
  • 48.23[1]% urban
  • 51.77% rural
Population (2016)761,538[2]
Median income$50,731
Cook PVIR+24[3]

The 6th Congressional District of Tennessee is a congressional district in Middle Tennessee. It has been represented by Republican Diane Black since January 2011. She unsuccessfully ran for the Republican nomination in the 2018 Tennessee gubernatorial election. Fellow Republican John Rose was elected on November 6th and is congressman-elect.

Current Boundaries[edit]

The district is located in north-central Tennessee and borders Kentucky to the north. It is currently composed of the following counties: Cannon, Clay, Coffee, Cumberland, DeKalb, Fentress, Jackson, Macon, Overton, Pickett, Putnam, Robertson, Smith, Sumner, Trousdale, White, and Wilson. It also contains very small pieces of Cheatham and Van Buren.


Much of the Sixth District is rural and wooded. It is spread across the geographic regions known as the Cumberland Plateau, the Highland Rim, and the Central Basin. The area is known for its waterfalls, such as Burgess Falls and Cummins Falls.

With close access to interstates 24, 40, and 65, subdivisions are sprouting almost exponentially, fast filling with new economy managers. Recently, many companies have opened either manufacturing or distribution centers in the 6th District. This includes Amazon[4] and Bridgestone-Firestone[5] in Lebanon, gun manufacturer Beretta[6] in Gallatin, and clothing manufacturer Under Armour[7] in Mt. Juliet.

Politically speaking, the region was traditionally a "Yellow Dog Democrat" district. However, the district began shifting rightward as Nashville's suburbs bled into the district. It supported Bill Clinton in 1992, partly due to Gore's presence as Clinton's running mate. However, it has not supported a Democrat for president since. By the turn of the century, it was obvious that the Democrats would have a hard time holding onto the district once longtime Democratic incumbent Bart Gordon retired.

Gordon retired in 2010, and Black—then a state senator—won the seat in a landslide, proving just how Republican this district had become. The 2010 redistricting made the district even more Republican, with its longtime anchor, Murfreesboro, being drawn out of the district. Since then, no Democrat has won an entire county within the district in any presidential, gubernatorial, senate, or congressional election.[8][9]

According to the 2010 census, the five largest cities are Hendersonville (51,372), Cookeville (30,425), Gallatin (30,278), Lebanon (26,190), and Mt. Juliet (23,671).[10]


Prior to the 1980 census, when Tennessee picked up a district, most of what is now the 6th district was in the 4th district.

During the 1940s, this area was represented by Albert Gore, Sr. of Carthage. Gore was elected to the United States Senate in 1952, where he was instrumental in creating the Interstate Highway system.[11]

From 1953 to 1977, the area was represented by Joe L. Evins of Smithville. Evins's nephew, Dan Evins, was the founder of Cracker Barrel Old Country Store restaurant/retail chain.[12] Cracker Barrel's headquarters are still located in Lebanon.[13]

In 1976, Evins was succeeded by Al Gore, future Vice President and son of Albert Gore, Sr. He was representing the area when much of it was moved into the present 6th District.

Shortly following the redistricting into the 6th District, Gore was elected to the United States Senate. He was then succeeded by former Democratic State Chair Bart Gordon of Murfreesboro. Gordon held the post for the next twenty-six years, relatively unopposed. The only year he faced much opposition was 1994, when attorney Steve Gill ran against him. Gordon defeated Gill by only one percentage point.[14]

Diane Black was elected in the Republican landslide of 2010 when Democrat Bart Gordon decided to end a 26-year career in Congress. Black's victory marked the first time that much of the district had been represented by a Republican since 1921, and for only the second time since Reconstruction.

Notable people[edit]

The Sixth District raised two Nobel Peace Prize winners: Cordell Hull of Pickett County (1945) and Al Gore of Carthage (2007). Also hailing from the district was World War I hero Alvin C. York.

Current residents include country musicians Charlie Daniels and Gretchen Wilson, as well as the band Kings of Leon.

List of representatives[edit]

Name Years Party District Residence Notes
District created March 4, 1813
Parry W. Humpreys March 4, 1813 – March 3, 1815 Democratic-Republican Nashville
James B. Reynolds March 4, 1815 – March 3, 1817 Democratic-Republican
George W. L. Marr March 4, 1817 – March 3, 1819 Democratic-Republican
Henry H. Bryan March 4, 1819 – March 3, 1821 Democratic-Republican
Vacant March 4, 1821 – January 3, 1823 Henry H. Bryan re-elected but failed to qualify for 17th Congress
James T. Sandford March 4, 1823 – March 3, 1825 Jacksonian D-R
James Polk restored.jpg James K. Polk March 4, 1825 – March 3, 1833 Jacksonian Columbia Redistricted to the 9th district, US President 1845–1849
Balie Peyton March 4, 1833 – March 3, 1835 Jacksonian
March 4, 1835 – March 3, 1837 Anti-Jacksonian
Campbell-william-by-wb-cooper.jpg William B. Campbell March 4, 1837 – March 3, 1843 Whig Carthage
Hon. Aaron V. Brown, Tenn - NARA - 528326.jpg Aaron V. Brown March 4, 1843 – March 3, 1845 Democratic Nashville Redistricted from the 10th district
Barclay Martin March 4, 1845 – March 3, 1847 Democratic Columbia
James H. Thomas March 4, 1847 – March 3, 1851 Democratic Columbia
William-hawkins-polk.jpg William H. Polk March 4, 1851 – March 3, 1853 Independent Democrat Columbia
Hon. Jones - NARA - 528402.jpg George W. Jones March 4, 1853 – March 3, 1859 Democratic Fayetteville Redistricted from the 5th district
James H. Thomas March 4, 1859 – March 3, 1861 Democratic Columbia
American Civil War
Sanuel M. Arnell July 24, 1866 – March 3, 1867 Unconditional Unionist Columbia
March 4, 1867 – March 3, 1871 Republican
Washington C. Whitthorne - Brady-Handy.jpg Washington C. Whitthorne March 4, 1871 – March 3, 1875 Democratic Columbia Redistricted to the 7th district
John Ford House - Brady-Handy.jpg John F. House March 4, 1875 – March 3, 1883 Democratic Clarksville
Andrew Jackson Caldwell (Tennessee Congressman).jpg Andrew J. Caldwell March 4, 1883 – March 3, 1887 Democratic Nashville
JosephEWashington.jpg Joseph E. Washington March 4, 1887 – March 3, 1897 Democratic Robertson County
JohnWGaines.jpg John W. Gaines March 4, 1897 – March 3, 1909 Democratic Nashville
Joseph Byrns.jpg Jo Byrns March 4, 1909 – March 3, 1933 Democratic Nashville Redistricted to the 5th district
ClarenceWTurner.jpg Clarence W. Turner March 4, 1933 – March 23, 1939 Democratic Waverly Died
Vacant March 23, 1939 – May 11, 1939
W. Wirt Courtney May 11, 1939 – January 3, 1943 Democratic Franklin Redistricted from the 5th district, Redistricted to the 7th district
James Percy Priest, Congressional portrait collection.jpg Percy Priest January 3, 1943 – January 3, 1953 Democratic Columbia Redistricted to the 5th district
James Patrick Sutton (US Congressman).jpg James P. Sutton January 3, 1953 – January 3, 1955 Democratic Lawrenceburg Redistricted from the 7th district
Ross Bass (1918-1993).jpg Ross Bass January 3, 1955 – November 3, 1964 Democratic Pulaski Resigned after being elected to US Senate
Vacant November 3, 1964 – January 3, 1965
Congressman William Anderson D-TN 06.jpg William R. Anderson January 3, 1965 – January 3, 1973 Democratic Waverly
Robin Beard.jpg Robin Beard January 3, 1973 – January 3, 1983 Republican Somerville
Sengore.jpg Al Gore January 3, 1983 – January 3, 1985 Democratic Carthage Redistricted from the 4th district
Bart Gordon2.jpg Bart Gordon January 3, 1985 – January 3, 2011 Democratic Murfreesboro Retired
Diane Black, 115th official photo.jpg Diane Black January 3, 2011 – January 3, 2019 Republican Gallatin Incumbent. Retiring after running for the Republican nomination in the 2018 Tennessee gubernatorial election
John Rose speaking during a Rotary Club meeting.jpg John Rose Elect. Republican Temperance Hall Term starting January 3, 2019.

Historical district boundaries[edit]

2003 – 2013

See also[edit]


  1. ^ https://www.census.gov/geo/maps-data/data/cd_state.html
  2. ^ https://www.census.gov/mycd/?st=47&cd=06
  3. ^ "Partisan Voting Index – Districts of the 115th Congress" (PDF). The Cook Political Report. April 7, 2017. Retrieved April 7, 2017.
  4. ^ http://www.amazonfulfillmentcareers.com/amazon-fulfillment/locations/
  5. ^ http://bridgestone-firestone.com/locations/distributioncenters/index.html
  6. ^ http://www.tennessean.com/story/news/local/gallatin/2014/08/28/beretta-breaks-ground-million-gallatin-plant/14751955/
  7. ^ http://www.tennessean.com/story/news/local/wilson/mt-juliet/2014/10/02/armour-announcement-expected-mt-juliet-today/16579357/
  8. ^ http://tn.gov/sos/election/results/2012-11/USPresidentCountyTotals.pdf
  9. ^ http://www.tn.gov/sos/election/results/20141104_StateCertCountyTotals.pdf
  10. ^ http://factfinder.census.gov/faces/tableservices/jsf/pages/productview.xhtml?pid=DEC_10_SF1_GCTPH1.ST13&prodType=table
  11. ^ http://gorecenter.mtsu.edu/gore-sr.shtml
  12. ^ https://www.washingtonpost.com/local/obituaries/dan-evins-founder-of-cracker-barrel-highway-empire-dies/2012/01/16/gIQAfkt43P_story.html
  13. ^ http://www.crackerbarrel.com/careers/home-office/
  14. ^ http://www.techlawjournal.com/people/gordon.htm

External links[edit]

Coordinates: 36°11′41″N 85°46′42″W / 36.19472°N 85.77833°W / 36.19472; -85.77833