Chattanooga, Tennessee: Wikis


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Chattanooga, Tennessee
—  City  —
Chattanooga from Lookout Mountain


Nickname(s): Scenic City (official), River City
Location within the U.S. State of Tennessee
Coordinates: 35°2′44″N 85°16′2″W / 35.04556°N 85.26722°W / 35.04556; -85.26722
Country United States
State Tennessee
Counties Hamilton, Marion, Rhea
 - Mayor Ron Littlefield (D)
 - City 143.2 sq mi (370.8 km2)
 - Land 135.2 sq mi (352.2 km2)
 - Water 8.0 sq mi (20.6 km2)
Elevation 676 ft (206 m)
Population (2008)
 - City 170,880
 Density 1,264/sq mi (485/km2)
 Metro 518,441
Time zone EST (UTC-5)
 - Summer (DST) EDT (UTC-4)
Area code(s) 423
FIPS code 47-14000[1]
GNIS feature ID 1307240[2]

Chattanooga is the fourth-largest city in Tennessee (after Memphis, Nashville and Knoxville), and the seat of Hamilton County. Located in southeastern Tennessee on Chickamauga Lake and Nickajack Lake, which are both part of the Tennessee River, Chattanooga lies approximately 104 miles (167 km) to the north-northwest of Atlanta, Georgia, 120 miles (190 km) to the southwest of Knoxville, about 135 miles (217 km) to the southeast of Nashville, and about 148 miles (238 km) to the northeast of Birmingham, Alabama. Chattanooga abuts the Georgia border, and the region is where three major interstate highways, I-24, I-75, and I-59, meet.

The city, which has a downtown elevation of approximately 680 feet (210 m), lies at the transition between the ridge-and-valley portion of the Appalachian Mountains and the Cumberland Plateau. The city is therefore surrounded by various mountains and ridges. The official nickname for Chattanooga is the Scenic City.



The first inhabitants of the Chattanooga area were Native American Indians. Sites dating back to the Upper Paleolithic period showed continuous occupation through the Archaic, Woodland, Mississippian/Muskogean (900-1650), and Cherokee (1776–1838) periods.

The first part of the name "Chattanooga" derives from the Muskogean word cvto /cható/ - 'rock'[3]. The latter may be derived from a regional suffix -nunga meaning dwelling or dwelling place.

Cherokee Chief John Ross, whose first language was English and whose family moved to the area in the 19th century, was said to have stated[4] that Chattanooga was Cherokee for "The Big Catch" because of good fishing on the Tennessee River.

A late 19th century history recounted:

With only occasional allusion to the various interpretations of Cherokee names, which have so long been accepted as true, their actual meaning, as derived from John Ross, the celebrated Cherokee chief, and from Lewis Ross, his brother, are here given. Chattanooga, originally was the name of a small Indian hamlet, situated near the base of Lookout Mountain, on the bank of Chattanooga creek. It means, in the Cherokee language, "to draw fish out of water", and hence was applied to the collection of huts, which were occupied by Indian fishermen. The humble hamlet disappeared, and its name, at first suggestive and appropriate, was inherited by the town of the white man, with meaningless application. A somewhat similar name was applied by the Cherokees to the cliffs, rising boldly from the river above the town, which was derived from Clanoowah, the name of a warlike but diminutive hawk, which was supposed to embody the spirit of the tribe. These cliffs were the favorite nesting-place of the bird, and hence a name was given which expressed this fact, and which, perhaps, has suggested the myth, that 'Chattanooga' means 'eagle's nest.'[5]

The earliest Cherokee occupation dates from Dragging Canoe, who in 1776 separated himself and moved downriver from the main tribe to establish Native American resistance (see Chickamauga Wars) to European settlement in the southeastern United States. In 1816 John Ross, who later became Principal Chief, settled here and established Ross's Landing. Located along what is now Broad Street, it became one of the centers of Cherokee Nation settlement, which also extended into Georgia and Alabama.[6]

In 1838 the US government forced the Cherokees, along with other Native American Indians from southeastern U.S. states, to relocate in what is presently the state of Oklahoma. Their journey west became known as the "Trail of Tears" for their exile and fatalities along the way. The US Army used Ross's Landing as the site of one of three large internment camps, or "emigration depots", where Native Americans were held prior to the journey on the Trail of Tears. The other two were Fort Payne, Alabama and the largest at Fort Cass, Tennessee.[7]

In 1838, the community of Ross's Landing incorporated as the city of Chattanooga, the Creek word for Lookout Mountain.[8] The city grew quickly, initially benefiting from a location well-suited for river commerce. With the arrival of the railroad in 1850, Chattanooga became a boom town. The city was known as the site "where cotton meets corn," referring to its location along the cultural boundary between the mountain communities of Southern Appalachia to the north and the cotton-growing states to the south.[6]

Confederate prisoners of war at a railroad depot in Chattanooga

During the American Civil War, Chattanooga was a center of battle. During the Chickamauga Campaign, Union artillery bombarded Chattanooga as a diversion and occupied it on September 9, 1863. Following the Battle of Chickamauga, the defeated Union Army retreated to safety in Chattanooga. On November 23, 1863, the Battles for Chattanooga began when Union forces led by Maj. Gen. Ulysses S. Grant reinforced troops at Chattanooga and advanced to Orchard Knob against Confederate troops besieging the city. The next day, the Battle of Lookout Mountain was fought, driving the Confederates off the mountain. On November 25, Grant's army routed the Confederates in the Battle of Missionary Ridge. These battles were followed the next spring by the Atlanta Campaign, beginning just over the nearby state line in Georgia and moving southeastward.

Market Square in 1907

After the war ended, the city became a major railroad hub and industrial and manufacturing center.[9] By the 1930s it was known as the "Dynamo of Dixie", inspiring the 1941 Glenn Miller big-band swing song "Chattanooga Choo Choo". The same mountains that provided Chattanooga's scenic backdrop became shrouded by the industrial pollutants that they trapped and held over the community.

In 1969, the federal government declared that Chattanooga's air was the dirtiest in the nation. But environmental crises were not the only problems plaguing the city. Like other early industrial cities, Chattanooga entered the 1980s with serious socioeconomic challenges, including job layoffs due to deindustrialization, a deteriorating city infrastructure, racial tensions and social division. Because of these factors, in the 1980s, Chattanooga lost over 10 percent of its population. However, since the 1980s, Chattanooga has become the only major city in the United States to regain growth in the 2 decades since.[10]

In recent years, private and governmental resources have been invested in transforming the city's tarnished image. They have worked to revitalize its downtown and riverfront areas, making use of its natural resources.[11][12] An early cornerstone of this project was the restoration of the historic Walnut Street Bridge. The Walnut Street Bridge is the oldest surviving bridge of its kind in the Southeastern United States.[13]

Efforts to improve the city include the "21st Century Waterfront Plan" - a $120 million redevelopment of the Chattanooga waterfront and downtown area. The Tennessee Aquarium has become a major waterfront attraction that has helped to spur neighborhood development.[14] Over the last ten years the city has won three national awards for outstanding "livability", and nine Gunther Blue Ribbon Awards for excellence in housing and consolidated planning.[15]


Downtown Chattanooga

Chattanooga's economy includes a diversified and growing mix of manufacturing and service industries.

Notable Chattanooga businesses include Access America Transport, BlueCross BlueShield of Tennessee, CBL & Associates, The Chattanooga Bakery, Chattem, the world's first Coca-Cola bottling plant, Coker Tire, Coptix, Covenant Transport, Double Cola, Gordon Biersch Brewery Restaurant Group, Krystal, Litespeed, Miller & Martin, National Model Railroad Association, Olan Mills, Inc., Republic Parking System, Retro Television Network (RTN), Rock/Creek,Tricycle Inc., and Unum. The city also hosts large branch offices of Cigna, AT&T, T-Mobile USA and UBS. McKee Foods Corporation, maker of Little Debbie brand snack cakes, is a privately held, family-run company headquartered in nearby Collegedale, Tennessee.

Notable companies that have manufacturing or distribution facilities in the city include Alstom, BASF, DuPont, Invista, Komatsu, Rock-Tenn, Plantronics, Domtar Corp., Norfolk Southern, Alco Chemical, Colonial Pipeline and Buzzi Unicem. The William Wrigley Jr. Company has a prominent presence in Chattanooga, now the sole production facility for Altoids breath mint products. There is also a Vulcan Materials quarry in the vicinity of the city.

On July 15, 2008, Volkswagen Group of America announced plans to build its new production facility in Chattanooga.[16] The $1 billion plant, due to open in 2011, will serve as the group's North American manufacturing headquarters. The plant is the first for Volkswagen since the 1988 closure of New Stanton, Pennsylvania's auto plant.[17]

In addition to corporate business interests, there are many retail shops in Chattanooga, including three shopping malls: Hamilton Place Mall in East Brainerd, Northgate Mall in Hixson, and Eastgate Town Center in Brainerd.



Chickamauga Lock and Dam on the Tennessee River at Chattanooga

Electric power for most of the city and surrounding area is provided by the city-run Electric Power Board (EPB). Beginning in the summer of 2009, the EPB is also providing high-speed Internet service, video, and telephone service to business and residential customers throughout Hamilton County.[18] The services that the EPB is providing to residents and businesses in Hamilton County is done via what will be the nation's largest municipally owned fiber-optic system.[19] The TVA operates the nearby Sequoyah Nuclear Power Plant, Chickamauga Dam and the Raccoon Mountain Pumped-Storage Plant, all of which provide electricity to the greater Chattanooga area.

Natural gas and water are provided by the privately run Chattanooga Gas Company and Tennessee-American Water Company, respectively. In 2005 Mayor Ron Littlefield stated his desire for the city to purchase the Tennessee-American Water Company,[20], which was sold in a public offering in 2007.[21] Former Mayor Jon Kinsey's attempts to have the city buy control of Tennessee-American Water were defeated in court.

Comcast is the cable provider for most areas of the city. The incumbent telephone company is AT&T. However, competing phone companies, cellular phones and VoIP are beginning to make inroads. A major interstate fiber optics line operated by AT&T traverses the city, making its way from Atlanta to Cincinnati.

Politics, government and law

The current mayor is Ron Littlefield, a long-time city councilman, who was elected in a run-off election in April 2005. Mayor Littlefield was reelected to a second four year term in March 2009.

The city operates under a charter granted by the state legislature in 1852, and the charter has been subsequently amended. As of 2009, the city operates with a strong mayor system.

The city's legislative branch is split up into nine districts, with a council member for each district selected in partisan elections. The current council members are Deborah Scott (District 1), Sally Robinson (District 2), Pam Ladd (District 3), Jack Benson (District 4), Russell Gilbert (District 5), Carol Berz (District 6), Manuel "Manny" Rico (District 7), Andrae McGary (District 8) and Peter Murphy (District 9).

See also a list of Mayors of Chattanooga, Tennessee.


Primary and secondary education

Most of Chattanooga's primary and secondary education is funded by the government. The public schools in Chattanooga (and Hamilton County) fall under the purview of the Hamilton County School System.[22] The Howard School, now a magnet school, was the first public school in the area, established in 1865 after the Civil War.[23] The Chattanooga School for the Arts and Sciences is another public magnet school.[24]

In addition, the city is home to several well-known private and parochial secondary schools, including Baylor School,[25] Boyd-Buchanan School,[26] McCallie School,[27] Girls Preparatory School,[28] Chattanooga Christian School,[29] and Notre Dame High School.[30] Grace Baptist Academy is a K-12 private school well-known for its academics and middle and secondary sports programs, having had several male and female sports teams that have played at the state tournament level.[31] Brainerd Baptist School is a small Christian elementary school.[32] Siskin Children's Institute in Chattanooga is a specialized institution in the field of early childhood special education.[33]

Higher education

University of Tennessee at Chattanooga's Founders Hall

The University of Tennessee at Chattanooga is the second largest campus of the University of Tennessee System, with a student population of over 10,000.[34] The University of the South at Sewanee lies about seventy miles to the northwest of Chattanooga. Chattanooga State Technical Community College and several religious schools are located here, including Tennessee Temple University. Chattanooga also has a branch of the University of Tennessee College of Medicine, which provides medical education to medical students, residents, and other medical professionals in southeast Tennessee through an affiliation with Erlanger Health System.

Public library

As the name implies, the Chattanooga-Hamilton County Bicentennial Library system has been jointly operated by the city and county governments since 1976.[35] The city was gifted with a Carnegie library in 1904, and the two-story purpose-built marble structure survives to this day at Eighth Street and Georgia Avenue as commercial office space. In 1939, the library moved to Douglas Street and McCallie Avenue and shared the new building with the John Storrs Fletcher Library of the University of Chattanooga. This building is now called Fletcher Hall and houses classrooms and offices for the University. The city library was moved to its third and current location in 1976 at the corner of Tenth and Broad streets.

Health care

Chattanooga's health care sector has three hospital systems. Erlanger Hospital is a non-profit academic teaching center affiliated with the University of Tennessee's College of Medicine.[36] It's also the area's primary trauma center, a Level-One Trauma Center for adults, and the only provider of tertiary care for the residents of southeastern Tennessee, north Georgia, north Alabama, and western North Carolina.[36] Erlanger treats approximately 250,000 people every year.[36] In 2008, Erlanger was named one of the nation's "Top 100 teaching hospitals for cardiovascular care" by Thomson Reuters.[37] Erlanger has been operated by the Chattanooga-Hamilton County Hospital Authority since 1976.[38]

Parkridge Hospital is located east of downtown in the Glenwood District and is run by Tri-Star Healthcare. Tri-Star also operates Parkridge East Medical Center in nearby East Ridge. Also located downtown is Memorial Hospital, which is operated by Catholic Health Initiatives. In 2004, Memorial was named one of the "Top 100 teaching hospitals" by Solucient Top Hospitals.[39]

Culture and tourism


Modern extension of the Hunter Museum of American Art

Chattanooga is home to the Hunter Museum of American Art, a well known art museum. As the birthplace of the tow truck, Chattanooga is the home of the International Towing and Recovery Hall of Fame and Museum.[40] Another transportation icon, the passenger train, can be found at the Tennessee Valley Railroad Museum, or called TVRM by locals, which is the largest operating historic railroad in the South. Other notable museums include the Chattanooga Regional History Museum,[41] the National Medal of Honor Museum,[42] the Houston Museum,[43] the Chattanooga African American Museum,[44] and the Creative Discovery Museum.[45]

Arts and literature

Chattanooga has a range of performing arts in different venues. Its historic Tivoli Theatre has been renovated and is home to the Chattanooga Symphony and Opera, under the direction of Robert Bernhardt.[46] The Chattanooga Theatre Centre offers 15 productions each year in three separate theater programs: the Mainstage, the Circle Theater, and the Youth Theater.[47] Another popular performance venue is Memorial Auditorium.

Chattanooga hosts several writing conferences, including the Conference on Southern Literature and the Festival of Writers, both sponsored by the Arts & Education Council of Chattanooga.[48]


Tennessee Aquarium

Chattanooga touts many attractions, including the Tennessee Aquarium, caverns, and new waterfront attractions along and across the Tennessee River. In the downtown area is the Chattanooga Choo Choo Hotel, housed in the renovated Terminal Station and exhibiting the largest HO model train layout in the United States. Also downtown are the Creative Discovery Museum, a hands-on children's museum dedicated to science, art, and music; an IMAX 3D Theatre; and the newly expanded Hunter Museum of American Art. The Tennessee Riverwalk, an approximately 13-mile (21 km) long trail running alongside the river, is another attraction for both tourists and residents alike.

Across the river from downtown is the North Shore district, roughly bounded by the Olgiati Bridge to the west and Veterans Bridge to the east. The newly renovated area draws locals and tourists to locally owned independent boutiques and restaurants, plus attractions along the Chattanooga Riverpark system, including Coolidge Park and Renaissance Park. Chattanooga's only floating hotel, the Delta Queen, is a unique attraction alongside the North Shore, and is permanently docked at Coolidge Park.

The Chattanooga Zoo at Warner Park is not far from the downtown area.

Parks and natural scenic areas provide other attractions. The red-and-black painted "See Rock City" barns along highways in the Southeast are remnants of a now-classic Americana tourism campaign to attract visitors to the Rock City tourist attraction in nearby Lookout Mountain, Georgia. The mountain is also the site of Ruby Falls and Craven's House.[49] The Lookout Mountain Incline Railway is a steep funicular railway that rises from the St. Elmo Historic District to the top of the mountain, where passengers can visit the National Park Service's Point Park and the Battles for Chattanooga Museum.[50] Formerly known as Confederama, it contains a diorama that details the Battle of Chattanooga. From the military park, visitors can enjoy the panoramic views of Moccasin Bend and the Chattanooga skyline from the mountain's famous "point" or from vantage points along the well-marked trail system.

Near Chattanooga, the Raccoon Mountain Reservoir, Raccoon Mountain Caverns and Reflection Riding Arboretum and Botanical Garden boast a number of outdoor and family fun opportunities. Other arboretums include Bonny Oaks Arboretum, Cherokee Arboretum at Audubon Acres and Cherokee Trail Arboretum. The Ocoee River, host to a number of events at the 1996 Atlanta Olympics, features rafting, kayaking, camping and hiking. Also just outside Chattanooga is the Lake Winnepesaukah amusement park. The Cumberland Trail begins in Signal Mountain, just outside of Chattanooga.

Maggie the Mayfield cow at the Chattanooga Market.

Festivals and events

Chattanooga hosts the Riverbend Festival, an annual nine-day music festival held in June in the downtown area. One of the most popular events is the "Bessie Smith Strut", a one-night showcase of blues and jazz music named for the city's most noted blues singer. The annual "Southern Brewer's Festival" and the "River Roast" festival celebrate such traditional Southern staples as beer and barbecue.

New events, such as GoFest![51], "Between the Bridges" wakeboard competition and Talespin[52] attract new audiences. Back Row Films is a city-wide celebration of film co-sponsored by the Hunter Museum of American Art, the Arts & Education Council and UTC.[53]

"Nightfall"[54] is the free weekly concert series in Miller Plaza on Friday nights that continues to bring an eclectic mix of rock, blues, jazz, reggae, zydeco, funk, bluegrass, and folk to downtown Chattanooga from Memorial Day until the end of September. The Chattanooga Market features events all year round as part of the "Sunday at the Southside", including an Oktoberfest in mid-October.

The Chattanooga Dulcimer Festival, held each June, features workshops for mountain dulcimer, hammered dulcimer, and auto harp, among others, along with performances by champion performers from across the nation.[55] Chattanooga is also the center of much bluegrass music. In 1935, as well as from 1993 to 1995, the city hosted the National Folk Festival.


Chattanooga was the home of the NCAA Division I Football Championship game, which has been held at the Max Finley Stadium, which is south of downtown, since 1997.

The Chattanooga Lookouts, a Class AA Southern League baseball team affiliated with the Los Angeles Dodgers,[56] boast a loyal following and respectable participation in season-end playoffs. Games take center stage at the downtown AT&T Field with tickets starting at only $4.

Annually, the first weekend in November, the Head of the Hooch rowing regatta, takes place in downtown Chattanooga. The head race originally took place on the Chattahoochee River in Atlanta, giving it the name the Head of the Hooch. With 1,800+ boats in 2009, this ranked as the 2nd largest regatta in the United States.[57] In addition to thousands of rowers descending on Chattanooga, there are festivities like hot-air balloon rides and a street market.

Chattanooga is also home to Chattanooga FC, a semi-profesional soccer team that currently plays in the National Premier Soccer League.

Outdoor sports

Due to its location at the junction of the Cumberland Plateau and the southern Appalachians, Chattanooga has become a haven for outdoor sports such as hunting, fishing, trail running, road running, adventure racing, rock climbing, mountain biking and road biking. The city boasts a number of outdoor clubs: Scenic City Velo, SORBA-Chattanooga, The Wilderness Trail Running Association, and The Chattanooga Track Club. The city also funds Outdoor Chattanooga, an organization focused on promoting outdoor recreation. In September 2004, the city appointed its first-ever executive director of Outdoor Chattanooga to implement the organization's mission, which includes promoting bicycling for transportation, recreation and active living.[58] For paddlers, Chattanooga offers the Tennessee River Blueway, a 50-mile (80 km) recreational section of the Tennessee River that flows through Chattanooga and the Tennessee River Gorge. In the spring of 2009, the Tennessee Aquarium launched their high speed catamaran, the River Gorge Explorer, to allow up to 70 people to explore the Tennessee River Gorge.[59] The Explorer departs from the Chattanooga Pier.[60]


As of the census[1] of 2000, there were 155,554 people, 65,499 households, and 39,626 families residing in the city. The population density was 1,150.5 people per square mile (444.2/km²). There were 72,108 housing units at an average density of 533.3/sq mi (205.9/km²). The racial makeup of the city was 59.71% White, 36.06% Black, 0.29% American Indian, 1.54% Asian, 0.11% Pacific Islander, 1.01% from other races, and 1.30% from two or more races. 2.11% of the population were Hispanic or Latino of any race. The 2006 revised estimated population was 168,293 which is an 8.4% percent increase over the original 2006 estimate. In 2009, the US Census Bureau estimated that Chattanooga's overall population grew some 9.3% from 2000 to 2008, which is as fast as Tennessee's largest cities. Also, the Census Bureau reported that it estimated that the city of Chattanooga added some 15,326 residents since the 2000 census, for an estimated 2008 population of 170,880 people.[10]

There were 65,499 households out of which 25.3% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 39.2% were married couples living together, 17.3% had a female householder with no husband present, and 39.5% were non-families. 33.5% of all households were made up of individuals and 11.6% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.29 and the average family size was 2.92. Same-sex couple households comprised 0.4% of all households.[61]

In the city the population was spread out with 22.4% under the age of 18, 10.8% from 18 to 24, 28.8% from 25 to 44, 22.8% from 45 to 64, and 15.2% who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 37 years. For every 100 females there were 89.3 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 85.2 males.

The median income for a household in the city was $32,006, and the median income for a family was $41,318. Males had a median income of $31,375 versus $23,267 for females. The per capita income for the city was $19,689. About 14.0% of families and 17.9% of the population were below the poverty line, including 27.0% of those under age 18 and 13.8% of those age 65 or over.

Chattanooga's Metropolitan Statistical Area, which includes Hamilton, Marion, and Sequatchie counties in Tennessee and Catoosa, Dade, and Walker counties in Georgia, grew from 476,531 people, as of the 2000 census, to 496,704 people, as estimated on July 1, 2006.[62] By July 1, 2008, the US Census Bureau had estimated the Chattanooga metropolitan area had grown to 518,441 people, up 9.6% from July 2006.[63] The Chattanooga-Cleveland-Athens Combined Statistical Area, which includes Bradley, Hamilton, Marion, McMinn, Polk, and Sequatchie counties in Tennessee, and Catoosa, Dade, and Walker counties in Georgia, had an estimated population of 658,201 in 2006.[64] The Chattanooga-Cleveland-Athens Combined Statistical Area had an estimated population of 683,095 people, as of July 1, 2008, up 9.6% from July 2006.[65]

Geography and climate

Location of Chattanooga, Tennessee

The city is located at latitude 35°4' North, longitude 85°15' West.

According to the United States Census Bureau, the city has a total area of 143.2 square miles (370.8 km²), of which, 135.2 square miles (350.2 km²) of it is land and 8.0 square miles (20.6 km²) of it (5.56%) is water.

The most prominent natural features in and around Chattanooga are the Tennessee River and the surrounding highlands. The city is nestled between the southwestern Ridge-and-valley Appalachians and the foot of Walden's Ridge; the river separates the ridge from the western side of downtown. Several miles east, the city is bisected by Missionary Ridge, which hosted an important battle of the American Civil War.

The Tennessee River is impounded by the TVA's Chickamauga Dam north of the downtown area. Five automobile bridges, one railroad trestle, and one pedestrian bridge cross the river.

Road transport is served by Interstate 75 to Atlanta and Knoxville, Interstate 24 to Nashville, and Interstate 59 to Birmingham. Chattanooga and the surrounding area is served by the Chattanooga Metropolitan Airport. Rail freight is offered by CSX to Atlanta and Nashville, and Norfolk Southern to Atlanta, Birmingham, Cincinnati, Knoxville and Memphis.


In addition to the restoration of downtown, many of Chattanooga's neighborhoods have experienced a rebirth of their own. Chattanooga has many buildings on the National Register of Historic Places, including three neighborhoods: Fort Wood, Ferger Place, and St. Elmo.

  • Alton Park
  • Avondale
  • Brainerd
  • Bonny Oaks
  • Bushtown
  • Clifton Hills
  • East Brainerd
  • East Chattanooga
  • East Lake
  • East Ridge
  • Eastdale
  • Ferger Place
  • Fort Wood
  • Glenwood
  • Highland Park
  • Hixson
  • Hwy 58
  • Jefferson Heights
  • Lookout Valley also known as Tiftonia and Wauhatchie
  • Lupton City
  • Missionary Ridge
  • North Chattanooga
  • Orchard Knob
  • Pineville
  • Red Bank
  • Riverview
  • Rossville (not to be confused with the nearby city of Rossville, Georgia)
  • Southside
  • Tyner
  • St. Elmo

Important suburbs


Monthly Normal and Record High and Low Temperatures
Month Jan Feb Mar Apr May Jun Jul Aug Sep Oct Nov Dec
Rec High °F/°C 78/26 79/26 87/31 93/34 99/37 104/40 109/43 105/41 102/39 94/34 84/29 78/26
Norm High °F/°C 49/9 54/12 62/17 72/22 79/26 86/30 90/32 89/32 83/28 72/22 61/16 52/11
Norm Low °F/°C 30/-1 33/1 40/4 47/8 56/13 65/18 69/21 68/20 62/17 49/9 40/4 33/1
Rec Low °F/°C -10/-23 1/-17 8/-13 25/-4 34/1 41/5 51/11 50/10 36/2 22/-6 4/-16 -2/-19
Precip in./mm 5.40/137 4.85/123 6.19/157 4.23/107 4.28/109 3.99/101 4.73/120 3.59/91 4.31/109 3.26/83 4.88/124 4.81/122
Source: [31]

According to the National Weather Service in Morristown, Tennessee (which has responsibility for all of east Tennessee), the heaviest snowfall in Chattanooga (both by storm total and 24-hour period) was 20.0 inches (50.8 cm) during the Great Blizzard of 1993. The most snow in one season was 23.9 inches (60.7 cm) in 1894-95. The coldest temperature ever recorded was −10 °F (−23 °C) in 1899, 1966, and 1985 (on Feb. 13, Jan. 31 and 21, respectively). [66]


Considered to be a gateway to the Deep South, Chattanooga's transportation infrastructure has developed into a complex and intricate system of railroads, streets, airports and waterways.

Principal highways

See also List of Tennessee state highways

Major surface routes

  • Brainerd Road/Lee Highway (U.S. 11)/(U.S. 64)
  • Broad Street
  • Cummings Highway (US 41)/(US 72)
  • Dayton Blvd (U.S. 27 North)
  • East Brainerd Road
  • Georgia Avenue
  • Hixson Pike
  • Main Street (U.S. 76)
  • McCallie Avenue
  • Ringgold Road
  • Rossville Boulevard (U.S. 27)
  • Signal Mountain Boulevard (U.S. 127)


  • Bachmann Tubes, (also unofficially known as The East Ridge Tunnels), which carry Ringgold Road into the neighboring city of East Ridge.
  • Missionary Ridge Tunnels (also unofficially known as McCallie or Brainerd Tunnels), which carry McCallie and Bailey Avenues through Missionary Ridge where the route continues as Brainerd Road.
  • Stringer's Ridge Tunnel, which carries Cherokee Boulevard through Stringer's Ridge where the route continues as Dayton Boulevard.
  • Wilcox Tunnel, which carries Wilcox Boulevard through Missionary Ridge and connects to Shallowford Road.

Public transit

The city is served by a publicly run bus company, the Chattanooga Area Regional Transportation Authority. CARTA operates 17 routes, including a free electric shuttle service in the downtown area, and free wireless internet on certain "smartbuses".[67]

Railroad lines

Despite a new emphasis on the technology and service sectors, Chattanooga maintains ties to the past and still serves as a major freight hub with Norfolk Southern (NS) and CSX running trains on their own (and each other's) lines. The Norfolk Southern Railway's enormous DeButts Yard is just east of downtown, Shipp's Yard and CSX's Wauhatchie Yard are southwest of the city. Indeed, the two railroad companies are among the largest individual landowners in the city (the Federal Government is another). The Tennessee Valley Railroad Museum, the largest historic operating railroad in the South, and the Chattooga and Chickamauga Railway also provides railroad service in Chattanooga.

Since both NS and CSX both run through Chattanooga, here are the lines that run through the town (the AAR codes are used for the following railroads: NS for Norfolk Southern, CSXT for CSX Transportation, TNVR for the Tennessee Valley Railroad Museum, and CCKY for Chattooga and Chickamauga Railway):

Also, the Lookout Mountain Incline Railway, often referred to as the Incline Railway by locals, as well as being a tourist attraction, is sometimes used for commuting by Lookout Mountain residents, particularly during wintry weather, when travelling up and down the mountain could be very dangerous.

Despite the relatively high level of freight rail activity, there is no passenger rail service in the city for either commuters or long-distance travelers.


Bridges in Chattanooga

Being bisected by a major waterway, Chattanooga has several large bridges that allow people to traverse the Tennessee River. They are, from west to east:

  • Market Street Bridge - Officially called the John Ross Bridge. It is a bascule span, which is a type of drawbridge. The bridge was completed in 1917 for the then-astronomical sum of USD $1,000,000. Having stood for decades since its last major overhaul, the Tennessee Department of Transportation declared it unsafe in late 2004. The bridge was closed in 2005 for a long-overdue renovation and reopened on August 4, 2007.[68]
  • Walnut Street Bridge – Also known as "The Walking Bridge", it is one of the centerpieces of Chattanooga's urban renewal, and is the second longest pedestrian bridge in the nation. Constructed in 1891, the bridge was declared unsafe and closed to traffic in 1978. It was on the verge of being demolished in the late 1980s when public demand led to it being restored as a pedestrian-only span that opened in 1993.[9][13]
  • Veterans Memorial Bridge – Completed in 1984, this structure has helped commuters from Hixson, Lupton City and other northern areas reach downtown quickly.[9]
  • C.B. Robinson Bridge – Opened in 1981, this bridge carries Dupont Parkway from Amnicola Highway to Hixson Pike and Route 153.[9]

Air travel

The Chattanooga Metropolitan Airport offers non-stop service to various domestic destinations via regional and national airlines, including Allegiant Airlines, American Eagle, Delta Connection, and US Airways Express.[70]

Media and communications

The city of Chattanooga is served by numerous local, regional and national media outlets which reach approximately one million people in four states: Tennessee, Alabama, Georgia and North Carolina.


The Chattanooga Times Free Press, the area's only daily newspaper, is published every morning. It was effectively formed in 1999 from two papers that had been bitter rivals for half a century, the Times and the News-Free Press. The Times was once owned by Adolph Ochs, who later bought the New York Times. The Times had been the morning paper and had a generally more liberal editorial page. The News-Free Press, whose name was the result of an earlier merger, was an afternoon daily and its editorials were more conservative than those in the Times. In 1999, the Free Press was bought by an Arkansas company, WEHCO Media, publisher of the Arkansas Democrat-Gazette, which then bought The Times from the Ochs heirs. The Times Free Press is the only known newspaper in the United States to have 2 editorial pages, each reflecting opposite ends of the political spectrum. The Times' editorial page, which is liberal, is on the left page and the Free Press' editorial page, which is conservative, is on the right page.[71]

The "Chattanooga Pulse" is a weekly alternative newspaper, published every Thursday. It was formed in 2003 by Zachary Cooper and Michael Kull, running independently until 2008, when the paper was purchased by local broadcast radio and website development firm Brewer Media Group. The newspaper shares news gathering resources with Brewer Media Group's WPLZ Pulse News 95.3FM news talk radio station, and the news website.

Online media

The Chattanoogan and its website "" is an online media outlet that concentrates on news from Chattanooga. The publisher is John Wilson, previously a staff writer for the Chattanooga Free Press.[72][73] is an online newspaper like website that began in 1999 and is updated many times daily with local, state and national news of interest to citizens living and working in the Chattanooga, North Alabama and Northwest Georgia areas. The site is webmastered by Rick Igou.


Chattanooga has the following radio stations:

  • WUUS 980 AM - Talk / WUUS Talk 980AM (Licensed to Rossville, GA)
  • WFLI 1070 AM - Southern gospel (Licensed to Lookout Mountain, TN)
  • WGOW 1150 AM - News/talk / NewsRadio 1150 [32]
  • WNOO 1260 AM - Urban gospel and Motown
  • WDOD 1310 AM - Sports/1310 Fox Sports Radio
  • WDEF-AM 1370 AM - Sports/1370 Fox Sports Radio
  • WUTC 88.1 FM - NPR [33]/Mixed music / Music 88. Operated by UTC. First and only station in Chattanooga to be broadcasting in HD Radio. (Licensed to Chattanooga, TN)
  • W203AZ 88.5 FM - Religious/CSN international [34]
  • WMBW 88.9 FM - Christian / Moody Radio For The Heart Of The Southeast. Owned and operated by Moody Bible Institute. (Licensed to Chattanooga, TN)
  • WDYN 89.7 FM - Southern Gospel / WDYN Radio [35] Operated By Tennessee Temple University. (Licensed to Chattanooga, TN)
  • W211BG 90.1 FM - Religious [36] (Licensed to Walden, TN)
  • WSMC 90.5 FM - Classical/NPR/PRI[37] Operated by Southern Adventist University. (Licensed to Collegedale, TN)
  • WAWL-FM 91.5 FM - College Alternative / 91 Rock The Wawl Chattanooga State Technical Community College (Licensed to Chattanooga, TN)
  • WDEF-FM 92.3 FM - Adult contemporary / Sunny 92.3[38] (Licensed to Chattanooga, TN)
  • WSAA 93.1 FM - Adult Hits / 93.1 Jack FM[39] (Licensed to Benton, TN)
  • WMPZ 93.5 FM - Urban oldies / Groove 93[40] (Licensed to Harrison, TN)
  • WJTT 94.3 FM - Urban contemporary / Power 94 [41] (Licensed to Red Bank, TN)
  • WAAK-LP 94.7 FM - Variety [42] (Low power station licensed to Boynton/Ringgold, GA)
  • WPLZ 95.3 FM - News/Talk [43] (Licensed to Cleveland, TN)
  • WDOD 96.5 FM - 96.5 The Mountain—Chattanooga's #1 Hit Music Station[44] (Licensed to Chattanooga, TN)
  • WUUQ 97.3, & 99.3 FM - Classic Country QCountry 97.3/99.3 (Licensed to South Pittsburg, TN)
  • WLND 98.1 FM - Hot AC / 98.1 LND (Licensed to Signal Mountain, TN)
  • WOOP 99.9 FM, Classic country, old-time gospel, bluegrass and mountain music. [45] Operated by the Traditional Music Resource Center, (Licensed to Cleveland, TN)
  • WUSY 100.7 FM, Contemporary country / US101 [46] (Licensed to Cleveland, TN)
  • WOCE 101.9 FM, Spanish (Licensed to Ringgold, GA)
  • WGOW 102.3 FM, [47] News/talk (Licensed to Soddy-Daisy, TN)
  • WBDX 102.7 FM, [48] Contemporary Christian (Licensed to Trenton, GA)
  • WLLJ 103.1 FM, [49] Contemporary Christian (Simulcast with WBDX 102.7) (Licensed to Etowah, TN)
  • WKXJ 103.7 FM, Top 40 / 103.7 Kiss FM [50] (Licensed to Walden, TN)
  • WALV 105.1 FM, [51] ESPN Sports Talk
  • WRXR 105.5 FM, [52] Active rock (Licensed to Rossville, GA)
  • WSKZ 106.5 FM, [53] Classic rock
  • WOGT 107.9 FM, [54] Contemporary country / The Duke (Licensed to East Ridge, TN)


Chattanooga's television stations include:

See also List of television stations in Tennessee, List of television stations in Georgia

Notable residents

The following people were born, currently live, or have lived in Chattanooga:

Sister cities

Chattanooga has five sister cities, as designated by Sister Cities International:

Chattanooga also has two twinning cities: Italy Ascoli Piceno, Italy, and United Kingdom Swindon, United Kingdom.

Other communities named Chattanooga

Other places named Chattanooga include Chattanooga, Oklahoma and a community named Chattanooga in Mercer County, Ohio.

See also


  1. ^ a b "American FactFinder". United States Census Bureau. Retrieved 2008-01-31. 
  2. ^ "US Board on Geographic Names". United States Geological Survey. 2007-10-25. Retrieved 2008-01-31. 
  3. ^ A Dictionary of Creek/Muskogee, Margaret McKane Mauldin
  4. ^ folk etymology. source?
  5. ^ Thomas Budd Van Horne and Edward Ruger, History of the Army of the Cumberland, 1875, p.407
  6. ^ a b Timothy Ezzell, Chattanooga. Tennessee Encyclopedia of History and Culture, 2002. Retrieved 2009-08-14.
  7. ^ Vicki Rozema, Voices from the Trail of Tears. Voices from the Trail of Tears, 2003. Retrieved 2009-08-19.
  8. ^ [1]
  9. ^ a b c d e f [2]
  10. ^ a b [3]
  11. ^ [4]
  12. ^ [5]
  13. ^ a b [6]
  14. ^ "waterfront_exec_summary.pdf (application/pdf Object)". Retrieved 2008-10-02. 
  15. ^ City of Chattanooga
  16. ^ Volkswagen wants slice of American pie
  17. ^ [7]
  18. ^ [8]
  19. ^ [9]
  20. ^ "Littlefield: "We Want Local Control" Of The Water Company". The Chattanoogan. 2005-12-19. Retrieved 2007-03-24. 
  21. ^ "Parent Company Of Tennessee-American Water To Be Sold In Public Offering". The Chattanoogan. 2006-03-25. Retrieved 2007-03-24. 
  22. ^ [10]
  23. ^ [11]
  24. ^ [12]
  25. ^ [13]
  26. ^ [14]
  27. ^ [15]
  28. ^ [16]
  29. ^ [17]
  30. ^ [18]
  31. ^ [19]
  32. ^ Brainerd Baptist School website
  33. ^ [20]
  34. ^ [21]
  35. ^ Library Website
  36. ^ a b c [22]
  37. ^ "Top 100 Hospitals 2008". Thomson Reuters. 2008. Retrieved 2008-11-18. 
  38. ^ Erlanger Board of Trustees
  39. ^ "Top 100 Hospitals 2004". Solucient. 2004. Retrieved 2007-03-24. 
  40. ^ The International Towing and Recovery Hall of Fame and Museum
  41. ^ Chattanooga Regional History Museum
  42. ^ National Medal of Honor Museum, Chattanooga, Tennessee
  43. ^ index.html
  44. ^ Chattanooga African American Museum
  45. ^ The Creative Discovery Museum
  46. ^ Chattanooga Symphony and Opera: Welcome!
  47. ^ Chattanooga Theatre Centre
  48. ^ The Arts & Education Council of Chattanooga
  49. ^ [23]
  50. ^ [24]
  51. ^ GoFest!
  52. ^ Talespin
  53. ^ The Back Row Film Series
  54. ^ [25]
  55. ^
  56. ^ Chattanooga Lookouts official site; affiliate stated on top right-hand corner of web page
  57. ^ Head of the Hooch
  58. ^ [26]
  59. ^ [27]
  60. ^ [28]
  61. ^ 2000 Census Data on Same-sex couple households
  62. ^ "Table 1. Annual Estimates of the Population of Metropolitan and Micropolitan Statistical Areas: April 1, 2000 to July 1, 2006 (CBSA-EST2006-01)" (CSV). 2006 Population Estimates. United States Census Bureau, Population Division. 2009-03-19. Retrieved 2009-03-21. 
  63. ^ "Table 1. Annual Estimates of the Population of Metropolitan and Micropolitan Statistical Areas: April 1, 2000 to July 1, 2008 (CBSA-EST2008-01)" (CSV). 2008 Population Estimates. United States Census Bureau, Population Division. 2009-03-19. Retrieved 2009-03-21. 
  64. ^ "Annual Estimates of the Population of Metropolitan and Micropolitan Statistical Areas: April 1, 2000 to July 1, 2006". U.S. Census Bureau. 2006. Retrieved 2007-05-02. 
  65. ^ "Table 2. Annual Estimates of the Population of Combined Statistical Areas: April 1, 2000 to July 1, 2008 (CBSA-EST2008-02)" (CSV). 2008 Population Estimates. United States Census Bureau, Population Division. 2009-03-19. Retrieved 2009-07-12. 
  66. ^
  67. ^ The Chattanoogan, September 19, 2007.
  68. ^ Market Street Bridge Project // What's Happening
  69. ^ [29]
  70. ^
  71. ^ [30]
  72. ^ "The Chattanoogan". Retrieved 2009-07-21. " was launched Sept. 1, 1999, as one of the first full-service web-only daily newspapers in the country. Since that date, it has proven to be a pace-setter in the rapidly-developing field of Internet news publishing and has drawn a wide following and readership. It currently gets about 50,000-80,000 visits per day." 
  73. ^ "Internet Newspaper to Appear in Chattanooga, Tenn.". Chattanooga Times/Free Press. 1999. Retrieved 2009-07-22. "A new Internet venture that calls itself one of the first full-service Web-only newspapers in the country is slated to appear today in Chattanooga. will publish Monday through Friday on the Internet at, said publisher and co-owner John Wilson on Tuesday. Mr. Wilson, formerly with the Chattanooga Free Press for 28 years and the Hamilton County historian, said the Internet paper will offer local news, sports, features, weather, obituaries, opinion, health and classified advertising. ..." 
  74. ^ "Chattanooga Timeline: 1907-1927". 2007. Retrieved 2007-11-11. 
  75. ^ "Will Marion Cook". Library Of Congress. 
  76. ^ "Dennis Haskins - Biography". IMDB. Retrieved 2007-11-11. 

External links

Simple English

Chattanooga, Tennessee
—  City  —
Nickname(s): Scenic City (official), River City
Coordinates: 35°2′44″N 85°16′2″W / 35.04556°N 85.26722°W / 35.04556; -85.26722
Country United States
State Tennessee
Counties Hamilton, Marion
 - Mayor Ron Littlefield
 - City 143.2 sq mi (370.8 km2)
 - Land 135.2 sq mi (352.2 km2)
 - Water 8.0 sq mi (20.6 km2)
Elevation 676 ft (206 m)
Population (2006)
 - City 168,293 (city proper)
 Metro 496,704
Time zone EST (UTC-5)
 - Summer (DST) EDT (UTC-4)
Area code(s) 423
FIPS code 47-14000[1]
GNIS feature ID 1307240[2]

Chattanooga is the fourth-largest city in Tennessee, a state in the United States of America. Cities larger than it are Memphis - the largest; Nashville - the capital of the state; and Knoxville. Chattanooga is located in the south-east of the Tennessee.

The first people to live in the Chattanooga area were Native American Indians with sites dating back to the Upper Paleolithic period.

Geography and climate

The United States Census Bureau say that the city has a total area of 143.2 square miles (370.8 km²). This is made up of 135.2 square miles (350.2 km²) of land, and 8.0 square miles (20.6 km²) of water (5.56% of the total area).

The most well known natural feature near Chattanooga is the Tennessee River and the surrounding highlands. The city is located between the southwestern Ridge-and-valley Appalachians and the foot of Walden's Ridge.


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