Tennessee River: Wikis

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Tennessee River
Tennessee River Airl.jpg
The Tennessee River in downtown Knoxville from the top of Neyland Stadium.
Origin Confluence of French Broad and Holston at Knoxville.
Mouth Ohio River at Paducah, Kentucky
Basin countries USA
Length 652 mi (1049 km) [1]
Source elevation 813 ft (248 m) [2]
Mouth elevation 302 ft (92 m) [3]
Avg. discharge 70,575 ft3/s (2,000 m³/s) [4]
Basin area 40,876 mi² (105,870 km²) [4]
The John Ross Bridge, spanning the Tennessee River in Chattanooga.
Natchez Trace Parkway, crossing the Tennessee River in Cherokee, Alabama
Map of the Tennessee Watershed

The Tennessee River is the largest tributary of the Ohio River. It is approximately 652 miles (1049 km) long and is located in the southeastern United States in the Tennessee Valley. The river was once popularly known as the Cherokee River, among other names.[1]

Contents

Course

The Tennessee River is formed at the confluence of the Holston and French Broad Rivers on the east side of Knoxville, Tennessee. From Knoxville, it flows southwest through East Tennessee toward Chattanooga before crossing into Alabama. It loops through northern Alabama and eventually forms a small part of the state's border with Mississippi, before returning to Tennessee. At this point, it defines the boundary between Tennessee's other two Grand Divisions: Middle and West Tennessee. The Tennessee-Tombigbee Waterway, a U.S. Army Corps of Engineers project providing navigation on the Tombigbee River and a link to the Port of Mobile, enters Tennessee near the Tennessee-Alabama-Mississippi boundary. This waterway reduces the navigation distance from Tennessee, north Alabama, and northern Mississippi to the Gulf of Mexico by hundreds of miles. The final part of the Tennessee's run is in Kentucky, where it separates the Jackson Purchase from the rest of the state. It then flows into the Ohio River at Paducah, Kentucky. It is one of a very few rivers in the United States which leave a state and then re-enter it; the Cumberland River is another such river.

Dams

The river has been dammed numerous times, primarily by Tennessee Valley Authority (TVA) projects. The placement of TVA's Kentucky Dam on the Tennessee River and the Corps' Barkley Dam on the Cumberland River directly led to the creation of Land Between the Lakes. A navigation canal located at Grand Rivers, Kentucky links Kentucky Lake and Lake Barkley. The canal allows for a shorter trip for river traffic going from the Tennessee to most of the Ohio River, and for traffic going down the Cumberland River toward the Mississippi.

Important cities and towns

Cities in bold type have more than 30,000 residents

History

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Beginning

Fish catch near Wilson Dam on the Tennessee River around 1940.

Officially the Tennessee River begins at mile post 652, where the French Broad River meets the Holston River. According to Tennessee Valley Authority historians,[citation needed] until 1933 the river that flowed past Knoxville was designated the Holston River, and the Tennessee River was considered to begin at the confluence of the Holston and the Little Tennessee River at Lenoir City 51 miles downstream and 601 miles upstream from the Ohio River at Paducah, Kentucky. The nomenclature was changed in 1933 due to a Congressional mandate that the Tennessee Valley Authority headquarters be located on the banks of the Tennessee River. Because the TVA headquarters were to be located in downtown Knoxville, the confluence of the Holston and French Broad Rivers was designated to be the beginning of the Tennessee River, placing the beginning of the river upstream from Knoxville.

Water rights and border dispute with Georgia

At various points since the early 19th century, Georgia has disputed its northern border with Tennessee. In 1796, when Tennessee was admitted to the Union, the border was originally defined by United States Congress as located on the 35th parallel, thereby ensuring that at least a portion of the river would be located within Georgia. As a result of an erroneously conducted survey in 1818 (ratified by the Tennessee legislature, but not Georgia), however, the actual border line was set on the ground approximately one mile south, thus placing the disputed portion of the river entirely in Tennessee.[5][6]

Georgia made several unsuccessful attempts to correct what Georgia felt was an erroneous survey line 'in the 1890s, 1905, 1915, 1922, 1941, 1947 and 1971 to "resolve" the dispute', according to C. Crews Townsend, Joseph McCoin, Robert F. Parsley, Alison Martin and Zachary H. Greene, writing for the Tennessee Bar Journal, a publication of the Tennessee Bar Association, appearing on May 12, 2008.

In 2008, as a result of a serious drought and resulting water shortage, the Georgia General Assembly passed a resolution directing the governor to pursue its claim in the United States Supreme Court.[7][8]

According to a story aired on WTVC-TV in Chattanooga on March 14, 2008, a local attorney familiar with case law on border disputes, says the U.S. Supreme Court generally will maintain the original borders between states and avoid stepping into border disputes, preferring the parties work out their differences.[9]

Meanwhile, many Tennessee lawmakers have dismissed the Georgia claims.

Modern use

The Tennessee River is an important part of the Great Loop, the recreational circumnavigation of Eastern North America by water.

Popular culture

Tennessee River tributaries

Tributaries and sub-tributaries are hierarchically listed in order from the mouth of the Tennessee River upstream.

See also

Notes

  1. ^ a b U.S. Geological Survey Geographical Names Information System: Tennessee River
  2. ^ U.S. Geological Survey. Shooks Gap quadrangle, Tennessee. 1:24,000. 7.5 Minute Series. Washington D.C.: USGS, 1987.
  3. ^ U.S. Geological Survey. Paducah East quadrangle, Kentucky. 1:24,000. 7.5 Minute Series. Washington D.C.: USGS, 1982.
  4. ^ a b "Arthur Benke & Colbert Cushing, "Rivers of North America". Elsevier Academic Press, 2005 ISBN 0-12-088253-1
  5. ^ "Georgians thirst to move Tennessee state line". February 8, 2008. http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/23076509/. Retrieved 2008-05-13. 
  6. ^ "Desperate for water, Georgia revisits border dispute". February 8, 2008. http://www.cnn.com/2008/US/02/08/drought.state.line.ap/. Retrieved 2008-05-13. 
  7. ^ Jones, Andrea (February 20, 2008). "Ga.'s quest to move Tenn. border advances". The Atlanta Journal-Constitution. http://www.ajc.com/metro/content/metro/stories/2008/02/20/tennborder_0221.html. Retrieved 2008-05-14. 
  8. ^ Dewan, Shaila (February 22, 2008). "Georgia Claims a Sliver of the Tennessee River". The New York Times. http://www.nytimes.com/2008/02/22/us/22water.html?em&ex=1203829200&en=9fe2c2ffaf5be75a&ei=5087%0A. Retrieved 2008-05-14. 
  9. ^ http://www.newschannel9.com/articles/georgia-967199-tennessee-border.html
  10. ^ a b c d e f g h Alabama Department of Transportation (1997). "County Highway Maps" (Lizardtech Plugin). University of Alabama. http://cartweb.geography.ua.edu:9001/StyleServer/calcrgn?cat=North%20America%20and%20United%20States&item=States/Alabama/Counties/colbert/hy_colbert97.sid&wid=500&hei=400&props=item(Name,Description),cat(Name,Description)&style=simple/view.xsl&plugin=true. Retrieved 2007-06-25. 
  11. ^ a b c d Army Corp of Engineers (1997). "Tennessee River Navigation Charts". Army Corp of Engineers. http://www.lrn.usace.army.mil/opn/TNRiver/. Retrieved 2007-07-04. 

Further reading

  • Woodside, M.D. et al. (2004). Water quality in the lower Tennessee River Basin, Tennessee, Alabama, Kentucky, Mississippi, and Georgia, 1999-2001 [U.S. Geological Survey Circular 1233]. Reston, VA: U.S. Department of the Interior, U.S. Geological Survey.
  • Myers, Fred (2004). Tennessee River CruiseGuide, 5th Edition

External links


Tennessee River
River
The Tennessee River in downtown Knoxville from the top of Neyland Stadium.
Country United States
States Tennessee, Alabama, Mississippi, Kentucky
Source Confluence of French Broad and Holston at Knoxville.
 - elevation 813 ft (248 m) [1]
 - coordinates 35°57′33″N 83°51′01″W / 35.95917°N 83.85028°W / 35.95917; -83.85028 [2]
Mouth Ohio River at Paducah, Kentucky
 - elevation 302 ft (92 m) [3]
 - coordinates 37°04′02″N 88°33′53″W / 37.06722°N 88.56472°W / 37.06722; -88.56472 [2]
Length 652 mi (1,049 km) [2]
Basin 40,876 sq mi (105,868 km²) [4]
Discharge
 - average 70,575 cu ft/s (1,998 m3/s) [4]
 - max 500,000 cu ft/s (14,158 m3/s)
Map of the Tennessee River watershed

, spanning the Tennessee River in Chattanooga.]]

in Decatur, Alabama.]]

]] The Tennessee River is the largest tributary of the Ohio River. It is approximately 652 miles (1049 km) long and is located in the southeastern United States in the Tennessee Valley. The river was once popularly known as the Cherokee River, among other names.[2]

Contents

Course

The Tennessee River is formed at the confluence of the Holston and French Broad Rivers on the east side of Knoxville, Tennessee. From Knoxville, it flows southwest through East Tennessee toward Chattanooga before crossing into Alabama. It loops through northern Alabama and eventually forms a small part of the state's border with Mississippi, before returning to Tennessee. At this point, it defines the boundary between Tennessee's other two Grand Divisions: Middle and West Tennessee. The Tennessee-Tombigbee Waterway, a U.S. Army Corps of Engineers project providing navigation on the Tombigbee River and a link to the Port of Mobile, enters Tennessee near the Tennessee-Alabama-Mississippi boundary. This waterway reduces the navigation distance from Tennessee, north Alabama, and northern Mississippi to the Gulf of Mexico by hundreds of miles. The final part of the Tennessee's run is in Kentucky, where it separates the Jackson Purchase from the rest of the state. It then flows into the Ohio River at Paducah, Kentucky. It is one of a very few rivers in the United States which leave a state and then re-enter it; the Cumberland River is another such river.

Dams

The river has been dammed numerous times, primarily by Tennessee Valley Authority (TVA) projects. The placement of TVA's Kentucky Dam on the Tennessee River and the Corps' Barkley Dam on the Cumberland River directly led to the creation of Land Between the Lakes. A navigation canal located at Grand Rivers, Kentucky links Kentucky Lake and Lake Barkley. The canal allows for a shorter trip for river traffic going from the Tennessee to most of the Ohio River, and for traffic going down the Cumberland River toward the Mississippi.

Important cities and towns

Cities in bold type have more than 30,000 residents

History

Beginning

Officially the Tennessee River begins at mile post 652, where the French Broad River meets the Holston River. According to Tennessee Valley Authority historians,[citation needed] until 1933 the river that flowed past Knoxville was designated the Holston River, and the Tennessee River was considered to begin at the confluence of the Holston and the Little Tennessee River at Lenoir City 51 miles downstream and 601 miles upstream from the Ohio River at Paducah, Kentucky.  The nomenclature was changed in 1933 due to a Congressional mandate that the Tennessee Valley Authority headquarters be located on the banks of the Tennessee River. Because the TVA headquarters were to be located in downtown Knoxville, the confluence of the Holston and French Broad Rivers was designated to be the beginning of the Tennessee River, placing the beginning of the river upstream from Knoxville.

Water rights and border dispute with Georgia

At various points since the early 19th century, Georgia has disputed its northern border with Tennessee. In 1796, when Tennessee was admitted to the Union, the border was originally defined by United States Congress as located on the 35th parallel, thereby ensuring that at least a portion of the river would be located within Georgia. As a result of an erroneously conducted survey in 1818 (ratified by the Tennessee legislature, but not Georgia), however, the actual border line was set on the ground approximately one mile south, thus placing the disputed portion of the river entirely in Tennessee.[5][6]

Georgia made several unsuccessful attempts to correct what Georgia felt was an erroneous survey line 'in the 1890s, 1905, 1915, 1922, 1941, 1947 and 1971 to "resolve" the dispute', according to C. Crews Townsend, Joseph McCoin, Robert F. Parsley, Alison Martin and Zachary H. Greene, writing for the Tennessee Bar Journal, a publication of the Tennessee Bar Association, appearing on May 12, 2008.

In 2008, as a result of a serious drought and resulting water shortage, the Georgia General Assembly passed a resolution directing the governor to pursue its claim in the United States Supreme Court.[7][8]

According to a story aired on WTVC-TV in Chattanooga on March 14, 2008, a local attorney familiar with case law on border disputes, says the U.S. Supreme Court generally will maintain the original borders between states and avoid stepping into border disputes, preferring the parties work out their differences.[9]

Meanwhile, many Tennessee lawmakers have dismissed the Georgia claims.

Modern use

The Tennessee River is an important part of the Great Loop, the recreational circumnavigation of Eastern North America by water.

Popular culture

Tennessee River tributaries

Tributaries and sub-tributaries are hierarchically listed in order from the mouth of the Tennessee River upstream.

See also

Notes

  1. ^ U.S. Geological Survey. Shooks Gap quadrangle, Tennessee. 1:24,000. 7.5 Minute Series. Washington D.C.: USGS, 1987.
  2. ^ a b c d U.S. Geological Survey Geographic Names Information System: Tennessee River
  3. ^ U.S. Geological Survey. Paducah East quadrangle, Kentucky. 1:24,000. 7.5 Minute Series. Washington D.C.: USGS, 1982.
  4. ^ a b "Arthur Benke & Colbert Cushing, "Rivers of North America". Elsevier Academic Press, 2005 ISBN 0-12-088253-1
  5. ^ "Georgians thirst to move Tennessee state line". February 8, 2008. http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/23076509/. Retrieved 2008-05-13. 
  6. ^ "Desperate for water, Georgia revisits border dispute". February 8, 2008. http://www.cnn.com/2008/US/02/08/drought.state.line.ap/. Retrieved 2008-05-13. [dead link]
  7. ^ Jones, Andrea (February 20, 2008). "Ga.'s quest to move Tenn. border advances". The Atlanta Journal-Constitution. http://www.ajc.com/metro/content/metro/stories/2008/02/20/tennborder_0221.html. Retrieved 2008-05-14. 
  8. ^ Dewan, Shaila (February 22, 2008). "Georgia Claims a Sliver of the Tennessee River". The New York Times. http://www.nytimes.com/2008/02/22/us/22water.html?em&ex=1203829200&en=9fe2c2ffaf5be75a&ei=5087%0A. Retrieved 2008-05-14. 
  9. ^ http://www.newschannel9.com/articles/georgia-967199-tennessee-border.html
  10. ^ a b c d e f g h Alabama Department of Transportation (1997). "County Highway Maps" (Lizardtech Plugin). University of Alabama. http://cartweb.geography.ua.edu:9001/StyleServer/calcrgn?cat=North%20America%20and%20United%20States&item=States/Alabama/Counties/colbert/hy_colbert97.sid&wid=500&hei=400&props=item(Name,Description),cat(Name,Description)&style=simple/view.xsl&plugin=true. Retrieved 2007-06-25. 
  11. ^ a b c d Army Corp of Engineers (1997). "Tennessee River Navigation Charts". Army Corp of Engineers. http://www.lrn.usace.army.mil/opn/TNRiver/. Retrieved 2007-07-04. 

Further reading

  • Woodside, M.D. et al. (2004). Water quality in the lower Tennessee River Basin, Tennessee, Alabama, Kentucky, Mississippi, and Georgia, 1999-2001 [U.S. Geological Survey Circular 1233]. Reston, VA: U.S. Department of the Interior, U.S. Geological Survey.
  • Myers, Fred (2004). Tennessee River CruiseGuide, 5th Edition
  • Hay, Jerry (2010). Tennessee River Guidebook, 1st Edition

External links


1911 encyclopedia

Up to date as of January 14, 2010

From LoveToKnow 1911

TENNESSEE RIVER, the largest tributary of the Ohio river, U.S.A. It is formed by the confluence of the Holston and the French Broad rivers 4.5 m. above Knoxville, Tennessee, flows S.S.W. to Chattanooga, there turns W. through the Cumberland Plateau and into the N.E. corner of Alabama, continues W. across the northern part of Alabama, turns N. on the boundary between Alabama and Mississippi, and continuing N. across Tennessee and Kentucky unites with the Ohio at Paducah. Its principal tributaries rise in the Appalachian Mountains: the Holston and the Clinch on the mountain slopes that flank the Appalachian Valley in western Virginia; and the French Broad, the Little Tennessee, and the Hiwassee in the mountains of western North Carolina. The Tennessee itself is 652 m. long, and with the Holston and the North Fork of the Holston forms a channel about 900 m. long. Its drainage basin. covers about 44,000 sq. m., and its low water discharge at Paducah is ro,000 cu. ft. per second. Its average fall is 0.79 ft. per mile: 0.956 ft. from Knoxville to Chattanooga; 1.19 ft. from Chattanooga to Florence, Alabama; and 0.39 ft. from Florence to its mouth. The banks are everywhere easily accessible except at Knoxville and Chattanooga, where, for short distances, high elevations rise precipitously from the water; and as the banks are mostly of clay or rock the channel is permanent and the river is unusually free from silt.

The Tennessee is navigable by steamboats throughout its entire course of 652 m. for several months of the year; its tributaries have a nearly equal navigable mileage, and the main river and its tributaries together have a navigable mileage for rafts and flatboats of 2400 m. At low water there are three obstructions to steamboat navigation in the main stream: the Colbert and Bee Tree shoals, just below Florence; the Muscle shoals just above Florence; and Hales Bar, 33 m. below Chattanooga. The state of Alabama, aided by the Federal government, constructed a lock canal, affording a depth of 5 ft., around the Muscle shoals in 1831-1836, but because of the obstructions above and below the canal was little used and was soon abandoned. The Federal government, beginning in 1868, completed the reconstruction of the Muscle Shoals Canal in two divisions (one 3.5 m. long with two locks, the other 14.5 m. long with nine locks, and both providing a depth of 5 ft.) in 1890, began in 1893 the construction of a canal, about 8 m. long and with one lock, around Colbert and Bee Tree shoals, and in 1904 authorized the construction with private capital of a lock and darn at Hales Bar to provide a channel 6 ft. deep at low water between it and Chattanooga, the water power to be used by the persons furnishing the capital. In 1905 a committee of the United States Senate recommended that future improvements of the river be made with a view of obtaining ultimately a channel having a minimum depth of 12 ft. at low water; and in 1907 Congress adopted a project for deepening to 5 ft. at low water the channel (145 m. long) between Hales Bar and the Muscle Shoals. Canal. In 1908 the commerce carried on the Tennessee between Resigned to enter the U.S. Senate.

Chattanooga and Paducah amounted to 755,010 tons, valued at $18,752,180; it consisted chiefly of general merchandise, farm products, forest products and iron ore in the upper section, of general merchandise, cotton, timber products and grain in the middle section, and of general merchandise, farm products and timber products in the lower section.

During the Civil War Fort Henry was erected by the Confederates on the Tennessee river, in Tennessee just below the Kentucky state line, and on the 6th of February 1862 was captured by Corn. A. H. Foote; Fort Donelson on the Cumberland, several miles east, was captured on the 16th by General U. S. Grant, and the two rivers were thus opened for the advance of the Federals far into Confederate territory.


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Simple English

File:Tennessee
Map of the Tennessee River.

The Tennessee River is a tributary, or a river that flows into, the Ohio River. Its path makes a cresent. It starts in eastern Tennessee before entering Alabama. After entering Alabama it goes north and for a few miles, forms the boundary between Alabama and Mississippi. Then it flows through Tennessee and Kentucky, where it joins with the Ohio River at the city of Paducah. The watershed for the Tennessee River includes parts of the states of Virginia, Kentucky, Tennessee, North Carolina, Georgia, Alabama, and Mississippi.

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