The rugged area of mountains and rivers, once called the State of Franklin, produced hard-working, fearless pioneers whose courage, daring and foresight helped shape the new nation. The legacy of Daniel Boone, David Crockett and Sam Houston gave way to the exploits of Admiral Farragut, Andrew Jackson, Sequoyah and those who followed.
The Great Depression and World War II each brought their own challenges and opportunities to East Tennessee. The Tennessee Valley Authority and the Manhattan Project broke scientific and technological barriers and established East Tennessee as a center for innovation, still seen today in the work of our highly regarded colleges and universities, the Oak Ridge National Laboratory, the Y-12 National Security Complex and the countless advances of private industry in the East Tennessee Technology Corridor and the six-county Innovation Valley area.
The evolution of a scientific advancement goes hand in hand with a respect for the arts and for the gifts of nature that bring so many visitors to East Tennessee. Great Smoky Mountains National Park, the nation’s most visited, recently celebrated its 75th anniversary. Sen. Howard Baker, whose name is on the University of Tennessee’s Center for Public Policy, is a champion of the Big South Fork National Recreation Area.
Today, the area’s natural beauty, mild climate and friendly natives combine with a history of bold deeds, forward thinking initiatives and respect for history to create unmatched for charm and livability. People from around the world have begun to recognize the area’s assets, with large global corporations and individuals in search of a better way of life now call East Tennessee home.