Johnson County, TN Sinkhole Map

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Johnson County, TN FAQs

History of Johnson County, TN

  • Native American Settlements
      • was inhabited by Native American tribes, including the Cherokee and Shawnee, before the arrival of European settlers.

  • European Settlement
      • European settlers, primarily of English, Irish, and Scottish descent, began moving into the region in the late 18th century
      • Johnson County was officially established in 1836.

  • Civil War
      • During the Civil War, Johnson County was divided in its allegiances, with some supporting the Union and others supporting the Confederacy
      • The county experienced skirmishes and raids, and the Battle of Shady Valley, a minor engagement, took place in the county in 1863.

  • 19th and 20th century
    • Logging and the timber industry played a significant role in the history of Johnson County, with large-scale logging operations and timber mills contributing to the local economy in the late 19th and early 20th centuries.
    • The arrival of railroads in the late 19th century and the construction of roads and highways in the early 20th century improved transportation and facilitated economic development in the county.

Notable Landmarks in Johnson County, TN

  • Doe Mountain Recreation Area
      • This outdoor recreational area located in Johnson County offers opportunities for hiking, mountain biking, ATV riding, and camping on its thousands of acres of pristine wilderness.

  • Backbone Rock
      • unique geological formation known as “The Shortest Tunnel in the World,” Backbone Rock
      • a 20-foot-long tunnel carved through solid rock that allows water from Beaverdam Creek to flow under a highway.

  • Shady Valley Country Store
      • Established in the late 19th century, the Shady Valley Country Store
      • a historic landmark that still operates as a country store
      • provides a glimpse into the history and heritage of the area.

  • Trade, Tennessee 
    • a well-preserved example of a 19th-century Appalachian settlement, with several historic buildings and structures that offer a glimpse into the past.
  1. Hiking: Johnson County is home to numerous trails that offer scenic hikes through its beautiful forests, mountains, and valleys. Popular trails include the Doe Mountain Recreation Area, which offers over 8,600 acres of hiking trails ranging from easy to challenging, and the Appalachian Trail, which passes through the county and offers stunning views of the surrounding landscapes.
  2. Fishing: Johnson County has several rivers, streams, and lakes that are perfect for fishing. The Watauga River, Doe Creek, and Roan Creek are popular destinations for trout fishing, while the South Holston Lake and Watauga Lake offer opportunities for bass and other game fish.
  3. Camping: There are several campgrounds and camping areas in Johnson County that provide opportunities for camping, RV camping, and tent camping. Doe Mountain Recreation Area offers camping options, as well as other camping areas such as Pioneer Landing and Roan Mountain State Park.
  4. ATV Riding: The Doe Mountain Recreation Area is a popular destination for ATV riding, with designated trails and areas for off-road enthusiasts. Visitors can explore the rugged terrain and enjoy thrilling ATV adventures in this recreational area.
  5. Wildlife Viewing: Johnson County is home to diverse wildlife, including white-tailed deer, wild turkey, black bear, and a variety of bird species. Wildlife enthusiasts can enjoy observing and photographing wildlife in its natural habitat in the county’s forests and natural areas.
  6. Boating and Water Sports: Johnson County is close to South Holston Lake and Watauga Lake, both of which offer opportunities for boating, kayaking, canoeing, and other water sports. These lakes are also popular for swimming, picnicking, and relaxing on the beaches.
  7. Hunting: Johnson County has abundant hunting opportunities, with deer, turkey, bear, and small game hunting available in designated areas during hunting seasons. Hunters can enjoy the challenge of hunting in the county’s forests and mountains.
  8. Scenic Drives: Johnson County is known for its picturesque landscapes, and there are several scenic drives that offer breathtaking views of the mountains, valleys, and forests. The Snake 421 Scenic Byway and the Drive the Roan are popular routes for scenic drives in the area.

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