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States of the US

Tennessee

A map of TennesseeA map of TennesseeTennessee is located in the central-southeast region of the United States. Rising on its eastern border are the Great Smoky Mountains, part of the Appalachian range. Stretching to the west is the Ridge and Valley region, a landscape of fertile valleys separated by wooded ridges. West of the Tennessee River lies the flat-topped Cumberland Plateau, which gives way to the rolling, bluegrass pastures of Middle Tennessee. West Tennessee is made up of the Mississippi Alluvial Plain.

WonderWorks at Pigeon ForgeWonderWorks at Pigeon Forge
The Hernando de Soto Bridge across the MississippiThe Hernando de Soto Bridge across the Mississippi

Name

Tennessee was probably named after a Native American village—although it is not certain which one. The earliest version was recorded by the Spanish explorer, Juan Pardo, who passed through a village named Tanasqui in 1567 while travelling inland from the South Carolina area. British traders in the early 18th century came across a Cherokee town named Tanasi (in present-day Monroe County), but it is unlikely to have been the same place as Pardo's Tanasqui (thought to be near modern Newport). Whatever its origin, the modern spelling, Tennessee, was in use by the 1750s.

Forbidden Caverns, SeviervilleForbidden Caverns, Sevierville

Climate

Beale Street in Memphis is considered by many to be the birthplace of the blues. Memphis was also where musicians such as Elvis Presley, Johnny Cash, Carl Perkins, Jerry Lee Lewis, Roy Orbison and Charlie Rich began their recording careers—and where rock and roll developed in the 1950s.

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