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Tennessee has a great variety of rivers, landforms, climate regions, and plant and animal species.

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West of the Unakas, the Great Appalachian Valley or, simply, Great Valley of East Tennessee, varying from 30 to 60 miles 50 to km in width, includes a series of low ridges that rise above the intervening valleys. Capital: Nashville Show more Population: 6,; est. About 60 miles km wide and running roughly north to south across the state, the basin floor is a slightly rolling terrain punctuated by small hills known as knobs.

West of the Appalachiansthe Cumberland Plateau has a generally flat, slightly undulating surface cut by deep and sometimes wide river valleys. Load Next .

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Nashville is the capital and Memphis the largest city. In response to the challenges on the frontier, white settlers in Tennessee developed a strongly independent attitude that has revealed itself often in state and national politics.

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Facebook Twitter. Subscribe Now. Tennessee River from Lookout Mountain, Tennessee.

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Please refer to the appropriate style manual or other sources if you have any questions. Tennessean Andrew Jacksonhero of the War of and seventh president of the United States, led the Democratic Party of the s to become the party of the common people, a path similarly pursued by his fellow Tennessean and U. Strongly divided by the American Civil War and its own version of ReconstructionTennessee became a part of the solid Democratic South, and, like much of that region, it lagged behind the rest of the country in wealth and prestige.

From a strictly geological perspective, Tennessee is divided into six natural regions.

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Let us know if you have suggestions to improve this article requires. The Cumberland Riverdipping into the state from the north, drains the upper middle region, while the Mississippi River directly drains a small portion of the west. Although still diverse within its own borders, Tennessee had clearly begun to merge economically and politically with the rest of the country. The damming of the Tennessee and, to a lesser extent, of the Cumberland not only has controlled flooding and improved but also has created an impressive chain of slack-water lakes, sometimes known as the Great Lakes of the South, many of which lie in Tennessee.

Also by this time, the Republican Party had won the favour of many Tennesseans, and Tennessee became once again a two-party state.

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Middle Tennessee has level, fertile land interrupted regularly by gently rolling hills; it traditionally has been a balanced agricultural and commercial region, with Nashville as its main urban centre. The dreams of the industrialists of the late 19th century were not realized until later in the 20th, when World War II and spending by the national government fueled new kinds of industrial activity. The valleys and upland basins of Tennessee have moderately fertile soil of limestone origins, and the streams have created rich alluvial lands along their beds.

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Give Feedback External Websites. While every effort has been made to follow citation style rules, there may be some discrepancies. Forested peaks of the Great Smoky Mountains, eastern Tennessee. The soils of the ridges and the plateau, however, are thin, stony, and moderately acid, while the eastern Gulf Coastal Plain has a sandy, thin soil that does not support agriculture.

West Tennessee is mainly flat land with rich soil and long has had an economy based on plantation agriculture, notably cotton. By the early 21st century, a strong service sector had developed. Print print Print. In the extreme eastern part of the state lie the Unaka Mountains —a section of which is popularly known as the Great Smoky Mountains —with more than a dozen peaks that rise above 6, feet 1, metres ; the tallest of them, Clingmans Domerises to 6, feet 2, metres.

The Cherokee, who lived in the Smoky Mountains area, left a palpable legacy in East Tennessee, despite white encroachment.

Tennessee enjoys a rich Native American heritage, mainly from the Cherokee and Chickasawwho populated the area at the time of white settlement in the s. It is located in the upper South of the eastern United States and became the 16th state of the union in The geography of Tennessee is unique.

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Population 6,; est. Full Article. Videos Images.

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External Websites. Get a Britannica Premium subscription and gain access to exclusive content. Table Of Contents. Seal of Tennessee. See all media. Tennessee is drained directly by three major rivers.

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Articles from Britannica Encyclopedias for elementary and high school students. Its extreme breadth of miles km stretches from the Appalachian Mountain boundary with North Carolina in the east to the Mississippi River borders with Missouri and Arkansas in the west; its narrow width, only miles kmseparates its northern neighbours, Kentucky and Virginiafrom GeorgiaAlabamaand Mississippito the south. Area 42, square milessquare km.

To the west the eastern Gulf Coastal Plain undulates only slightly and is laced with meandering low-banked streams; the region stretches westward, terminating in the Mississippi alluvial plain, a narrow strip of swamp and floodplain alongside the Mississippi River.

The Tennessee Riverwhich flows southward in the east and northward in the west, drains the east, the southern part of the middle region, and a major part of the west. Show more Governor: Bill Haslam Republican Show more Date Of Admission: June 1, Show more U. Show more. Tennesseeconstituent state of the United States of America.