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Cumberland County, Tennessee

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Profiles

  • (USA), Lewis B Scarborough (1816 - 1882)
    Civil War Veteran.Inscription on his stone reads, Co. D, 2nd Tennessee Infantry.Note: For information regarding the 2nd Tennessee Infantry during the Civil War, please see URL below: [Please notice the...
  • Thomas Pottenger (1801 - 1877)
  • John "Jack" Parham (1764 - 1846)

Please add profiles of those who were born, lived or died in Cumberland County, Tennessee.

Official Website

History

Cumberland County was formed in 1856 from parts of several other counties. During the Civil War, the county was nearly evenly split between those supporting the Union and those supporting the Confederacy.

In 1787, the North Carolina legislature ordered widening and improvements to Avery's Trace, the trail that ran from North Carolina through Knoxville and what is now Cumberland County to Nashville, Tennessee. They raised funds by a lottery and completed a project that built a wagon road. This slightly improved travel, but still required a bone jarring trip. The road was often muddy and crossed stone slabs so that it was only passable in some places on foot. Reportedly wagons could not get down the steep grade at Spencer's Mountain without locking brakes on all wheels and dragging a tree behind to slow the descent. The mountain top was described as "quite denuded of trees."

Cumberland County was the site of an important saltpeter mine. Saltpeter is the main ingredient of gunpowder and was obtained by leaching the earth from Grassy Cove Saltpeter Cave. Richard Green Waterhouse settled in this area in 1800. In his "Diary, Journal, and Memoirs" he states that he went with William Kelly into Grassy cove and explored his (Kelly's) saltpeter cave on October 7, 1812.

According to Barr (1961), Dicky Mathews began the manufacture of gunpowder at the cave in 1859. His son was killed by an explosion at Powder House Spring below the cave. This is an exceptionally large cave and evidence of mining extends far from the entrance. The leaching vats were located in a large room near the entrance, but this room is damp and the wooden vats have deteriorated to the point that they are difficult to recognize.

During the 1930s, as part of the New Deal, the federal government's Subsistence Homesteads Division established the Cumberland Homesteads outside of Crossville. The program provided land and houses for 250 impoverished families. Cumberland Mountain State Park was built as part of this project.

Adjacent Counties

Cities, Towns & Communities

  • Alloway
  • Big Lick
  • Bowling
  • Bowman
  • Crab Orchard
  • Crossville (County Seat)
  • Daysville
  • Fairfield Glade
  • Grassy Cove
  • Lake Tansi
  • Midway
  • Ozone
  • Pleasant Hill
  • Renegade Mountain
  • Westel

Links

Wikipedia