16 Fun Facts about Tennessee

Tennessee was the 16th territory to enter the United States in 1796. As a nod to our statehood 220 years ago, here are 16 interesting facts about Tennessee.
1.    Chattanooga is home to the world’s largest freshwater aquarium
2.    The Great Smoky Mountains are the most visited National Park. 
3.    Tennessee’s nickname, the Volunteer State, was earned during the War of 1812, when it sent so many soldiers to fight in the Battle of New Orleans. 
4.    Graceland, the home of Elvis Presley in Memphis, is the most visited private home in Tennessee. 
5.    The Copper Basin, an old copper mine, was once able to be recognized from space. 
6.    Known as “The Lost Sea,” the largest underground lake, over 13 acres, is located in Sweetwater. 
7.    Tennessee’s name comes from an old Cherokee word, Tanasqui, whose meaning is lost but possibly refers to where a river bends back on itself. 
8.    The Grand Ole Opry in Nashville is the longest running live radio program. Begun in 1925, It airs on Friday and Saturday evenings.
9.    Reelfoot Lake was created by a series of earthquakes in 1811 and 1812 which caused the Mississippi River to run backward. 
10.    The world’s shortest highway tunnel is in Shady Valley and is merely a few feet long. 
11.    Tennessee shares its borders with eight other states, more than any other state excpept for Missiouri. The states are Kentucky, Virginia, North Carolina, Alabama, Mississippi, Arkansas, and Missouri.
12.    North America’s only fresh water pearl farm is in Camden, TN. 
13.    Ober Gatlinburg Ski Resort has over five acres of man-made skiing trails, the world’s largest.
14.    The United State’s first female senator, Hattie Caraway, was from Bakersville, Tennessee. 
15.    3 US presidents called Tennessee home: Andrew Jackson (1829-1837), Andrew Johnson (1865-1869), and James Polk (1845-1849). 
16.    Established in 1779, Jonesborough is the state’s oldest town. Despite being in a slave-holding state, Jonesborough was home in 1820 to The Emancipator, the largest anti-slavery newspaper in the U.S.

Crystal Davidson, King University