Category Archives: June
The name Tennessee derives from an early Cherokee village called “Tanasi,” as early Europeans had a relationship with the natives who inhabited the state before the Revolution. Tribes such as the Chickasaw left indelible impressions on Tennesee, but were removed by the 19th century. Soon, English and American settlers began forming their own governments in Tennessee, realizing they weren’t under British authority. As a district of North Carolina, Tennessee supported the Colonies during the Revolutionary War. They initially petitioned to become a state named Franklin, but instead the Continental Congress made the region a federal territory called Territory South of the River Ohio. Finally, Tennessee became the 16th State in 1796. Two of the most important figures Tennessee produced were presidents and war heroes Andrew Jackson and James K. Polk, who both left a lasting impression on American foreign policy and economy before the Civil War. Deep in the heart of the South, Tennessee’s borders stretch from the Appalachian Mountains in the east to the Mississippi River in the west. Cities like Memphis and Nashville are legendary for their role in blues and country music, hosting the likes of Elvis Presley, Jerry Lee Louis, Johnny Cash, Muddy Waters, and Dolly Parton.
Another famous Tennessean was Davy Crocket, who was a frontiersman. What do you think the term frontiersman means?
At the time of America’s transition from colonialism to independence, Kentucky was still considered a wild frontier. As a local district of Virginia, it opened up after Daniel Boone blazed a trail through the Cumberland Gap and deep into the heart of the Bluegrass Region in 1769. In the 1770s, brave settlers began forming towns and called for statehood. On June 1st, 1792, Kentucky became the 15th state, the first formed west of the Appalachian Mountains. The Civil War was a trying time for Kentucky. Both presidents – Abraham Lincoln of the North and Jefferson Davis of the South – hailed from the state, and though Kentucky sided with the Confederacy, some citizens fought for the Union. Though it had its share of rough patches, Kentucky cultivated a distinct identity, defined by its urban north – which serves the greater Cincinnati area – and its genteel, slow-paced Bluegrass Region, which epitomizes a leisurely Southern lifestyle. Kentucky remained an agricultural region well into the 20th century, but is also known as a coal mining state and home to important military bases like Fort Knox and Fort Campbell. As America’s stable, Kentucky is also a proud horse-breeding state, and hosts the country’s most important equestrian race, the Kentucky Derby, every year.
Why do you think Kentucky was so divided during the Civil War? Who would you side with?