Gideon Morris, for whom the town is named, was granted a tract of land by North Carolina in 1787. The settlement flourished because important early travel routes intersected here, and in 1855 Morristown was officially incorporated. The city’s continued growth coincided with the coming of the railroad to east Tennessee.
Over the next 50 years, Morristown blossomed into a retail center for surrounding communities. Influences of war heroes, entrepreneurs, musicians, early aviators, and other big-time personalities have stemmed from the town’s humble beginnings.
Civil War battles such as the Battle of Morristown and Gilliam’s Stampede were fought here. In the 1940s, during the height of World War II, the Tennessee Valley Authority created Cherokee Reservoir in order to help meet its emergency energy demands. Today, the downtown SkyMart system is world famous for its unique design of second-level sidewalks.
Highlights of Morristown:
• Working for a living
• Past and present
• Hometown heroes
• Families and faces
Larry Hobby, a Hamblen County Archives volunteer, is a native with deep community roots. Along with his interest in preservation of local history and collecting local memorabilia, he is a graphic artist and an amateur photographer. He draws on the extensive resources of the Rose Center: Hal Noe Historical Collection and help from the community to chronicle the community’s fascinating history.
Available at area bookstores, independent retailers, and online retailers, or through Arcadia Publishing at www.arcadiapublishing.com or
Arcadia Publishing is the leading publisher of local and regional history in the United States. Our mission is to make history accessible and meaningful through the publication of books on the heritage of America’s people and places. Have we done a book on your town? Visit www.arcadiapublishing.com.