Introduction to Johnson City, Tennessee
Johnson City is located in Washington County. Forbes magazine ranked the city at #10 in the list of "Best Small Places for Business and Careers" in the country. It hosts the popular Blue Plum Festival and the region offers majestic scenery.
The town was established as a railroad station in 1856 by a man named Henry Johnson. It became a prominent rail center in the Southeast. From 1870 to 1890 the area experienced significant growth due to the railroad station and the thriving mining industry. The city and the nearby town of Bristol were well known for old-time music including the notable 1928 recording sessions named the "Johnson City Sessions." During the 1920's it was called "Little Chicago" due to being involved with bootlegging activities in the Appalachian Mountains. Citizens claim that Al Capone utilized the town as a distribution center for illegal alcohol. Residents also claim he resided part-time in a nearby luxury apartment complex.
- Jonesborough Historic District features distinctive architecture. It went through a major restoration and is included in the National Register of Historic Places.
- Tipton Haynes Historic Site is a notable restored 18th Century house. The acreage features a limestone cave and nature trails.
- Andrew Johnson National Historic Site showcases the life of President Andrew Johnson.
- B. Carroll Reece Museum features art, history exhibits as well as antique musical instruments that are typical for the region.
- Jonesborough History Museum contains numerous noteworthy artifacts.
- Rocky Mount Living Museum offers education regarding the life of the pioneers.
- Barter Theatre is popular with residents and visitors.
- National Storytelling Festival is a notable event.
- Farmhouse Gallery and Gardens features wildlife and scenic beauty.
- Bays Mountain Park & Planetarium features animal habitats and provides locations for hiking and bicycle riding.
Boone Lake is available for water skiing and hiking. Buffalo Mountain Park offers scenic hiking trails and places for mountain biking and bird watching. Roan Mountain Sate Park features beautiful views of the Appalachian Mountains and superb hiking areas. Tourists follow the Quilt Trail which showcases the tradition of quilting in the region. The trail features quilts situated on the walls of historic barns. Visitors walking along the trail also have opportunities to see historic sites and visit shops, galleries and other interesting locations. Excellent opportunities for trout fishing are located in the region.
The city is home to East Tennessee State University, which includes the James H. Quillen College of Medicine.