Introduction to Johnson City, Tennessee

Johnson City is located in Washington County. 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 1920s 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.

Historic Sites

  • 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.

Higher Education

The city is home to East Tennessee State University, which includes the James H. Quillen College of Medicine.


Total Population 64,978
Male Share of the Population 47.6%
Female Share of the Population 52.4%
Senior Citizens 15.5%
Employed Population 16+ 29,242
Age of the Population 36


% of people married 43.1%
Average household size 2

Education and Earnings

Population % with Bachelor Degree or Higher 39.4%
Median Earnings25+ $32,347
Median Earnings Without High School Qualification $20,081
Median Earnings With High School Degree $21,173


Median Family Income $55,387
% Above Poverty Level 76.9%
% Below Poverty Level 23.1%

Commute & Sprawl

Average Commute Time 18 minutes
% Working from Home 3.8%
% Walking and Biking to Work 2%
% Using Public Transportation 0.6%


People Living Alone 35.4%
Median Gross Rent $686
Median House Value $153,800


Other(often includes Hispanic and African American) 21.8%
US/American 0.1%
English 14.5%
Irish 9.7%

Source: American Community Survey, U.S. Census Bureau, 2015, www.census.gov/programs-surveys/acs/.

Johnson City Almanac

Category Value
Nearest Large City 113 miles NW of Charlotte, North Carolina
County Washington
Metro Area Johnson City - Kingsport - Bristol
Standard Zip Codes 37601, 37604, 37615
P.O. Box Zip Codes 37602, 37605, 37614
Phone Area Codes 423
Time Zone Eastern (-5 hours from GMT)
Daylight Savings The city observes Daylight Saving Time.
Latitude 36.313
Longitude -82.353

Johnson City Climate

Nearest Weather Stations


  • Temp ranges are avg daily min and max for the month
  • Precipitation is rainfall (and rainfall equiv of snowfall)

Distance 7.7 miles
Jan Temp 25 to 44 F
Apr Temp 41 to 66 F
Jul Temp 64 to 85 F
Oct Temp 44 to 68 F
Annual Precip 43.8 inches
Distance 10.9 miles
Jan Temp 24 to 44 F
Apr Temp 42 to 67 F
Jul Temp 64 to 85 F
Oct Temp 42 to 68 F
Annual Precip 41.3 inches
Distance 28.1 miles
Jan Temp 19 to 41 F
Apr Temp 36 to 59 F
Jul Temp 57 to 77 F
Oct Temp 38 to 62 F
Annual Precip 49.6 inches

Neighborhood and Nearby Area Names

According to the US Postal Service, Johnson City, its neighborhoods, and/or surrounding areas are also referred to as:

Etsu (37614)

Note that not all alternate names are acceptable for use in US Post Office addresses.

Nearby Cities and Towns

Location Population Median Family Income
Bluff City 1,863 $52,961
Elizabethton 14,058 $43,173
Erwin 6,028 $36,094
Jonesborough 5,189 $61,333
Unicoi 3,598 $53,783
Watauga 376 $47,045

Source: American Community Survey, U.S. Census Bureau, 2015, www.census.gov/programs-surveys/acs/.

Johnson City Public Libraries

Johnson City Public Library
Johnson City, Tennessee
(423) 434-4450
Library Web Site

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More Information for Librarians

Johnson City Hospitals

(Voluntary non-profit - Private)
(423) 434-1400
Emergency Service: No

(Voluntary non-profit - Private)
(423) 854-5600
Emergency Service: Yes

(Voluntary non-profit - Private)
(423) 431-6111
Emergency Service: Yes

Mountain Home VA Medical Center
Lamont and Sydney Streets

Emergency Service:

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Johnson City High Schools

(Sorted by Number of Students)

Serves 2,438 students.

P O BOX 70632 ETSU
Serves 517 students.

Johnson City Colleges

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