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Gibson County, Tennessee facts for kids

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Gibson County
Map of Tennessee highlighting Gibson County
Location within the U.S. state of Tennessee
Map of the United States highlighting Tennessee
Tennessee's location within the U.S.
Country  United States
State  Tennessee
Founded 1823
Named for John H. Gibson
Seat Trenton
Largest city Humboldt
 • Total 604 sq mi (1,560 km2)
 • Land 603 sq mi (1,560 km2)
 • Water 0.9 sq mi (2 km2)  0.2%%
 • Total 49,683
 • Density 82/sq mi (32/km2)
Time zone UTC−6 (Central)
 • Summer (DST) UTC−5 (CDT)
Congressional district 8th

Gibson County is a county located in the U.S. state of Tennessee. As of the 2010 census, the population was 49,683. Its county seat is Trenton. The county was formed in 1823 and named for John H. Gibson, a soldier of the Natchez Expedition and the Creek War.


Gibson County
Sheriff's Department
Agency Overview
Legal personality Governmental agency
Jurisdictional Structure
Divisional agency
(Operations jurisdiction)
County (US) of Gibson in the State of Tennessee , United States
Size 604 sq mi
Legal jurisdiction As per operations jurisdiction.
General nature
  • Local civilian police
    See also Police
Operational Structure
Agency executive Paul Thomas, Sheriff
Stations 1
Jails 1

Gibson County is located in what was known as "Indian Land": territory that was legally occupied by Chickasaw Native American people. The Chickasaw Cession, proclaimed on January 7, 1819, eliminated those rights and opened the region for settlement and exploitation by white settlers and speculators.

Soon after the Chickasaw Cession, the first log cabin in what was to become Gibson County had been built by Thomas Fite about eight miles (13 km) east of present-day Trenton. From 1819 the area was part of Carroll County but, as settlement progressed, citizens petitioned for the formation of a new county. The county was established by private act on October 21, 1823 and was named in honor of Colonel John H. Gibson who had died earlier that year. Gibson was a native of Bedford County, Tennessee who was commissioned Lieutenant in the Tennessee Militia; he took part in the War of 1812, the campaign to Natchez of 1813, and fought in the Creek Wars of 1813.

In its early years, Gibson County grew rapidly, chiefly because the land had less dense forest growth than some adjacent areas and was therefore more easily prepared to farm cotton and corn. By the end of 1824, the county had 273,143 acres (1,105.37 km2) of taxable land. The county's first cotton gin was built in 1826.


According to the U.S. Census Bureau, the county has a total area of 604 square miles (1,560 km2), of which 603 square miles (1,560 km2) is land and 0.9 square miles (2.3 km2) (0.2%) is water.

Adjacent counties

State protected areas

  • Horns Bluff Refuge (part)
  • Maness Swamp Refuge
  • Obion River Wildlife Management Area (part)
  • Tigrett Wildlife Management Area (part)


Historical population
Census Pop.
1830 5,801
1840 13,689 136.0%
1850 19,548 42.8%
1860 21,777 11.4%
1870 25,666 17.9%
1880 32,685 27.3%
1890 33,859 3.6%
1900 39,408 16.4%
1910 41,630 5.6%
1920 43,388 4.2%
1930 46,528 7.2%
1940 44,835 −3.6%
1950 48,132 7.4%
1960 44,699 −7.1%
1970 47,871 7.1%
1980 49,467 3.3%
1990 46,315 −6.4%
2000 48,152 4.0%
2010 49,683 3.2%
Est. 2015 49,399 −0.6%
U.S. Decennial Census
1790-1960 1900-1990
1990-2000 2010-2014
USA Gibson County, Tennessee.csv age pyramid
Age pyramid Gibson County

As of the census of 2000, there were 48,152 people, 19,518 households, and 13,584 families residing in the county. The population density was 80 people per square mile (31/km²). There were 21,059 housing units at an average density of 35 per square mile (13/km²). The racial makeup of the county was 78.66% White, 19.72% Black or African American, 0.20% Native American, 0.14% Asian, 0.02% Pacific Islander, 0.50% from other races, and 0.76% from two or more races. 1.12% of the population were Hispanic or Latino of any race.

There were 19,518 households out of which 30.20% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 52.20% were married couples living together, 13.60% had a female householder with no husband present, and 30.40% were non-families. 27.40% of all households were made up of individuals and 13.70% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.41 and the average family size was 2.93.

In the county, the population was spread out with 24.00% under the age of 18, 8.10% from 18 to 24, 26.90% from 25 to 44, 23.30% from 45 to 64, and 17.70% who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 39 years. For every 100 females there were 89.50 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 85.80 males.

The median income for a household in the county was $31,105, and the median income for a family was $39,318. Males had a median income of $30,360 versus $21,351 for females. The per capita income for the county was $16,320. About 9.40% of families and 12.80% of the population were below the poverty line, including 17.00% of those under age 18 and 15.30% of those age 65 or over.



There are two airports located in Gibson County:

  • Humboldt Municipal Airport (M53), which is owned by City of Humboldt.
  • Gibson County Airport (TGC), located midway between Trenton and Milan and owned by City Of Milan and Gibson Co.


The Gibson County Fair is held each August in Trenton. The fair is billed as the "oldest continuously running fair in the South." The fair was first held in 1856 and has been held annually since 1869.

The West Tennessee Strawberry Festival had been held annually during the first full week of May in Humboldt since 1934. The festival has drawn up to 100,000 people from across the area. Popular festival events include Thursday's traditional Jr. Parade, which is one of the world's largest non-motorized parades, Friday's Grand Floats Parade, the Horse Show, Governor's Luncheon, Carnival, Prayer Breakfast, Car Show, 5K and 10K Runs, and Festival Beauty Reviews.




Unincorporated communities

Notable natives

  • Doug Atkins, football player
  • W. Winfred Moore, Baptist clergyman
  • Wallace Wade, football coach
  • Avery Williamson, Tennessee Titans Linebacker
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