Kingsport, Tennessee facts for kids

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Kingsport, Tennessee
City
A Fun Fest balloon floats over Kingsport, Tennessee
A Fun Fest balloon floats over Kingsport, Tennessee
Nickname(s): The Model City
Location in the state of Tennessee
Location in the state of Tennessee
Country United States
State Tennessee
Counties Sullivan, Hawkins
Settled: 1771
Chartered/Rechartered: 1822, 1917
Area
 • City 45.0 sq mi (116.6 km2)
 • Land 44.1 sq mi (114.4 km2)
 • Water 0.9 sq mi (2.4 km2)
Elevation 1,211 ft (369 m)
Population (2010)
 • City 48,205
 • Estimate (2013) 52,962
 • Rank US: 694th
 • Density 1,018.9/sq mi (393.4/km2)
 • Urban 106,571 (US: 291st)
 • Metro 309,283 (US: 161st)
Time zone EST (UTC-5)
 • Summer (DST) EDT (UTC-4)
ZIP code 37660, 37662, 37663, 37664, 37665 & 37669
Area code(s) 423
FIPS code 47-39560
GNIS feature ID 1303478
Website http://www.KingsportTN.gov

Kingsport is a city in Sullivan and Hawkins counties in the U.S. state of Tennessee; most of the city is in Sullivan County. The population according to the 2010 census is 48,205.

Kingsport is the largest city in the Kingsport–BristolBristol, TN-VA Metropolitan Statistical Area (MSA), which had a population of 309,544 as of 2010. The Metropolitan Statistical Area is a component of the Johnson City–Kingsport–Bristol, TN-VA Combined Statistical Area – commonly known as the "Tri-Cities" region. Census data from 2006–2008 for the Tri-Cities Combined Statistical Area estimates a population of 496,454.

Kingsport is commonly included in what is known as the Mountain Empire, which spans a portion of Southwest Virginia and the mountainous counties in eastern Tennessee. The name "Kingsport" is a simplification of "King's Port", originally referring to the area on the Holston River known as King's Boat Yard, the head of navigation for the Tennessee Valley.

History

Kingsport was developed by European Americans, after the American Revolutionary War, at the confluence of the North and South Forks of the Holston River. In 1787 it was known as "Salt Lick," for an ancient lick. It was first settled along the banks of the South Fork, about a mile from the confluence. The Long Island of the Holston River is near the confluence, which is mostly within present-day corporate boundaries of Kingsport. The island was an important site for the Cherokee, colonial pioneers and early settlers, and specifically mentioned in the 1770 Treaty of Lochaber.

Early settlements at the site were used as a staging ground for other pioneers who were traveling overland on the Wilderness Road leading to Kentucky through Cumberland Gap. First chartered in 1822, Kingsport also became an important shipping port on the Holston River, a main transportation carrier. Goods originating for many miles around from the surrounding countryside were loaded onto barges for the journey downriver to the Tennessee River at Knoxville.

Kingsport-tennessee-1937-tva1
Kingsport in 1937

In the Battle of Kingsport (December 13, 1864) during the American Civil War, a force of 300 Confederates under Colonel Richard Morgan (1836–1918) stopped a larger Union force for nearly two days. An army of over 5,500 troops under command of Major General George Stoneman (1822–1894) had left Knoxville, Tennessee, to raid Confederate targets in Virginia: the salt works at Saltville, the lead works at Wytheville, and the iron works in Marion. While Col. Morgan's small band held off a main Union force under Major General Cullem Gillem on the opposite side the Holston River, Union Col. Samuel Patton took a force of cavalry to a ford in the river 2.5 miles (4.0 km) north and came down behind the Confederates. Out-numbered, out-flanked, and demoralised by the bitter winter weather, Col. Morgan surrendered. The Confederates suffered 18 dead, and 84 prisoners of war were sent to a Union prison in Knoxville. The city lost its charter after a downturn in its fortunes precipitated by the Civil War.

On September 12, 1916, Kingsport residents demanded the death of circus elephant Mary (an Asian elephant that performed in the Sparks World Famous Shows Circus). She had killed city hotel worker Walter Eldridge, who was hired by the circus the day before as an assistant elephant trainer. Eldridge was attacked and killed by the elephant while he was leading her to a pond. The elephant was impounded by the local sheriff. Leaders of several nearby towns threatened to prevent the circus from performing if it included the elephant. The circus owner, Charlie Sparks, reluctantly decided that the only way to quickly resolve the situation was to hold a public execution. On the following day, she was transported by rail to Erwin, Tennessee, where a crowd of over 2,500 people assembled in the Clinchfield Railroad yard to watch her hang from a railroad crane.

Re-chartered in 1917, Kingsport was an early example of a "garden city." Part of it was designed by city planner and landscape architect John Nolen of Cambridge, Massachusetts. It was nicknamed as the Model City from this plan, which organized the town into areas for commerce, churches, housing and industry. Most of the land on the river was devoted to industry. Most of The Long Island is now occupied by Eastman Chemical Company, which is headquartered in Kingsport. As part of this plan, Kingsport built some of the earliest traffic circles (roundabouts) in the United States.

Kingsport was among the first municipalities to adopt a city manager form of government, to professionalize operations of city departments. It developed its school system based on a model promoted by Columbia University.

Pal's Sudden Service, a regional fast-food restaurant chain, opened its first location in Kingsport in 1956.

Geography

Kingsport is located at 36°32′N 82°33′W / 36.533°N 82.55°W / 36.533; -82.55 (36.5369, −82.5421), at the intersection of U.S. Routes 11 and 23. Kingsport is the northwest terminus of Interstate 26.

According to the United States Census Bureau, the city has a total area of 45.0 square miles (116.6 km²) of which 44.1 square miles (114.1 km²) is land and 0.9 square miles (2.4 km²) (2.07%) is water.

Neighborhoods

Demographics

Historical population
Census Pop.
1920 5,692
1930 11,914 109.3%
1940 14,404 20.9%
1950 19,571 35.9%
1960 26,314 34.5%
1970 31,938 21.4%
1980 32,027 0.3%
1990 36,365 13.5%
2000 44,905 23.5%
2010 48,205 7.3%
Est. 2015 53,014 10.0%
U.S. Decennial Census
2013 Estimate

As of the census of 2000, there were 44,905 people, 19,662 households and 12,642 families residing in the city. The population density was 1,018.9 per square mile (393.4/km²). There were 21,796 housing units at an average density of 494.6 per square mile (191.0/km²). The racial makeup of the city was 93.32% White, 4.22% African American, 0.79% Asian, 0.24% American Indian/Alaska Native, 0.02% Native Hawaiian/Pacific Islander, 0.34% some other race, and 1.06% two or more races. Hispanic or Latino of any race were 1.05% of the population.

There were 19,662 households of which 26.5% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 48.5% were married couples living together, 12.7% had a female householder with no husband present, and 35.7% were non-families. 32.5% of all households were made up of individuals and 14.7% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.22, and the average family size was 2.80.

In the city, the population was spread out with 21.7% under the age of 18, 6.5% from 18 to 24, 26.2% from 25 to 44, 25.3% from 45 to 64, and 20.3% who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 42 years. For every 100 females there were 84.1 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 79.4 males.

The median income for a household in the city was $30,524, and the median income for a family was $40,183. Males had a median income of $33,075 versus $23,217 for females. The per capita income for the city was $20,549. About 14.2% of families and 17.1% of the population were below the poverty line, including 24.9% of those under age 18 and 13.0% of those age 65 or over.

Medical

Kingsport is the location of two hospitals:

  • Holston Valley Medical Center – A regional Level I trauma center
  • Indian Path Medical Center

Military

  • The vessel SS Kingsport Victory, which later became USNS Kingsport, was named in honor of the city.

Recreation

The Kingsport Parks and Recreation manages several parks within the city.

  • Bays Mountain Park
  • Borden Park
  • Dogwood Park
  • Kingsport Greenbelt Walking/Cycling Trail
  • Riverview Splash Pad
  • Scott Adams Skate Park

Kingsport Police Department

Kingsport Police Department
Abbreviation KPD
Agency Overview
Formed 1917
Legal personality Governmental agency
Jurisdictional Structure
Divisional agency City of Kingsport in the State of Tennessee , United States
General nature
  • Local civilian police
    See also Police
Operational Structure
Sworn members 99
Unsworn members 57
Agency executive David Quillin, Chief
Website
http://police.kingsporttn.gov

Kingsport Police Department is the municipal law enforcement agency for Kingsport, Tennessee. The current chief is David Quillin.

In 2006, the KPD consisted of 104 sworn officers, 44 full-time non-sworn officers, and 17 part-time non sworn officers. The budget for 2005 was $8,602,800. The KPD has twelve SWAT members that train regularly. KPD SWAT responded to thirteen emergency calls during 2005.


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