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Paris, Tennessee
The Eiffel Tower of Paris, Tennessee
Location in Henry County, Tennessee
Location in Henry County, Tennessee
Country United States
State Tennessee
County Henry
Incorporated 1823
Named for Paris, France
 • Total 12.96 sq mi (33.55 km2)
 • Land 12.91 sq mi (33.43 km2)
 • Water 0.05 sq mi (0.12 km2)
515 ft (157 m)
 • Total 10,316
 • Estimate 
 • Density 778.99/sq mi (300.78/km2)
Time zone UTC-6 (Central (CST))
 • Summer (DST) UTC-5 (CDT)
ZIP code
Area code(s) 731
FIPS code 47-56720
GNIS feature ID 1296772

Paris is a city in and the county seat of Henry County, Tennessee, United States. As of the 2020 census, the city had a population of 10,316.

A 70-foot (21 m) replica of the Eiffel Tower stands in the southern part of Paris.


The present site of Paris was selected by five commissioners appointed to the task at the December 1822 session of the Court of Pleas and Quarter Sessions of Henry County. Their choice was fifty acres, 37 and one half of which were owned by Joseph Blythe and 12 and one half owned by Peter Ruff, both of whom gifted the land. A public square, streets, alleys and 104 lots were laid off and the lots were sold at auction over a two-day period in either March or April 1823.

Paris was incorporated on September 30, 1823. It was the first town incorporated in West Tennessee, followed by Lexington on October 9, 1824, and Memphis on December 19, 1826. The city was named after Paris, France, in honor of the Marquis de Lafayette.


Paris is located at 36°18′4″N 88°18′50″W / 36.30111°N 88.31389°W / 36.30111; -88.31389 (36.301229, -88.313815).

According to the United States Census Bureau, the city has a total area of 10.9 square miles (28 km2), of which 10.9 square miles (28 km2) is land and 0.04-square-mile (0.10 km2) is water. The total area is 0.37% water.


Historical population
Census Pop.
1880 1,767
1890 1,917 8.5%
1900 2,018 5.3%
1910 3,881 92.3%
1920 4,730 21.9%
1930 8,164 72.6%
1940 6,395 −21.7%
1950 8,826 38.0%
1960 9,325 5.7%
1970 9,892 6.1%
1980 10,728 8.5%
1990 9,332 −13.0%
2000 9,763 4.6%
2010 10,156 4.0%
2020 10,316 1.6%

2020 census

Paris racial composition
Race Num. Perc.
White (non-Hispanic) 7,547 73.16%
Black or African American (non-Hispanic) 1,723 16.7%
Native American 26 0.25%
Asian 131 1.27%
Other/Mixed 602 5.84%
Hispanic or Latino 287 2.78%

As of the 2020 United States census, there were 10,316 people, 4,335 households, and 2,556 families residing in the city.

2010 census

As of the census of 2010, there were 10,156 people, 4,394 households, and 2,605 families residing in the city. The population density was 897.4 people per square mile (346.5/km2). There were 4,965 housing units at an average density of 456.4 per square mile (176.2/km2). The racial makeup of the city was 76.99% White, 19.25% African American, 0.34% Native American, 0.64% Asian, 0.01% Pacific Islander, 0.42% from other races, and 2.34% from two or more races. Hispanic or Latino of any race were 1.63% of the population.

There were 4,394 households, out of which 24.8% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 38.5% were married couples living together, 16.8% had a female householder with no husband present, and 40.7% were non-families. 36.8% of all households were made up of individuals, and 19.3% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.14 and the average family size was 2.77.

In the city, the ages of population were nearly equally distributed, with 22.94% under the age of 18, 55.89% from 18 to 64, and 21.7% who were 65 years of age or older. For every 100 females, there were 81.5 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 77.1 males.

The median income for a household in the city was $25,261, and the median income for a family was $32,258. Males had a median income of $27,759 versus $20,198 for females. The per capita income for the city was $15,572. About 14.1% of families and 19.0% of the population were below the poverty line, including 26.6% of those under age 18 and 20.5% of those age 65 or over.


Catfish welcome to paris tennessee 11-09-2007
The text of the sign beneath the catfish statue reads Welcome to Paris, Tennessee.

Eiffel Tower

Originally constructed by Christian Brothers University in the early 1990s, the Eiffel Tower is located in Eiffel Tower Park. The original 65 foot wooden tower was later replaced with a 70 foot metal structure. The tower is a 70 foot tall scale model of the Eiffel Tower in Paris, France.

In addition to the Eiffel Tower, Eiffel Tower Park provides tennis courts, a public Olympic-sized swimming pool, soccer fields, two walking trails, a children's playground with pavilions, and a newly constructed frisbee golf course.

World's Biggest Fish Fry

Paris is home of the "World's Biggest Fish Fry". The festival is held every year and culminates on a weekend, on the last full week in April, with a parade, an art and craft fair, a rodeo and a fun fair. Part of the festivities include the "catfish races." There is a sign which features a roughly 20-foot (6.1 m) long catfish that can be seen when entering the town from the south on U.S. Route 79. As Kentucky Lake is only a 20-minute drive from downtown, fishing is a popular activity around the Williams Lake and Paris Landing area.


Paris is known for its support of the arts. Many large events of musical nature take place in the city's auditorium, the Krider Performing Arts Center. Known as "KPAC", the building is attached to the city's public elementary school, Paris Elementary.

Paris/Henry County media

Radio stations
  • WRQR AM/1000 - "Classic Hits WRQR"
  • W248BK FM/97.5 - "Classic Hits FM"
  • WMUF FM/104.7 - "104.7 W-M-U-F"
  • WLZK FM/94.1 - "94.1 The Lake"
  • WAKQ FM/105.5 - KF99-KQ105
  • WTPR FM/101.7
  • The Paris Post-Intelligencer


From 1922 to 1924, Paris was home to a Minor League Baseball team that played in the Kentucky–Illinois–Tennessee League as the Paris Travelers (1922) and the Paris Parisians (1923–1924). HCHS Football team has won the 5A State Championship twice.

Notable people

  • John Hall Buchanan, Jr.Representative of Alabama's 6th Congressional District, U. S. House of Representatives 1965–1981, and in other political positions.
  • John Wesley Crockett — U. S. House of Representatives 1837–1841, Attorney General of the Ninth Judicial District of Tennessee 1841-1843
  • Rosan "Rattlesnake Annie" Gallimore — country musician
  • Edwin Wiley Grove — established Paris Medicine Company 1886, endowed E. W. Grove High School 1906
  • Isham G. HarrisTennessee State Senate 1847, U. S. House of Representatives 1848–1852, Tennessee governor 1857–1862, United States Senate 1877–1897, President pro tempore of the United States Senate 1893-1895
  • John Hudson - son of Richard "Bill" Hudson and professional football player, played for Super Bowl champion Baltimore Ravens in 2000, played for championship team at Auburn in college.
  • Howell Edmunds Jackson — Tennessee House of Representatives 1880–1881, United States Senate 1881–1886, Judge of the Sixth Judicial Circuit 1886–1891, Judge of the Sixth Judicial Circuit Court of Appeals 1891–1893, U.S. Supreme Court Justice 1893-95
  • Vernon Jarrett — political activist, social commentator and Chicago Tribune's first African-American syndicated columnist
  • Mordecai Wyatt Johnson — a preacher and the first black president of Howard University, serving 1926-1960
  • Bobby Jones — gospel musician
  • Cherry Jones — actress, Tony Award for Best Actress in a Play 1991- (nominee, Our Country's Good), 1995 (winner, The Heiress), 2000 (nominee, A Moon for the Misbegotten), 2005 (winner, Doubt); Drama Desk Award for Outstanding Actress in a Play 1995 (winner - The Heiress), 1998 (winner, Pride's Crossing), 2005 (winner, Doubt), 2006 (nominee, Faith Healer)
  • Merle Kilgore — country musician, songwriter, manager
  • Charles Gilbert "Chick" King — outfielder, Detroit Tigers 1954–56, Chicago Cubs 1958-59 and St. Louis Cardinals 1959, first two-sport professional athlete
  • Keith Lancaster — singer, songwriter, and founder of The Acappella Company,
  • Vernon McGarity — Congressional Medal of Honor 1946
  • Bobby Olive — former NFL wide receiver for the Indianapolis Colts
  • James D. Porter — Judge of the 12th Judicial Circuit of Tennessee (1870–1874), Tennessee governor 1875–1879, president of the Nashville, Chattanooga and St. Louis Railroad Company 1880–1884, Assistant Secretary of State under President Grover Cleveland 1885–1887, Minister to Chile under President Grover Cleveland 1893–1895, Chancellor of the University of Nashville 1901, President of Peabody Normal College 1902, later President of those two schools' merging (George Peabody College) until 1909
  • Thomas Clarke Rye — Attorney General of the 13th Judicial District, Tennessee governor 1915–1919, Chancellor of the 8th Chancery Court of Tennessee 1922-1942
  • Edward H. Tarrant — Representative of Red River County, Texas in the Texas House of Representatives September–December 1837, Chief Justice of Red River County, Texas 1838, Brigadier General of Fourth Brigade Northeast Texas Defenders, Texas House of Representatives 1849–1853, namesake of Tarrant County, Texas
  • Stephen M. Veazey — president, Community of Christ 2005–present
  • Hank Williams Jr. — Country musician, has a home "near Paris"
  • Felix Zollicoffer — Tennessee State Printer 1835, Comptroller of the Tennessee State Treasury 1845–1849, Tennessee State Senate 1849–1852, U. S. House of Representatives 1853–1859, Brigadier General, Confederate States Army
  • Gin Cooley — Model
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