Kingsport’s History

Kingsport, TN possesses one of the richest historic backgrounds in America. It is an exceptional treasure among surrounding treasures. Prior to being in Tennessee, the area previously known as King’s Port was part of four different Virginia counties and one North Carolina county.

In the mid-18th century, the eastern United States began to seem crowded. Adventurous men looking to move further west discovered this place. Daniel Boone and his axemen left an area known as the Boatyard District and Long Island on the Holston River and marked a trail through Cumberland Gap for the pioneers who were to follow. Four years later two expeditions left “Long Island,” to travel west by water. In the late 18th century, this was America’s frontier, and a bustling center of activity and enterprise. It was the first stop on the western migration, therefore, King’s Port was an area where many pioneers gathered to decide if they were going west by land or water and consequently, it became an important shipping point on the Holston River. During this period King’s Port was frequently visited by frontiersmen like Davy Crocket and Daniel Boone.

After the construction of the railroad bypassed King’s Port in the mid-1800’s, travel through the area declined. Then early in the 20th century, businessmen who needed to market area products including the Appalachian coalfields, proceeded with another plan for a railroad. This vision and implementation opened the way for industry and commerce, heralding a new age of growth because of the river access and the completion of the Clinchfield railroad in 1915. The city fathers commissioned Dr. John Nolen to develop America’s first “Model City” and Kingsport was chartered in 1917. Its design was executed, placing residential neighborhoods and the famous church circle on high ground, industry along the river, and a commercial district with row houses in between. Kingsport seems to have been the first municipality in Tennessee to be established under a city manager-board of mayor and alderman government.

Kingsport’s population is 41,454. The city is part of Sullivan County, the state’s sixth largest county, with a population of 150,700.

Kingsport, Tennessee, is within a day’s drive of 70 percent of the U.S. population.
Kingsport is near 5 national parks, 15 state parks and 6 TVA lakes.

Tax Info

State: 7 percent
Local: 2.5 percent

Recognition and Awards for Kingsport

Kingsport and the Tri-Cities have been ranked by Golf Digest Magazine as one of the Best Places to Live in the U.S. for golfers.

Kingsport was named as one of the Top Ten Cities in which to Walk by Walking Magazine.

Kingsport’s popular Greenbelt is a 10-mile walking and biking trail that extends from one end of the city to the other, winding its way along the Holston River and through beautiful open meadows, marshlands, historic sites, flower gardens, quaint neighborhoods and even shopping and eating destinations.

Kingsport is home to the historic Netherland Inn, the nation’s only registered historic landmark that was both a stage stop and a boatyard.

The historic 200-mile Daniel Boone Wilderness Trail started in Kingsport and blazed the pathway to the western frontier for hundreds of thousands of settlers.

Kingsport is home to Bays Mountain Park, a 3,500-acre nature preserve with 22 miles of hiking and biking trials, a 44-acre reservoir lake, nature center and museum, planetarium and native wildlife habitats. Bays Mountain is the nation’s largest municipally-owned park.

Kingsport is home to Warriors Path State Park, the most visited state park in Tennessee.

Kingsport is home to Fun Fest, a nine-day summer family festival that is consistently ranked as one of the Top 20 Events to attend in the Southeast in July by the Southeast Tourism Society. More than 180,000 people attend more than 100 Fun Fest events each year.

The Fun Fest Crazy 8’s Road Race, which holds both men’s and women’s 8-K world records, was listed by Blue Ridge Outdoors Magazine as one of the Top Five Best Road Races in the South.

Because of its legendary hospitality and first-rate amenities, popular attractions and visitor accommodations, Kingsport continues to be selected among cities nationwide to host numerous Amateur Athletic Union (AAU) National Championships and other amateur sports tournaments. Thousands of dollars from tournament proceeds are given to area schools each year.

Kingsport Information

D-B Makes 2010 Newsweek Top High Schools List
James Jacobs Named Principal of George Washington
Several D-B Students Place in Tennessee Math Teachers Association Annual Competition
Kingsport students place in Tennessee Science Olympiad
D-B Featured in National Report on Preventing High School Drop Outs
Dobyns-Bennett Air Force Junior ROTC Receives Distinguished Unit Award
John Sevier Middle School Principal Cookie Greer Named Tennessee’s 2010 National Distinguished Principal
City Schools Double Number of Students Qualifying for Algebra in Sixth Grade
Ryan Wagner Named D-B Baseball Coach