Hoskins Drug Store and the Ritz Theater
Photo: Brian Stansberry
Green McAdoo Cultural Center
Photo: Brian Stansberry
Lewellen Bridge in Clinton, TN
Photo: Calvin Sneed
Clinton's Market Street
Photo: Brian Stansberry

All About Clinton

Clinton is a thriving town with a population of approximately 10,000 citizens. Founded in 1801, the town of Burrville was named in honor of Aaron Burr, first-term Vice President under Thomas Jefferson. The land was selected and partitioned for a courthouse, and Burrville was designated as the county seat for the newly formed Anderson County. But the city changed its name when Aaron Burr was charged with treason for conspiring with the Governor of the Louisiana Purchase, to form another country.  The name Clinton is believed to come from George Clinton who was a rival of Burr’s along with Alexander Hamilton and succeeded Burr as Vice President. Clinton uses the council-manager government system, which was established in 1890 when the city was incorporated.


From 1895 to 1936 Tennessee was one of the nation’s six leading states in marketing freshwater pearls and Clinton was listed as one of the three towns in Tennessee at the center of the pearling industry.  The Clinch River, which runs through Clinton was home to a variety of about 45 freshwater mussels. New York dealers regularly traveled to Clinton during the pearling season.


One of the most notable parts of Clinton's history is the desegregation of Clinton High School in 1956.  Following the U.S. Supreme Court decision, twelve African American students entered the doors for the first time, becoming the first to desegregate a state-supported public school in the Southeast.  Today, the Green McAdoo Cultural Center pays tribute to those 12 brave students who changed history. 


The Historic Downtown area gives visitors plenty of ways to spend their free from perusing the more than 20 antique shops, other retail businesses, and eateries.

Clinton is in close proximity to Knoxville and Oak Ridge has excellent access to Interstate-75 and is within driving distance of three state parks- Norris Dam, Cove Lake, and Big Ridge with their miles of hiking trails or great boating and fishing on Norris Lake.


The Museum of Appalachia is a living history museum — a pioneer mountain farm-village that lends voice to the people of Southern Appalachia through the artifacts and stories they left behind. The Museum is now a non-profit organization and a Smithsonian Affiliate museum.

Clinton is a great place to live or visit.  Hope to see you soon!


All Around Town