Bibliography of Tennessee Local History Sources > Introduction & Index

Index of County Names
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Bibliography of Tennessee Local History Sources is the result of a project of the Tennessee Library Bicentennial Committee (TLBC), formed by Dr. Edwin S. Gleaves, Tennessee State Librarian & Archivist (retired), in late 1994. It was compiled by and for Tennessee public librarians, in honor of Tennessee's bicentennial celebration, 1996. The bibliography includes books, articles, maps, theses, dissertations, audiovisual materials and some unpublished works on ninety-one of Tennessee's ninety-five counties (Davidson, Hamilton, Knox & Shelby excluded).

When the TLBC membership expressed the need for a local history bibliography, the Tennessee State Library & Archives agreed to put the list together, with help from the public librarians across the state. Libraries sent suggestions for inclusion to the Library and Archives, where staff used additional sources to locate as many local history items as possible and arrange the citations into a usable list. Sources used, in addition to suggestions made by Tennessee librarians, include: Tennessee's union catalog (IMPACT); the OCLC database; FirstSearch databases such as Readers Guide, etc.; various existing bibliographies; Books in Print; and UMI lists of theses and dissertations. In addition, major periodicals were searched for relevant articles.

Many technical items, and also many maps, were deliberately excluded, as an effort was made to confine the list to sources useful to the general public. Some technical items are included, if they seem to reflect the people, the land, and/or life in the area. Strictly genealogical sources are excluded (see County Genealogical Sources, available via the Library and Archives, for these sources).

This list is only a beginning for source material on Tennessee counties, towns, schools, churches, battlefields, and historic sites. Local libraries often hold unique collections or items (see Special Collections in Tennessee Public Libraries and other published collection guides), and ephemera files, photographs, original materials, artifacts, newspapers, and local contacts are excellent sources. No list such as this one can substitute for source material found only at the local level.

The Bibliography is arranged by county, with sources treating the county as a whole followed by sources on towns, significant events, historic sites and institutions of higher learning. Some counties have several categories of entries, while others have only one or two.

Staff members at the Library and Archives who worked on the Bibliography are Ronald Lee and Fran Schell. Our staff members are anxious to improve the list, add to it, and make it available to interested persons. Please direct inquiries to them:

Phone : (615) 741 - 2764 (voice) or (615) 253-6471 (fax)

E-Mail :

Mail : Tennessee State Library & Archives, at the address listed at the bottom of this page.

PLEASE NOTE that the Tennessee State Library and Archives does not hold copies of all of the items listed in this bibliography. Please check the Tennessee State Library and Archives Online Catalog or visit the Ask Us a Question! web page to contact the Library and Archives and verify we have an item in our collection. The Library and Archives will respond to e-mail requests promptly; response time may vary, depending on the amount of research required to answer your question and the unique nature of your request. If you need immediate assistance you may call the reference desk at (615) 741-2764 or visit us in person.