Tennessee Map & Atlas Guide

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Any Historical Tennessee Map can indicate who owned specific property in the state and which towns held the county seat at the time.  This information is a valuable starting point for your research pointing you to the right location of records.

Solving Research Problems with a Tennessee Maps – If you have started your family research, you might have experienced trouble with trying to identify Tennessee city borders and names that have changed over the course of time. This can make it difficult to understand where your ancestors’ information is kept.

Because Tennessee historic maps were usually commissioned by the county seat, they often display information about the county, including town names. Reading a Tennessee map from the time period you are researching can help tremendously in solving these problems by leading you to the correct town records. It can also give you other leads, such as the location of city directories or old post offices in Tennessee.

Tennessee Map of Counties

Tennessee Map of Counties

Choosing the Best Tennessee Map – If you have a large source of maps to choose from, try starting with the area where your ancestors resided and looking for the maps with the most detail.  You can determine a lot by seeing if the area was still rural or more developed, and how far it was to the nearest city.  This can shed light on your family’s lifestyle and occupation. Were they farmers who lived in the country, or merchants who traveled often to a nearby city?  A map can give you an idea of what occupations were possible.

Tracing the history of early families in Tennessee is much easier if the researcher has an understanding of Tennessee gazetteers and maps. There are civil district maps, early surveyors’ maps, and many other Tennessee maps on file at the Tennessee State Library and Archives. They also have both current and historical maps on file, including topographical maps from the U.S. Geological Survey. Some Ocoee District plat books and Mountain District grants can also be found there.

Tennessee Map of County Formations For The Years 1777-1985

These Tennessee maps shows the historical changes to Tennessee counties from 1777 to 1985.

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Tennessee Map Abbreviations
unorg. = unorganized
g. = gained
w. = with
fr. = from
atmt. = attachment
exch = exchanged
nca.= non county area
ch. = changed
An  - Anderson
Bed - Bedford
Ben - Benton
Ble - Bledsoe
Blo - Blount
Br  - Bradley
Cam - Campbell
Can - Cannon
Cbn - Claiborne
Chs - Chester
Cly - Clay
Coc - Cocke
Cof - Coffee
Cr  - Crockett
Crl - Carroll
Ctm - Cheatham
Ctr - Carter
Cu  - Cumberland
Da  - Davidson
Dec - Decatur
Di  - Dickson
DK  - Dekalb
Dy  - Dyer
Fa  - Fayette
Fe  - Fentress
Fr  - Franklin
Gib - Gibson
Gil - Giles
Gra - Grainger
Gre - Greene
Gru - Grundy
Han - Hancock
Haw - Hawkins
Hay - Haywood
Hbn - Hamblen
Hdm - Hardeman
Hi  - Hickman
Ho  - Houston
Hrn - Hardin
Hry - Henry
Hsn - Henderson
Htn - Hamilton
Hu  - Humphreys
Jac - Jackson
Je  - Jefferson
Jo  - Johnson
Jon - Jones
Kn  - Knox
Lak - Lake
Lau - Lauderdale
Law - Lawrence
Le  - Lewis
Li  - Lincoln
Lo  - Loudon
Mac - Macon
Mad - Madison
Mau - Maury
McM - McMinn
McN - McNairy
Me  - Meigs
Moo - Moore
Mor - Morgan
Mrn - Marion
Mro - Monroe
Msl - Marshall
Mty - Montgomery
Ob  - Obion
Ov  - Overton
Pe  - Perry
Pi  - Pickett
Po  - Polk
Pu  - Putnam
Rh  - Rhea
Roa - Roane
Rob - Robertson
Ru  - Rutherford
Sc  - Scott
Seq - Sequatchie
Sev - Sevier
Sh  - Shelby
Sm  - Smith
St  - Stewart
Sul - Sullivan
Sum - Sumner
Ti  - Tipton
Tr  - Trousdale
Uci - Unicoi
Unn - Union
VB  - Van Buren
War - Warren
Was - Washington
Way - Wayne
We  - Weakley
Wh  - White
Wls - Wilson
Wms - Williamson

Tennessee Maps & Atlases

1836 Tennessee MapThe David Rumsey Historical Tennessee Map Collection is scanned from original copies so you can see Tennessee as our ancestors saw them over a hundred years ago.

Some Tennessee map years (not all) have cities, railroads, P.O. locations, township outlines and other features useful to the Tennessee researcher.

Tennessee D.O.T. County Road and Highway Maps

Tennessee County DOT MapThe Tennessee Department of Transportation is pleased to provide highly detailed county maps online. These maps contain more detailed information about man-made features than the geological survey maps. In addition to roads and boundaries, these maps include rural communities, churches, and cemeteries.

These maps are downloadable and are in PDF format. The main use of these are the locations of all known cemeteries in a county and of course the various roads and church locations. These Maps are Free to Download

External Links for Tennessee Maps

U.S. State Map Guides