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Fayette County is a county located in the U.S. state of Tennessee. As of the 2010 census, the population was 38,413.[2] Its county seat is Somerville.[3] The county was named after the Marquis de la Fayette, French hero of the American Revolution.[4]

Fayette County
County Courthouse, Town of Somerville, seat of Fayette County
County Courthouse, Town of Somerville, seat of Fayette County
Map of Tennessee highlighting Fayette County
Location within the U.S. state of Tennessee
Map of the United States highlighting Tennessee
Tennessee's location within the U.S.
Coordinates: 35°11′N 89°25′W / 35.19°N 89.41°W / 35.19; -89.41
Country United States
State Tennessee
FoundedSeptember 29, 1824
Named forMarquis de Lafayette[1]
SeatSomerville
Largest townOakland
Area
 • Total706 sq mi (1,830 km2)
 • Land705 sq mi (1,830 km2)
 • Water1.5 sq mi (4 km2)  0.2%%
Population
 • Estimate 
(2018)
40,507
 • Density56.8/sq mi (21.9/km2)
Time zoneUTC−6 (Central)
 • Summer (DST)UTC−5 (CDT)
Congressional district8th
Websitefayettetn.us

Fayette County is part of the Memphis, TN-MS-AR Metropolitan Statistical Area. It is considered part of the Mississippi Delta and was a major area of cotton plantations dependent on slave labor in the nineteenth century.

Rhea "Skip" Taylor is currently the county mayor.[5] Fayette County has a 19 person legislative body referred to as the Board of County Commissioners. All positions are elected every four (4) years along with the County Mayor.

HistoryEdit

Settlement in the area of Fayette County began in around 1820.

Fayette County was established by the Tennessee General Assembly in 1824.

The first churches in the county were the First Presbyterian Church in Somerville, established in 1829, and Immanuel Parish, established in 1832.

Following the emancipation of slaves on plantations, many of Fayette County's African-American residents worked as sharecroppers. In the 1960s and 1970s, civil rights activists fought for school integration and voting rights; and created tent cities to house displaced tenant farmers who had tried to register to vote.

In recent years, Fayette County has been transitioning from a rural area to accommodate the suburban sprawl from Memphis. [6]

GeographyEdit

According to the U.S. Census Bureau, the county has a total area of 706 square miles (1,830 km2), of which 705 square miles (1,830 km2) is land and 1.5 square miles (3.9 km2) (0.2%) is water.[7] It is the third-largest county in Tennessee by area. The county is, roughly, the same size as Marshall County, Mississippi.

Adjacent countiesEdit

State protected areasEdit

  • William B. Clark Conservation Area
  • Ghost River State Natural Area
  • Piperton Wetland Complex Wildlife Management Area (part)
  • Wolf River Wildlife Management Area
  • WMA Briggs Tract
  • Herb Parsons Lake

DemographicsEdit

Census Pop.
18308,652
184021,501148.5%
185026,71924.3%
186024,327−9.0%
187026,1457.5%
188031,87121.9%
189028,878−9.4%
190029,7012.8%
191030,2571.9%
192031,4994.1%
193028,891−8.3%
194030,3225.0%
195027,535−9.2%
196024,577−10.7%
197022,692−7.7%
198025,30511.5%
199025,5591.0%
200028,80612.7%
201038,41333.4%
Est. 201840,507[8]5.5%
U.S. Decennial Census[9]
1790-1960[10] 1900-1990[11]
1990-2000[12] 2010-2014[2] 2017[13]
 
Age pyramid Fayette County[14]

As of the census[15] of 2000, there were 28,806 people, 10,467 households, and 8,017 families residing in the county. The population density was 41 people per square mile (16/km²). There were 11,214 housing units at an average density of 16 per square mile (6/km²). The racial makeup of the county was 62.48% White, 35.95% Black or African American, 0.19% Native American, 0.22% Asian, 0.01% Pacific Islander, 0.39% from other races, and 0.76% from two or more races. 1.03% of the population were Hispanic or Latino of any race.

According to the census of 2000, the largest ancestry groups in Fayette County were English 51.66%, African 35.95%, Scots-Irish 7.1%, and Scottish 1.2%.

By 2005 Fayette County was 67.9% non-Hispanic whites. Its population was 28.2% African-American, 1.9% Latino and 1.2% Asian.

In 2000 there were 10,467 households out of which 31.00% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 58.50% were married couples living together, 14.00% had a female householder with no husband present, and 23.40% were non-families. 20.50% of all households were made up of individuals and 8.60% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.71 and the average family size was 3.14.

In the county, the population was spread out with 25.70% under the age of 18, 8.20% from 18 to 24, 27.40% from 25 to 44, 25.60% from 45 to 64, and 13.00% who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 38 years. For every 100 females there were 96.50 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 92.20 males.

The median income for a household in the county was $40,279, and the median income for a family was $46,283. Males had a median income of $33,603 versus $24,690 for females. The per capita income for the county was $17,969. About 10.90% of families and 14.30% of the population were below the poverty line, including 18.40% of those under age 18 and 18.00% of those age 65 or over.

Since the four-lane expansion of Highway 64 in the early 1990s, western Fayette County has had a population explosion. Although the county seat is still in Somerville, the population of Oakland has far surpassed it because of the influx of people working in Shelby County and seeking more affordable housing.

Although Fayette County is growing on its western side, the county's economy is still based on agriculture. Historically it was a site of cotton plantations as part of the Mississippi Delta. Several of the county's largest farmers, including the Rhea, German, Dilliard, and Karcher families, control the vast majority of the county's wealth. Some of these families have been farming for generations dating back to plantations before the Civil War. Others are younger farmers who have used their skill, business savvy, and work ethic to develop large farming operations.

Fayette County has become a destination for people of the Memphis metro area. This group is known by Fayette County natives as "Shelby County Spillover" or "White Flight Memphonites". The total value for building permits in June 2007 was close to that of the much larger Memphis suburban area of DeSoto County, Mississippi.

EducationEdit

[16] www.fcsk12.net

  • Fayette Ware Comprehensive High
  • Fayette Academy (PK-12 Independent School)
  • Rossville Christian Academy
  • West Jr High
  • East Jr High
  • Buckley-Carpenter Elementary School
  • Southwest Elementary
  • Oakland Elementary
  • LaGrange-Moscow Elementary
  • University of Tennessee at Martin (Somerville Campus)

CommunitiesEdit

PoliticsEdit

Presidential election results
Presidential Elections Results[17]
Year Republican Democratic Third Parties
2016 67.3% 13,055 30.3% 5,874 2.4% 465
2012 64.8% 12,689 34.2% 6,688 1.0% 197
2008 63.2% 12,173 35.8% 6,892 1.0% 189
2004 60.8% 8,962 38.7% 5,696 0.5% 79
2000 55.5% 6,402 43.7% 5,037 0.8% 90
1996 46.3% 4,406 48.9% 4,655 4.8% 458
1992 43.1% 3,713 48.9% 4,211 8.0% 685
1988 51.6% 3,573 47.6% 3,292 0.8% 56
1984 50.4% 3,733 49.1% 3,634 0.5% 34
1980 40.9% 2,944 57.6% 4,141 1.5% 110
1976 35.3% 2,133 63.8% 3,853 0.9% 54
1972 59.8% 3,264 37.8% 2,067 2.4% 132
1968 13.3% 740 40.3% 2,236 46.3% 2,570
1964 52.6% 2,922 47.4% 2,636
1960 49.0% 1,370 31.9% 892 19.2% 537
1956 18.2% 358 32.5% 639 49.3% 971
1952 46.7% 1,029 53.3% 1,173
1948 3.7% 66 12.7% 226 83.6% 1,493
1944 10.8% 172 89.1% 1,417 0.1% 2
1940 4.1% 78 95.8% 1,826 0.1% 2
1936 1.6% 29 98.4% 1,764
1932 3.1% 42 95.6% 1,287 1.3% 17
1928 9.9% 121 90.1% 1,100
1924 5.1% 65 92.8% 1,181 2.1% 27
1920 13.1% 346 86.9% 2,294
1916 6.0% 116 93.9% 1,812 0.1% 2
1912 6.0% 59 84.5% 830 9.5% 93

Historically, Fayette County was part of the “Solid SouthBlack Belt whereby the county’s black majority was entirely disenfranchised. From the end of Reconstruction until Harry S. Truman’s civil rights proposals during the 1940s, Democrats won over 85 percent of Fayette County’s vote even in 1920 and 1928 when Warren G. Harding and Herbert Hoover carried the state’s electoral votes. During the Civil Rights era, Fayette County’s politics resembled that of Mississippi more than that of the rest of Tennessee, with Strom Thurmond winning over 83 percent of the county’s limited electorate in 1948 and T. Coleman Andrews carrying the county as a “States’ Rights” candidate in 1956. Once the county’s blacks were enfranchised during the 1960s, Democrats would carry the county or only lose narrowly between 1976 and 1996, but in the twenty-first century as the county becomes increasingly white and suburban, its strongly conservative social views have made it strongly Republican.[18]

See alsoEdit

ReferencesEdit

  1. ^ Dorothy R. Morton, "Fayette County," Tennessee Encyclopedia of History and Culture. Retrieved: 27 June 2013.
  2. ^ a b "State & County QuickFacts". United States Census Bureau. Archived from the original on June 7, 2011. Retrieved November 29, 2013.
  3. ^ "Find a County". National Association of Counties. Archived from the original on May 3, 2015. Retrieved 2011-06-07.
  4. ^ Gannett, Henry (1905). The Origin of Certain Place Names in the United States. Govt. Print. Off. p. 124.
  5. ^ "County Directory". Fayettetn.us. Archived from the original on 2013-07-25. Retrieved 2013-05-05.
  6. ^ Morton, Dorothy R. (October 8, 2017). "Fayette County". Tennessee Encyclopedia. Archived from the original on November 16, 2018. Retrieved June 29, 2019.
  7. ^ "2010 Census Gazetteer Files". United States Census Bureau. August 22, 2012. Retrieved April 4, 2015.
  8. ^ "Population and Housing Unit Estimates". Retrieved July 20, 2018.
  9. ^ "U.S. Decennial Census". United States Census Bureau. Archived from the original on April 26, 2015. Retrieved April 4, 2015.
  10. ^ "Historical Census Browser". University of Virginia Library. Retrieved April 4, 2015.
  11. ^ Forstall, Richard L., ed. (March 27, 1995). "Population of Counties by Decennial Census: 1900 to 1990". United States Census Bureau. Retrieved April 4, 2015.
  12. ^ "Census 2000 PHC-T-4. Ranking Tables for Counties: 1990 and 2000" (PDF). United States Census Bureau. April 2, 2001. Retrieved April 4, 2015.
  13. ^ "QuickFacts. Fayette County, Tennessee". United States Census Bureau. Retrieved October 3, 2018.
  14. ^ Based on 2000 census data
  15. ^ "American FactFinder". United States Census Bureau. Archived from the original on 2013-09-11. Retrieved 2011-05-14.
  16. ^ "Fayette County Schools ::". Fcsk12.net. Retrieved 2013-05-05.
  17. ^ Leip, David. "Dave Leip's Atlas of U.S. Presidential Elections". uselectionatlas.org. Retrieved 2018-03-10.
  18. ^ Cohn, Nate; ‘Demographic Shift: Southern Whites’ Loyalty to G.O.P. Nearing That of Blacks to Democrats’, New York Times, April 24, 2014

External linksEdit