Home » Tennessee » Lenoir City

James W. Loewen (1942-2021)

We mourn the loss of our friend and colleague and remain committed to the work he began.

Lenoir City

Tennessee

Basic Information

Type of Place
Independent City or Town
Metro Area
Politics c. 1860?
Don’t Know
Unions, Organized Labor?
Don’t Know

Sundown Town Status

Confirmed Sundown Town?
Possible
Was there an ordinance?
Don't Know
Sign?
Don’t Know
Year of Greatest Interest
Still Sundown?
Probably Not, Although Still Very Few Black People

Census Information

The available census data from 1860 to the present
Total White Black Asian Native Hispanic Other BHshld
1860
1870
1880
1890
1900
1910 3392 20
1920
1930 4470 8
1940 4373 1
1950 5159 4
1960 4979 1
1970
1980
1990 6147 25
2000
2010
2020

Method of Exclusion

  • Unknown

Main Ethnic Group(s)

  • Unknown

Group(s) Excluded

  • Black

Comments

According to a local professor:
“In Loudon and Lenoir City, Tennessee, local businesses posted Klan symbols in their windows and announcements for the Klan marches that occurred through downtown on all major holidays. On those dates, blacks were not permitted in those towns. I was told by whites in several towns that blacks had to be out of town by 5 p.m., even though I saw no posted signs. I was viewed by local town officials as an outside troublemaker, but the local community action committees were glad to have me there collecting this information. In Athens, Tennessee, I met with local blacks at the Employment office. So long as we stayed inside the facility, local blacks were willing to speak with me. Without exception, however, blacks feared being seen with me (because my skin is white) on the streets of their towns. In Athens, Tennessee, one young black man was very specific in his certainty that he would be physically assaulted by the local Klan if here were seen with me in public.
I don’t recall seeing the sundown sign you mention, but I do know that there were communities in my target areas in which local blacks could not meet with me in town after 5 p.m. Communities in which blacks refused to meet with me in town at night or early evening included the Tennessee towns of Crossville, Loudon, Lenoir City…”