See Rock City

See Rock City

Tuesday, February 12, 2013

Charleston, TN

Welcome sign along US-11

Charleston is a city in Bradley County, Tennessee, United States. The population was 651 at the 2010 census. It is included in the Cleveland Metropolitan Statistical Area.


Charleston is situated along the south bank of the Hiwassee River, which flows down out of the Appalachian Mountains several miles to the east and empties into the Chickamauga Lake impoundment of the Tennessee River several miles to the west. The river forms the boundary between Bradley County and McMinn County. Calhoun, Charleston's sister city, is situated on the north bank of the Hiwassee, on the McMinn County side.

Charleston is traversed by U.S. Route 11, which enters the city from Calhoun to the north and exits the city en route to Cleveland to the south. Interstate 75, which roughly parallels U.S. 11 in the area, runs along Charleston's western boundary.

According to the United States Census Bureau, the city has a total area of 1.0 square mile (2.6 km2), of which 0.1 square miles (0.26 km2), or 5.77%, is water.


The city is across the Hiwassee River from a large paper mill operation of Bowater Corporation in Calhoun, which is a major local employer. Logging trucks and rail traffic to and from this plant frequently traverse Charleston.

Charleston is the postal address of the international headquarters of the Christian denomination The Church of God, commonly called "The Church of God (Charleston, Tennessee)" to distinguish it from other similarly named denominations. However, the denomination's headquarters are actually located in Cleveland.


Charleston was the site of the last Cherokee Agency as well as Fort Cass, the headquarters of the Cherokee Removal of 1838, known as the Trail of Tears. The valley between Charleston and Cleveland, Tennessee was filled for 12 miles (19 km) with internment camps in which thousands of Cherokee from various towns waited during the summer of 1838 for the start of the main trek west.