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TN History for Kids

Lewis County

Some of the residents of The Farm in 2013

When it comes to history, Lewis County is known for hippies, elephants and its strange connection to one of the most important explorers in American history.

On the southeast edge of Lewis County you will find The Farm, which was for many years regarded as the best known commune in America. The Farm is still there. It is no longer a commune, but still welcomes visitors and is, in many ways, a unique place in Tennessee.

One of the residents of the Elephant Sanctuary in
Lewis County
PHOTO: The Elephant Sanctuary

Residents of The Farm are not, however, the LARGEST residents of Lewis County.

Lewis County contains an elephant sanctuary that takes care of old, sick or needy elephants who are retired from zoos and circuses. It contains an elephant shelter, ponds, and lots of wide open space in which the elephants can roam around and, well, be elephants.

The sanctuary is not open to the public, but you can check out its inhabitants by clicking here.

The Meriwether Lewis monument

Another story: Lewis County isn’t named for someone who lived there, but someone who died there. Meriwether Lewis was a great explorer; part of the Lewis & Clark expedition that mapped out parts of the American West. In 1809 he was passing through this part of Tennessee when he died under mysterious circumstances.

To this day people disagree on whether he killed himself or was murdered.

Here's a photo of the Lewis County Courthouse.

Lewis County

County seat: Hohenwald

Population (2015 estimate): 11,854

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