Skip to content

TN History for Kids

Washington County

A marker and fountain in Jonesborough

Washington is the "mother county" of Tennessee. When it was first formed in 1777, Washington County was part of North Carolina, and the "county" contained much of the land that later became Tennessee.

Washington County also contains Jonesborough, Tennessee's first town (chartered by the state of North Carolina in 1779).
 

The mostly abandoned campus of Washington College

If you roam through Washington County for long enough, you may stumble across the former campus of Washington College.

This was the very first institution of higher learning founded west of the Appalachian Mountains and has a proud history. However, Washington College decreased in stature after the Civil War, and now the campus is partially used.

An alligator skull found at the Gray Fossil site

And as if Washington County needs more history: within its borders lies the Gray Fossil Site and natural history museum.

The Washington County Courthouse was the very last courthouse that Tennessee History for Kids photographed. Yep, we got all 95 of them, and this was the last one to be checked off the list.

Washington County

County Seat: Jonesborough

Population (2015 estimate): 126,302

See also: