11 Quirky Facts About Tennessee That Sound Made Up, But Are 100% Accurate
We think that Tennessee is one of the coolest states in the entire US of A. As we dive into these fun facts about Tennessee, we think you will find a deeper appreciation for our state, too. Some of these trivia tidbits might sound totally crazy — but they’re all true!
1. We have the world’s largest collection of salt and pepper shakers.
There are some things you just didn’t think you needed over 20,000 pairs of, but yet here we are. This wonderful collection is the product of one woman's sheer determination and is now the only
salt and pepper shaker museum
in the world. It might seem like a silly thing to do, but this museum is quite inspiring and completely worth the trip to Gatlinburg.
2. We have the most-visited national park in the country.
Well, we share the most-visited national park in the country with our good friends in North Carolina. In 2021 alone, the Great Smoky Mountains sad 14.1 million visitors!
3. We have the shortest tunnel in the world.
Backbone Rock is a fun detour on a weekend trip, but did you know it's also the shortest tunnel in the world? This arch hugs the road on both sides and is an impressive 80 feet tall while the length of it is only 20 feet long.
4. Tennessee is tied for the state with the most bordering states.
We might not be the only state surrounded by *eight* other states, but we're happy to share this title!
5. We have the tallest underground waterfall in the United States
is a magnificent natural wonder. Deep within Lookout Mountain, you can take a tour to see Ruby Falls which falls a stunning 145 feet. Exploring caves or chasing waterfalls alone can be a thrilling experience; marry them together, and it’s quite mind-blowing.
6. Speaking of caves, we also have the largest underground lake in the whole country.
Lost Sea Adventure
is a cave tour that leads to a massive underground lake. Keep an eye out for the fish that call the lake home while you enjoy this epic natural wonder in our state.
7. We have the most sensitive seismic station on the planet.
Tuckaleechee Caverns has given us a unique ability to hear activity from all over the world. The cave's limestone digs deep into the crust of the earth. allowing for sensitive equipment to pick up activity like waves crashing on the shore 500 miles away. The system will even detect earthquakes or nuclear testing done all the way in North Korea!
8. Tennesse’s state mammal is the raccoon
You would probably think that the black bear would be the easy choice for state mammals in Tennessee, but nope, it's the humble raccoon.
9. Tennessee is the only place in North America where freshwater pearls are harvested.
Not only is it the only place to find these beautiful iridescent pearls, but you can also visit a museum that puts the process and the product on display for all to see: the
Tennessee River Freshwater Pearls Museum
10. Mountain Dew came from Tennessee.
That's right -- the iconic brightly colored green soda came right from our state. It was originally designed to be mixed with whisky, but later ended up being everyone’s favorite soft drink.
11. The first combination candy bar was created in Tennessee.
The GooGoo Cluster was the first-ever combination candy bar, which means that they use several ingredients to make the candy. The GooGoo Cluster uses four ingredients and became an instant hit. You can even visit the home of this delicious concoction at
the GooGoo Shop
File these under “weird but true.” The next time you need to wow someone with your Tennessee trivia, share some of these fun facts!
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