Haywood County got its start in agriculture like most of Tennessee counties, but it has retained its lead in cotton production. The county is the largest in cotton in the state.
Haywood County has grown from its first settlement in 1821, and was officially separated from Madison County in 1824. It was named in honor of Judge John Haywood, who was a Tennessee Supreme Court Justice from 1812-1826. Brownsville became the county seat by an act of the state legislature on October 16, 1824 and the fifty acres that comprise the public square was deeded for $1.00 by Thomas Johnson. The county has a population of 18,240 in the 2010 census, and now features a new megasite that promises a future that will fuel tremendous growth in population, retail and other industrial ventures.
Brownsville, as the county seat, features the West Tennessee Delta Heritage Center that contains a Welcome Center, Cotton Museum, Music Museum, Hatchie River Museum, the home of blues legend “Sleepy” John Estes and the childhood school of Tina Turner “The Queen of Rock and Roll”, the most successful female rock and roll artist in history. Flagg Grove School was moved to the Heritage Center in 2012 and restored. It contains memorabilia from Turner, along with continuous video footage of interviews and concerts.
There are several walking and driving tours of the historical district and sites around Haywood County, where you are able to view three distinct districts, and four locations on the
National Register of Historic Places, Tina Turner’s childhood home of Nutbush, the community of Stanton to the Southwest and the beautiful Hatchie River Wildlife Refuge.
Great History abounds in Haywood County, and we invite you to see some of it at the Delta Heritage Center, or you can contact the Chamber about a tour of the Haywood County Museum at College Hill, where there is one of the largest Abraham Lincoln collections in the United States, the genealogy room of the Emma Ross Library and even more detailed in the “Heart of the Tennessee Delta” guidebooks available at the Chamber.
There are a number of things to see all over our historic county, including visits to all the quaint communities of Rudolph, Wellwood, 3 Way, Shepp, Koko, Allen, Forked Deer, Belle Eagle, Providence, Tabernacle, Douglas, Macedonia, Hillville, Nutbush, Eurekaton, Holly Grove, Zion and lower Zion, Marvins Chapel, Union, Tibbs, Norris Crossing, Turnpike, Woodville, Woodland, Stanton and Dancyville. Ask us at the Chamber for a copy of our rich history in “Heart of the Tennessee Delta.”