The history of Hickman County began before Tennessee achieved statehood in 1796. Hickman County is now the eighth largest county in the state and contains 612 square miles.
Written by Joyce Mayberry
Hickman County Historical Society
Hickman County was established in December 1807. The county was named for Edwin Hickman, who was part of a surveying party that came here in 1791. Edwin Hickman was killed by the Indians and buried near the outskirts of what is now Centerville.
Read more: County History
Several people from Hickman County have gained national fame including two native Hickman County including Beth Slater Whitson and Sara Ophelia Colley Cannon.
Read more: Famous People
The county’s early industry centered around the iron furnaces. Vast amounts of timber were cut and cleared to fuel the furnaces.
Read more: Industry
There are more springs and scenic waterfalls in Hickman County than any other county in Middle Tennessee. Much of the spring water is so pure and soft that it requires little, if any, treatment for drinking. Some of the creek and rivers are unusually pure and clean as well.
Read more: Valuable Water
In 1807, the county extended all the way to the present Alabama State line, and Vernon, on the Piney River, became the first county seat. Major changes to the county were soon to follow.
Read more: County Seats
In April 1791, Edwin Hickman, a native of North Carolina, led a surveying party into what is now Hickman County. Hickman’s party included James Robertson, later known as the Father of Middle Tennessee; Robert Weakley, who also played a prominent role n the early history of the state; and others. The party camped at the mouth of a small creek on the north side of Duck River opposite the present site of Centerville.
Read more: Edwin Hickman