About Lawrence County
Created in 1818, Lawrence County is named in honor of Captain James Lawrence, famous for his War of 1812 battle cry “Don’t give up the ship.” With more than 100,000 acres, the Bankhead National Forest makes up the southern part of this rural county and the Tennessee River forms the county’s northern border. Lawrence County is the birthplace of Olympic Gold Medal Winner Jesse Owens and the home of Gen. Joe Wheeler.
Lawrence County’s population of 33,933 is 78 percent white, 17 percent black and 5 percent Hispanic and other. There are 18 major educational outlets in the county.
Cotton, corn, soybeans and wheat are the major agricultural crops in the county. Wheat, poultry and cattle are also grown. Besides agriculture, International Paper is also a major industry.
Lawrence County has many tourist attractions, including the Jesse Owens Park and Museum, Wheeler Dam, Joe Wheeler Home, Oakville Indian Mound and Museum, Sipsy Wilderness Area, Doublehead Resort and Bankhead National Forest.
The Lawrence County Extension Office has three agents, two full-time secretaries and one part-time agent assistant. About 185 volunteers help with various programs. Some 2,000 youth are enrolled in 4-H programs.