The first pioneers to explore the Tazewell area were the long hunters, surveyors, and land speculators. In 1750, Dr. Thomas Walker remarked in his diary on the lush grass, plentifulness of game, and large quantities of coal. The town of Tazewell, settled in 1799 and incorporated in 1870, was first called Jeffersonville Township in honor of third U.S. president and native Virginian Thomas Jefferson. Over 200 years have passed, but the region's mountains and vast areas of pastureland remain unspoiled. Tazewell now serves as the seat and one of the most historic areas in Tazewell County.
About the Author
Louise B. Leslie is the retired editor of the Clinch Valley News, a weekly newspaper founded in 1845 and published by three generations of the Leslie family. She writes the awardwinning column My Main Street in the Tazewell County Free Press and is a founding member of the Tazewell County Historical Society. Dr. Terry W. Mullins is in his 30th year as a government and history teacher at Tazewell High School. A member of the adjunct faculty at Southwest Virginia Community College, Bluefield State College, and Virginia Intermont College, he earned his doctorate from Virginia Tech in 1996. He is a founding member and current officer of the Tazewell County Historical Society.