Today, Jonesborough attracts heritage tourism because of its historical status as Tennessee's oldest town and its significant historic preservation efforts that have preserved a rich architectural fabric The historic city is home to nearly 5,400 people and has had a slow but steady growth over the years. Jonesborough is the home to the International Storytelling Center, which holds the annual National Storytelling Festival on the first full weekend in October. The Festival builds on the Appalachian cultural tradition of storytelling and has been drawing people from around the world for more than 35 years. Large tents are pitched in parks around town, and storytellers sit on stages or at the head of the main tent to perform. Occasionally, performances are interrupted for a moment by passing Norfolk Southern Railway trains. Past storytellers included Carmen Agra Deedy, Syd Lieberman, and Kathryn Tucker Windham. The festival inspired the development of a successful storytelling graduate degree program at the nearby East Tennessee State University.

Washington County Schools

Washington County Schools of East Tennessee is comprised of 16 schools serving Pre-K through grade 12 with 9,055 students and 580 teachers. Out of the 16 county schools 5 of them are located in Jonesborough, Tennessee.

Higher Education

East Tennessee State University is home to approximately 14,500 students. It offers 112 undergraduate and 75 master’s programs, including one of the country’s select few fully accredited graduate programs in storytelling. It also is the only four-year university in the world with a comprehensive bluegrass music program. ETSU also boasts a College of Pharmacy and the James H. Quillen College of Medicine. With a high-performing public school system and higher learning facilities to meet most anyone’s needs, education is key in East Tennessee.

Northeast State Community College is a comprehensive two-year community college under the governance of the Tennessee Board of Regents of the State University and Community College System of Tennessee. Northeast State provides university parallel programs designed for students desiring to transfer to another college or university, career programs for students planning to enter the workforce immediately upon graduation, and continuing education and community service programs for professional growth and personal enrichment to the citizens of Carter, Johnson, Sullivan, Unicoi and Washington counties. Although the main campus is located in Blountville, Tennessee, Northeast State has a satellite facility located at 101 E. Market St., in Johnson city's downtown area. The entrance to the facility's parking garage is located off Buffalo Street.

Milligan University has educated men and women to lead and to serve for over 150 years. Our commitment to Christ-centered liberal arts education has led Milligan to become a growing, well-respected liberal arts institution. Because of our emphasis on scholarship, community, and faith, students come from all over the world to experience our distinctively different approach to higher education.

Milligan offers more than 100 majors, minors, pre-professional degrees, and concentrations in a variety of fields, along with graduate and adult degree completion programs. Consistently recognized for quality and value, Milligan has been recently ranked by U.S. News and World Report as one of the best regional universities in the South for quality and value; named one of Washington Monthly’s top 20 master’s universities in the nation; and in 2016, listed as the No. 2 best universities in Tennessee by

King University establishes students in a robust liberal arts foundation and offers specialization in a contemporary range of undergraduate degrees. These include Nursing, Security and Intelligence Studies, Exercise Science, and Digital Media Art & Design, as well as more traditional majors such as Mathematics, History and Political science, English, Biology, and more.

Undergraduates have the opportunity to engage in a variety of real-world economic and scientific research opportunities, and to interact with prominent voices examining the intersection of faith and culture. On-campus and online learning programs are available, plus a dual degree program in Engineering. Graduate and Professional offerings include master’s degrees in nursing, business and education, and a doctoral degree in nursing practice.

The value of the school’s educational environment has been recognized by U.S. News & World Report, which has named King a Best Regional University in the South for nearly 30 consecutive years. King has also been recognized by the Brookings Institution, which in 2016 ranked the University third in Tennessee for preparing students for high-paying careers.
King’s main campus resides on 135 scenic acres in Bristol, Tennessee. University-centered athletic opportunities include membership on one of 28 teams competing in the NCAA Division II and Conference Carolinas or participation in on-campus leagues and groups sponsored by King’s Student Life group. Additionally, Bristol is officially recognized as the Birthplace of Country Music, and the Tri-Cities area features a wealth of live music, including the nationally known Rhythm and Roots Reunion weekend festival. Students can also enjoy concerts, races, and sporting events at nearby Bristol Motor Speedway, along with outdoor pursuits, such as hiking, biking, fishing, skiing, and exploring the Blue Ridge and the Smoky Mountains.

Our Public Schools

David Crockett High School
Jonesborough Elementary
Lamar Elementary
Sulphur Springs Elementary
Jonesborough Middle School
Learn About Washington Co. Schools

Higher Education
(Click The School To Learn More)

East Tennessee State University
Northeast State Community College
Milligan University
King University

Ballad Health is Leading the charge in the medical industry in the Tri-Cities. Ballad is an integrated healthcare system serving 29 counties of Northeast Tennessee, Southwest Virginia, Northwest North Carolina, and Southeast Kentucky. Their system was created to improve the health of the people they serve. Ballad Health operates a family of 21 hospitals, including three tertiary medical centers, a dedicated children’s hospital, community hospitals, three critical access hospitals, a behavioral health hospital, an addiction treatment facility, long-term care facilities, home care, and hospice services, retail pharmacies, outpatient services, and a comprehensive medical management corporation.

Johnson City Medical Center is a 445-bed regional tertiary referral center for the entire service area and one of five Level 1 Trauma Centers in the state of Tennessee. Since 1911, Johnson City Medical Center has been dedicated to helping the people of our region attain their highest possible level of health (Ballad Health).

Franklin Woods Community Hospital is an acute care 80-bed hospital located in Johnson City, Tenn. Franklin Woods (FWCH) has a wide range of specialty and subspecialty care, including general acute medical services, a family birth center, 24/7 emergency services, and comprehensive diagnostic imaging. The hospital also provides advanced surgical services, including minimally invasive da Vinci robotic surgery options (Ballad Health).

State of Franklin Healthcare Associates (SoFHA) is a progressive, patient-centered system of 13 medical practices. Most are located on our main campus in Johnson City, Tennessee. We also offer the first “call-ahead,” walk-in clinic in the region. Our SoFHA physicians establish strong connections with patients first and foremost, allowing for efficient and timelier healthcare.

No matter what brings you to the beautiful historic town, you will find plenty of activities to keep you busy. Jonesborough is packed full of historical charm, and there are exciting activities that appeal to all ages. From parks and zoos, to and hiking to walking tours, there’s an activity that will perfectly suit your time, frame, budget, and preferences.

Our Parks and Trails

Buffalo Mountain Park Johnson City (Picnic Area And Trails)
Winged Deer Park Johnson City, TN
Carver’s Gap Roan Mountain, NC (Hiking)
Laurel Falls Trail in Hampton, TN (Kid-Friendly Hike/Waterfall)
Coon Den Falls in Hampton, TN
Willow Springs Park Johnson City, TN
Steele Creek Park Bristol, TN
Bristol Caverns Bristol, TN
Founders Park Johnson City, TN
Tweetsie Trail Johnson City, TN
Bays Mountain Kingsport, TN
Blue Hole Falls Elizabethton, TN
Little Wilbur Lake Elizabethton, TN
Sycamore Shoals State Park in Elizabethton, TN
Roan Mountain State Park in Roan Mountain, TN
Warriors Path State Park Kingsport, TN

See Our Full List of Parks

The restaurants dotted along Jonesborough’s streets do more than serve incredible food, they tell a story. These stories have been passed down for decades and are told through the old-time architecture, the unique food, and the people there.

The Black Olive - All of The Black Olive's food is housemade, with locally grown and organically-sourced ingredients used as often as possible. For a taste of timeless, classic Italian be sure to visit The Black Olive.

Rocky's Pizza - We are a family-owned restaurant that has been operating for over 18 years. Our menu consists of pizza, subs, salads, and wings.

Amigo - Amigo's is a family ran business established in 1993. We have been an integral part of the community ever since. Stop by for an authentic Mexican meal.

Texas Burritos - Texas Burritos & More has the flavor you've been searching for. We specialize in burritos and famous Tex-Mex staples. We look forward to serving you.

Main Street Cafe - The Café offers homemade soups, salads, grilled items, and an endless variety of sandwiches, to our ever-popular oven-baked desserts & fresh ground coffee & locally brewed Beer.

Downtown Sweet - Downtown Sweet serves desserts and sandwiches in historic downtown Jonesborough, TN. Everything is made "in house". They serve an array of incredible chocolates, unique desserts, and comfort foods.

More Restaurants


Whether you’re looking to window shop or purchase locally handcrafted art, you’re sure to find treasures as you stroll through town. The stunning architecture and cobblestone walkways create a beautiful setting for your shopping experience. Inside these historic buildings, you will discover local shops featuring hand-made crafts, one-of-a-kind gifts, antique stores, art galleries, gourmet food shops, fashion boutiques, and many other delightful retail shops. Shop Local

If you are looking for a fun trip for the family we recommend visiting The Pinnacle where you can shop, dine, and play! The Pinnacle is located in Bristol, TN approximately 35 minutes from Johnson City.

Learn More About The Pinnacle


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