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Rural King

McKenzie (Carroll County)

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McKenzie is the largest town in Carroll county, and was established in 1867 when the Nashville and Northwestern Railroad built a line that intersected the already established Memphis and Ohio rail line in the county. The community is located in the northwest portion of the county, with portions of it lying in Henry and Weakley Counties. The community has a small industrial base, but thrives mostly off of Bethel College and serving as a local commercial center for significant portions of three counties.

City Population (2000) - 5,295

County Population (2000) - 29,475 (County Seat Huntingdon)

PHofKS highlighted for me that McKenzie is unusual as it has terminal horizons, that is that two of its main townsquare roads terminate into a row of buildings that deny a constant view to the horizon.

So with all the base info out of the way, onward to the photos!



Example of a terminal horizon. (Note: The streets were being paved)



The Gazebo in the middle of the town square.


Park Theatre


The Old Post Office, which is now the Gordon Browning Museum. (Sadly it was closed on the day I visited :( )



Artillery on the townsquare


The offices of the local paper: The McKenzie Banner



A terrific old building that use to house the Bank of McKenzie - now the city library. Good use IMO.





Some great looking buildings


McKenzie's historic train station, I wish more of these survived in West Tennessee.


What would one of my threads by without on of these type pics?


Every small town needs a Caboose if its history is based around the railroad doesn't it?


Another nice street shot


The very new and modern McKenzie Municipal Complex


The firestation compenent around back


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To wrap up some pics of Bethel College, which IMO is a fantastic little campus and a great asset to the community and region:










Thats it! There where a lot of photos, but I thought I'd put them all in one thread as its just a easier way to show off a smaller town than seperate threads I have decided, esp. with a smaller town like this with not enough material to create multiple threads dedicated to seperate areas of interest.

For more information on McKenzie I recommend this site:


This site provided me with some great facts and history regarding McKenzie. Its worth a visit if anyone is interested.

Also, this webpage has a selection of McKenzie photos dating from 2001 with infromational headings that some might be interested in:


Thanks for viewing. Comments are welcomed!

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Nice photos. I hope to get down that way again soon.

I think their downtown has a lot of potential for the creation of something really unique. If they could restore the town to an early 1920's look, they would encourage tourism and who knows, maybe have a movie made there.

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Very nice, particularly since McKenzie is so small, it has a relatively intact downtown.

I keep meaning to take some shots of the small towns around here--Mason City IA, Austin MN, and Albert Lea MN--for a comparison to the southern towns. There's some difference in style, not sure what it is.

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They're just now paving the streets. Talk abouit rural. It looked like a ghost town, a few cars here and there, but no people. Just kidding about the paving, if you couldn't tell, great tour RK, keep 'em coming. How far are you from Brownsville? There's this guy that's built this monumental sculpture/installation out of recycled metal and found pieces that's located just off the square. You really need to check that out and photograph it, it's pretty amazing. Have you ever driven down 412 just outside of Jackson going either to or from Hwy 70 and seen that car/helicopter in somebodies front yard? It's a curious area out thar in West Tennessee.

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Thanks for all the great feedback everyone. :D

@ Nashvillain - Brownsville is a decent distance from me (65 miles on less than speedy roads), but I do have a few pictures I took from around its square with my old camera a couple of years ago. I am not familar with the car/plane either, but thats an interesting tidbit I might try to go find one day.

I may post my Brownsville and Alamo, TN pics next if folks would be interested in seeing those. It will be a very small thread since I did not have a digital camera at the time those pics were taken. I wish I had my digital camera when I visited those two and several other locals though, as a digital camera gives me so much more leeway in taking pics of locals like these.

As for people, I usually try to take shots with no people in them, as that can make some locals uncomfortable and avoids people asking why I am taking pictures, which I have found is less of a problem in most cities as it is unavoidable. Most smaller downtown areas in WTN don't have much foot-traffic anyway though, unless its someplace like Union City, Dyersburg, or a county seat; but most have plenty of folks out and about on foot in older residential areas with sidewalks - where again I avoid people in my shots.

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They're just now paving the streets. Talk abouit rural.

Nashvillian, I know you are kidding. :lol:

Actually, part of the reason for the roadwork you see in the pictures is because there has been so much paving in the past that the street has to be milled down, almost a foot in some places, so some new sidewalks an be built. Otherwise the sidewalks would drain toward the buildings. The corner by the Theater will have a new traffic signal supported on mast arms to help reduce some of the overhead utility clutter, in that corner. The corner by the park will have the sidewalk extended into the street to provide for handicap ramps and avoid damaging the park in any way.

Overall, downtown should look a little better when this is completed.

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