The Town of Franklin is a unique village nestled in the heart of the Smoky Mountains. Franklin is the county seat and was founded in 1855 and named for an eighteenth century political leader, Jesse Franklin. An ancient Indian Mound located in the heart of town serves as a reminder of an earlier time when the Cherokee lived in and around what is now called Franklin. Streets with names like Wayah, Ulco, Iotla and Watauga reflect Indian heritage.
Franklin is home to approximately 3,800 citizens, but the population nearly doubles during the spring, summer and fall seasons due to our temperate climate and beautiful scenery. Our geographical position enables us to enjoy cool summer nights and mild winters. With a healthy tourism industry and lots of local people taking an active role in the community, there are always exciting activities and places to go. Visit the Franklin
Main Street Program for more information.
Evidence of the bustling community's growth is found in the census figures. In 1890 the population was only 281, now it is 3,989. Census figures for each decade show a steady increase. Franklin is fast becoming a choice retirement place with a summer population increasing to double the number of year round residents.
Today, the Town of Franklin is recognized as the trade center of Southwestern North Carolina. Several old established businesses plus many new ones supply the home builders' needs from foundation to finish. Tourism also plays a large role in the economy of Franklin in providing an outlet for the many beautiful crafts created by the natives and the newcomers.
Though historically Protestant, many other established churches are found in and around the Town of Franklin. The medical, educational and recreational facilities are outstanding. The beauty of the mountains, lakes and valleys attracts thousands of visitors each year.
Franklin is governed by a Manager / Council form of government. Elections are held bi-annually to elect the Mayor and three of the six Aldermen. Aldermen run for terms of four years. A staff of sixty-six regular employees provide the services of police & fire protection, water, street maintenance, sewer and administrative work.
Fire protection is provided by a dedicated group of 30 volunteer firemen and 3 full-time paid staff.
The key to the success and peaceful atmosphere that prevail in this small town are the many hardworking, God fearing, loyal citizens that call Franklin home.