Henning, Tennessee

Coordinates: 35°40′25″N 89°34′39″W / 35.67361°N 89.57750°W / 35.67361; -89.57750
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Henning, Tennessee
Location of Henning in Lauderdale County, Tennessee.
Location of Henning in Lauderdale County, Tennessee.
Coordinates: 35°40′25″N 89°34′39″W / 35.67361°N 89.57750°W / 35.67361; -89.57750
CountryUnited States
 • Total2.47 sq mi (6.40 km2)
 • Land2.47 sq mi (6.39 km2)
 • Water0.00 sq mi (0.01 km2)
Elevation292 ft (89 m)
 • Total871
 • Density353.06/sq mi (136.31/km2)
Time zoneUTC-6 (Central (CST))
 • Summer (DST)UTC-5 (CDT)
ZIP code
Area code731
FIPS code47-33360[4]
GNIS feature ID1287426[2]

Henning is a town in Lauderdale County, Tennessee, United States. The population was 945 at the 2010 census.


Founded in the late 1800s, the town is named after prominent businessman and railway official William H. Henning. The infamous Battle of Fort Pillow, a Civil War victory for the Confederates, took place near Henning. Here, nearly 300 black troops serving in the Union Army were massacred after surrendering by Confederates under the command of General Nathan Bedford Forrest. The Confederate refusal to treat these troops as traditional prisoners of war infuriated the North, and led to the Union’s refusal to participate in prisoner exchanges. Union survivors’ accounts, later supported by a federal investigation, concluded that African-American troops were massacred by Forrest’s men after surrendering.[5]

In 1900, a local black man, Anderson Gause, was lynched by a mob.[6]


Henning is located at 35°40′25″N 89°34′39″W / 35.67361°N 89.57750°W / 35.67361; -89.57750 (35.673563, -89.577366).[7]

According to the United States Census Bureau, the town has a total area of 1.3 square miles (3.4 km2), all land.

Henning is situated on the southeastern edge of the New Madrid Seismic Zone, an area with a high earthquake risk.


Historical population

2020 census[edit]

Henning racial composition[10]
Race Num. Perc.
White (non-Hispanic) 153 17.57%
Black or African American (non-Hispanic) 621 71.3%
Native American 39 4.48%
Other/Mixed 37 4.25%
Hispanic or Latino 21 2.41%

As of the 2020 United States census, there were 871 people, 491 households, and 315 families residing in the town.

2000 census[edit]

As of the census[4] of 2000, there were 970 people, 362 households, and 238 families residing in the town. The population density was 752.3 inhabitants per square mile (290.5/km2). There were 406 housing units at an average density of 314.9 per square mile (121.6/km2). The racial makeup of the town was 22.37% White, 74.85% African American, 1.34% Native American, and 1.44% from two or more races. Hispanic or Latino of any race were 0.41% of the population.

Alex Haley's boyhood home and his grave beside the home (2007)

There were 362 households, out of which 32.6% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 35.4% were married couples living together, 26.0% had a female householder with no husband present, and 34.0% were non-families. 30.4% of all households were made up of individuals, and 13.0% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.68 and the average family size was 3.37.

In the town, the population was spread out, with 32.8% under the age of 18, 10.6% from 18 to 24, 24.1% from 25 to 44, 19.2% from 45 to 64, and 13.3% who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 31 years. For every 100 females, there were 90.9 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 76.7 males.

The median income for a household in the town was $20,438, and the median income for a family was $21,776. Males had a median income of $26,500 versus $19,583 for females. The per capita income for the town was $8,413, which is the lowest in the state. About 30.9% of families and 30.0% of the population were below the poverty line, including 31.9% of those under age 18 and 30.2% of those age 65 or over.

Government and infrastructure[edit]

The United States Postal Service operates the Henning Post Office.[11]

The Tennessee Department of Corrections operates the West Tennessee State Penitentiary in unincorporated Lauderdale County, near Henning.[12] Previously the Cold Creek Correctional Facility was located in the area.[13]

Henning is home to a community of Mississippi Band of Choctaw Indians. The tribe placed 79 acres of local land into federal trust in 2012, making it the only Native American Indian tribe that owns land in Tennessee.[14]


Henning Public Schools are part of Lauderdale County School District. The school district has one primary school, two elementary schools, one middle school, one junior high school and two high schools.[15]

Shawn Kimble is the superintendent of schools.[16]

Notable people[edit]

Historical marker in front of Alex Haley's boyhood home (2007)


  1. ^ "ArcGIS REST Services Directory". United States Census Bureau. Retrieved October 15, 2022.
  2. ^ a b U.S. Geological Survey Geographic Names Information System: Henning, Tennessee
  3. ^ a b "Census Population API". United States Census Bureau. Retrieved October 15, 2022.
  4. ^ a b "U.S. Census website". United States Census Bureau. Retrieved January 31, 2008.
  5. ^ "Lauderdale County".
  6. ^ "Lynchings". The Grenada Sentinel. January 5, 1901. Retrieved January 11, 2019.
  7. ^ "US Gazetteer files: 2010, 2000, and 1990". United States Census Bureau. February 12, 2011. Retrieved April 23, 2011.
  8. ^ "Census of Population and Housing: Decennial Censuses". United States Census Bureau. Retrieved March 4, 2012.
  9. ^ "Incorporated Places and Minor Civil Divisions Datasets: Subcounty Resident Population Estimates: April 1, 2010 to July 1, 2012". Population Estimates. U.S. Census Bureau. Archived from the original on June 11, 2013. Retrieved December 11, 2013.
  10. ^ "Explore Census Data". data.census.gov. Retrieved December 8, 2021.
  11. ^ "Post Office Location - HENNING Archived 2010-10-06 at the Wayback Machine." United States Postal Service. Retrieved on September 26, 2010.
  12. ^ "West Tennessee State Penitentiary." Tennessee Department of Correction. Retrieved on September 26, 2010.
  13. ^ "Cold Creek Correctional Facility." Tennessee Department of Correction. February 3, 1999. Updated July 13, 1998. Retrieved on September 26, 2010.
  14. ^ "Vision of Trust Management Model, Responsibility and Reform, Chief Phyliss J. Anderson, Mississippi Band of Choctaw Indians, 29 April 2013, to the Secretarial Commission on Indian Trust Administration and Reform" (PDF). Retrieved December 23, 2020.
  15. ^ "Lauderdale County School District". GreatSchools Inc. Retrieved June 22, 2012.
  16. ^ "Tipton County Schools". Tipton County Schools. Retrieved June 22, 2012.