In 1942, the United States government purchased almost 60,000 acres (242 sq km) of narrow valleys and rolling hills in rural East Tennessee to enrich uranium for atomic weapons. But the government wasn’t purchasing empty land. Several rural communities existed on the land that became Oak Ridge. These communities, with homes, schools, churches, and businesses, were small yet vital to the region for decades prior to the Manhattan Project. Scroll down to discover more of what became, and what is left, of these pre-Manhattan Project communities.
Scroll down for sites that existed before the Manhattan Project ▼
Last updated: January 13, 2023