Spencer is a town in Van Buren County, Tennessee, United States. The population was 1,683 as of the 2010 census. It is the county seat of Van Buren County. It is home to Fall Creek Falls State Park.
Spencer is named after Thomas Sharp Spencer (d. 1794), a long hunter who passed through the Van Buren County area in the mid-18th century. The town was established in 1850 and incorporated in 1909.
Burritt College was located in Spencer from 1848 until its closure in 1939.
Fall Creek Falls State Park History
In 1937, the U.S. government began purchasing the badly eroded land around Fall Creek Falls. The following year, the Works Progress Administration and the Civilian Conservation Corps began the work of restoring the forest and constructing park facilities. The National Park Service transferred ownership of the park to the State of Tennessee in 1944.
Millikan's Overlook is named after Glenn Millikan, who was head of the Department of Physi