Williamsburg, the seat ofWhitley county, is located in the center of the county on the Cumberland river. The town of Whitley Court House was formed with the new county in 1818 and named, like the county, for William Whitley. The post office opened the next year. The name of the town and post office were changed to Williamsburgh in 1882 and the spelling was changed to Williamsburg in 1890. The population in 1990 was 5,493.
Williamsburg is the home of Cumberland College, founded in 1889 and the home of the Appalachian Center and Museum.