Powell is an unincorporated community in Knox County, Tennessee, United States. The area is located in the Emory Road corridor (State Route 131), just north of Knoxville, southeast of Clinton, and east of Oak Ridge. The United States Geographic Names System classifies Powell as a populated place. It is included in the Knoxville, Tennessee Metropolitan Statistical Area.
Despite its status as unincorporated, Powell is considered to be more of an "independent" small town than a suburb. One of the reasons behind this is that it was established in 1789 (two years before the establishment of Knoxville) by settlers passing through East Tennessee into the frontier. Among these early settlers was Stockley Donelson (1753–1804), a brother-in-law of President Andrew Jackson. Donelson's home, now known as the Alexander Bishop House, still stands on Bishop Lane. Another early settler was John Manifee, a Revolutionary War veteran who built a small fort and trading station along what is now Clinton Highway in the late 1780s.
The community's name is derived from the Powell Station train stop, which was in turn named for Columbus Powell, a prominent local resident. The train station is not currently in use but remains in the town's "downtown" area.