Iuka is a city in Tishomingo County, Mississippi. The population was 3,059 at the 2000 census. It is the county seat of Tishomingo County. Woodall Mountain, the highest point in Mississippi, is located just south of Iuka.
Iuka is built on the site of a Chickasaw Indian village that is thought to have been subordinate to the settlement at Underwood Village. The name "Iuka" comes from the name of one of the chieftains of the village.
Euro-American settlers arrived with the Memphis and Charleston Railroad in 1857. Before the American Civil War, the town boasted an all-female college, a boys' military academy, and a fine hotel. The Civil War brought widespread devastation when a major engagement here occurred on September 19, 1862. The Battle of Iuka resulted in 1200 to 1500 killed or wounded. The dead Confederate soldiers were buried in a long trench that eventually became Shady Grove Cemetery.
The first normal school built in the former Confederacy after the Civil War, Iuka Normal Institute, was built here. However, the town did not return to prosperity for many years. The building of Pickwick Landing Dam and Pickwick Lake by the Tennessee Valley Authority brought activity back to the town.