Heavy storms that have battered the Southeast since the weekend have caused at least 28 deaths, 19 of them in Tennessee.
The rain has been especially cruel to Tennessee, swelling rivers to historic levels, turning roads to lakes and flooding landmarks such as the Grand Ole Opry in Nashville.
Parts of Tennessee had been so damaged by the floods that President Obama declared them major disaster areas, a designation that makes federal funding available to affected residents.
The state was expected to get a break from rain Wednesday.
"The next chance of precipitation is not until Friday and that doesn't look like much," said John Cohen, forecaster for the National Weather Service. "So we are very fortunate. Very fortunate indeed."
Many waterways, such as the Cumberland River, have risen well past flood level. On Tuesday night, the Cumberland, which flows through Nashville, was at 51.8 feet, 11.8 feet above flood stage, the National Weather Service said.
Some residents had little time to prepare for the waters that crashed into homes, washed away roads, prompted evacuations of hotels and displaced thousands of people.