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Showing posts from 2013

Changes - Gay Street at Clinch (The 700 Block)

Here we find ourselves standing on the eastern sidewalk of the 600 block of Gay St. looking northwest, through the Clinch Avenue intersection, to the western side of the 500 block. Oh, how much has changed since this shot from the 1920's!

1920's
2013
Let's count the changes -
On Gay Street itself - the street cars are gone, as are the platforms and the traffic tower.
Now, from left to right. 1) The 1875 building and then the Fouche block have both been replaced by the East Tennessee History Center. 
2) Holston National Bank is still there, but it is now the Holston, a condominium development.
3)The next seven storefronts including the Bond Brother's Building (clothing store) which housed  Hanover Shoes and Wormser Hat Shop; the Fred Breeden Barber shop and Economy Drugs and Tea Room; Hope Gift Shop along with the Hope Bros. clock; O'Neils Cafe; and the Queen Theatre have all been replaced by the Krutch Park extension. 
4) The last two store fronts on the block, Woo…

614 W. Church Avenue - The Hotel Arnold - A Twist of Fate

At the corner of Henley Street and the Clinch Avenue viaduct, stands an early 1980's building. It was built during the construction of the World's Fair Park, when the old rail yards were reborn into a global stage. The building was perhaps the most practical of all the structures built for the fair as it soon housed the Knoxville administrative offices for the State of Tennessee. It has served that purpose for over thirty years, however, that is all soon to change.


Recently, the local newspaper has announced that the state has agreed to sell the state office building to a local developer/hotelier, who also owns the adjoining Holiday Inn. He intends to turn the state office building into the fanciest hotel in Knoxville. Story Here. Called the Tennessean, it will boast sleekly designed, large, luxurious rooms. The plan is promising, mostly attractive, and offers a sensible path to reuse a large but otherwise unremarkable (to some) building. A building designed to house state off…

Holston Hills - Before Golf

Aside from my ardent preservationist beliefs, one of the ways in which I became interested in doing this blog was through a hobby I developed on lunch hours. I like to look through archives of old photos and identify those photos which have been labeled "unidentified." I have found that I have quite a knack for it, identifying nearly 100 photos for the McClung Collection over the years. There has, however, been a series of unidentified photos that have been bothering me for nearly three years. The reason they were so hard to figure out was that they aren't very remarkable on their face. Surprisingly, the inspiration came to me today and I was able to crack them.

In Knoxville, we are very fortunate to have the photograph collection of Jim Thompson. This man photographed just about everything he could lay his eyes upon. He is the source for the grand majority of the photos that one sees in the photo history books of Knoxville. Take a trip down to Steamboat Sandwiches on Ma…