Knoxville, being at the epicentre of the Tennessee valley, has played an important role in American history. Here are some lesser known and interesting facts about Knoxville, Tennessee, a city that shares its name with 5 others in the states of Georgia, Iowa, Maryland, Pennsylvania and Ohio. The city was named after Henry Knox, the first Secretary of the War for the United States.
Things that Make Knoxville Unique
- In 1982, the city was the smallest city to host the World’s Fair.
- The first ever touch-screen was demonstrated for the very first time at this World’s Fair.
- Knoxville is the place where the drink “Mountain Dew” was born in 1940.
- It is called the “Cradle of Country Music,” given that this genre of music finds its roots back in Knoxville.
- It is also called the “Marble City.” Although in reality, what is called marble here is actually limestone!
- The University of Tennessee was established to be called so only in 1879. It was originally founded as Blount College in 1794.
- The city calls Labor Day “Boomsday,” named after the fireworks celebration that takes place over the Tennessee River and also includes a waterfall of fireworks.
- Knoxville is an international port. If you wish to travel up to the Gulf of Mexico or the Great Lakes, this is the place to catch your boat.
- The city is also known as the “Streaking Capital,” due the numerous streaking events that occurred here in the 1970s. It is also called the “Underwear Capital.”
- The Tennessee River cuts through the city, which is also surrounded by seven lakes.
- Quentin Tarantino, the famous Hollywood director, was born here. Actor and comedian Johnny Knoxville is from the city. His given name was Philip John “PJ” Clapp.
- This is the place where Elvis Presley’s career took off, when a record company that heard his first song blaring from a radio, bought the contract. And as they say, the rest is history.
- Dolly Parton and the Everly Brothers also started their careers from this place.
- In place of the Open-air Marketplace, there once stood a large building called the Market House.
- The Golden Globe or the Sunsphere is one of the two buildings left from the World’s Fair. You can take an elevator to the observation deck or try the Sunburget and Sunburst cocktail at its restaurant.