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Did you know these about Knoxville?

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Knoxville is a city with fascinating stories, rich history and diverse culture. It has played a tremendous role in just every facet of American history. There is plenty to love about this city. Here are some interesting facts about Knoxville that will get you craving to visit Knoxville.

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Image By Brian Stansberry (Own work) [CC BY 3.0 (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/3.0)], via Wikimedia Commons

Knoxville Geographical and Demographic Fast Facts

  • Knoxville is the county seat of Knox County. 
  • It is a city in Tennessee, United States. 
  • It is the third largest city in Tennessee. 
  • The Tennessee River goes through Knoxville. 
  • It is located at the headwaters of the Tennessee River and near the Great Smokey Mountains. 
  • It is about 30 miles from the Great Smoky Mountains National Park.
  • The city is surrounded by seven lakes, as well. It is a water town! These lakes are: Norris, Cherokee, Tellico, Douglas, Melton Hill, Ft. Loudon and Watts Bar.
  • Downtown Knoxville is set at an elevation of 936 ft above sea level.
  • It is an international port.  If want to travel to the Great Lakes or the Gulf of Mexico, this is the spot to catch a boat.
  • Knoxville is the hub for 3 main interstate highways. Interstate highways 40, 75 and 81 all join in the city, making it convenient to get to and from all regions of the country.
  • The ethnic composition of Knoxville includes White-76.1%, Black-17.1%, Native American-0.4%, Asian-1.6%, Latino or Hispanic of any race- 4.6% and Pacific Islander-0.2%.

Knoxville History Fast Facts

  • The first settlers of East Tennessee and Knoxville were the Indians. Later, came the Europeans and the Cherokees to the area.
  • The first known settler of the city was James White.
  • In 1786, White’s Fort was established.
  • In 1791, Knoxville was settled and named after the first ever Secretary of the War for the U.S.- Henry Knox. William Blount chose the name for the city.
  • In 1792, Blount Mansion was constructed to accommodate the Tennessee’s governor. 
  • In 1796, Tennessee was formed as a state and Knoxville was chosen as the first capital of the U.S. state of Tennessee. It remained the capital until 1812.
  • Knoxville was incorporated as a city in 1815.
  • During the Civil War, the city was a strategic point for the Confederate forces as well as the Union.
  • In 1855, the first train arrived in the city.
  • In 1875, Knoxville College was established.
  • Knoxville Railway and Light Company were formed in 1905.
  • In the early 1900s, it was a main hub for marble distribution, thus dubbed as “The Marble City”. 
  • The Tennessee Valley Authority was established and headquartered in the city in 1933.
  • The Town of Oak Ridge was formed near the city in 1942.
  • In 1982, World’s Fair was held and Sunsphere was built. The fair drew over 11 million visitors to Knoxville.

Knoxville Government and Economy Fast Facts

  • Knoxville has a Mayor-Council type of government.
  • The city is home to one of the fastest growing cable network- HGTV.
  • The city is home to several corporate headquarters that includes Bush Brothers and Company, Regal Entertainment, Pilot Corporation, Petro’s Chili & Chops and Goody’s Family Clothing.
  • The University of Tennessee calls Knoxville its home.
  • The Tennessee Valley Authority has headquarters in Knoxville.

Knoxville Important and Interesting Fast Facts

  • Knoxville is nicknamed as “Gateway to the Great Smoky Mountain”, “The Marble City”, “Queen City of the Mountains”, “Scruffy City”, “Heart of the Valley”, and “K-Town”.
  • Knoxville is also called the “Streaking Capital”, “The Cradle of Country Music” and the “Underwear Capital”. 
  • Knoxville shares its name with several cities- New Knoxville, Ohio; Knoxville, Georgia; Knoxville, Pennsylvania, Knoxville, Iowa, and Knoxville, Maryland.
  • The city hold’s the largest Labor Day fireworks display in the nation, and it is dubbed as the “Boomsday”. 
  • The Knoxville Zoo has witnessed the birth of more than 100 red pandas since 1978, and hence is named as the “Red Panda Capital of the World”.
  • In the late 1940s, the drink “Mountain Dew” was first marketed and named in Knoxville.
  • The Morningside Park in Knoxville has a 13-foot bronze statue of Alex Haley, the author of “Roots”. It is considered to be the country’s largest African-American statue.
  • The city was home to World’s Fair of 1982 and the first ever touch-screen computer marked its debut for the very first time at this event. 
  • The city is home to debut of the first electric streetcar in 1890.
  • In Knoxville, to lasso a fish is against the law.
  • Several well-known personalities have their roots in Knoxville- Quentin Tarantino, P.J. Clapp and Pat Summitt.
  • The city has played an important role in the success of Everly Brothers, Dolly Parton and Elvis Presley.
  • Elvis Presley’s Career got a push from Knoxville only, when a record executive heard his song on the radio and bought him a contract. And it is said, rest is history!
  • The city is home to the largest Rubik’s Cube in the world.
  • The local daily newspaper in Knoxville is the “Knoxville News Sentinel”.
  • Knoxville has received many honors/awards:
    • Knoxville was ranked second by CareerBliss.com on their list of “Happiest Cities to Work in Right Now”.
    • Knoxville was among top 50 “Best Places for Careers and Business” according to Forbes (2013).
    • Knoxville was in the list of “Top 10 Metropolitan Hotspots in the U.S.” by Forbes Magazine (2008, April).
    • Knoxville was listed in the “Top 5 Cities for Career & Business” by Forbes Magazine (2008).
    • Knoxville was ranked at fifth position in the list of “Best Value Cities” by Kiplinger (2011).
    • According to Livability.com (2013), Knoxville was included in the list of “Top 10 Best Places to Retire”.
    • Knoxville was ranked fourth in the list of “Most Affordable Travel Destinations in the U.S.” by Hotwire.com
    • Knoxville ranked ninth in the list of “Hot Cities for Business” by Expansion Magazine.
    • Knoxville was at position fifth in the list of “Best Places for Business” by AllHeadlineNews.com.
    • Knoxville was included in the list of “Top 7 Most Affordable Destinations in the U.S. and abroad” by CNNMoney.com
    • Knoxville was ranked thirteen in the list of “Best Cities to Reside in the U.S. and Canada” by Places Rated Almanac Millennium Edition.
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