A new permanent exhibit at the Facilities Services Complex on Sutherland Avenue honors the site’s history as part of the “Marble City,” when Knoxville was the epicenter of the booming Tennessee marble industry.
Tennessee marble—indigenous to East Tennessee—is known for its pink and gray color, its high polishability, and its resistance to stains and discoloration. It found great demand as flooring, paneling, and exterior stone throughout the United States starting in the late 19th century.
“The campus community and visitors following Knoxville’s Pink Marble Trail are welcome to stop by and learn more about the history of this site,” said Dave Irvin, associate vice chancellor for facilities services.
From 1917 to 1965, the Gray Knox Marble Company located on the site provided finished stone for building projects nationwide, including high-profile projects such as the US Supreme Court building, the National Gallery of Art, the US Capitol’s east front expansion, and the Tennessee Supreme Court building.
In 2013, UT purchased and renovated the 90,000 square foot Gray Knox mill that now serves as headquarters for UT’s Facilities Services. The renovation was honored with an East Tennessee Preservation Award as well as recognition by the East Tennessee chapter of the American Institute of Architects and by American School and University magazine.
The exhibit features large-format photographs accompanied by historical vignettes.
For more information, contact Facilities Services at 865-946-7777.