Love history and want to learn more? Explore a variety of historical topics as authors, scholars, and local historians present the latest research and books, as well as new looks at old subjects. Lectures are open to the public and are free of charge unless otherwise stated.

Previous Lectures

  • @ East Tennessee History Center
    May 25, 2016 - 2:00pm to 3:30pm

    Sharyn McCrumb, New York Times bestselling author of the acclaimed Appalachian “Ballad” series, masterfully combines historical research and captivating folklore in her new Depression-era novel, Prayers the Devil Answers.  Suddenly thrust into the role of primary caretaker for her family following the tragic death of her husband, Ellie...

  • @ East Tennessee History Center
    May 6, 2016 - 7:00am to May 7, 2016 - 8:45am

    The Knoxville Stomp Festival of Lost Music, May 5-8, celebrates the old-time, jazz, blues, and gospel music of the 1929 and 1930 Knoxville session recordings. The festival opens at the History Center with a panel featuring old-time music scholar Ted Olson, historian Tony Russell, and Bear Family record label head Richard Weize. They will...

  • @ East Tennessee History Center
    April 13, 2016 - 7:00am to April 14, 2016 - 7:45am

    WNOX began broadcasting in 1922 as the eighth radio station in the nation. Old time, gospel, blues, jazz, and other styles performed by local talent filled the station’s airtime and showcased Knoxville as a melting pot of musical culture. Bradley Reeves, archivist at the Tennessee Archive of Moving Image and Sound, will share rare film clips,...

  • Presented in Partnership with the Friends of the Knox County Public Library
    March 22, 2016 - 3:00pm to March 23, 2016 - 4:45pm

    Erik Larson, widely acclaimed master of page-turning nonfiction sagas, will speak in Knoxville at the Bijou Theatre on Tuesday, March 22, at 7 p.m.  Larson, who divides his time between New York City and Seattle, is the author of four national bestsellers: In the Garden of Beasts, Thunderstruck, The Devil in the White City...

  • @ East Tennessee History Center
    March 9, 2016 - 7:00am to March 10, 2016 - 7:45am

    In November 1917, Knoxville was scene to a tense showdown between activists for women’s votes, local law enforcement, and Tennessee lawyers. Wanda Sobieski uses this story of controversy and courage as a starting point to explore the struggle over voting rights in our region. Tennessee was deeply divided on the suffrage issue, but eventually...

  • @ East Tennessee History Center
    February 24, 2016 - 7:00am to February 25, 2016 - 7:45am

    Stephen Wicks, curator at the Knoxville Museum of Art, will explore the legacy of painter Beauford Delaney, one of the country’s most significant African American modernists. Born in Knoxville in 1901, Delaney went from sketching on Sunday school cards to formal lessons with Knoxville’s Lloyd Branson to joining the artistic revolution in Harlem...

  • @ East Tennessee History Center
    February 10, 2016 - 6:30am to 7:30am

    Following the Civil War, the rugged upcountry of Breathitt County, Kentucky, developed the reputation as “the darkest and bloodiest of all the dark and bloody feud counties.”  In a Brown Bag Lecture on February 10, Dr. T. R. C. Hutton will discuss his book Bloody Breathitt: Politics and Violence in the Appalachian South and argue that...

  • @ East Tennessee History Center
    January 30, 2016 - 5:00am to January 31, 2016 - 8:45am

    Do you own a work of art by Knoxville artist Lloyd Branson? If so, the East Tennessee Historical Society would like to know about it.

    In the decades after the Civil War, Lloyd Branson rose from a precocious sketcher on his family’s East Tennessee farm to become an accomplished artist and Knoxville’s most popular portraitist. He won...