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

  • @ The East Tennessee History Center
    September 24, 2014 - 7:00am to September 25, 2014 - 7:45am

    In 1901, Knoxvillian Weston Fulton patented an invention, the metal bellows, whose impact would reach from the home and industry to “the bottom of the ocean to the surface of the moon and from hospital rooms to the top of skyscrapers.”  Learn more about Fulton’s fascinating story, his business ventures that included Fulton Company, and his...

  • @ The East Tennessee History Center
    September 10, 2014 - 7:00am to September 11, 2014 - 7:45am

    Most natives of Appalachia are aware that their speech differs from others but may not understand exactly why and how.  Paul Reed will explain the variations and contributing factors and how their rich linguistic system is critical to local and regional identity, forming a central part of what it means to be an East Tennessean.  A native of...

  • @ The East Tennesssee History Center
    November 12, 2013 - 1:00pm to November 13, 2013 - 12:45pm

    Coup is the remarkable story of how partisans from both sides of the political aisle came together on January 17, 1979, to stop what one FBI agent called, "the state's most heinous political crime in half a century."  Driven by new information that some of the worst criminals in the state penitentiary were to be released (including...

  • @ The East Tennessee History Center
    October 27, 2013 - 10:30am

    For Bill Robinson, what started out as a typical mission day in Vietnam, September 20, 1965, turned into a long nightmare when his helicopter was shot down and the entire crew captured.  The North Vietnamese took Bill to the infamous Hanoi Hilton Prison, where he endured unspeakable conditions and cruelty, surviving only through his strong will...

  • @ The East Tennessee History Center
    October 22, 2013 - 2:00pm to October 23, 2013 - 1:45pm

    ETHS is excited to announce that award-winning author Sharyn McCrumb will be giving a free lecture and book singing at the East TN History Center.  Sharyn McCrumb is an award-winning Southern writer, best known for her Appalachian "Ballad" novels, including the New York Times best sellers The Ballad of Frankie Silver...

  • @ The East Tennessee History Center
    September 22, 2013 - 9:00am to September 23, 2013 - 8:45am

    Modern medicine is only about 100 years old, and before that time, little was known about how to cure any disease or how to preserve good health.  What was it like to be sick in the days before antibiotics, anesthetics, clean drinking water, underground sewers, or vaccination against diseases?  Elaine G. Breslaw will provide a fascinating look...

  • @ The East Tennessee History Center
    August 11, 2013 - 9:00am to August 12, 2013 - 8:45am

    Steven Spielberg, Historian?  Emancipating Lincoln, a screening of Lincoln (2012) with comments by William E. Hardy, Ph.D., adjunct professor, Lincoln Memorial University.

    The movie will begin at two o'clock at the East Tennessee History Center, 601 S. Gay Street, Knoxville.  For more information on the lecture,...

  • @ The East Tennessee History Center
    August 7, 2013 - 7:00am to August 8, 2013 - 7:45am

    '"Old Tennessee Is as Good a Country as We Want": Black Southerners in the Union Army, 1863-1866, lecture by Paul Coker, Ph.D.

    Some 20,000 African Americans in Tennessee, equivalent to 40% of the states's eligible black population, served in the Union Army during the Civil War.  They fought with distinction, and their valor...