When the World Came to Knoxville: Remembering the 1982 World’s Fair

University of Tennessee, Department of History
East Tennessee History Center
Wednesday, May 4, 2022 - 12:00pm

The Knoxville World’s Fair is 40 years old this year—but does that make it historic? 

In this program, hear how five different historians would answer that question. Jack Neely, director of the Knoxville History Project, will be joined by three professors from the University of Tennessee, Knoxville, and Michael Camp, author of a recent book that examines the key role of East Tennessee in addressing the national energy challenges of the 1970s and 1980s.

In addition to examining how and why the world came to Knoxville in 1982, the event will explore some surprising aspects of the fair that deserve to be remembered. 

The evening will include rare film clips from the fair, provided by the Tennessee Archive of Moving Image and Sound. Attendees will receive a free copy of a 30-page booklet (while supplies last) produced by the Knoxville History Project on the fair and its legacy. The program will also provide a preview of a four-part podcast series on the history of the World’s Fair, produced in collaboration with WUOT-FM.

This program is funded, in part, by a grant from Humanities Tennessee, an independent affiliate of the National Endowment for the Humanities.

For more information, contact Lisa Oakley or Paul James.

 A gallery of more than 600 images of the 1982 World’s Fair shared by members of the community can be viewed at: https://www.flickr.com/photos/khpwf82