New in May: The history of Knoxville’s most fiercely independent community in the stories of 56 extraordinary citizens. From pioneers to civic leaders and selfless heros. If the history of a community is written in the lives of its people, and it is, then Fountain City has a very rich history and many worthy role models for meeting the challenges of its future.
$25 Fountain City – Tumblin
Long-time Shopper columnist and Fountain Citian Dr. Jim Tumblin writes the history of his beloved native soil, by telling the life stories of fifty-six of its extraordinary citizens. Beginning with the first permanent white settlement in 1788, the author traces the establishment and growth of the area through the people and families who left their mark on what would become one of the largest unincorporated cities in the United States, before it was annexed by Knoxville in 1962.
The story of Fountain City begins with John Adair, who established Fort Adair two years after James White’s fort was built in the area that would become Knoxville. The book is divided into five sections, each highlighting eras of change and development that would contribute to the unique heritage of a community that continues to retain a stubbornly independent character even today.
After John Adair, Fountain City found its next champion in Col. J.C. Woodard, who liquidated his assets in Lexington, KY, to purchase 431 acres, including the Fountain Head Hotel and Resort. Woodward’s Fountain Head Land Company would be responsible for impounding Fountain City Lake and developing the surrounding lots both as a destination resort and amenity-filled neighborhood. Fifty years later his legacy would be preserved by the efforts of Dr. H.E. Goetz and his attorney Judge John W. Green, who fought (and won) a legal battle to maintain the park and lake for public use.
Dr. Tumblin’s list of public and private heroes goes on to include educators, doctors, businessmen, politicians, and soldiers, private citizens who took leadership through decades of change and challenge, through the World War II years and beyond. This thoroughly researched account of the lives of Fountain City icons is a must-read for local history buffs and Fountain City residents, whether long-term or brand new.
Dr. Jim Tumblin, one of East Tennessee’s finest historians, has added to the luster of his many achievements with his latest book on the history of Fountain City. The book, a companion to his two other Fountain City histories, is a must-read for those interested in the history of this region. His latest work looks at the many people central to the creation of Fountain City. This volume fills in the details of one of Knoxville’s most beautiful and land-rich sections.
It will become a vital addition to any library of the vast history of the Knoxville area.
Retired Senior Writer
Knoxville News Sentinel
Taking his inspiration from two excellent local histories, The French Broad Holston Country and Heart of the Valley, local historian Dr. Jim Tumblin has compiled an in-depth look at the some of the key people who shaped the history of Fountain City. The stories of the lives of these individuals offer us a window into the life of the community across time. His writing is engaging, and the stories are well-documented and well-researched. This book is a good read, and it will be a good book to have on the reference shelf of anyone who loves Fountain City.
Manager, Calvin M. McClung Historical Collection
Knox County Public Library System
East Tennessee History Center