Knoxville History Project

The Knoxville History Project (KHP) is a new educational nonprofit whose mission is to research and promote the history of Knoxville. Knoxville is home to other important historic organizations concerning regions or specific groups, but the KHP is the only organization devoted just to the particular history of the city of Knoxville. It works closely with other nonprofit organizations, including the East Tennessee Historical Society, the Knox County Public Library, the Tennessee Archive of Moving Image and Sound, and Visit Knoxville, and Knox Heritage, which is currently serving as KHP’s fiscal sponsor.

The educational nonprofit offers talks and tours to schools, museums, service groups, and other organizations. It offers consultation to developers and government organizations on projects concerning Knoxville’s history. Its biggest single project is the Knoxville Mercury, in support of its work to promote better understanding of the city of Knoxville and its history and culture. The Knoxville History Project buys a full page in each issue of the Knoxville Mercury, as an educational public service, to promote local historical events and projects, and to relate historical stories of general interest.

The KHP accepts fees for services, but its main source of revenue is philanthropic contributions. Contributions to the KHP are tax-deductible.

The Knoxville Mercury is a new nonprofit newspaper. It is not a tax-exempt nonprofit, like a 501(c)(3). Most of its revenue comes from advertising. The Mercury also accepts contributions, especially through its League of Supporters campaign. Those contributions are not tax-deductible.

The KHP and the Mercury are separate organizations, run by separate boards of directors. However, the Knoxville History Project is the “sole member,” the equivalent of the owner, of the Knoxville Mercury. Any profits from the Mercury go not to enrich any owner or investor, but to support the educational programs of the Knoxville History Project.

The current Board of Directors of the Knoxville History Project includes Nelda Hill, Linda Billman, Rick Blackburn, Bob Booker, Ernie Freeberg, Duane Grieve, Joe Sullivan, Casey Fox, Scott Fugate, Kim Lauth, Steve Cotham, with executive director Jack Neely an ex-officio member.

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