Knoxville, Tennessee – back in Suttree country

Knoxville rests on the banks of the Tennessee River: 

Here we have the Gay St Bridge on the left and the Henley St Bridge on the right

 The good people at the McClung Historical Collection Research Library allowed me the use of their computers to go over the final edits and complete the index for the McCarthy edited collection while in town:

East Tennessee History Center

Scenes from around town:

Tennessee Theatre


    Jack Neely giving a musical history walking tour:

Cnr Market Square & Union

 Street art in the alleyway behind Market Square:


Possibly an artist’s rendition of the Chimneys in the Smokies (will need to confirm that with Wes)

  The funky ceiling in Preservation Pub: Market Square:   

Scenes from the Old Town:


I’ve painted a couple of these signs/scenes from my last visit – always fun to revisit places that inspire

    Random store signage: 

Haha yes it is! I may see some snow yet…

 The thing that first brought me to Knoxville was the fact that Suttree, my favourite McCarthy novel, was set here, and that the story is written in such detail that you can walk the streets in search of the ghosts of that novel (and that time). Wes Morgan, the good friend who has been driving me up and down and round the Smokies, is, to my mind, the most knowledgeable Suttree (and McCarthy) scholar alive (with a particular interest in his Tennessee period). You can view photos of key sites from the novel, along with a map pointing you to their various locations around town, on his blog Searching for Suttree. It’s well worth a look. 

Scenes from Suttree/McCarthy’s life, courtesy of Wes:

Michael’s Cave is nestled in amongst the greenery across the river


One of the houses once rented by the McCarthy family


Another former family home


The Bijou Theatre – site of Suttree’s temporary residence with Joyce

 You can find anything in Knoxville (though I am still on the hunt for powdered hummus). I even found a store called ‘Everything Mushrooms’ while on a quest for a laundromat. They have books and posters and every kind of mushroom you can imagine. They even have mushroom art and craft:

This is made entirely of mushrooms!

 After a week in this wonderful city, I am heading back to the trail tomorrow…

Till next time, farewell Knoxville!


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