2019’s Annual Luncheon is scheduled for Thursday April 18 at the Foundry on the World’s Fair Site.
This annual event is KHP’s signature fundraising event. In past year’s the luncheon has generated more than $20,000 in support of KHP’s work to research and promote the history and culture of Knoxville.
Plan on join us to not only celebrate the important work of the Knoxville History Project but also recognize the significant contributions of others within the community.
2019 Honoree: Professor Emeritus Bruce Wheeler, a North Carolina native who earned his Ph.D. from the University of Virginia, began teaching history at the University of Tennessee back in 1970. For decades, UT’s brighter liberal-arts students looked for any excuse to take his interesting and entertaining classes on multiple areas of American history, and it’s not surprising that his charismatic style has made him a favorite off campus as well.
Wheeler has earned many awards over the years, among them the National Alumni Association Award for Public Service. He naturally developed a curiosity about his adopted home of Knoxville; his modern history of the city, originally a joint project with the late Michael McDonald, first came out in 1982, and had become a standard, with a third edition soon to be released. Now enjoying a busy retirement, he splits his time between Sevier County’s Wears Valley and downtown Knoxville.
This “Ask” event is not a ticketed event but “invitation” only. The success of the event is down to volunteer “Table Hosts” filling tables with members of the community interested in our city’s rich history and potentially supportive of KHP’s mission of researching and promoting the history and culture of Knoxville.
While enjoying a delicious lunch and dessert, we will begin with a brief overview of 2018 and priority projects and programs of 2019 as well as a special presentation with KHP Executive Director Jack Neely and our honoree.
Our table hosts are already busy inviting guests. If you have not been already invited by a table host we would gladly assign you to a special table host in advance of the event. Please contact 865-337-7723 or email firstname.lastname@example.org for more information.
For planning purposes, we cannot accommodate day-of-the-event sign-ups.
There is no fee to attend the luncheon, but there will be an opportunity for everyone to make a donation to KHP in the amount of their choice.
Honorarium gifts in recognition of Prof. Wheeler’s outstanding contributions to our city will be accepted at any time.
How Can I Host a Table?
Please help KHP reach new supporters and create a successful event by hosting a table of 10. All you need to do is invite friends and colleagues to sit at your table – we will provide email language for your invitees. On event day, your role is simply to be a gracious host to your guests and hand out the donation response forms and envelopes when our lead fundraiser makes the “pitch” towards the end of the event. All gifts are confidential.
All materials will be ready for you on the day and we stand by to help you every step of the way.
Thank you for your consideration in supporting KHP and expanding access to Knoxville’s history within our community.
If you cannot attend but would still like to make a general donation or a donation in honor of Bruce Wheeler please make a donation online or mail a check to:
Knoxville History Project
516 West Vine Avenue, #8
Knoxville TN 37902.
Please call 865-337-7723 or email email@example.com for more information.
ARCHIVE: 2018 Honoree: Bob Booker, Knoxville Historian
Highlight from the 2018 Luncheon: Podcast of the Q and A with KHP’s Jack Neely and Bob Booker:
Bob Booker grew up in the “Bottom” area of East Knoxville, and graduated from Austin High School in 1953. Following a three year stint in the U.S. Army, stationed in France and England, Booker returned to his hometown to study at Knoxville College on the G.I. Bill, graduating in 1962 with a B.S. in Education. At Knoxville College, as a two-term president of the student body, Booker became involved in Knoxville’s Civil Rights movement, organizing sit-ins to advance desegregation.
In 1966 he was elected as Knoxville’s first black Tennessee State Representative. In the 1970’s he served as administrative assistant to Mayor Kyle Testerman, and on the Tennessee Civil Service Commission. Later he served on Knoxville City Council. For 11 years, he was the executive director for the Beck Cultural Exchange Center. We are also proud to say that he was an inaugural Board Member for the Knoxville History Project.
Booker is an authoritative author of Knoxville black history in book form, and has also written hundreds of newspaper columns.
His book titles include:
• An Encyclopedia: Experiences of Black People in Knoxville, 1844-1974
• Two Hundred Years of Black Culture in Knoxville: 1791 to 1991
• And There Was Light!: The History of Knoxville College, Knoxville, 1875-1995
• The Heat of a Red Summer: Race Mixing, Race Rioting in 1919 Knoxville
Plus, his autobiography, From the Bottom Up! was released last year.