Knoxville: Summer of 2015, a celebration of James Agee

“We are talking now of summer evenings in Knoxville, Tennessee, in the time I lived there so successfully disguised to myself as a child.” So begins the famous short piece entitled “Knoxville: Summer of 1915” by James Agee.

This year marks the centennial of his reminisced summer of 1915. Please join us on September 4 at the East Tennessee History Center, 601 S. Gay Street, for a commemoration of this centennial with an evening of vintage film and local photography celebrating the literary legacy of one of East Tennessee’s own, James Rufus Agee. Free. Refreshments will be served. 


6:00 – Photography Exhibit: Knoxville in 1915

Curated by Steve Cotham. An exhibition of vintage photography from the Jim Thompson Collection at the Calvin M. McClung Historical Collection

7:00 – Film Screenings

Agee Lost and Found  

Introduction by Paul Brown, author of an upcoming book on the filming of the 1963 Paramount film All The Way Home

A compilation of unique footage featuring the local filming and Knoxville premier of All the Way Home, plus footage of Agee’s Fort Sanders boyhood home and home movies filmed on-location by Knoxville residents

All the Way Home 

Introduction by Michael Kearney, featured co-star of All the Way Home

Director: Alex Segal. Starring Jean Simmons, Robert Preston, John Cullum, Michael Kearney, and a cast of Knoxville extras

In early 1900's Tennessee, a loving family undergoes the shock of the father's sudden, accidental death. The widow and her son must endure the heartache of life following the tragedy, but slowly rise up from the ashes to face the hope of renewed life. A rare 16mm screening of the 1963 film partially shot in Knoxville, and based on James Agee’s autobiographical Pulitzer Prize winning novel A Death in the Family.

This "Knoxville: Summer of 2015" commemoration is produced by the Tennessee Archive of Moving Image and Sound (TAMIS), a department of Knox County Public Library's McClung Historical Collection.  


Dating back to 1915, the moving image collection currently contains more than 5,000 reels and videotapes of home movies, documentaries, advertisements, industrial and training films, commercial films, television programming, and newsreels, all with local or regional connections. Its audio collection includes vintage radio programming, sound recordings, and oral histories and field recordings from the region, which date back to the 1930s.
Some of the iconic programming preserved by TAMIS includes the early television shows of Cas Walker, 1982 World's Fair footage, and Jim Thompson's home movies of 1915 of the Great Smoky Mountains, which helped spawn the National Park movement. TAMIS recently unearthed early unreleased demo recordings by a young Dolly Parton. For requests or information regarding TAMIS resources, please email TAMIS at