Collections include over 100 school histories, over 200 biographical sketches and photographs of administrators, personnel lists of Knox County and Knoxville City Schools (many dating back to the 1800's ), old textbooks, yearbooks, school newspapers and memorabilia ( sweaters, class rings, trophies, etc.) as well as other collections
Knox County School Stats -1946
Only 32 teachers had Masters Degrees; 179 teachers had Bachelor's leaving 353 teachers with less than 4 years college and no professional licenses.
There were 8 one teacher schools, 13 two teacher schools; 37 of the other schools had less than 8 teachers apiece; Only 6 elementary schools had supervising principals; only one of the had a school clerk.
50 schools had no indoor toilet facilities or running water; 33 of them were still heated by pot-bellied stoves. One school has no electricity. Only 54 schools had telephones.
Central Office was located in the basement of the Old Court House and consisted of the Superintendent, 2 supervisors (Mack Davis and Gussie Hoffman), 1 secretary/receptionist and 1 bookkeeper. The Maintenance department had 3 employees and 1 truck.
If you had taught in Knox County prior to 1960 in most schools, you would have had furnished by the county: blackboards, white chalk, a green cardboard set of the alphabet, desks, chairs, a waste paper basket, a manual pencil sharpener, and a set of textbooks. you would have access to a record player, a 16 mm film projector and maybe a piano. An American flag and a framed picture of George Washington too.
What you would have found missing/without: air-conditioning, intercom, adding machines, calculators, photo copiers, encyclopedias, physical education equipment, physical education teachers, special area teachers, clinic, library, teacher manuals, curriculum guides, typewriters, filing cabinets, offices, security guards, coke machines, snack machines- federal aid to education hadn't happened yet. Anything above these items came out of your $2400 a year salary or through fundraising or from the P.T.A. organizations.
Notes/ notices sent home were all handwritten reports in triplicate requiring the use of carbon paper. Attendance was kept by individual teachers in a register. There was no standard accounting or school bank accounts.
Available at the museum- History, minutes, clippings of the Knox County Retired Teachers Association.
The Knoxville- Knox County Retired Teachers Association was organized April 8, 1954. Dr. John H. Thackston was its first president; Wilson New was its first Vice President with Lida Bell Gambill as Recording Secretary. Other officers included Mrs. Ruth Roe as Corresponding Secretary, W. W. Morris as Treasurer and Miss Delia Harris as Parliamentarian. The first regular meeting place was the S&W Cafeteria on Gay Street.