Barn Burner in a Backwater

With its World's Fair, Knoxville tries to get on the map

Knoxville is not the prettiest or most intriguing city in the world, or the U.S., or the Southeast, for that matter. There are scores of larger American cities, two of them right in Tennessee, Nashville and Memphis. Why, then, is it in Knoxville (pop. 183,000) that the 1982 World's Fair opens on May 1? Simple: seven years ago, a group of high-rolling local businessmen started thinking that a Knoxville World's Fair would be a nifty thing to whip up. Local citizens were dubious, and...

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