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Fragile Fifteen

Knox Heritage announced its 2013 list of the most endangered historic buildings and places in Knoxville and Knox County on May 15, 2013. The announcement took place at the Kennedy-Baker-Walker-Sherrill House, 9320 Kingston Pike, where Knox Heritage released its list of priority historic places for the coming year. The Kennedy-Baker-Walker-Sherrill House, thanks to its new owner Bill Hodges, has been removed from the Fragile 15 list and is being restored for reuse as office space.

The Kennedy-Baker-Walker-Sherrill House occupies a prominent position on Kingston Pike in West Knoxville and is notable for its survival as a two story brick Federal residence.  The property was owned by James Kennedy and his wife, Jane Cox Kennedy, who reportedly built the house in 1849.  In 1858, Dr. William J. Baker purchased the estate from Kennedy and moved to the house, wishing to be near his brother Dr. James Harvey Baker (1811-1864), who lived in the house known today as the Baker-Peters House at 9000 Kingston Pike.  Dr. Baker, who called the house Cedar Grove, added an office in the one-story wing on the west side of the house. Upon his death, the property was left to his niece, Katherine Elizabeth Baker, and her husband, J.W. Walker; the Walkers and thier descendants lived in the house until 1942.  The Sherrill family bought the house in 1953 and owned it until 2007.

Every May during National Preservation Month, Knox Heritage releases its list of the most endangered historic buildings and places in Knox County to educate the public and local leaders about the plight of significant historic resources. Often, the endangered buildings and places are representative of issues that endanger similar parts of our heritage across the community.

The historic places included on the list are selected by the Knox Heritage Board of Directors from nominations received from members of Knox Heritage and the general public. The list provides a work plan for the organization over the next 12 months. Preservation strategies are developed for each site on the list and can include working with current property owners, government officials, citizens and/or potential new owners to preserve these important parts of Knox County’s heritage. Knox Heritage is committed to acting as an advocate for the endangered properties we identify each year. We invite the community to join us in our efforts to save our endangered heritage through advocacy and action. Contact Knox Heritage at 523-8008 or info@knoxheritage.org. 

Knox Heritage advocates for the preservation of places and structures with historic or cultural significance. Founded in 1974, Knox Heritage is the non-profit historic preservation organization for Knoxville and Knox County. It is governed by a board of directors with representatives from across our community. Knox Heritage carries out its mission through a variety of programs and encourages community support through education and advocacy.



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Knox Heritage, Inc.
P.O. Box 1242
Knoxville, TN 37901

Tele: (865)523-8008
Fax: (865)523-0938