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Ghosts of cowboys and confederates walk the streets of the Historic Old City, located at the intersection of Jackson Avenue and Central Street. The Old City is Knoxville’s most unique and vibrant collections of restaurants, boutiques, coffee houses, galleries, antique stores, nightclubs, and private residences, all located in restored, turn-of-the century office buildings and warehouses which provide a lively place for both locals and visitors to shop, dine and be entertained.
The Old City is a product of the period when the railroads made Knoxville a major Southeast center for commerce. Trading flourished when merchants from other areas would ride the trains to Knoxville to sell their products and to buy local merchandise. The trains were unloaded in the rear of these warehouse buildings, and the merchandise was sold in the front, making the intersection of Jackson and Central the trade center of the region.Today, this appropriately named historical district flourishes with activity. Visitors to Knoxville will find uniqueness in every establishment located within these rejuvenated, 19th century brick warehouses that are once again filled with merriment and elegance and have become the “new” Old City.