The History of Post 2 Knoxville
Post 2 was organized on July 2, 1919 by fifteen ex servicemen who met in an upstairs room on Gay street to “sign the Charter”, according to an article in the July 13, 1958 edition of the Knoxville News Sentinel. Three men, Henry G. Moody, attorney W.B. Hatcher and realtor Ed. C. Schmid, all original charter members, were quoted in the article.
Meetings were held the first Monday of the month, in the Knoxville Market Hall until the Post had grown to a membership of 400 men. In 1944, the Post purchased a building, located at 704 State Street in downtown Knoxville. Various newspaper articles chronicles the many activities at the Post.
On February 17, 1966, Post 2 announced that the property was for sale, as operational expenses for such a large building were too high, and the building was now was too large for their needs.
On March 22, 1967, it was announced that the Post building had been sold for $60,000 and a new home for Post 2 had been purchased. This new location, the former Seventh Day Adventist Church, 800 Luttrell Street was purchased for $30,000 and Post 2 moved to their new home on April 26, 1967.
Post 2 remained at 800 Luttrell Street until 1981. The records are not clear, however the attempts of the Post to move, as reported in the December 11, 1981 issue of the Knoxville News Sentinel stated “MPC denied American Legion Post 2 the rezoning request for 7.3 acres on the Old North Hills Presbyterian Church property on Prosser Road, the residents being opposed.”
Records indicate the Post continued to search for a new home and attempted to purchase property on Haggard Drove with the same results. The Knox News Sentinel reported in February of 1982 “Mayor Randy Tyree breaks the tie in favor of American Legion Post 2 to rezone property of a former church on Haggard Drive on first reading.” While the reason is unclear, the Post withdrew their zoning appeal before the second reading scheduled for March 4, 1982.
On March 7, 1983, with the guidance of Lester Speeks and Charles McMillan, the Post purchased the former Sunnyview Elementary School from Knox County Schools, for $80,000. The school, located at 6520 Ruggles Ferry Pike, built in 1931 had been closed for four years, and was in need of repairs.
Charlie Mills worked with Brimer Monument Company to arrange for the donation of the Memorial Plaque for the dedication of the current home of Post 2 on August 3, 1983.