University of Arkansas, Fayetteville


As a city of crossroads, Knoxville acted as an urban gateway for the surrounding rural areas. The economic depression struck Knoxville much like other cities, with the exception of the Tennessee Valley Authority. Thus, the hope of finding work with the TVA or other industries attracted hoards of people to Knoxville. The incoming tide of transients prompted the creation of the Knoxville Transient Bureau (KTB), and established a new form of aid, unlike any other. Although the KTB was one of many transient bureaus, the importance of the KTB as a singular institution should not be dismissed. Rather, the examination of one Transient Bureau provides historians with an in-depth assessment of the problems both transients and agencies faced.