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2/26 - A TALE OF TWO SQUARES - Michael Jordan and Jack Neely

Union Ave Books welcomes Micahel Jordan and Jack Neely for a talk entitled "A TALE OF TWO SQUARES" on Wednesday February, 26th at 6:30 pm. Michael will be presenting his book SAVANNAH SQUARE BY SQUARE, and Jack will discuss concepts from his book MARKET SQUARE: A HISTORY OF THE MOST DEMOCRATIC PLACE ON EARTH.

Knoxville History Project is a partner on this event. Find out more about their work at


Savannah-aIn 1733, Georgia's founder James Oglethorpe laid out a new kind of city in the midst of a virgin forest. The unique city plan Oglethorpe created-- a repeating pattern of squares encircled by homes and public buildings-- has provided a template for close to three centuries of growth. Oglethorpe's four original squares have grown to 22 historic squares, each with its own unique character and charm.

Savannah Square by Square is a handsome coffee table book featuring more than 300 full color photographs of each of Savannah's beautiful, historic downtown squares. Author Michael Jordan, a noted local filmmaker and historian, reveals the fascinating history of each of the 22 existing squares, as well as the two lost squares and Savannah's "other squares"-- Forsyth Park and Colonial Park Cemetery.


Conceived in 1853 as a canny real-estate scheme by two young investors expecting to get rich off the idea, Market Square came to be Knoxville’s most public spot, a marketplace familiar to every man, woman, and child in the area. By the 1860s, it was the busiest place in a burgeoning city. In a town that became bitterly divided by politics, race, and background, Market Square became a rare common ground: a place to buy all sorts of local produce, but also a place to experience new things, including the grandiose Market House itself, considered a model in a progressive era. Beset by urban blight by the mid-1900s, Market Square had become more of a curiosity than a point of municipal pride, and the neighborhood declined. After years of controversy, the city razed the Market House and struggled to modernize the old Square itself.


Michael Jordan: An award-winning Savannah, GA journalist and filmmaker Michael’s on-air experience includes anchoring nightly Monday-Friday newscasts on Savannah NBC affiliate WSAV/News 3. He is the owner of Cosmos Mariner Productions, a documentary and commercial video production company. Michael earned his Masters of Arts in history from Armstrong Atlantic University in 2006. He is married to Dr. Krista Wiegand, a fellow at the Howard Baker Center for Public Policy and professor of political science at the University of Tennessee in Knoxville. They have one son, Joseph. Michael is also the editor of a book about Savannah in the Civil War. Check out his author page at

Jack Neely  Jack is a journalist who has been writing about his hometown’s character and heritage for many years. After graduating from the University of Tennessee, where he studied American history, Neely was an Egyptian museum tour guide at the 1982 World’s Fair; later, he was a criminal-defense investigator, and an assistant editor for a national fiction magazine. Since his column, “Secret History,” debuted in 1992, he’s been known mainly as a Knoxville journalist with a particular interest in the city’s unique culture and heritage. Jack continued his work on Knoxville in his weekly column, “The Scruffy Citizen” for The Knoxville Mercury (2015-2017). He has written several books about Knoxville and its history, most recently The Tennessee Theatre: A Grand Entertainment Palace (2015); Knoxville, Tennessee: Green by Nature (2014); Market Square: A History of the Most Democratic Place on Earth (2nd ed., 2011) and Knoxville, Tennessee: This Obscure Prismatic City (2009).

Event Date: 
Wednesday, February 26, 2020 - 6:30pm
517 Union Ave.
Knoxville, TN 37902
Market Square: A History of the Most Democratic Place on Earth Cover Image
Email or call for price
ISBN: 9780578003054
Availability: Special Order
Published: Market Square District Association - September 4th, 2009

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