Knoxville Zoo in United States

Knoxville Zoo

Total nrs
Address 3500 Knoxville Zoo Drive
Zip-code 37914
Place Knoxville, Tenessee
Country United States
Website Website


Key People


Elephant department

Head keepers
of elephants

Elephant keepers
Relevant literature

Knoxville Zoo, located at 3500 Knoxville Zoo Drive, in Knoxville, Tenessee, United States , was founded in 1948.

Living elephants

At the Knoxville Zoo lives 2 elephants with records in this database: (detail list)
  1. Edie born 1983
  2. Tonka born 1979

Comments / picturesThe Knoxville Zoo began as the Birthday Park Zoo in 1948. Due to a lack of expertise and funding, the Humane Society started proceedings to close the zoo in 1971 after the animals’ welfare came under scrutiny.

The zoo was saved by Guy Smith, a local television executive, who took on the job as the zoo’s first director at a salary of $1 per year. Smith managed to convince the City of Knoxville and the local community to invest in this wonderful sanctuary.

As the zoo’s conditions improved and awareness was raised, a focus was placed on breeding threatened or endangered animals. These efforts were rewarded in 1978 with the birth of the first two African elephants to be born in the western hemisphere.

References for records about Knoxville Zoo

Recommended Citation

Koehl, Dan (2023). Knoxville Zoo, Elephant Encyclopedia. Available online at (archived at the Wayback machine)

Litterature about Knoxville Zoo

Recommended Litterature:

Links to websites about Knoxville Zoo

Recommended Links on Internet:

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