Knoxville: The Marble City
Saturday, December 10th, 2011
The marble industry once thrived in East Tennessee, and 100 years ago, Knoxville was commonly referred to as “The Marble City.” In the early 1900s, Knoxville was home to nearly 20 marble companies. From the 1920s through the 1970s, Candoro Marble Company served as one of the largest marble processors in the United States. There was a time when Candoro Marble Company was the largest producer of pink marble in the United States. Though once a very popular and sought-after stone, Tennessee pink marble of Knoxville is rarely used today. In the year 1920, there were approximately 20 marble quarries surrounding Knoxville, TN. Today, there are only six active marble quarries in the Knoxville metro area.
Candoro Marble began with a main building used as an office and marble showroom. Because the building’s purpose was to showcase a variety of marble floor patterns, there are a variety of marble patterns throughout the structure. Each room has a different marble floor. The outbuildings on the property operated as a working facility to cut and polish the marble. The company was widely known as “Candoro Marble Works.” It was in operation as a marble cutting and polishing facility for about 50 years. Eventually, other independent marble fabricating companies occupied the space up until the early 2000s.
The beautiful main building serves as hub for the neighborhood known as “Vestal” in Knoxville, Tennessee. The architecture and grounds stand today as a unique neighborhood icon.