Mechanics' Bank and Trust Company Building

612 S. Gay St., Knoxville, Tennessee


Mechanics bank and trust knoxville tn1.jpg

The Mechanics Bank building is a six-story (five floors and a mezzanine) rectangular building that measures roughly 145 feet (44 m) by 32 feet (9.8 m).[1] The building's facade (facing Gay Street) is constructed of locally-quarried Tennessee marble, while the sides and rear of the building are constructed of brick and reinforced concrete. The building originally consisted of three floors and a mezzanine. In 1923, two more floors were added, with the builders carefully following the original design scheme. An elevator penthouse was added to the roof several decades later

Photo: Brian Stansberry / Creative Commons,"


Street View 


The design of the Mechanics' Bank building is derived from the Second Renaissance Revival style. Six Ionic capitals span the building's three-bay main floor facade, with the middle two capitals resting atop marble columns that flank either side of the recessed entrance. A heavy cornice separates the main floor facade from the facade of the upper floors. The main entrance is a high archway topped by a pedimental hood. The central bay of the upper floors' facade is recessed, with balustrades spanning the recess between the first and second floors and the third and fourth floors, and a stylized cornice with a central arm-and-hammer symbol (the Mechanics' Bank symbol) above the top floor. The interior of the building has been extensively remodeled, although some original features remain. The building's entry foyer contains pink marble walls, and two marble columns flank the lobby's central entrance. The lobby itself still retains some original marble wainscoting and plaster beams. Nine columns border the two-story lobby of the first floor suite with crown molding and a large mezzanine above the original bank vault that has been remodeled and now serves the purpose of a kitchen.

National Register information 

Posted to the National Register of Historic Places on January 27, 1983
Reference number
Architectural styles
Victorian: Renaissance; Other architectural type; Italian Rennaissance
Area of significance
Level of significance
Evaluation criteria
C - Design/Construction
Property type
Historic function
Financial institution
Current functions
Business; Financial institution
Periods of significance
1900-1924; 1925-1949
Significant years
1907; 1923


20th Century (29,076)
Bank (1,351)
Brick (42,462)
Built 1907 (874)
Built during 1900s (9,446)
Commercial building (6,148)
Have Street View (46,450)
Knox County, Tennessee (118)
Knoxville, Tennessee (92)
Private owner (54,398)
Renaissance (1,333)
Stone (26,160)
Tennessee (2,878)
Victorian (19,698)

Update Log 

  • February 12, 2021: New photo from Michael Miller
  • June 6, 2017: New Street View added by Michael Miller
  • October 25, 2015: Photo imported by pam phillips

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