James Smith Park History
James D. Smith is credited with leading a community effort to get a half-acre on Elmwood Street developed into the first park in East Knoxville. Because of his efforts, City officials renamed Sanland Park to James D. Smith Park. In the late 1960s, Smith spearheaded a community effort to raise money for playground equipment for the park. He was the founder and first president of the Villa Site Community Group. Smith also pushed for a K-Trans route in East Knoxville and organized the first crime watch program in the Villa Site Community. He died in July 1994.