Education and Workforce Development Cabinet
Kentucky Archives Month observed in October

Press Release Date:  Thursday, October 01, 2015  
Contact Information:   

FRANKFORT, Ky. (Oct. 1, 2015) – The Kentucky Department for Libraries and Archives (KDLA) has designated October 2015 as Kentucky Archives Month. The theme for this year is Voting and Civil Rights, in honor of the 50th anniversary of the Voting Rights Act of 1965.

Nearly 300 archival and manuscript repositories in Kentucky hold archival records that document the history of Kentucky. Their holdings include personal papers, photographs, Bibles, diaries, letters and government records – such as marriage certificates and wills.

Many of these institutions are hosting special programs, open houses, exhibits and speakers to highlight historical materials available for research in Kentucky archival and manuscript repositories. All of the events are listed on the Kentucky Archives Month website at

The Kentucky State Historical Records Advisory Board (SHRAB) will present four Certificates of Merit and the Thomas D. Clark Kentucky Archives Month award to commemorate the month. Amanda Jo Runyon, assistant professor of English at the University of Pikeville (UPIKE), will be awarded with a Certificate of Merit for Teaching. Runyon has implemented the use of primary source materials into the curriculum of her Appalachian Literature and Developmental Writing course by having students identify and describe various images from the Special Collections and Archives at the Frank M. Allara Library at UPIKE.

The Kentucky African American Encyclopedia project will receive a Certificate of Merit for Writing or Other Production. A large part of the research for the encyclopedia was accessed from archival resources found in Kentucky repositories. Dr. John A. Hardin, Dr. Karen C. McDaniel and Dr. Gerald L. Smith, editors of the publication, are Kentucky scholars who recognize the importance of preservation and dissemination of history.

Christian County Clerk Michael A. Kem, along with Deputy County clerks Jodie Oglesby and Betty Stites will be awarded a Certificate of Merit for Notable Service to and Advocacy for Archives in Kentucky by a Public Official. Kem, Oglesby and Stites have worked diligently to preserve and provide access to valuable Christian County public records by rehousing and reshelving a large portion of their early 19th-century collection, ensuring that these records will be available for future generations.

David Williams, journalist, editor, activist, novelist, artist, community historian and collector will be awarded a Certificate of Merit for Notable Service to and Advocacy for Archives in Kentucky by a Private Citizen. Williams began gathering archival materials in the 1970s related to lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) individuals, institutions and movements.

In 2001, Williams donated his massive collection of books, papers, periodicals, photographs, and ephemera to the University of Louisville, establishing the Williams-Nichols Collection. It’s the first institutional archives designated to support LGBT research and study in Kentucky.

The Thomas D. Clark Archives Month Award will be presented to retired Kentucky State Archivist Barbara Teague. Teague’s career with the KDLA began in 1983, and her contributions continued in various capacities for more than 32 years. She served as state archivist and records administrator and director of the Archives and Records Management Division from February 2008 until her retirement in August 2015.

Teague provided regional and national archives and records management leadership as an active member of the Southeastern Archives and Records Conference, the Council of State Archivists, the Society of American Archivists, and the National Association of Government Archives and Records Administrators. Her experience and expertise greatly influenced the work of KDLA and its goals and mission, and she fulfilled her many responsibilities and duties with consummate skill and professionalism.

Kentucky Archives Month is sponsored by the Kentucky State Historical Records Advisory Board, the Kentucky Council on Archives, the Friends of Kentucky Public Archives Inc. and KDLA. For further information, call 502-564-1719.