Kentucky Historical Society
KHS to Dedicate Historical Marker at Willis Russell House in Danville

Press Release Date:  Thursday, November 15, 2012  
Contact Information:  Chelsea Compton
502-564-1792, ext. 4504

FRANKFORT, Ky. (Nov. 15, 2012) — The Kentucky Historical Society (KHS) will dedicate a historical marker for the Willis Russell House at 4 p.m. Monday, Nov. 19, at 204 E. Walnut St. in Danville.

Willis Russell, a well-educated and emancipated slave of Revolutionary War captain Robert Craddock, relocated from Warren County, Ky., to Danville around April 1838. He taught African-American children in the pre-1795 log home that he inherited when Craddock died in 1837. Russell had been educated in Craddock’s home by French soldier Peter Tardiveau, a political interpreter for Gen. George Rogers Clark. Both Craddock and Tardiveau were members of The Political Club, which had petitioned for Kentucky statehood.

The Kentucky Historical Marker Program, administered by KHS in cooperation with the Kentucky Transportation Cabinet, tells Kentucky’s story through the people, places and events that have shaped local communities across the Commonwealth. These markers highlight the importance of place in Kentucky’s collective history, in order to build strong communities for the future. The markers are on-the-spot history lessons that make connections between history, place and historical evidence housed in the Commonwealth’s many historical organizations. Through the program, Kentucky’s history is made accessible to the public on markers along the state’s roadways and online at and via the Explore Kentucky History smartphone application available for free at iTunes and Google Play.

For more information, contact Becky Riddle, Kentucky Historical Marker program coordinator, at 502-564-1792, ext. 4474 or



An agency of the Kentucky Tourism, Arts and Heritage Cabinet, the Kentucky Historical Society, established in 1836, is committed to helping people understand, cherish and share Kentucky's history. The KHS history campus includes the Thomas D. Clark Center for Kentucky History, the Old State Capitol and the Kentucky Military History Museum at the State Arsenal. For more information about the Kentucky Historical Society and its programs, visit