Kentucky Historical Society
Kentucky Oral History Commission Awards 10 Grants to Oral History Projects Across Kentucky
FRANKFORT, Ky. (March 9, 2012) — The Kentucky Oral History Commission (KOHC) has awarded 10 grants to projects from across the Commonwealth. KOHC’s grant program provides assistance annually to both amateur and professional oral historians to conduct research projects on topics of particular significance to Kentucky. The four grant categories (project, transcription, technical assistance and preservation) encourage statewide participation in the collection and preservation of historically valuable interviews.
The 10 grant recipients for 2012 are:
“Caverna Schools and the History of Integration,” project director Kenneth Russell, Horse Cave/Hart County.
Horse Cave Development Corporation is a nonprofit organization committed to enhancing the community pride of Horse Cave and surrounding communities. This project seeks to document the history of the integration of the Caverna Schools in Horse Cave, with the goal to incorporate this history and first-person documentation in an interactive tour of the community.
“The Underground Sound: How Cafe LMNOP Ignited 30 Years of Independent Music Culture in Lexington, Ky.,” project director Mick Jeffries, Lexington.
In the late 1970s, shortly after its acclaimed emergence in New York, underground rock music came to Lexington. The catalyst in Kentucky was a short-lived nightclub called Cafe LMNOP, operated by Bradley Picklesimer. The performances at his club in 1979-80 were unlike anything Lexington had ever seen, attracting an incredible array of patrons. It was a zeitgeist of music and arts culture which flourishes to this day, 30 years after the club closed its doors.
“The Kentucky Center for the Performing Arts Oral History Project,” project director Traci Simonsen, Louisville.
The purpose of this project is to document and preserve the oral history of the founding members, board chairs, donors and others who have significantly contributed to the realization of The Kentucky Center for the Performing Arts.
“Funerary Traditions of Southeastern Kentucky,” project director Darla Jackson, Harlan County.
This project seeks to document funerary traditions of Harlan and surrounding counties through 40 oral history interviews. These traditions reflect the diverse cultural and ethnic groups that have shaped contemporary attitudes toward death and dying.
“James Harrod Trust Oral History Project,” project director Kandie Adkinson, Harrodsburg.
This project will focus on documenting the African-American experience in Harrodsburg/Mercer County from the 1930s to present, focusing on the Broadway Street Neighborhood, with topics including social changes through integration of schools and businesses in the 1960s. The project will focus on the segregated schools, their students, teachers and sporting traditions. The oral histories will also focus on the church influence and job opportunities for African-Americans in the mid-20th century.
“Stories from the Balcony,” project director Joanna Hay, Frankfort/Franklin County.
This is an oral history project about the history of the Grand Theatre in Frankfort. As a symbol of segregation in the 1950s and 1960s, interviews about the Grand encompass the struggle for civil rights and questions about the problems of urban renewal. This project will develop into a public website, a documentary film and a published book.
“Lost Voices of Scott County Speak,” project director Cynthia Foster, Sadieville/Scott County.
Project objectives are to connect the pieces of Scott County’s African-American history, heritage and culture and to preserve the life experiences and stories passed down through generations by families and friends. Accounts will include: experiences attending a Rosenwald School; descendants of the Great Migration to Nicodemus, Kan.; the social life of the African-American hamlets; and spiritual life in the hamlet churches.
“Hidden Treasure: Rediscovering the Scrivener-Moore Coal Mines in Jackson County, Ky.,” project director Mary Ruth Isaacs, Williamsburg, Whitley County and Jackson County.
This project seeks to provide information on an area of Kentucky that few researchers or historians have explored. Interviews will be solicited from individuals who lived in the Scrivener-Moore Coal Mining community in the 1930s, 1940s and 1950s. Individuals will be asked to discuss their opportunities for job creation and advancement, ways of life, work and living conditions and traditions. Information from these interviews will be published in books and journal articles, and presented to the citizens of Kentucky and students at the University of the Cumberlands.
“Being Loretto Amid the Needs of the Late 20th Century,” project director Sister Eleanor Craig, Bardstown/Nelson County.
"Meeting the needs of the times" has been the mission of the Sisters of Loretto since the beginning of the community on the Kentucky frontier in 1812. In these oral interviews, individual members of the Loretto community tell how they have lived their commitment to meet the needs of the late 20th century, shaped by an increasingly global consciousness of social, political and cultural diversity.
“Documentation of the History of the Bluegrass Theatre Guild,” project director Nancy Atcher, Frankfort/Franklin County.
As part of its 30 year celebration, the Guild plans to begin documenting its history by interviewing 10 of its founding members.
For more about KOHC and its grant program, contact KOHC Administrator Sarah Milligan at email@example.com or 502-564-1792, ext. 4434 or visit www.history.ky.gov/oralhistory.
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 www.history.ky.gov.