Your Kentucky Community
It’s the last Pass the Word Challenge! Our hope is that these challenges have encouraged you explore the diversity of topics found in oral history collections accessible throughout the state. You still have time explore Pass the Word and participate in any of the 12 challenges to be entered into a drawing to win a digital recorder. Submissions for any of the Pass the Word Challenges will be accepted until 5 PM EST on Friday, August 23rd.
When the Kentucky Oral History Commission was established in 1976, a recorder to conduct oral histories was placed in every county library. The purpose was to document the rich history of the Commonwealth at the local history level. Members of each local community conducted interviews to capture the stories of local residents. The Kentucky County Oral History Collections were created as a result of local community members agreeing to be interviewed or to conduct the interviews.
During the process of digitizing the Caldwell County Oral History Collection recently, I heard snippets of conversations about gripping topics like hangings and burnings of buildings allegedly done by the Ku Klux Klan and the vigilantism and the resistance of Night Riders to the monopolistic practices of the American Tobacco Company. These firsthand accounts vividly portrayed what it was like to live during these eras.
In addition to these stories about some dramatic historical events, the collection also includes interviews that cover a wide range of themes that include family histories, local businesses, curing country ham, water witching and raising tobacco. These interviews with local community members offer insight into the daily lives of Kentuckians throughout the state.
Pass the Word Final Challenge
Find a county collection on Pass the Word and share something interesting that you discovered. Is there someone you know who has an interview listed on Pass the Word? Was there a particular topic or story that caught your attention? Tell us what sparked your interest!