Creepy Kentucky at KHS
All this month, the Kentucky Historical Society has shed light on some items that have, well, somewhat of a dark side. If you live in the Lexington viewing area, you might have seen a series of creepy items on the “Kentucky History Treasures” segments that WTVQ airs on Sunday nights and Monday mornings. (If you haven’t, see the link at the bottom of this blog.)
But Jimmy the doll, beads with a curse woven into them, a stormy cornet and clothes that survived while the body that wore them turned to dust are not the only odd, if not down-right creepy, items in our collections.
Here are three others to round out your week and put you in a proper Halloween frame of mind:
Cursed Chest Claims 16 Victims?
This Empire-style mahogany veneered chest of drawers is lethal, according to the family of its original owner. Family lore, recounted in the book, “Flapdoodle, Trust and Obey,” has it that a miserly slave owner ordered one of his slaves to make the chest. The owner, though, was unhappy with its construction and beat the slave to death. In revenge, the slave’s family placed a “conjure” or curse on the chest to punish the owner. Not only did it do that job, but it also claimed 16 victims through tragedy or death over several generations until the family cook put together a potion to break the curse.
How creepy is that?
Graveyard Quilt Might Send Chills down Your Spine
We don’t think about death the same way our ancestors did. You can look at this quilt and know that. Elizabeth Mitchell started this quilt in 1843. She placed coffins with names of relatives on the outer perimeter. As a person died, she added the date and moved his or her coffin to the center graveyard area. The quilt is an excellent example of 19th century mourning customs and illustrates the emotions and experiences that women often expressed through their quilts. Yet, in our world, it might just evoke a chill down the spine and the thought, “How creepy is that?”
Learn more in our objects catalog.
This Makes You Glad You Live in the 21st Century
When we think of surgery, we think of precision lasers, stainless steel blades, sterile conditions. Imagine living in the late 19th to early 20th century when Dr. John T. Robinson practiced medicine in Gallatin County. This metacarpal saw is what he used to amputate small bones.
How creepy is that?