From a photograph by Solomon D. Butcher of four daughters of rancher Joseph M. Chrisman, at their sod house in Custer County, Nebraska. From left to right, Harriet, Elizabeth, Lucie, and Ruth. Photographed in 1886.

Thursday, November 08, 2007

An Evening at the Kentuckiana Digital Library

Historical documents, images, and more



A few minutes ago, I had to pull myself away from the Kentuckiana Digital Library (KDL) so I can write in my blog and go to bed!

The KDL is just one section of The Kentucky Virtual Library, an immense resource for research in and about Kentucky. I don't pretend to know everything that can be found in and through the Kentucky Virtual Library. I do know that you can search, get the name of a book and its library, and have your local library arrange an interlibrary-loan.

The KDL has a lot of old photographs, books, and newspapers online. For example, I found a little book from 1915 that gives a proud overview of Christian County, Kentucky (where I live.) The entire text of William Henry Perrin's histories of Christian and Trigg Counties is also available there.

I learned a bit about the WPA work done around here in the Depression from some of the images of Christian County. Besides building roads and bridges, they operated a stone quarry that provided the materials. The images also include views of the coal mines in the northern part of the county in the early years of the century, a few farming photos from that era, and a number of photos of the long-gone Bethel College in Hopkinsville.

Since we live on the east side of Christian County with the Jefferson Davis Monument in the greater circles of our neighborhood, I was interested in the 1929 images of the newly completed monument. The one that shows a vintage automobile approaching Fairview is my favorite.

The Todd County photos (next county to the east) raised a question in my mind that will now have to be answered. What has become of the Gray and Blue State Park that appears in over a dozen photographs?

A hotel, lodge, traveler's rest hall, and more are shown in the photos of the Gray and Blue State Park. The park was transferred in 1936 to the National Park Service according to one of the captions. The only modern-day evidence I can find of the park's existence is the address of a church: "2273 Blue and Gray Park Road." I'm planning a drive down that road to see what I can see.

If you appreciate old-time photographs, newspapers, books, etc., there are wonders to behold at this website. I hope you'll pay a visit.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

The correct name for the kentucky state park that was located in todd county-kentucky , was [ The Blue and Gray Park ].At the time the park was call by the locals of todd county-kentucky , The Blue and Gray Memorial Park to remember the people who loss there lifes in the usa civil war.The park was handed over to the state of kentucky on Saturday August 31,1929 at 1:30 pm according to a old newspaper article of the kentucky new era on the opening of the blue and gray park.There is also a facebook page on the [ Blue-Gray-Kentucky-State-Park-Of-Todd-County-Kentucky ] at https://www.facebook.com/pages/Blue-Gray-Kentucky-State-Park-Of-Todd-County-Kentucky/128646773945972

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CONTENTMENT: Keep your heart free from hate, your mind from worry, live simply, expect little, give much, sing often, pray always, forget self, think of others and their feelings, fill your heart with love, scatter sunshine. These are the tried links in the golden chain of contentment.
(Author unknown)

IT IS STILL BEST to be honest and truthful; to make the most of what we have; to be happy with simple pleasure; and to be cheerful and have courage when things go wrong.
(Laura Ingalls Wilder, 1867-1957)

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