Sharing the Stories of WWI: The Adventures of Spafford Ackerly

Have you heard about the Filson’s new World War I exhibits?  Called to Arms: Kentuckians in the First World War and Selling the War: Posters from WWI are both open to the public by guided tour. Now that the frenzied preparations for the opening are over, I’m excited to guide visitors through the completed exhibit spaces.  I think the best […]

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The Home for Friendless Women

by Kelly Morris, University of Louisville Commonwealth Center for Humanities and Society Intern I stumbled across the charity the Home for Friendless Women while interning at the Filson this semester. It’s hard to imagine this would be a go-to name for an organization nowadays, but there was a time this was a common name for a charity designed to help […]

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Tele-what?

As the Marketing and PR Coordinator for The Filson, part of my job is coming up with new and interesting ways to market upcoming events to our members. This is one of my favorite parts of the job because it means I get to dive into a bit of history and more often than not, I learn something new in […]

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Tuesday, February 6, 1883 — Mardi Gras!

If you can’t have king cake (or boudin or crawfish…) on Mardi Gras, what better way to celebrate than to post a blog about everyone else enjoying those things? Alright, so while J.W. Stewart probably wasn’t wearing beads or eating a cake adorned with neon green, yellow and purple icing, complete with a plastic baby baked inside, I do know that […]

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From the Archives: Valentine’s Day Greetings, the Victorian Way

*This post originally ran on February 10th, 2015 Valentine’s Day (or National Single’s Awareness Day, if you are so inclined) is coming. Starting on December 26, you can’t ignore it. As soon as the Christmas decorations come down, the pink and red go up, the cards and candy come out, and the blatant consumerism rages on. I admit I’m a […]

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Life on the Ohio: The Mercantile Pursuits of Ulysses P. Schenck

Steamboat Congo [BOS-49]

Like the towns described in Mark Twain’s memoir Life on the Mississippi, the town of Vevay, Indiana is seated strategically along the banks of a river.  Ulysses P. Schenck, merchant and entrepreneur, numbered among the town’s notable members in the 19th century.  A Swiss immigrant raised in Louisville, Schenck relocated to Vevay following the financial panic of 1837.  His name “Ulysses” […]

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Success Stories: Student Researchers at The Filson

Filson researchers in the making! [Filson Photograph Collection – SCH-76 GR Clark School, n.d.] Recently at The Filson we’ve undergone a tremendous amount of change, from moving not just our reading room from floor to floor (to floor, to floor…) but also rearranging our entire campus what with reception in another building entirely, as well as combining reference services (the […]

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Fanny Henning Speed

A portrait framed in dark wood and gilded gold adorns the Ferguson Mansion’s grand entry hall.  It depicts a bearded man, his arm encircling a dark-eyed woman.  By all accounts, Joshua and Fanny Speed were deeply in love (despite some initial doubts on Joshua’s part, overcome with the help of his friend Abraham Lincoln!).  In this portrait by George Peter […]

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“The Meal’s Not Complete Without Something Sweet”: Autumnal Dessert Recipes from The Filson

By Heather Potter. Fall is my favorite time of year: the leaves are beginning to fall around the Ferguson Mansion, Old Louisville is a sight to see, and best of all the weather has cooled down a smidge so I can begin to bake again. I kicked off my fall baking last night with two loaves of my mom’s banana […]

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Celebrating Archives Month with a New Building

It is fitting that The Filson’s $12 million Campus Expansion Project will reach its completion during the month of October, which coincides with #ArchivesMonth!  It’s an exciting (and stressful!) time at The Filson.  The construction crews are installing the finishing touches on the new Owsley Brown II History Center, while the staff plan exhibits and programs for our Grand Opening […]

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