The Kentucky Derby: “Run for the Roses”

  As many of you may know this Saturday, May 4, 2013 marks the 139th “Run for the Roses” also known as the Kentucky Derby! Having only lived in the Commonwealth for 1 ½ years, I have become extremely fascinated by Kentucky cultural traditions and have spent many of my weekends exploring the states rich cultural history. The Kentucky Derby […]

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Spring is here!

Spring has finally made it to Louisville, and you won’t find a happier person than me (maybe). I adore warm weather, flowers, and even mowing the grass. Springtime means new life and fresh starts for me, and I wouldn’t have it any other way. In honor of the warm weather, here are a few postcards  from our collection showcasing Churchill Downs. […]

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Sketches of War and Peace: The James William Abert Collection

The most common mental images of the American Civil War may be that of dramatic cavalry charges, roaring cannon, and soldiers charging across broken grounds with bayonets fixed. Quieter thoughts of the war might include stern faced generals contemplating intricate maps and drawings of fortifications with their subordinates.  Enthusiasts still study these maps and drawings today, yet we rarely pause […]

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The whimsical side of The Filson’s collections

I’m always delighted when my research for events takes me into The Filson’s collections, and I love a good piece of Louisville history. This week, I’ve been researching the Louisville clock, designed by Barney Bright in the 1970’s. The clock, which is the topic of The Craziest Thing You Ever Saw, a documentary by Alfred Shands, has fascinated me ever since we […]

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Health Care for African Americans in the Falls City: The Creation of a Second Louisville

I have recently been reading about health care in Louisville at the turn of the twentieth century, especially as it concerned the city’s African American population.  In honor of Black History Month, I will share some of what I have learned. In the decades following the Civil War, African Americans explored new avenues of opportunity and advancement, including the field […]

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Advertising in The Filson’s Collections

As an advertising/graphic design person, I have always been interested in graphics, ads, books, magazines, stationary, etc. I designed my own wedding invitations, and for each of our moves I sent out customized moving announcements. If you’ve sent me a card, chances are I still have it. One of my favorite classes in college was my History of Communication course. I loved […]

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When It All Comes Together

We have a lot of fantastic information resources in this town.  Never was this more apparent to me than during a recent research endeavor done for personal purposes.  I had been lucky enough to be invited over to a friend’s home in Old Louisville for a dinner party. During the course of the evening, the inevitable “when was this house […]

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A history of UofL’s Belknap campus

I was recently discussing the addition of new buildings to the architectural landscape of the University of Louisville with another former student.  The conversation eventually turned to the history of the site prior to its use by the University.  There is nothing like working in a library when it comes to satisfying your curiosity regarding local history.  With a little […]

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Magic lantern slides reveal Louisville history

By Kathy Jones, Filson Volunteer The Filson recently received seventy glass lantern slides rescued by a realtor from the attic of a Louisville house. She knew only that they came from the All-Prayer Foundlings Home. The Filson’s library collection includes a pamphlet on the All-Prayer FoundlingsHome, The Golden Key, written by G. C. Cromer, the founder of the home, on […]

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Who was George Welby?

The Filson’s Special Collections has a sample book from the 1850s lithograph firm of Henry Miller and Co. which includes many colorful sample labels for items such as tobacco, perfumes and spirits. One of the labels is for Bourbon Whiskey from Geo. Welby. The question to answer is who was this George Welby who is purchasing bourbon labels? In the […]

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