Fifty Years On, the Stories of May 1968 Are Still Being Told

The spring of 1968 was a tumultuous time in the United States. Martin Luther King Jr. was assassinated on April 4th, in Memphis, Tennessee. While the nation at large was stunned, Black communities in particular were struck by the loss of a central spokesperson and leader of the civil rights movement. Tension and unrest followed the assassination, with both peaceful […]

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Dear Mr. Filson: Louisville’s First Florist?

By Jennie Cole Last week, I received an email inquiry from the Belford Museum in Northumberland requesting information on an Edward Wilson. The museum’s contact person explained that in 1877, Wilson presented a clock to the local Presbyterian Church; the clock is currently at the Museum. Wilson was a local philanthropist in Northumberland in the late 1860s and 1870s, but […]

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Look Beyond the Surface: Abstract Art at the Filson

November '88 by G. C. Coxe

In 134 years of collecting, preserving, and telling the significant stories of Ohio Valley history and culture the Filson has never mounted an exhibit quite like Understanding the Indescribable: Paintings by G. Caliman Coxe, on view in the Bingham Gallery through December 15th. The show is not the first at the Filson to include art by an African American, nor is […]

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Vu iz valdo? Revisiting Collections Through a Jewish Lens

What we seek often determines not only what we find but what we overlook in the process. My two-year-old niece and nephew have recently discovered the joy of the Where’s Waldo? books, screaming with delight when they manage to locate that telltale striped hat and scarf amidst globetrotting visual chaos. Sometimes they need help though, and the patient adult whose […]

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Happy 4th of July

The Filson Historical Society would like to wish you a happy and safe 4th of July! We will be closed tomorrow, Tuesday, July 4, 2017, but will be open the rest of the week. To kick off your holiday, a few patriotic archival finds of the day: two pieces of WWI era sheet music and a fun A. L. Due […]

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World War I Remembered at The Filson

April marked the 100th anniversary of America’s entrance into World War I and to commemorate the anniversary Filson staffers have been hard at work planning, researching and writing WWI content to share with our members and visitors. If you’ve yet to visit our WWI Exhibits “Called to Arms: Kentuckians in the First World War” and “Selling the War: Posters from […]

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Kentucky Music Comes Home

Wade Ward with Alan Lomax, c. 1960

On Thursday, February 16th, curator Nathan Salsburg from the Alan Lomax Archive will visit the Filson to discuss the repatriation of the many recordings of folk and vernacular music collected by Lomax and his colleagues in Kentucky between 1933 and 1942. But what does it mean to “repatriate” Kentucky’s cultural heritage? Where did it go? For at least the last […]

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Filson Finds: the Bullitt Family Papers

Unlikely Squatter: The intimate exchanges of Anne Christian, 1770 to 1787 by Melissah J. Pawlikowski Anne Christian exchanged letters with an intimate circle made up mostly of women. A Jane Austen cast of childhood acquaintances, the group persisted into adulthood as each married into a network of brothers and associates commissioned in Virginia’s military. I pulled Anne’s personal correspondence for […]

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The Dresden Plate Quilt

Ah, the Dresden Plate. A pattern that looks fairly complicated but actually isn’t. This type of pattern is one of my favorites, simply because it’s easy but not boring. You get to play with a fun template, there’s lots of ironing, and it looks pretty cool when you are done. You might be wondering why I’m telling you the virtues […]

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Ferguson Mansion Third Floor Move

This past week, The Filson’s Development, Programming, and Special Collections Departments all moved out of the Ferguson Mansion’s third floor to allow for renovation work to begin.      Development and Special Collections staff offices have moved to the Ferguson Mansion’s basement, while members of the Programming Department are temporarily back in their original location on the first floor while renovations continue […]

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