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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Kentucky Bourbon Whiskey: An American Heritage

The history of the United States is reflected in the history of the distilling industry. One of the first constitutional crises for the new government was the “Whiskey Rebellion” in 1791-1792. As the new nation struggled to pay the debts from its war of independence the government turned to an excise tax on distilled spirits to raise the money to […]

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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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Voyage of Discovery at The Filson Historical Society

Growing up the daughter of two American history enthusiasts made it almost impossible not to absorb and enjoy American history. Most children went to theme parks on their summer vacations. I went on extended camping trips across the country.  In the summer of 2004, our annual family camping trip was designed to celebrate the bicentennial of the Voyage of Discovery. […]

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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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Farewell Filson

By Heather Fox This is my last week as Associate Curator of Special Collections at the Filson, and as a farewell I’d like to post a few of my favorite images from our collection. It’s been a great pleasure working with the collections and the wonderful staff. Enjoy.

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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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