Reflections on Gettysburg

My family and I recently returned from a visit to Pennsylvania. While there we took the opportunity to revisit the Gettysburg National Military Park (having last been there in 1996). Anyone who has ever been there knows what a moving experience it is. Touring the museum, viewing the restored Cyclorama, and of course driving and walking over the field (with […]

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The Secrets of Houses

I recently read a compelling graphic novel, Locke and Key: Welcome to Lovecraft. In it, three children are subjected to the trauma of their father’s violent death and journey across the country with their mother to start over with their lives. The destination: their father’s childhood home, Keyhouse, a rambling manse with secrets. If you turn a special key and […]

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Norman Kohlhepp, Renaissance Man

Currently being processed in Special Collections are the papers and photographs of Louisvillian Norman Kohlhepp (1892 – 1986).  Kohlhepp was a multi-talented individual who excelled in the fields of science, art  and education.  A graduate of Louisville’s Manual Training High School, he went on to obtain a degree in metallurgical engineering from the University of Cincinnati.   After graduating, he […]

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John Sneed: Centenarian and Revolutionary War Veteran.

On the third floor landing, just outside the door to the curator’s office, hangs a very unusual portrait: Mr. John Sneed. Nearly all of the Filson visitors who reach the third floor, without fail, pause to marvel at this unusual image of the elderly man. Perhaps it’s his no-nonsense expression that captures the imagination? Sneed was 100 years old when he […]

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Postcards – Summer Pastimes

The Filson recently produced a set of six postcards with the theme of “Summer Pastimes.” These postcards celebrate the season with scenes of enjoyment of the outdoors and relaxation, all set in the Kentucky area, and all from The Filson’s Special Collections. They are available for purchase for $5.oo, either at The Filson or online, at http://www.sagepayments.net/eftcart/product_detail.asp?part=044. This first postcard […]

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The Ferguson Mansion

Whether visiting the Filson Historical Society to do research or just to tour the building, the most frequent remark made by patrons tends to be something along the lines of “wow, you are so lucky to work in such a beautiful place!”  This “beautiful place”, known as the Ferguson Mansion (named for Edwin Hite Ferguson), draws people in with its […]

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An Arresting Portrait

One of my favorite paintings in the Ferguson Mansion hangs in the stairwell on the way to the basement level. It is a portrait of a certain Mrs. Denton Whipps, painted by a mysterious unknown artist, and generously donated by Mrs. Walter Osborne. This painting utilizes a severe palette of white, black and gray. Mrs. Whipps’ luminous skin vividly contrasts […]

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Images Celebrating Independence

The Filson wishes you a Happy Independence Day! S.A.R. Congress, Louisville, 1911. Gen. Simon Bolivar Buckner and Mr. Geo. L. Danforth Pres. Ky. Society, posing with a reproduction of the McHenry Flag in front of the Louisville Free Public Library. A July 4th Picnic at Richlawn Stock Farm, 1905, Ralph Barker Collection Sons of the American Revolution Fountain at Fort […]

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Joan Rapp – Volunteer Extraordinaire

The Filson is most fortunate to have a loyal core of volunteers. As related in a previous post on Larry Carr vounteering at The Filson, our volunteers bring a variety of experience and knowledge to the work they do here. Their talents and dedication help us to succeed in our mission of making collections available to researchers and telling the […]

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Dr. Richard Price – Observations on Airplanes

One of our oldest works is entitled Considerations on the Order of Cincinnatus, which was printed for J. Johnson in St. Paul’s Church-Yard, London in 1785. Included in the book is an abstract of Dr. Richard Price’s Observations on the Importance of the American Revolution, with notes and reflections upon that work.  Dr. Price was a fellow of the Royal Society […]

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