From Monday, Aug. 27, to Thursday, Aug. 28, the library will be presenting the 10th Annual Local History Week. Local History Week is the library’s celebration in conjunction with Winchester’s Pioneer Festival that always occurs the last weekend of August. Monday through Thursday before Pioneer Weekend, the library sponsors lectures or performances by some of Kentucky’s best historians, scholars and reenactors.
There’s always a great meal beforehand. For the past few years luscious meals have been catered by Winchester’s Thompson Catering Service. Thompson will be catering three of the meals this year. The fourth will be an authentically prepared colonial Kentucky dinner. More about that later. Here’s this year’s Local History Week schedule:
Monday Aug. 27: Janet Scott portrays Mary Settles the Last Shaker at Pleasant Hill, 1836-1923. Mary Settles’ husband abandoned her and their two children at Pleasant Hill. They became members of the Shaker Community. She lived through the Civil War at Pleasant Hill and watched as the community slowly dissolved until she was the last Shaker.
Tuesday, Aug. 28: Barbara and Brook Elliott of Fort Boonesboro demonstrate, prepare and serve 18th century American colonial agriculture and cooking. This performance will be the dinner, a presentation you can really sink your teeth into (sorry). Barbara and Brook, experts in Kentucky history, agriculture and cooking will make a meal Dan’l himself ate. Find out how pioneers kept body and soul together at this unique program.
Wednesday, Aug. 29: Obadiah Ewing-Roush portrays John G. Fee, Kentucky abolistionist, 1816-1901. Born the son of a slave holder, John Fee’s enrollment in the Lane Theological Seminary made him see that slavery was inherently wrong and he devoted his life to the abolition movement in Kentucky. Cassius Clay and Fee were allies for awhile, but disagreed about the way to end slavery. Fee also founded the Union Church of Christ, an anti-slavery, non-denominational church that eventually became Berea College.
Thursday, Aug. 30: Ronald Elliott portrays Irvin S. Cobb, Kentuckian. A famous newspaperman, author, lecturer, war correspondent, and humorist, Cobb liked to say “being a New Englander is a chore and being a Virginian is a profession, but being a Kentuckian is an incurable disease.” Despite residing in Hollywood and New York, his signature always read “Irvin S. Cobb, Paducah, Kentucky.”
The cost per night for each of these local history dinners and programs is $6 per person. Tickets must be bought in advance at the circulation desk of the library. Because of the popularity of these programs, we cannot hold tickets until the night of the program. Each dinner begins at 6:15 p.m., and the program begins at 7 p.m.
If you have any questions about Local History Week, please call the library and contact the reference department by choosing phone menu option 2. During Local History Week, plan to come in a little early and take a look at works by the Big Turtle Art Society hanging in the Rosemary Codell Brooks Community Room. The show will open Monday, Aug. 27, in conjunction with Local History Week.
Local History Week also celebrates what we do best, providing a place where Clark County citizens can explore, share ideas and meet congenially. The library’s not just for homework any more.