Friends of the Bullitt County History Museum
January 21, 2011 (Volume 7, Number 1)
>>Meet Jeb Stuart. Annual Lee-Jackson Dinner Jan 22.
This announcement will be too late for most people, but let me announce it. For you Civil War fans, the annual Lee-Jackson Dinner, sponsored by the John Hunt Morgan Camp will be January 22 at 6:00 p.m. at South Park Country Club. It will feature a Jeb Stuart living History presentation by Wayne Jones. Call Bill Hays at 439-4517 for details.
>>Bullitt Genealogical Society Meets February 19.
Well respected Lebanon Junction historian and City Councilman Steve Masden will be speaking about the history and genealogy resources at the new LJ Public Library, in which there is a room dedicated to such research. Steve will also be speaking about Lebanon Junction history in general. As alway, the meeting will be held at the Ridgway Memorial Public Library located in Shepherdsville at North Walnut Street and Second Street. Meeting time is 10:00 a.m.
>>Winter Weather Closing Policy.
It continues to be quite a winter in Bullitt County, causing the museum to close several days due to snow, most recently January 20. The museum closing policy is simply, if Bullitt County Public Schools are closed due to weather, then so are we. Sometimes we could make it in, but my primary concern in bad weather is the safety of our Volunteers who so generously give their time.
So, especially during our winter season when weather looks bad, I suggest calling ahead if planning to visit us at the museum.
>>Trainers Needed for Windows 7 and MSOfficePro 7. Any day now (We hope!) new computers and software will be coming to the museum as part of a fantastic gift from Best Buy, Geek Squad City, and Zappos. But all that new software has us a little scared.
Our Volunteers, and me as well, will need to be brought up to speed on this wonderful new stuff, and we're all a bit intimidated.
We need someone willing to come to the museum and patiently teach us how to use this stuff! If you, or someone you know, is willing to set up some training sessions for us, hopefully for free, please let me know.
>>New Best Buy Distribution Center.
Speaking of Best Buy, a new Best Buy distribution center, not directly related to our current Best Buy friends, has opened in Bullitt County. I was part of a tour of this new facility this week and it's quite a place! If I understand correctly, this new building and 150-200 people will handle all internet orders for Best Buy customers from here to the east coast. It also handles returns and has expansion plans already in the works. Did you know 1 of 3 TVs in the U.S. are now bought from Best Buy?
That makes Bullitt County quite a hub of activity in that business, with Geek Squad City (which does repairs for all Best Buy stores across the U.S.) also in our county.
Welcome to these great people. I look forward to their continued and increased involvement in our community.
With the 150th anniversary of the American Civil War coming up, it was suggested to me to start a trivia section in this newsletter. So here's your first challenge (and it's a tough one): When did the last Bullitt County veteran of the Civil War die, and how old was he?
>>GOSH it's been busy! We love it, but it can be so exhausting and crowded sometimes! Seems like nearly every day now, our tiny little museum research room is packed with people as soon as we open the doors. I do believe it is by far the most consistently active room in the courthouse. Of course, we have a good number of visitors in our display rooms, but the real action goes on in our office. That room, roughly 15 by 15 foot square if I recall correctly, quite often has six, eight, even ten people in there, researching our many unique files, asking questions, giving us new information and items, and trying to use our two rapidly failing old computers (six new ones coming soon!). And almost on cue, as one person leaves, another walks in.
It gets a little crazy sometimes. Sometimes our Volunteer staff, and me too, just look across at each other, smile wearily, and posture as if to say "Whoo!". But it goes to show you how valued we have become. I am so proud and I believe the county respects what we do. In fact, as the next article points out, respect has grown far beyond our little county.
This time from Congress. Steve Miller, Deputy to Kentucky Congressman Brett Guthrie, came by the office this week with a recognition from the Congressman, thanking our Museum for all we do, and particularly José Rosario for his work on the Henry Mattingly story and the related Lebanon Junction Cemetery ceremony that we have reported on before. Most of our Museum Volunteer staff was there, as was Lebanon Junction Mayor Butch Sweat. Still the best praise, to me, was what we have heard from several state and federal officials over the years, that being, "This museum is the best front door of any courthouse in the state!"
All of this is pretty good stuff for a little county history museum made up of volunteers and with extremely limited funds!
>>African-American Display at Museum.
For the month of February, the Museum will have a special display on African-American history in Bullitt County. Genealogical President and Museum Volunteer Daniel Buxton has long had a special interest in this subject and has done quite a bit of research on cemeteries and schools in our area. He and Museum Volunteers plan to have this humble but special display ready by February 1st. The display will feature photos and information on local cemeteries and schools, and particularly on some successful people from Bullitt County. Did you know there was a well known Jazz artist from here? A highly successful Chicago businessman?
Also, check our web site for ongoing additions to the African-American story.
>> Books Donated.
Charles Hartley has donated the new records book, Divorces Granted by the Kentucky General Assembly 1792-1850, 941 Divorces compiled by Sandra K. Gorin in 2010. This compilation reminds me of the changes related to divorce law in Kentucky over the years. If not already done, that would be an interesting research topic for someone.
A copy of the fine new pictorial history book, Nelson County, Kentucky 1785-2010 has been donated to our Museum by Nancy Hibbs. Yet another great book from our friends of the Nelson County Historical Society. Call them at 502-348-8559 for ordering info. Price is $49.95 plus shipping and taxes.
>>Bullitt County History Book reprinted and available again.
Many of you will recall a green booklet on the history of Bullitt County that was produced in 1974. Though we would dearly love to have a more definitive book on our history, this one has always provided a nice brief synopsis of the county. But we ran out of copies some time ago.
Now, thanks to Charles Hartley and Daniel Buxton, the Bullitt County Genealogical Society has produced a reprinting of the book. Still not what we would like to see, this book is a faithful copy, complete with listing the county officers at the time. It can still be quite helpful, and at a reasonable price.
The new edition, now in ringed binding, is available for $8 a copy ($10 if mailed). They can be purchased directly at the museum or by mail. Checks should be made to The Bullitt County Genealogical Society.
>> New Staff Volunteer. I am happy to announce yet another great Volunteer is being added to our museum staff family. Mark Milliner has been coming in quite often doing research on his own, and we had already come to rely on him to help us with our own research questions.
Now Mark has offered to work with us on a regular basis. He is currently scheduled to open the Museum on Friday mornings and cover it until noon. And he still often comes in on other days as well. Thank you Mark!
By the way, a personal research project for Mark has been the St. John the Baptist Catholic Church that was at one time off Lutes Lane. If you know anything on that subject or have photos, please do contact Mark on that.
>>Spoke with Scout Troop 100.
I spoke last week with some Boy Scouts of Troop 100 in Mt. Washington. I had been invited to speak on Citizenship and History as they worked toward their badges. Great group!
>>Web Site Additions.
Follow this link to the page of Latest Additions.
For Your Information...
>> A weird but perfect Christmas present: Tombstone Books. My dear 34-year-old daughter looked at me funny when she gave me my Christmas presents this year. As I opened them, she said something like, "Dad, only you would like a gift like this." And I did! She gave me two books. One titled Everybody's Book of Epitaphs, compiled by W.H. Howe, and Stories in Stone. A Field Guide to Cemetery Symbolism and Iconography by Douglas Keister. Great books! Well OK, maybe I am a bit weird, but great books nevertheless!
>>A couple of good resources.
Here's a couple of good sources of information you might want to check some time: The Filson Historical Society, and The Kentucky Association of Teachers of History. Give them a try and see what you can find!
This newsletter marks the start of my seventh year writing for you.
My goodness time flies when you're having fun!
With the support of Friends like you, the coming year looks to be our most exciting and satisfying yet.
Friends, I promised last month to have an annual report in this month's newsletter, but this edition is getting long and I need to get this information out to you now. So, I'll send out a special edition to you in the next few days devoted solely to the details of how and what we did together in 2010.
Thank you for being a Friend of the Bullitt County History Museum.
Bullitt County History Museum
Museum Phone: 502-921-0161
E-Mail address: David.Strange@BullittCountyHistory.org