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UK Special Collections Research Center announces digitized Appalachian Collection

The University of Kentucky Special Collections Research Center successfully completed a NEH Humanities Collections and Reference Resources digitization grant, resulting in online access to 132 cubic feet from the Bert T. Combs Appalachian Collection.


The materials focus on 189 years of economic development in the Eastern Kentucky coalfield from 1788 to 1976. The ten individual collections document the search for, extraction of, and distribution of coal, oil, and natural gas resources in Breathitt, Boyd, Clark, Floyd, Harlan, Lawrence, Letcher, Perry, and Powell counties; the creation of railroads to bring these raw materials to industrial manufacturers and electrical power generators across the United States; and the company towns, their services, and the individual lives that grew up to sustain and make possible this economic development.


These collections include the Benham Coal Company records, Wheelwright collection, Sherrill Martin collection, Louisville and Nashville Railroad Company and Lexington and Eastern Railway Company records, and the Kentucky Union Land Company records. Additional details on the project and other Appalachian-related collections at UK SCRC can be found on the Bert T. Combs Appalachian Collection page.


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