WKMS News Preservation and Restoration Series

Many residents of the Four Rivers region devote their time to restoring and preserving our history.  WKMS Reporters set out to meet some of those residents to produce the stories you'll find below.

We get background on Kentucky's role in the forgotten war of 1812, then we meet a man who's devote much of his time to restoring honor by way of headstones to veterans of that war.

Reporters Angela Hatton and Heidi Couch report on ways people in our region revert to the "old ways" to make sweet sorghum molasses and healthy teas and salves.

Casey Northcutt and Shelly Baskin report on the little talked about history history of Burlesque and Moonshine.

We also learn about ancient Native American Mounds in our region and how Murray State is preserving recorded conversations from nearly 45 years ago.

Pages

Society
2:22 pm
Thu July 3, 2014

Columbia Club Seeks Funds to Renovate Historic Paducah Theatre

Darlene Mazzone and Landee Bryant-Greene join us on Sounds Good to talk about the Columbia Club's efforts to raise funds to renovate Paducah's historic Columbia Theatre, a project with an estimated $6 million price tag. Mazzone says restoring the architectural gem will improve downtown economic viability and expects the donation to be put toward a feasibility study for the renovation project. Hear the conversation: 

Read more
Culture
4:56 pm
Wed April 24, 2013

Reenactors and Music at the 'Turn of the Century Social' in Murray

Mike Gowen

Music From the Front Porch co-host Mike Gowen organizes the "Turn of the Century Social" at Murray’s Central Park this Saturday from 10 to 2 with reenactors in period costumes reenacting scenarios at the old schoolhouse, courthouse, and train depot. Mike stopped by Sounds Good to talk with Todd Hatton about the weekend festivities. PS: Todd will be there handing out some WKMS News CDs (technology from the future).

Society
1:11 pm
Fri March 22, 2013

Revitalizing the Higgins House and Other Murray Main Street Projects

Deana Wright visits Sounds Good Friday to give an update on work on revitalizing the Higgins House just west of the Murray Calloway County Public Library on Main Street. Wright says that Main Street is looking at about $200,000 in repairs before "the pretty" work begins to convert the hundred year old home into public spaces, particularly for social gatherings involving fewer than 50 attendees. Also, learn more about the 100 Year Anniversary of the County Court House on the Murray square to be celebrated on May 7.

Restoration & Preservation
3:42 pm
Mon July 9, 2012

Kentucky Played a Major Roll in the Forgotten War of 1812

Zachary Taylor at the Battle of Fort Harrison
Wikimedia Commons

June marked the bicentennial of the start of the War of 1812.  Not many Kentuckians know much about the conflict, aside from the burning of the White House, and “The Star-Spangled Banner.”  Even fewer know about the role the Commonwealth played in it, despite the fact that if you live in the Jackson Purchase, you likely live in a county named for a soldier who fought and died in one battle of the War of 1812: Major Bland Ballard, Major Benjamin Graves, Captain Paschal Hickman, and Captain Virgil McCracken.  

Read more
Restoration & Preservation
3:35 pm
Mon July 9, 2012

Ancient History Housed in Mounds Around Us

Wickliffe Mounds
Wikimedia Commons

Long before the Jackson Purchase, in about 1000 C.E, back when the Vikings were the only Europeans to come to this continent, Native American civilizations were building mound cities in and around our region.  Today, researchers and volunteers work to preserve these sites.  They call the people who built these now brooding places the Mississippians.  While much is known about them, there’s much more that’s mysterious.

Preservation and Restoration Series
9:00 am
Sun July 8, 2012

Clarksville Herbalist Cherishes Great-Grandmother's Remedies

A salve mixed from comfrey and olive oil is one of the home remedies Angelique Greer learned from her great-grandmother.

Before access to modern medicine became widespread, the rural poor mixed up their own treatments from the plants they grew and foraged. They learned which plants would relieve aches, supplement nutrition, and get rid of infections. These days, a trip to the pharmacy is a much more common way to heal an ailment. But there are still enclaves of natural healing around our region. Angela Hatton traveled to Clarksville, Tennessee, where a local herbalist has preserved her great-grandmother’s remedies.

Read more
Preservation and Restoration Series
9:00 am
Sun July 8, 2012

Calloway Countian Preserves 1812 Veterans' Graves

Photo by Craig Thweatt | Pictured is the grave of James Warterfield (Waterfield), in Calloway County. The inscription partially reads: "Born, Apr. 16, 1786, a soldier of 1812, ... died June 11, 1878 and was buried June 12 with military honors)

The War of 1812 is sometimes called the second war for independence. It’s also called the forgotten war, as it was overshadowed fifty years later by a much bloodier war. Kentuckians were an important part of the 1812 war effort. The Commonwealth contributed more to the casualty list than any other state. Soldiers buried in western Kentucky fought in campaigns from Canada to New Orleans, with a few under the command of then-General and future president Andrew Jackson. Angela Hatton went searching for their graves.

Read more
Preservation & Restoration
9:00 am
Sun July 8, 2012

Local Farmer Preserves Sorghum History

At Brad Lowe’s farm, the livestock enjoy free range living together in an open field. Under an old oak tree, chickens peck for food while pigs root around and goats graze. An audience of dairy cows listens intently, while Lowe explains his love of sorghum.

Read more
Preservation & Restoration
8:00 am
Sun July 8, 2012

Pogue Library Bringing Oral History Recordings into the Digital Age

Pogue Library is home to the Oral History Collection at Murray State.
Shelly Baskin WKMS News

Recordings in the Oral History Collection at Murray State University contain stories of the history and culture of the Jackson Purchase region. On reel to reel and cassette tapes, hundreds of recordings amounting to many hundreds of hours of audio are stored in the Pogue Library archives on the school’s campus. Some, however, are joining the rest of the world in making the switch to digital. 

Read more
Preservation and Restoration Series
4:00 pm
Sat July 7, 2012

Benton Shape Note Singers Looking to Next Generation

The 139th Big Singing

Benton’s annual Big Singing is the longest running indigenous musical event in the country. It’s a gathering of singing enthusiasts in the Benton courthouse every spring. But in recent years, attendance has been dwindling. We’ll join Rose Krzton-Presson as she explores this tradition and why it’s struggling to bring in a new generation of singers.

Read more

Pages