Laurel County Historical Society
The first Laurel County Historical Society was formed at the
instigation of Rev. J. J. Dickey in 1896. Dr. Dickey was not a local
resident but came to Laurel County to help establish Sue
Bennett College. He was interested in the history of every area
he visited and soon he gathered a group of teachers and began
to collect genealogical information on local families. This group
became the basis of the first historical society. It is not known
how long this society was active, but by the early 1900's it
ceased to be mentioned in the old records.
Not until 1963 did another group of local historians establish the
present Laurel County Historical Society. In January, 1963,
Fredora Pennington Lay and Nellie Jones Johnson paid the first
dues as charter members of this new historical society, followed
by Logan and Barbara Brown Ewell in early February. These
four began to solicit memberships from across the country, and
by March 21, 1963, the Laurel County Historical Society
published a list of 158 charter members. This organization has
been more or less active until the present time.
Between the years of 1963 and 1991 meetings were held at
various venues, including the Laurel County Public Library, but
because the Society had no permanent location, materials were
not readily available for research. In 1991 the Laurel County
Fiscal Court allowed the Society to move into quarters vacated
by the Older Persons Activity Center (OPAC) in the basement of
the old City Hall. For the first time in its history, the Laurel
County Historical Society had its own space in which to display its
collection of books and files.
In the spring of 2007, the Laurel County Historical Society moved
to its present location at 310 West Third Street when that
building (the former Health department) became available.
The Society meets
the 2nd Thursday of
the even numbered
April, June, August,
in the Library at
The next meeting
April 13, 2017
North - From Exit 41of Interstate 75: Turn
left, go east 0.6 mile to the 2nd light.
Turn right on US 25 (Main Street). Go to
4th Street. Turn right. Go two blocks.
Turn left at second stop sign on Long
Street. Go one block to Third Street.
Turn right. Go 0.1 mile. The library is on
South - From Exit 38 of Interstate 75:
(There are three turning lanes from this
exit. You need to get in the middle lane
because once you are on the bypass
you will be turning left in one tenth of a
mile.) Turn right from the middle turning
lane. Go 0.1 mile to the first light. Turn
left on 1005 (5th Street). Go 1.3 miles to
the first light. Turn right on Mill Street.
Go 0.1 mile to 3rd Street. Turn left. Go
0.1 mile. The library is on the right.
East - From Hal Rogers parkway: Turn
left at light on Highway 192 By Pass. Go
to Highway 80 (4th Street). Turn right. Go
to Long Street. Turn left. Go one block to
Third Street. Turn right. Go 0.1 mile. The
library is on the left.
West - From Somerset: Turn right on US
25 (Main Street). Go to 4th Street. Turn
right. Go two blocks. Turn left at second
stop sign on Long Street. Go one block
to Third Street. Turn right. Go 0.1 mile.
The library is on the left.