Pass the Word a project of the Kentucky Oral History Commission

This tool is a way to provide discovery to oral history collections in publicly accessible institutions throughout the state of Kentucky. The "Get it Here" button on each collection or interview record will take you directly to the interview, if it is accessible online, or to the organization's website that provides information on how to request access to the interview, if it is not. Every participating organization has individualized systems in providing access to these collections, so please check the institution's collection access policies for more information.

Since its establishment in 1976, the Kentucky Oral History Commission (KOHC) has supported the creation of oral history recordings statewide through grant programs, equipment loans, and general technical assistance. In 1991 the Commission committed itself to facilitating access to the growing oral history collections at institutions across the state by publishing The Guide to Kentucky Oral History. The Guide identified over 25,000 interviews at 41 repositories. In 2001, the Commission brought the Guide into the digital age by providing the content as a searchable online database.

The Commission has now updated The Guide to Kentucky Oral History into a searchable oral history resource with the generous support of the National Endowment for the Humanities and the Kentucky Historical Foundation. This interactive tool offers more than just information about oral history collections. It highlights projects which have grown out of these collections, such as books, documentaries, and school programs. The site provides a meeting point for oral historians to share current project information or queries. Content can be added and edited by the librarians and archivists charged with caring for each individual collection, facilitating continual updated access to oral history collections. With this new functionality, the site corrects the former limitation on the printed guide and original database--being outdated by the time they were published. As such, Pass the Word represents the next phase in KOHC’s commitment to facilitating access to Kentucky oral history collections.

The following individuals participated as members of the Pass the Word advisory board:

Alexia Ault, Southeast Kentucky Community & Technical College
Doug Boyd, University of Kentucky
Jackie Couture, Eastern Kentucky University
Carrie Daniels, University of Louisville
Lynn David, Independent consultant
Pam Federspiel, Shelby County Public Library
Lois Hamill, Northern Kentucky University
Jonathan Jeffrey, Western Kentucky University
Larry LaFollette, Southeast Kentucky Community & Technical College
Mark Meyers, Kentucky Department of Libraries and Archives
Dieter Ulrich, Murray State University
Debbie Whalen, Eastern Kentucky University

Want to add your oral history collections to this site? Contact us.