Library Blog Archive


Visit this space to find out the latest happenings at Muhlenberg County Public Libraries!

“Kentucky and the War of 1812” program to be held May 17

Muhlenberg County Public Libraries’ popular “Thursdays at Thistle” program continues May 17 with an afternoon discussion program about the War of 1812.

Dr. William H. Mulligan Jr. will visit the library to discuss Kentucky’s important role in the war.

Mulligan’s program, “Kentucky and the War of 1812,” will focus on the impact the war had on Kentucky as well as how soldiers from Kentucky impacted the course of the war. While many textbooks focus on sailors and clashes over sovereignty as the main causes of the War of 1812, two-thirds of American casualties in the war came from Kentucky. Mulligan contends that the events preceding the war had a huge impact on Kentuckians, leading them to join the military in droves and fight for what was important to them. Mulligan will use contemporary evidence to demonstrate that Britain’s support of Indian raids on frontier settlements was a hot topic and major contributing cause to the war and Kentucky’s involvement thereof.

Mulligan is a 25-year veteran of Murray State University’s History Department. He has extensively studied and lectured on America’s military history, among other topics. He has served on Kentucky’s State Historic Preservation Board as well as serving as president of both the Jackson Purchase Historical Society and Murray State’s Phi Kappa Phi Honor Society. Mulligan has lectured at programs and conferences across the world and now sits on Kentucky Humanities’ Speakers Bureau, for which he developed the “Kentucky and the War of 1812” program.

This Speakers Bureau program will be held May 17 at 2 p.m. at Muhlenberg County Public Libraries’ Thistle Cottage. The program will be presented free of charge. Light refreshments will be provided.

For more information about this program, contact Muhlenberg County Public Libraries at 270-338-4760.

The Speakers Bureau is a presentation of Kentucky Humanities. Local funding is provided by the Felix E. Martin Jr. Foundation.


Dr. William H. Mulligan Jr.

Spring Victorian Tea to be held May 12

Muhlenberg County Public Libraries is preparing for their annual Spring Victorian Tea, an event people look forward to all year.

This year’s tea will be held May 12 at 2 p.m. at Thistle Cottage.

Ticket sales begin April 23.



The Spring Victorian Tea is held each year to give visitors a glimpse of what it would be like to attend a traditional Victorian afternoon tea. The event is held at Thistle Cottage, which was built in 1912, soon after the end of the Victorian era – a perfect setting to evoke just the right feel for the event, according to Muhlenberg County Public Libraries staff. Attendees are treated to a light meal and a variety of carefully chosen teas.

“This is an opportunity to do something a little different from most of the parties or events people normally get to attend in Muhlenberg County,” library director Janet Harris said. “We try to be as authentic as possible to a real, elegant, Victorian-era afternoon tea.”

Afternoon tea became popular in England during the reign of Queen Victoria as a way to bridge the gap between meals, and the tradition continues today. Menus typically involve small portions of both sweets and savories, including such items as miniatures cakes, sandwiches, etc.

Harris said planning the tea menu is a balancing act. Staff work hard to design a menu that includes enough familiar items to be attractive and comfortable to the less adventurous while still including things that aren’t available every day.

The menu changes slightly each year. This year’s menu is inspired by the upcoming royal wedding between Britain’s Prince Harry and American Meghan Markle.

“We want to treat our guests like royalty, too,” Harris said. “We really try to make sure everyone feels special and has a great time at all our events.”

The menu also includes a selection of hot teas sponsored by the Louisville Tea Company from Louisville, Ky.

Harris pointed out that the timing of the tea – the Saturday before Mother’s Day – makes it a perfect event for a family outing. “We have a lot of people who come every year as a family to celebrate Mother’s Day,” Harris said. “We especially see a lot of mother and daughter groups, and some sibling groups.” However, Harris said, the event is open to anyone who wants to attend.

The tea also includes a hat contest. Attendees are encouraged to wear their favorite fancy hats. A prize will be given away at the end of the event.

Tickets for the tea are $10 each and may be purchased at Thistle Cottage (122 South Cherry St. in Greenville). Seating is limited, so anyone interested in attending is encouraged to purchase their tickets as soon as possible.

For more information about the Spring Victorian Tea, call Muhlenberg County Public Libraries at 270-338-4760.

Ky. Chautauqua on April 19 – William Wells Brown

Muhlenberg County Public Libraries is continuing the popular “Thursdays at Thistle” program this year, beginning with a Kentucky Chautauqua program on April 19.

Virgil Covington, Jr. will present his “William Wells Brown: How I Got My Name” program at Thistle Cottage on April 19 at 7 p.m.

William Wells Brown is now recognized as the first published African-American novelist and playwright, but he was not always known as such. Brown was born a slave in Kentucky in approximately 1814-15. He was contracted out to business owners to do various jobs. One of those jobs included working for a “soul driver,” a man who bought and sold slaves for profit. Brown saw the sale of his own family members as well as the brutal separation of other families, strengthening his desire for freedom. He made several unsuccessful attempts to escape, suffering many arrests and beatings each time he was caught.

Brown eventually succeeded in his attempts to escape in 1834 while the riverboat he was working on was docked in Cincinnati. He was taken in by Quaker abolitionist Wells Brown, whose name he adopted as his own.

Brown moved north to New York, where he worked on a steamboat and helped many other fugitive slaves escape across the border to Canada. He learned to read and write and used his new knowledge to help further his advocacy for abolition and temperance. He wrote a bestselling memoir, Narrative of William W. Brown, a Fugitive Slave, Written by Himself. He later moved to Europe, where he published the novel Clotel; or the President’s Daughter (1853). Brown’s freedom was purchased by friends while he was living in Europe, allowing him to return to the United States as a free, famous man soon after Clotel was published. He also wrote and published the play The Escape; or a Leap for Freedom in 1858. He was the first African-American man to publish a novel or play.

Brown also studied and practiced medicine in Massachusetts. He died in Chelsea, Mass. in 1884.

Brown is portrayed for Kentucky Chautauqua by Virgil Covington, Jr. Covington is a former public school teacher, guidance counselor and principal with more than 35 years of experience working with youth in Kentucky schools. He has also been involved with several regional theater productions, including those for Bryan Station High School, Wittenberg University, Woodford Theatre and the University of Kentucky.

This Kentucky Chautauqua program will be presented free of charge. Light refreshments will be provided.

For more information about this program, contact Muhlenberg County Public Libraries at 270-338-4760.

Kentucky Chautauqua is a presentation of the Kentucky Humanities Council. Local funding is provided by the Felix E. Martin Jr. Foundation.

Science in Play2Go special event dates

The Science in Play2Go exhibit will host field trips and other special events at the following dates/times:


  • Wednesday, May 2 at 9-11 a.m.
  • Friday, May 4 at 10 a.m.-12 p.m.
  • Monday, May 7 at 9-10 a.m.
  • Monday, May 7 at 1-2 p.m.
  • Tuesday, May 8 at 9-10 a.m.
  • Tuesday, May 8 at 1-2 p.m.
  • Wednesday, May 9 at 9-10 a.m.
  • Wednesday, May 9 at 1-2 p.m.
  • Thursday, May 10 at 9-11 a.m.
  • Monday, May 14 at 9-10 a.m.
  • Monday, May 14 at 1-2 p.m.
  • Tuesday, May 15 at 9-10 a.m.
  • Tuesday, May 15 at 1-2 p.m.
  • Thursday, May 17 at 9-11 a.m.
  • Thursday, May 17 at 11:45 a.m.-1:45 p.m.
  • Friday, May 18 at 9-11:15 a.m.
  • Monday, May 21 at 9-10 a.m.
  • Monday, May 21 at 1-2 p.m.
  • Wednesday, May 23 at 9-10 a.m.
  • Wednesday, May 23 at 1-2 p.m.
  • Thursday, May 24 at 9-11 a.m.
  • Thursday, May 24 at 11:45 a.m.-1:45 p.m.
  • Friday, May 25 at 9-11 a.m.


Ending times are approximate and are subject to change.


This exhibit may be extra busy at these times. Please plan your visits accordingly.

Science in Play2Go exhibit opens March 10

Science in Play exhibit opens March 10 at library


Muhlenberg County Public Libraries is hosting a fun new exhibit this spring at their Central City branch.
The Science in Play2Go exhibit opens to the public March 10.
Science in Play2Go was designed by the Kentucky Science Center in Louisville, Ky. as a mobile version of their permanent early childhood exhibit. The exhibit is intended to help children and families learn more about how things work by simply playing together, using fun, hands-on activities.
While the exhibit was designed with young children in mind, it was also created specifically to be fun and educational for all ages, even adults.
Science in Play2Go is in its second year touring libraries in Kentucky. In the first year, nearly 50,000 people visited the interactive exhibit at four locations. Muhlenberg County Public Libraries will be the sixth stop on the four-year tour.
“We hope this exhibit will give families a fun new way to experience scientific concepts through play,” Muhlenberg County Public Libraries director Janet Harris said.
The exhibit has several elements, including a build-your-own rollercoaster section, a giant lighted pegboard, giant foam building blocks and more. These elements, the Science Center said, were all created to “encourage open-ended thought, collaboration and creativity,” building fundamental skills to help prepare children for adulthood.
The Science in Play2Go exhibit will be available at the Central City library through June 2. The exhibit will be open Monday from 10 a.m. to 6:30 p.m., Tuesday through Friday from 10 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. and Saturday from 9 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. Hours are subject to change due to special events. Changes will be posted within the library.
This exhibit is free and open to everyone. Group visits (over 10 people) and field trips are encouraged; contact Muhlenberg County Public Libraries to arrange a special visit for these groups.
Children must be accompanied by an adult when visiting the Science in Play2Go exhibit.
For more information about Science in Play2Go, call 270-338-4760 or visit us on Facebook. Click here to see dates of special events such as field trips.

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