14 Aug 2015

The Black Patch Three

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A Conversation about the Night Ridersbpthree

Saturday, September 26, 2015

Forbes Conference & Events Center

1002 S. Virginia Street


The event is free, but reserve your seat HERE!

For the first time in Hopkinsville, three of the foremost authorities on the Black Patch region come together for a discussion about the Tobacco War that plagued this area. Generations of farming heritage combine with years of academic research and a triple dose of charm in this presentation that is not to be missed!

Justice Bill Cunningham

A native of Lyon County, Cunningham (pictured right) was elected to the Supreme Court of Kentucky in November 2006 to serve the 1st Supreme Court District. Justice Cunningham earned his bachelor’s degree from Murray State University in 1962 and his juris doctor in 1969 from the University of Kentucky College of Law. He is a veteran of the U.S. Army, having served in Vietnam, Korea, and Germany. The judge wrote On Bended Knees, a comprehensive account of the era of the Tobacco Wars. He joins us for the Books of the Black Patch program and for the Trial of the Night Riders where he astutely portrays Judge Hanberry.

Rick Gregory

Born and reared in Robertson County, Tennessee, Gregory’s (pictured left) roots in tobacco farming extend deep into generations of his ancestors. He holds a B.A. degree in history from the University of Indianapolis and a M.A. and Ph.d in history from Vanderbilt University. Since he raised tobacco to pay his tuition at Vanderbilt, it only seemed appropriate to focus his doctoral dissertation on the crop and its effect on this region. His scholarly work produced Desperate Farmers: A History of the Dark-Fired Tobacco Planters Protective Association of Kentucky and Tennessee. Rick and his wife Patti live on a farm in Robertson County, and both play instrumental roles in Adams’s Bell Witch Fall Festival that features events about the Black Patch including the remarkable Smoke: A Ballad of the Night Riders.

William T. Turner

The Official Historian of Hopkinsville and Christian County (pictured center) brings his knowledge, insight, and human interest stories about the region to this discussion. Turner is a Professor Emeritus of the Hopkinsville Community College where he taught history from 1971 until 2003. He earned his Associate of Arts degree from Bethel College in Hopkinsville and his Bachelor of Science degree from Austin Peay State University in 1963. Turner also holds Master of Arts degrees in Education and History. In 1982, Turner organized and conducted the first Night Rider Tobacco Raid Re-enactment in Hopkinsville in hopes that the hayride would help educate the community about the Tobacco War era. Join him and fellow historian Chris Gilkey on Friday, September 25 for the 33rd annual ride!

The event is free, but reserve your seat HERE!


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