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Oldham County is a place many call home. Its history is steeped in a rich and colorful past that has been preserved through various court documents, diaries, old newspapers, letters and oral histories. Dr. Nancy Sterns Theiss, Ph. D. has taken these stories and compiled them into a book that takes a fascinating look at a county that has a strong connection to the Ohio River and has played an important role in shaping the state of Kentucky.
Similar to many other counties along the Mason-Dixon Line, Oldham County has maintained varying loyalties on a wide range of topics. Drawing from background materials that included primary sources from the archives of the Oldham County History Center as well as some oral histories, Theiss has penned a book using a river theme in an effort to show “how the Ohio River shaped Oldham County’s development and history,” said Theiss. Four sections of the book represent four major periods: Muddy Waters: Pioneer & Antebellum; Turbulence: Civil War & Reconstruction; Undertow: Progressive Period & Depression; and Currents & Streams: Modern Era. Some of the book material has appeared in articles for the World Beneath Your Feet column Theiss writes for the Courier-Journal. She has expanded these ideas into a written timeline of Oldham County history.
Theiss will be the featured author in the last program of the History Press Author Dinner Series on Wed., Dec. 11 at 6:30 p.m. The program will take place at the Rob Morris Chapel Educational Building on the grounds of the Oldham County History Center campus. Light dinner fare will be followed by Theiss’ program highlighting Oldham County’s history. Reservations are required. Cash bar will be available. Tickets are $12 for members, $15 for non-members. Copies of the book will be available for sale.
Theiss is a native of Oldham County and Executive Director of the Oldham County Historical Society. She has earned degrees in biology and environmental education, and a Ph.D. on the teaching strategies of wildlife ecologist/naturalist Aldo Leopold. She gives many talks and programs on Oldham County history.