The “First Annual State History Conference” was held on April 3, 1976, at the Student Center, University of Kentucky in Lexington. It was organized under the leadership of the late Dr. Raymond Betts (his files documenting the extraordinary care in coordinating this first conference are archived with the rest of the KATH records in the Kentucky Historical Society in Frankfort).

First State History Conference
Organization Committee
Raymond Betts, Chairman
William C Baldwin
John Drier
Nancy Schrom Dye
Richard Lowitt
John R Mayfield
Robert Tri
William F Willingham

The conference was sponsored by the University of Kentucky History Department and the Tau Chapter of Phi Alpha Theta.

Dr. Betts reached out to his many national and international connections to recruit the keynoter for this first Conference: Dr. Esmond Wright, Director of Institute of United States Studies at University of London. After an introduction by UK President and historian Otis Singletary, Dr. Wright spoke on, “A British View of the American Revolution” at the start of the conference luncheon.

The conference opened with remarks from UK History Department chair, George Herring. Then a panel of educators spoke on “The Present State of Historical Studies in the Kentucky Educational System” chaired by Robert Troutman of Western KY University: Ron Wigglesworth of Frankfort High School, Paul David Nelson of Berea College, and Elizabeth Whalen of Jessie Clark Jr. High School (in Lexington).

After the luncheon keynoter, several breakout sessions convened:

  • “New Views of the American Revolution,” chaired by Sister Mary Philip Trauth of Thomas More College, included James Ramage of Northern Kentucky State College, and Oline Carmical Jr. of Cumberland College
  • “Collection and Preservation of Documents in Kentucky,” chaired by Stuart Sprague of Morehead State University, included Lowell Harrison of WKU and George Robinson of EKU
  • “New Approaches to Instruction in History,” chaired by Jack Thacker of WKU
  • “Coordination between Instruction in History at the Senior High School and College Freshman Levels” chaired by Anita Sanford of Bryan Station Senior High School (in Lexington)
  • “Teaching History in the Community College” chaired by Mike Zalampas of Jefferson Community College

Dr. Betts then distributed a questionnaire which by May of 1976 drew 46 respondents to help craft the Second Annual History Conference.

Thereafter the Annual Conferences were organized by the Executive Board chairs, supported by committee members of various numbers each year. The following list of KATH Board Chairs from 1977-2011 is presented in alpha order (some chairs served more than one term):

Carol Crowe-Carraco
Western KY University
Carrie Dowdy
KY Historical Society
Ellen Emerick
Georgetown College
John Ernst
Morehead State University
Melanie Beals Goan
University of Kentucky
Carolyn Dupont
Eastern KY University
Denver Fugate
Elizabeth Comm College
Rebecca Hanly
KY Historical Society
James Heizer
Georgetown College
Ray Hebert
Thomas More College
Randolph Hollingsworth
University of Kentucky
James Klotter
KY Historical Society
Francois LeRoy
Northern KY University
Lonnie Lewis
Frankfort Christian Acad
Lorie Maltby
Henderson Comm College
Thomas Matijasic
Prestonsburg Comm College
Melissa McEuen
Transylvania University
Tim Moore
Simon Kenton High School
Ora Nall
Apollo High School
Chad Owen
University of Louisville
Kevin Simon
Sayre School
Kevin Sullivan
KY Country Day School
Anita Sanford Tolson
Bryan Station High School
Rick Smoot
Bluegrass C & T College
Eric Wake
Cumberland College
Jeffrey Williams
Northern KY University

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

%d bloggers like this: