Yesterday afternoon I made the trip to Buffalo Trace for a party they were throwing to celebrate the completion of their Oral History project done with the help of the Louie B. Nunn Center at the University of Kentucky. The party was a very good one with plenty of older and retired employees, reporters and others. They served appetizers and cocktai;s - Ward 8 and bourbon Collins. I brought along a bottle of Echo Springs, Bottled-in-Bond Spring 1916 -Fall 1922. We cracked this open after the presentation and it was enjoyed by many.
Now the exciting part is the project itself. They played a video "trailer" for the project with excerpts from many of the videos recorded. Yes, video. Unlike the oral history projects of the past where cassette tapes were made, these were done as digital video so that 100 years from now they will be able to both hear and see the person being interviewed. They have over 20 hours of interviews with employees such as Elmer T. Lee, but also people such as Taylor Hay Jr., Julian Van Winkle, and Harlan Wheatley. A real variety of age groups.The person who did the interviews is a Proffessor of Astro-physics at U of K and this means there are many questions dealing with the science of distilling as well as the history. This is going to be a valuable tool in the future. The best part is they are going to expand it to other people and distilleries. I think Ed Foote and Tod Hollenbach are two people they need to add to their collection of interviews. I am sure there are others out there as well.
This was a very good event, well attended and a great time had by all. More important than the event is the fact that there is now agreat collection of oral histories available for researchers at the University of Kentucky.