Professional News

Bourbon Barons Help Earn UK Nunn Center Library of Congress Invitation

photo of Doug Boyd and Joanna Hay (right) present bourbon documetary to AFC Director Elizabeth Peterson
photo of Supreme Court Justice Samuel Alito, Doug Boyd, Martha Alito, AFC Director Elizabeth Peterson

LEXINGTON, Ky. (Feb. 23, 2017) In December, the Louie B. Nunn Center for Oral History at the University of Kentucky Libraries was invited to present a documentary as part of the Celebration of Kentucky event held by the American Folklife Center (AFC) at the Library of Congress.

During the AFC's Celebration of Kentucky, Doug Boyd, director of the Nunn Center, presented a lecture on the center's bourbon oral histories and a screening of the documentary "Kentucky Bourbon Tales: Distilling the Family Business."

Boyd was humbled to have the Nunn Center's work featured, "I think it speaks to the power of oral history, as well as to the cultural importance of Kentucky's bourbon industry on the national and international stage.”

Directed by Joanna Hay, “Kentucky Bourbon Tales: Distilling the Family Business” is a documentary that explores the science and art behind the bourbon-making process and details how the Kentucky staple became a global phenomenon. It features Nunn Center oral history interviews and stories from master distillers and bourbon barons from famous distilleries including Woodford Reserve, Wild Turkey, Heaven Hill, Maker's Mark, Jim Beam, Brown Forman, and Bulleit. The film was created in conjunction with the Kentucky Distillers' Association as part of the Kentucky Bourbon Tales Oral History Project.

Following the film screening, the AFC officially accepted the documentary into their collection. The full oral history interviews on which the film is based can be viewed online at

The AFC was created in 1976 by the U.S. Congress to "preserve and present American folklife" through programs of research, documentation, archival preservation, reference service, live performance, exhibitions, publications and training. Designated as the national center for folklife documentation and research, the AFC continues to collect and document living traditional culture, while preserving for the future its unparalleled collections in the state-of-the-art preservation facilities of the Library of Congress.

UK is the University for Kentucky. At UK, we are educating more students, treating more patients with complex illnesses and conducting more research and service than at any time in our 150-year history. To read more about the UK story and how you can support continued investment in your university and the Commonwealth, go to: #uk4ky #seeblue