From the Cut-Through project that moved mountains, the infamous Hatfield/McCoy feud, to the rich production of coal which partly defined the region’s emergence, Pikeville and Pike County has a background rich in history. Now, the city of Pikeville will be home to the Pikeville-Pike County Hatfield McCoy Museum.
Director Polly Hopkins hopes to have the museum up and running before the annual Hillbilly Days festival beginning on April 16.
Hopkins, a Pike County native, studied French at the University of Kentucky where she then went on to teach English in France under a teaching assistantship. Upon moving home from France, she was informed about the museum position and submitted an application.
The museum, which is located on the fourth floor on the former Hall of Justice, will provide the community and visitors a look into the many aspects of the city’s and county’s history from the coal background to the Hatfield/McCoy Feud.
Hopkins hopes to create a dynamic space that will be interactive in nature. She hopes to incorporate video screens, bring in local artists, and display temporary collections.
One element that Hopkins wants to utilize is social media. She wants to incorporate an active blog site that visitors can follow.
What can we expect to see in the museum? Hopkins is working on putting together themed rooms such as a coal room which will focus on coal in the region and how it has shaped many lives. Also a local high school room will display local schools and sports, as well as an arts and entertainment room, and a room that focuses primarily on Pikeville and the Cut-Through project.
Some of Hopkins’ favorite pieces include old tools and household items. She wants to set the tools up to appear to be in an old tool shop to create an educational visual.
“I am excited to see the museum go from an idea to something physical,” said Hopkins on the opening of the museum.
Hopkins hopes the museum will allow individuals to see history in a positive light and will inspire them to learn about local history on their own.
She hopes to have interns from UPIKE to assist her in the museum and wants to get the local schools involved by bringing them in on field trips.
If you are interested in making this dream a reality and want to volunteer at the museum, contact director Polly Hopkins at firstname.lastname@example.org or by phone at (606)213-4397.