Tuesday, May 18, 2010
Muhlenberg County Courthouse - Greenville, Ky.
I attended a wedding this weekend in Hartford, Kentucky and decided to finally get some counties that are west of I-65. Being that some of my wife's family is from this area, I was pretty comfortable with the roads and decided to see how many counties I could check off. It was a pretty great afternoon, as my wife, her grandfather and I traveled through the Green River counties. I learned a whole lot about these counties, as my wife's grandfather told me all about the counties that he has lived in for more than 30 years.
Most people probably know about Muhlenberg County from the John Prine song "Paradise" which memorializes an old coal town that was torn down in the 60s. What I hadn't realized before this trip was how literal this song is. As we traveled through Muhlenberg County, my wife's Grandfather told me about the what at the time was the world's largest shovel, which was brought in to strip out the coal. He told me that the shovel, which could fit 3-4 trucks in the bucket, had to be placed on the coal bed itself, because if placed on the earth it would sink.
When you drive through Muhlenberg County, the thing you really begin to realize is that much of the county is a huge swamp. My wife's grandfather told me that years ago, after they built the major road through the county, it was discovered that the road went through a wetland, and the road construction had destroyed much of the habitat of local ducks. Dozens of ponds for ducks had to be built to rectify the problem.
The courthouse pictured above is striking and beautiful. As you can probably see, the windows and doors are boarded over. I hope that it is simply being restored in this picture, but I couldn't help but notice a new judicial center next door.