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At a flooded Kentucky cultural center, resilience is part of the story

Whitesburg, Ky.

The raging floodwaters that left dozens dead or missing in eastern Kentucky also swept away some of the region’s irreplaceable history.

Appalshop, a cultural center known for chronicling Appalachian life for the rest of the world, is cleaning up and assessing its losses, like much of the stricken mountain region around it.

Record flooding on the North Fork of the Kentucky River inundated downtown Whitesburg in southeastern Kentucky, causing extensive damage last week at the renowned repository of Appalachian history and culture. Some of its losses are likely permanent, after floodwaters soaked or swept away some of Appalshop’s treasures, including archives documenting the region’s rich, and sometimes painful, past.

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