Moments in Kentucky
Legislative History

Presented by the Kentucky Historical Society

Thirteenth Amendment

On February 24, 1865, the General Assembly rejected the Thirteenth Amendment to the U.S. Constitution, which provided for the abolition of slavery in the United States. On March 1, 1865, Governor Thomas Bramlette sent a letter to the Kentucky House, saying that he disagreed with the rejection and arguing that “slavery is irrevocably doomed to speedy extermination.” He noted, however, that “your action is complete without my approval.” The amendment was ratified by three-fourths of the states and went into effect on December 6, 1865. Kentucky finally approved the amendment on March 18, 1976.

Cotton tulip tree quilt

Cotton tulip tree quilt made by an unknown slave owned by Alice Haggin of Woodford County, ca. 1850. A study of slave quilts held in museum collections across the country found that not a single slave quilt maker was fully identified. The earliest tulip designs come from Persia, where the flower grows wild. A legend holds that a young Persian boy fell in love but was rejected. He fled to the desert where he died of a broken heart. Tulips sprang forth from the desert sands where his bitter tears had fallen. The flowers became the symbol of perfect love. KHS Collections.

Kentucky Unbridled Spirit

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