There are more notable African Americans with Kentucky roots and ties than any one person knows about. Very little has been written about many of them and it is a challenge to find what was written in the past. For some, their stories have only been told by word of mouth. The Notable Kentucky African Americans Database (NKAA) has been developed as a finding aid to bring together a brief description of pertinent names, places, and events, and to list the sources where additional information may be found. This is not currently an all inclusive database, but we are working toward that goal and suggestions are welcomed.

Recently Updated/Added

Johnson, Freddie / James Johnson, Sr. / James Johnson, Jr.

Freddie Johnson is bourbon tour guide at Buffalo Trace in Frankfort, KY. He and his family have a long history with the distillery, going back to his…

Roberts, Erwin

In 2004, Erwin Roberts was the first Director of Homeland Security in Kentucky. Later that year he was named Secretary of the Personnel Cabinet by…

Lewis, Garrett Davis

In 1880, Lewis won the Kentucky Derby riding Fonso. The industry's first foul was claimed after the race. Garrett Davis Lewis rode for Byron…

African American Schools in Lexington and Fayette County, KY

cadentown school.pdf

Often mentioned as one of the early schools for African Americans in Lexington, was a school taught by a white man from Tennessee around 1830. But an…

Quisenberry, Rosetta Lucas

Rosetta Quisenberry, born in Lexington, KY, was a school teacher for 14 years. She had collected over 1,000 postcards and other memorabilia with…

Laine, Henry Allen

Henry A. Laine was born near College Hill in Madison County, KY. He was a poet and wrote many poems using Negro dialect. Laine was one of three poets…

Routt, Thalethia B.

Thalethia B. Routt

Thalethia B. Routt is the first African American to be an Associate General Counsel for the University of Kentucky since January 2006. The Office of…