Locust Grove Interpretation Task Force

Mission Statement

The Interpretation Task Force endeavors to honor and preserve the history and legacy of the Men, Women, and Children of African and Caribbean Descent enslaved at Historic Locust Grove. We strive to promote a climate of peace, healing and acknowledgement which recognizes the pain and trauma caused by the enslavement of African and Caribbean-ancestored people. We engage to locate and identify descendants of those enslaved at Locust Grove inviting them to discover and utilize resources to gain knowledge of their Ancestors. Through this effort we hope to ease the hurts and trauma caused by slavery and give voice to those enslaved and their descendants.

Four Pillars Of The Interpretation Task Force:


We seek to acknowledge the true history of enslavement at Locust Grove, and to tell an accurate story that honors the men, women, and children who were enslaved at Locust Grove.


We seek to create engagement with diverse audiences at Locust Grove. We seek to engage with researchers and descendants, giving them a voice to the history and interpretation of the home of their ancestors.


We seek to build a community of descendants, engaging them in the interpretation of the full history of Locust Grove. We seek to identify other community groups in our local area that we can partner with to further educate on the history of Locust Grove.


We seek to acknowledge the generational hurt and trauma that enslavement has caused and find ways to have safe, healing conversations about our shared history through tours, programs, and conscious descendant connection.

Current Goals

  • Identifying descendants and creating a descendants database.
  • Creating engaging and informative content on the Locust Grove website and other publications regarding the descendants database.
  • Dedicated research on the cemetery where members of the enslaved community may be located.
  • Revitalizing the Locust Grove Interpretative Plan.
  • Planning an annual in-person descendants gathering.
  • Creating an active Descendants Committee and nominating identified and engaged descendants to Locust Grove Board.


Debra Middleton, Professional Genealogist and Descendant of Charlotte Brown
Christopher Padgett, President of the Kentucky Genealogical Society and Locust Grove Board Member

Staff Advisors:
Kaitlyn Tisdale, Locust Grove Director of Interpretation
Carol Ely, PhD, Locust Grove Executive Director
Heather Hiner, Locust Grove Assistant Program Coordinator
Brandi Lashay Threatt, Locust Grove Museum Theater Director

Members at Large:
Sharron Hilbrecht, Locust Grove Volunteer
Tyler Fleming, Locust Grove Board Member, Associate Professor at the University of Louisville Department of Pan-African Studies 
Shannon Floyd, Mediator & Licensed Therapist
Rev. Troy Overton, Locust Grove Volunteer, Pastor at Our Lady of Mount Carmel
Andrea Meriwether, Locust Grove Board Member, Louisville Tourism Black Tourism Advisory Council Member
Del Marie Vaccaro, Locust Grove Board Member and Researcher
Jill Cooper, Locust Grove Board Member
Gwynne Potts, Board Emeritus
Janet Guerin Muller, Locust Grove Board Member
Jermaine Fowler, Author of The Humanity Archive


Are you interested in joining our task force? Please contact Carol Ely for additional information at