Date of Award

January 2014

Degree Type

Open Access Thesis

Document Type

Master Thesis

Degree Name

Master of Arts (MA)



Department Name when Degree Awarded


First Advisor

Thomas H. Appleton

Department Affiliation


Second Advisor

John P. Bowes

Department Affiliation


Third Advisor

Bradford J. Wood

Department Affiliation



This thesis takes into consideration literature created by various authors during the period 1890 to 1910, the turn of the twentieth century. This thesis looks specifically at the works produced during that time period by authors from Kentucky, living in Kentucky, or with strong ties to the state. The texts themselves illustrated these ties, as they all focused on or related to Kentucky at the time.

The data that was gathered for this thesis came directly from the writings themselves. In order to research the appropriate authors and the works they produced, the author read all of the materials discussed in this thesis, taking great care to compile many notes in the process. The compiled notes were then analyzed to produce this thesis.

The author found that there were several prevailing themes present in Kentucky-based literature written from 1890 to 1910. The five major themes that revealed themselves during the research for this thesis were nature, poverty, race, romance, and war/peace. These themes are discussed in this thesis as a means to explain why Kentucky-based literature was so popular during the aforementioned time period.