This irresistible biographical lecture and slideshow builds around the haunting discovery of nearly 200 beribboned love letters from the Jazz Age in an attic trunk that also held a first edition of Virginia Woolf’s “The Years” and a court ensemble once owned by the 1930s shorts-wearing rebel tennis star Helen Jacobs. Such was the luck of author Emily Bingham when she set to exhuming the memorabilia of her great-aunt Henrietta, whose ghost threaded around the outskirts of the author’s childhood. (The trunk itself is a prized feature of the Frazier’s current exhibit Spirits of the Bluegrass: Prohibition in Kentucky.)
Emily Bingham is the great-niece of Henrietta Bingham. Born in Louisville, Kentucky into a journalism family, early on she decided she wanted to write. She studied history at Harvard and received her Ph.D. from University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. She has taught at University of Louisville, Bellarmine University, and Centre College. Her great-aunt Henrietta’s extraordinary courage and allure first struck her when, as a graduate student, she conducted an an oral history project with her grandmother, Mary Caperton Bingham. “Irrepressible” is Henrietta’s extraordinary story.
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