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The Monument Workshop at UK


About: The Monument Workshop at the University of Kentucky is a new, grant-funded program designed to improve the monument landscape in Kentucky and beyond. We connect groups working on monuments and memorials with expertise in issues like legal rights, landscape design, historical research, and community engagement. Like our national funding initiative, the Monuments Project, we prioritize local and underrepresented stories and memorials. The Workshop team is open to collaborations with all communities and groups, with the expectation that our partners engage with experts and citizens regardless of race, ethnicity, sexual orientation, or political affiliation. We ask for this commitment because practical and ethical solutions to monument conflicts require widespread civic engagement. 


Why do monument groups need legal advice? 

  1. Communities are more likely to find creative and achievable solutions when they understand the limits and possibilities of existing legal protections. 
  2. Understanding legal issues specific to a monument and memorial sites, like property rights, titles and boundaries, easements, or adverse possession can help groups address problems proactively and efficiently.   
  3. Providing direct legal services like (501(c)(3) registration or problem resolution) to rural and underserved communities ensures that all communities are reflected in local monuments. 


Year One Focus Areas: 

  1. The monumental and unmet needs of Black cemeteries and memorials in Kentucky 
  2. The important role of natural spaces in Kentucky, particularly in rural communities 
  3. Local monument or memorial projects with specific legal questions or research needs 
  4. Memorials and markers that tell the stories of underrepresented communities not formally recognized through other traditional avenues. 


Project Limits 

Currently, we don’t have direct funds for site clean-up or the construction of new markers or signage. However, feel free to reach out to us and let us know about your unmet needs so we can make future connections or contact you when opportunities arise. The Workshop, and the nationwide Monuments Project under which we are funded, support “publicly oriented initiatives that are accessible to everyone and promote stories that are not already represented in commemorative spaces.” Therefore, many traditional projects that focus on already commemorated local leaders, such as Abraham Lincoln or Henry Clay, for example, may be outside the scope of our work. 


Contact Us 

We welcome contact from any project or community interested in discussing a monument or memorial. Email us at or leave us a message at (859) 218-1578.