For those who responded to me about Olive Hill, Volume 1, thank you for your kind words.”

Olive Hill, Kentucky gave all that it had in a time it was most needed until a time it was not. More people need to know the Olive Hill story. Olive Hill, Volume 1 is the story of the first America, the land of opportunity. In May 1800, where Volume 1 begins, America was a few million souls clinging to the eastern edge of a vast continent. People were moving west and opening up a vast new wilderness. Olive Hill, Volume 2 is the story of the second America, the land of progress. Industrial might. World power. Olive Hill, Kentucky played a little-known, but important role in both Americas.

Olive Hill Volume 1 and Volume 2 Overview

Carter County, Kentucky was blessed with an abundance of diverse natural resources, including timber, iron ore, coal, and limestone.

During the Industrial Revolution one of its towns, Olive Hill, became the center of a 600 square mile hotbed of fireclay, a unique heat-resistant clay used to make firebricks.

For decades, thousands of hard-working Olive Hillians dug, moulded, and fired that uncommon clay into hundreds of thousands of firebricks per day to line open hearth steel furnaces, locomotive fireboxes, and steamship boilers.

Without the steel, there would be no skyscrapers and no rail lines. Without the trains and ships, there would be no movement to expedite a growing nation. Olive Hill firebricks helped make this possible. This one small Kentucky town can lay claim to help building the greatest nation on earth.

Olive Hill Volume 1 follows the Reed family from May, 1800 thru September, 1884. From Virginia to Kentucky to other historical places and events… Olive Hill Volume 2 continues to follow the Reed family from September, 1884 to June, 1959. History is alive in both volumes.

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