Interview with George M. Kurtz, September 18, 1975

Project: University of Kentucky Oral History Project

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Interview Summary

George Kurtz was born and raised in Garrard County, Kentucky, where he still owns a farm. Kurtz entered the University of Kentucky in 1933 to study pre-law, but later transferred to the College of Agriculture. He pledged Alpha Gamma Rho and stayed in the fraternity house. Kurtz graduated from UK in 1937, despite the difficulties of the Depression. Kurtz describes UK's campus, and mentions instructors, and the College of Agriculture's programs. He remembers that students and faculty shared a closer association because of the small class sizes, and he talks about Dean Thomas Poe Cooper and Tommy Bryant. Kurtz recalls attending the Wednesday afternoon teas at Maxwell Place, where he met President and Mrs. Frank L. McVey.

Kurtz discusses the social life of the students. He remembers Hell Week was hard on the freshmen. Kurtz talks about the advent of 3.2 beer, students' social activities, and local spots where they would gather such as the Huddle, later called the Paddock. He mentions the Canary Cottage and the Big Bands that played at Joyland Casino and Park. Kurtz was a member of Lamp and Cross, the Strollers, President of Block and Bridle, and a member of UK's livestock judging team.

After college, Kurtz served as a County Agent in Clark, Casey, Edmonson, Counties, and recalls the farmers were very supportive. He assisted in developing a hemp seed program for the government during World War II. Kurtz mentions the farming subsidy programs enacted during the Depression by the Franklin D. Roosevelt administration. Kurtz was in the auction and real estate business for thirty years. He recalls that he met "Uncle Adolph" Rupp, the basketball coach at the University of Kentucky, at a cattle sale.

Kurtz mentions various UK Presidents. He comments on the breaking of the color barrier in athletics. Kurtz states that he encouraged UK basketball coach Joe B. Hall to take another look at Larry Johnson, from Union County, who eventually played for the team. He mentions Dwane Casey, from the same county, who also played for UK. He also talks about his family

Interview Accession

1975oh023_af003

Interviewee Name

George M. Kurtz

Interviewer Name

Charles Atcher

Interview Date

1975-09-18

Interview Keyword

University of Kentucky

Interview Rights

All rights to the interviews, including but not restricted to legal title, copyrights and literary property rights, have been transferred to the University of Kentucky Libraries.

Interview Usage

Interviews may be reproduced with permission from Louie B. Nunn Center for Oral History, Special Collections, University of Kentucky Libraries.

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Interviews may be reproduced with permission from Louie B. Nunn Center for Oral History, Special Collections, University of Kentucky Libraries.

All rights to the interviews, including but not restricted to legal title, copyrights and literary property rights, have been transferred to the University of Kentucky Libraries.

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Kurtz, George M. Interview by Charles Atcher. 18 Sep. 1975. Lexington, KY: Louie B. Nunn Center for Oral History, University of Kentucky Libraries.

Kurtz, G.M. (1975, September 18). Interview by C. Atcher. University of Kentucky Oral History Project. Louie B. Nunn Center for Oral History, University of Kentucky Libraries, Lexington.

Kurtz, George M., interview by Charles Atcher. September 18, 1975, University of Kentucky Oral History Project, Louie B. Nunn Center for Oral History, University of Kentucky Libraries.





Persistent Link for this Record: https://kentuckyoralhistory.org/ark:/16417/xt7msb3wwp49