Pick Your Community: | Hopkins | Muhlenberg | Daviess | Christian | Henderson | Lakes | McCracken | Webster

LuRay Artifacts Add to Richness of Memories

antique1CENTRAL CITY, Ky. (8/4/14) — Central City's LuRay Hotel holds a special place in the heart of Wanda Jones, who is proud to say she is '79 years young.'

As plans progress for breaking ground for the LuRay Park, on the site of the historic hotel, Jones has donated several items now on display at the Central City city building.

“In 1952, my husband, Rev. Gerald Jones, and I, caught the train at the LuRay Hotel to go on our honeymoon," Jones told SurfKY News. "We waited in the lobby to take a train to Columbus, Ind. They had large steam engine passenger cars then."

As a newlywed couple, the Joneses were some of the last to ride the passenger trains from the LuRay's then bustling location in downtown Central City. The railroads drastically and quickly cut train service as the use of automobiles became the norm for travel.

Just three decades after the Joneses marriage, the LuRay fell to the wrecking ball in the mid 1970s. The three-story structure was razed, but many area residents have rare items that were auctioned off when the site was leveled.

The city has begun looking for possible items to increase awareness of the rich history of the hotel, which was once a major stopping point between Nashville and Louisville.

"Central City Fire Chief Ricky King came by my house to see what items I had from the hotel that might be of interest," Jones said. "I think he kind of fell in love with what treasures I had, and I was so glad he did. I had the painting of the LuRay, along with the tea set and chair. Just as fascinating for me was the original stool that sat behind the hotel's front desk. For a while, I thought it was handmade, but if you turn the stool upside down, there is a tag that documents that it was made in Louisville. There's no telling how many years this stool sat behind the front desk at the LuRay."

Jones said she also loves the oil painting of the hotel by Magdalene White. The painting is dated on the canvas as being completed in 1976. Jones admits she knows little about the artist or the painting's history.

"The painting was given to me as a gift in 1995," Jones said. "I really don't know anything about the artist. I wish I did. But I just love pictures of historic buildings and this is a great one."

Jones said she has cherished the extremely rare items through the years, but believes that sharing them with others is more important.

"I had these pieces and was using them in my husband's study," Jones said. "When I saw the plans at the city building for the new park I was inspired to give the city these items to do what I can to help out. I wanted to do something for Central City. My husband I lived here so long. We were in the Cedar Grove Missionary Baptist Church parsonage for 42 years, from 1965 until my husband's passing. It's important now to give back to this community. I hope that others will do the same."

The Rev. Cody Crowell, current pastor of the Cedar Grove Missionary Baptist Church, said Mrs. Jones has always been a person who lives to share.

"She is an inspiring person," Crowell said. "She still teaches a Sunday School class and she is always open to mentoring younger Christians, in helping them to grow in their faith. She is a very giving person."

King seems to agree with Crowell.

"We think it is inspiring that Mrs. Jones gave us these historic artifacts," King said. "Hopefully, we'll be able to incorporate many of these fascinating pieces of history into the finished park. We are hoping to break ground in time to have next year's Labor Day events on the LuRay amphithearter stage. That is our dream. We are also in the process of obtaining a bit more land for the park."

Jones' items are on display Monday through Thursday at the Central City city building 8 a.m to 4 p.m. and on Friday from 8 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. To find out more about donating items from the hotel, or to make monetary donations to the LuRay Park fund, call (270) 754-5097.

ant-2 

ant3

Paul McRee
Photos by Paul McRee

© Copyright 2014 SurfKY News Group, Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, or rewritten without permission. SurfKY News encourages you to share this story by using one of the social media links below.

button coupons
button classifieds

In Other News...

'Cram the Cruiser' Concludes with Great Success

OWENSBORO, Ky. (12/17/14) — Cram the Cruiser concluded Dec. 16, 2014 and Post 16 has received the largest amount of… Read More

Webster County to Host Baptist Holiday Classic

DIXON, Ky. (12/18/14) — The Webster County High School boys' basketball program will host the 2014 Baptist Health… Read More

Most Read This Week

December 16, 2014 9225

Coal Miner Fatally Injured in Underground Mining…

in Top News For All Sites by Dick Brown
December 14, 2014 8359

Muhlenberg Pays Homage to U.S. Armed Forces

in Local (Muhlenberg) Top News by Charles W. Riley II, SurfKY News
December 12, 2014 7962

Man Allegedly Threatening Medical Staff with…

in Local (Muhlenberg) Top News by Wes Miller
December 17, 2014 5968

Elderly Couple Found Shot to Death in Muhlenberg

in Local (Muhlenberg) Top News by Trooper Stu Recke
December 17, 2014 5907

Three Men Charged with Burglary

in Local (Hopkins) Top News by Madisonville Police Department
December 15, 2014 4752

Hopkins County Woman Charged Second Time in Two…

in Local (Hopkins) Top News by Charles W. Riley II, SurfKY News
December 12, 2014 4680

Man Allegedly Hits Brother with Pickup Truck…

in Local (Muhlenberg) Top News by Wesley Miller
December 15, 2014 4261

Woman Leads Police on High-Speed Chase in Stolen…

in Local (Hopkins) Top News by Madisonville Police
December 12, 2014 3770

Man Accused of Public Intoxication, Stealing…

in Local (Hopkins) Top News by Madisonville Police Department
December 15, 2014 3239

Vehicle Careens down 150 Foot Embankment with…

in Local (Hopkins) Top News by Madisonville Police Department

Stories Trending Today

December 17, 2014 5968

Elderly Couple Found Shot to Death in Muhlenberg

in Local (Muhlenberg) Top News by Trooper Stu Recke
December 17, 2014 5907

Three Men Charged with Burglary

in Local (Hopkins) Top News by Madisonville Police Department
December 17, 2014 2095

Madisonville Police Arrest Reports - Dec. 17, 2014

in Hopkins News by Madisonville Police Department
December 17, 2014 1683

KSP Charges Grayson County Man with Crimes…

in General News For All Sites by Sherry H. Bray
December 17, 2014 1544

Harney-Led Lady Mustangs Top Ohio County

in Local (Muhlenberg) Top News by Steve LeMaster
December 17, 2014 1526

KYTC Announces Winners of 2014 Adopt-a-Highway…

in General News For All Sites by Lisa Tolliver
December 17, 2014 1442

Mustangs Earn District Win over Ohio County

in Local (Muhlenberg) Top News by Steve LeMaster
December 17, 2014 1264

Princeton Road Drug Investigation Results in…

in Local (Hopkins) Top News by Madisonville Police Department
December 17, 2014 936

Change to Holiday Schedule for LBL Administrative…

in Local (Lakes) Top News by Land Between The Lakes
December 18, 2014 909

Cat Scratching over Dog Ownership Escalates

in Local (Hopkins) Top News by Amber Averitt, SurfKY News

SurfKY News Group, Inc.
Corporate Office & Studio
1125 Nebo Rd.  •  Madisonville, KY 42431
270.452.2727 (phone)
  •  270.452.2249 (fax)


Contact a member of our staff: www.surfky.com/contact
Copyright © 2014 SurfKY News Group, Inc.  •  Terms of Use  •  Site Map

social fbsocial twsocial yt
social gpsocial flrsocial rss