University of Kentucky




James Hillary Mulligan
In Kentucky
King Library Press, Lexington, 1996

A printing of Judge Mulligan's famous 1902 poem with historical notes. The text and information about the poem and author are available.

A Note About the Text

The text of In Kentucky was set from a manuscript copy in Judge Mulligan's hand, signed at Maxwell Place, in the Special Collections of the University of Kentucky. There are minor differences between this manuscript and the various printed versions. The arrangement of the stanzas and the punctuation here reflect the text as written by Judge Mulligan.

A Note About the Illustration

In 1949, The Gravesend Press issued its first book, The Mint Julep, as a keepsake for Christmas of that year. Joseph C. Graves designed the book and executed two drawings, and decorative head- & tail-pieces for this edition.

To honor the memory of Joseph C. Graves, and his legacy to The King Library Press, we have adapted his julep cup as fitting ornamentation for this edition of Judge Mulligan's famous poem, metaphoric of the spirit of the Bluegrass of Kentucky.


Composition, presswork, & binding were done by Alan Cornett, Dave Elbon, Gina Gentile, Mary Kelly, & Jim Russo under the direction of Paul Evans Holbrook at the King Library Press.

This book was set by hand in old A.T.F. Caslon type and printed on Rives Lightweight paper in the press of Gravesend.

One hundred twenty-five copies.


  • Title
  • 1/The moonlight falls the softest
  • 2/The bluegrass waves the bluest