The late Homer Ledford received the Governor's Award for Lifetime Achievement during the Kentucky Music Hall of Fame induction ceremony Feb. 21 in Lexington. His wife, Colista Ledford, accepted the award, presented by Colman Elridge.
Wallace "Pete" Stamper, a broadcaster at WRVK 1460 radio in Mount Vernon, was given the Steven Foster Award from the Kentucky Broadcasters Association, and former Gov. Paul Patton was given the Danny Ford Service Award.
Musicians Les McCann, Crystal Gayle, Florence Henderson, Norro Wilson and Dwight Yoakam were also inducted.
Ledford was born and raised in the Tennessee Mountains, a part of the Appalachian chain. At an early age, he began making musical instruments, his first being a "match stick" fiddle. At the age of eighteen, he was given a rehabilitation scholarship to attend the John C. Campbell Folk School, in Brasstown, N.C. There, while recuperating from rheumatic fever, he made his first dulcimer.
Ledford attended Berea College in 1949 and transferred to Eastern Kentucky University, where he received a bachelor's degree in 1954. Teaching industrial arts for 10 years, he resigned in 1963 to become a full-time instrument maker. Ledford's craft is represented in the Smithsonian Institute and registered in the U.S. Patent Office.