Butcher Hollow, Kentucky
Butcher Hollow (also known as Butcher Holler) is a coal-mining unincorporated community located in Johnson County, Kentucky, USA. Its claim to fame is being the birthplace of country music legend Loretta Lynn, who paid tribute to the community in the song Coal Miner's Daughter, which begins with the lyrics
"Well, I was born'd a coal miner's daughter
In a cabin on a hill in Butcher Holler"
Later in the song, she also mentions Van Lear, the larger community in which Butcher Hollow is located:
"My daddy worked all night in the Van Lear coal mines.
All day long in the fields a-hoein corn"
Butcher Hollow is a part of the community of Van Lear, which was constructed by the Consolidation Coal Company in the early part of the 20th century. Van Lear was named for Van Lear Black, one of the company's directors. Although most of Butcher Hollow lies outside of the old Van Lear city limits, the mailing address of those who have lived there has been Van Lear since the establishment of the Van Lear post office in 1909. Butcher Hollow is not an independent town or village in its own right.
Hundreds of tourists visit the town of Van Lear each year to see the childhood home of Loretta Lynn, Crystal Gayle, and her siblings. Herman Webb, one of Lynn's brothers, gives tours of the house for a fee of five dollars. Although Butcher Hollow is often listed as a separate town, it is clear those listing it this way do not understand that a hollow in an Eastern Kentucky community would be referred to as a street or avenue if it were located in a city. Thus, Butcher Hollow's address would be Butcher Hollow, Van Lear, Johnson County, Kentucky.