TODAY IN KENTUCKY HISTORY

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On October 10, 1773, James Boone died in the Boone Massacre in what is now Lee County.  Native Americans killed Daniel Boone’s eldest son and five others in their camp of eight settlers en route to Kentucky.  Separated from Daniel Boone’s leading party, the men had set up camp near Wallen’s Creek.  At dawn, the Indians attacked and killed James Boone, Henry Russell, John and Richard Mendenhall (brothers), a youth whose last name was Drake, and Charles (one of two slaves in the party).  Isaac Crabtree and Adam, a slave, escaped.  The massacre prompted Boone and his party to abandon their first attempt to settle Kentucky and return to NC.

Localtonians wishes a Happy Anniversary to Henry Clay, Jr. and Julia Prather who were married in 1832.  The couple had five children.  Their daughter Anne Brown Clay (1837–1917) married Major Henry Clay McDowell (1832–1899).  In 1883, they purchased her grandfather’s Ashland estate from other heirs.  Their son, Thomas Clay McDowell, was a significant figure in Thoroughbred horse racing in Kentucky.  He was a breeder, owner, and horse trainer, who won the 1902 Kentucky Derby with Alan-a-Dale.

October 10, 1849, Abolitionist Patrick Doyle was sentenced to 20 years hard labor in a Lexington courtroom for enticing away slaves.   

Localtonians wishes a Happy Birthday to Kentucky’s 33rd Governor William Sylvester Taylor born in 1853.  Governor Taylor was born in a log cabin on the Green River, about five miles from Morgantown, Butler County.  He was the original winner of the disputed gubernatorial election of 1899.  Still, the Kentucky General Assembly, dominated by the Democrats, reversed the election results, giving his Democratic opponent, William Goebel, the Governorship.  Thus, Taylor served only 50 days as Governor.

Localtonians wishes a Happy Anniversary to Governor and Mrs. William J. Fields and Dora McDavid Fields who wed in 1893.  “Honest Bill from Olive Hill” was our 41st Governor from 1923-27.  The Governor was born in Willard and moved to Olive Hill, both in Carter County.  

October 10, 1916, Deputy Sheriff Lem Nolan, Perry County Sheriff’s Office, was shot and killed near the mouth of Buffalo Creek, near Hazard, while attempting to arrest two men for illegal shooting.  One of the men opened fire on Deputy Nolan, mortally wounding him.  Despite his wounds, Deputy Nolan returned fire and wounded the man.  The subject Deputy Nolan shot was arrested by a posse near the headwaters of Eagle Branch.  Deputy Nolan was 27-years-old and survived by his wife.

On October 10, 1899, the Independent Negro League of Kentucky organized, representing all African-Americans who opposed the Republican administration.  One reason for supporting Democratic candidate Goebel was because he supported the Separate Coach Law.  Goebel proposed a first-class coach for black women to no longer have to ride in the rear of smoke cars, and a second-class coach for any black men who would pay.  After the meeting, they agreed that Republican candidate Taylor would do nothing as Governor to improve the conditions of “Jim Crow Cars” for African-Americans in Kentucky; therefore, they would support the Goebel ticket.  The League also resolved always to support colored candidates and nominate any man of color who would advance the black cause.

On October 10, 1938, explorers found a vast new underground section of Mammoth Cave National Park.  “The abundance of the various forms of gypsum,” the report continues, “is the outstanding mineral feature in the newly-discovered section.  These deposits are certainly far superior to any previously found in this or any other cave in this area, and I believe they will prove to be the best display in the entire United States.”

October 10, 1943, Chief of Police James W. Smith, Falmouth Police Department, was shot and killed while responding to a domestic disturbance call on Park Street.  When he arrived at the scene he confronted a male subject who was armed with a 12-gauge and as he attempted to talk the man into putting the gun down he was shot in the chest and killed instantly.  The county sheriff responded to the scene and arrested the suspect.

October 10, 1945, President Harry S. Truman dedicated the $115,000,000 Kentucky Dam at Gilbertsville and pushed for more projects like this T.V.A. dam during his speech.  It was the President’s third visit to Paducah in 27 days.  On this visit, thousands lined the streets from the airport to the dam.

October 10, 1951, Army PFC Harold K. Norfleet from Pulaski County died fighting in the Korean War.

October 10, 1953, in Bear Bryant’s last year as head coach, an unranked Kentucky football team ties the 14th ranked LSU Tigers on the road 6-6.  The cats finished the season 7-2-1.

October 10, 1966, Marine Corps PFC Lawrence E. Clark from Amba in Floyd County died fighting in the Vietnam War.

October 10, 1968, Air Force TSGT Emmett S. Orr from Ashland in Boyd County died fighting in the Vietnam War.

October 10, 1992, the Jockey Club Gold Cup (G1) at Belmont Park attracts a top class field.  A.P. Indy stumbles out of the gate.

October 10, 1997, Bill Collins leaves prison for extorting money from state contractors and disguising kickbacks as political contributions while his wife was Governor.  Martha Layne Collins was in the courtroom when he was sentenced and was waiting for him when released.

October 10, 2003, Kentucky’s 51st Governor Ned Breathitt from 1963-67, collapsed while making a speech at Lexington Community College.  He was admitted to the University of Kentucky Hospital, but remained comatose after the collapse and died four days later.  His final resting place is his hometown of Hopkinsville.  His major accomplishment as Governor was the passage of the Kentucky Civil Rights Act, the first desegregation law passed by a southern state.