TODAY IN KENTUCKY HISTORY

Kentucky Trivia

In the December 27, 1787 edition of the Kentucky Gazette, Elijah Craig solicited scholars to study at a new academy.  It opened in January 1788 in Lebanon Town (Scott County) and would offer the courses taught in public seminaries.  Ten years later the school was absorbed by the Rittenhouse Academy.  In 1829 Georgetown College took control.

December 27, 1860, Governor Magoffin called a special session to consider succession.
The Civil War in Kentucky by Lowell H. Harrison

December 27, 1862, Elizabethtown was captured by General John Hunt Morgan.  Each side wrote their account of the day; one pro-Union account reported widespread looting, some even by Morgan himself.  Other accounts give Morgan the details of establishing a headquarters and receiving calls from old friends and those who had heard of him and wanted to see the “Rebel Raider.”  He had just been promoted to Brigadier General on December 11 and married the 14th.

December 27, 1871, Lexington native Robert Jefferson Breckinridge, passed away, the son of Senator John Breckinridge.  A restless youth, Breckinridge was suspended from Princeton for fighting, and following his graduation from Union College in 1819, was prone to engage in a lifestyle of partying and revelry.  But, he was admitted to the bar in 1824 and elected to the Kentucky General Assembly in 1825.  A serious illness and the death of a child in 1829 prompted him to turn to religion, and he became an ordained minister in 1832.

December 27, 1875, City Marshal Thomas H. Chandler, Lebanon Police Department, died from a gunshot as his posse attempted to arrest a man.  Marshal Chandler shot the man when he refused to surrender and was then fatally shot by the man’s brother.

December 27, 1896, Officer Charles Lacey, Cynthiana Police Department, succumbed to gunshot wounds sustained on Christmas Eve while attempting to arrest a drunk subject.  The 16-year-old subject who shot him was acquitted.

On December 27, 1908, Deputy Jailer Logan Young, Jessamine County Sheriff’s Department, succumbed to gunshot wounds when he and another deputy attempted to arrest a mentally ill man threatening a family member.  When the deputies arrived, the man opened fire on them with a shotgun from behind his horse.  The suspect was declared insane and was institutionalized.

December 27, 1952, Marine Corps PFC Durward A. Ray from Lancaster died in the Korean War.

December 27, 1960, Muhammad Ali (2-0) fought Herb Siler (1-1) in Miami Beach Auditorium.  Siler became Clay’s first knockout victim, going down in the fourth round of a scheduled eight-round fight.  Twelve years later, Siler was convicted of manslaughter and served a seven-year prison sentence.  He died in 2001 in Miami.

December 27, 1967, Marine Corps LCPL Mitchell Hughes Junior from Louisville died in the Vietnam War.

December 27, 1972, the U.S. Department of Agriculture killed a 36-year-old program where they helped millions of farmers pay for projects designed to conserve soil and water and curb pollution on private land.  Kentucky farmers lost $5 million per year on average.  

December 27, 1986, Rex Chapman prepared to take a shot as Louisville’s Craig Hawley defended during the Cats’ 85-51 win in Louisville.  Chapman, a freshman, lit up the Cards for 26 points, hitting 10 of his 20 shot attempts.  Despite playing only two years at Kentucky, Chapman is 50th on UK’s all-time scoring list with 1,073 points.

Kentucky Trivia:  Out of Kentucky’s two senators and six congressmen, only three are native Kentuckians; Hal Rogers, Andy Barr and John Yarmuth.

December 27, 1990, forward John Pelphrey launched a jump shot against Eastern Kentucky at Rupp Arena.  Pelphrey had 12 points in the 74-60 UK win.

December 27, 1997, Denny Crum’s Louisville Cardinals meet Tubby Smith’s #4 Kentucky Wildcats in Lexington.  Kentucky lost 79-76, snapping a six year winning streak against non-conference opponents at home.

December 27, 2001, the U.S. Department of Agriculture Forest Service stated that Oaks and Hickories are claiming more ground in Appalachian Forest in the wake of a three-year siege by an army of pine beetles.  With the death of so many pine trees, the forest will replace them naturally with deciduous hardwoods.

December 27, 2001, Amazon.com Inc. said its holiday “Delight-O-Meter” counted 37.9 million orders for the holiday season as of midnight December 21.  Wall Street analysts were not impressed, and the stock continued to trade as it always had in the past.  “The Delight-O-Meter number is meaningless and hard to interpret,” said an analyst.  They delivered over 1.5 billion products worldwide for the 2020 holidays.

December 27, 2001, Boyle County’s quarterback Jeff Duggins won the 2001 Mr. Football honor.  Jeff was a perfect 44-0 in three seasons as the Rebel’s signal-caller taking home three consecutive state championships.

December 27, 2003, #20 Louisville visits #2 Kentucky and wins 65-56.  Pitino entered Rupp to the sound of boos, but he again got the last laugh, beating UK for the second time in three tries since returning to the Commonwealth.

December 27, 2003, Zola Starnes was interviewed from prison and told how a friend received 90 20-milligram Oxycontin pills through Medicaid for a small co-pay each month.  She would pay her friend $15.00 apiece and then sell them for $25.00.  That is how she landed a seven-year prison sentence.  Local officials stated, “If the government was subsidizing the addiction, they need to pony up for some treatment.” At the time, Kentucky was not one of the 29 states providing qualified drug treatment to prisoners.

December 27, 2009, Rich Brooks coached his last game for the Kentucky Wildcat football team in a losing effort against Clemson in the Music City Bowl, 13-21.

December 27, 2011, a survey commissioned by the horse industry said that 87% of Kentuckians want to vote on the question of expanded gambling and 64% would favor a constitutional amendment to allow casinos.  Kentucky Governor A. Beshear spoke strongly in favor of legalizing sports betting in his State of the Commonwealth address in January of 2020.

December 27, 2014, #1 UK defeats #4 UofL, 58-50 in Louisville.  Freshman guard Tyler Ulis stepped up with a career-best 14-point performance made more impressive by the fact he achieved it despite a bandaged right eye that made blinking difficult.  Kentucky ended Louisville’s 35-game nonconference home winning streak dating to December 2010.  The last loss was to Kentucky.

December 27, 2017, eight former and current Kentucky employees sued the Kentucky Retirement System (KRS) officials, consultants, selected board members, three hedge fund firms and their top executives.  The suit claimed KRS and their partners played roles in a “civil conspiracy” that gambled a $2.1 billion investment in risky hedge funds and masked the severity of the crisis for years.

On December 27, 2017, the general public became aware that a Paducah native was the mysterious individual who sent a manure pile to Treasury Secretary Steve Mnuchin’s home in Los Angles.

December 27, 2018, a Kentucky newspaper spotlighted Tom Myers, a Lexington entomologist who travels the globe taking pictures of insects.  The National Museum of Natural History and Truman’s Scientific Guide To Pest Management Operations, the industry’s bible, are a few publications that feature his photographs.

December 27, 2020, according to state records, 2,555 Kentuckians have died from the coronavirus since the first positive cases in March 2020.