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Kentucky Trivia ● Kentucky Tweets

January 25, 1715, Thomas Walker was born in Queen and King County, VA.  As a Loyal Land Company member, Walker engaged in land speculation and led the 1st organized English expedition on record through Cumberland Gap into Kentucky on April 13, 1750, naming the gap and the Cumberland River.  His party erected a crude cabin near Barbourville.  After wandering in the mountains for several weeks, they returned to Walker’s Virginia plantation, Castle Hill in Albemarle County, on July 13.

Walker’s 1750 Trek

January 25, 1810, Kentucky created Grayson County from the western part of Hardin County and the eastern part of Ohio County and named it in honor of William Grayson, aide to George Washington in the Revolutionary War and Virginia U.S. Senator.  Leitchfield is the county seat.  Other cities and towns include Caneyville, Clarkson, Big Clifty, Pine Knob, Saint Paul, and Anneta.  The 54th county created, Grayson County covers 511 square miles.

By David Benbennick

January 25, 1834, Kentucky created Marion County from Washington County and named it in honor of Francis Marion, Revolutionary War General.  Lebanon is the county seat.  Other localities include Bradfordsville, Gravel Switch, Loretto, Nerinx, and Raywick.  The 84th county created, Marion County covers 347 square miles.

By David Benbennick

January 25, 1865, a horrible massacre occurred in Simpsonville, some say the last recorded “battle” of the Civil War in Kentucky.  The 5th U.S. Colored Cavalry (USCC), based at Camp Nelson, transported 900 cattle to Louisville.  When the troopers, nearly all enslaved people, neared Simpsonville, Confederate guerrillas attacked from behind.  The Louisville Journal called it “a horrible butchery.”  Twenty-two USCC men perished, and eight were severely wounded.  Locals buried the men in a mass grave.

January 25, 1875, Zerelda James, a slaveholder and mother of Jesse James, lost part of an arm and a young son in a night raid on her Kentucky home by Pinkerton operatives.  Throughout her life, she never surrendered the belief that her sons were Confederate heroes, not ruthless murderers.

Thursday, January 25, 1900, Frankfort woke up to an increased population of 1,000 more male citizens of voting age, many of whom carried guns.  They wanted to know more about the governor crisis that had evolved.  At 11:00 a.m., when the legislators convened, the concerned citizens met at the historic old capital where many politicians took to the stump.

January 25, 1907, State University, Lexington (UK) defeated Central University (TU) 22-9 in the State College Gymnasium.  UK played them the following month and lost in OT.

January 25, 1922, the General Assembly approved a resolution stating how badly they wanted to keep Camp Knox.  They spotlighted how much the government all ready invested in the site.  It then cited the advantages, including “the climate such as to permit outdoor training the year-round.”  The resolution petitioned the War Department and Congress not only to retain the site but “to grant adequate funds for the permanent improvement of said Camp Knox and make it the chief center of artillery training and for all branches of the U.S. Army.”

January 25, 1926, Ohio County native James Cooksey Earp died.  The lesser-known older brother of old west lawmen Virgil Earp and Wyatt Earp was a saloon-keeper who did not participate in the Gunfight at the O.K. Corral in 1881.

January 25, 1927, Blue Licks State Park became Kentucky’s 5th state park.  Judge S. Wilson of Fayette County, chairman of the Blue Licks Battlefield Monument Commission, presented a deed for thirty-two acres to the Kentucky State Park Commission on behalf of local citizens who donated the land.

January 25, 1929, Manchester native Laura Rogers White died of a heart condition.  One of the 1st eight women to graduate from the University of Michigan (1874), she later studied architecture at M.I.T. in Cambridge and the Sorbonne in Paris, France.

January 25, 1969, Marine Corps PFC Clifford L. Newberry from Crescent Springs in Kenton County died in the Vietnam War.

January 25, 1977, Melanie Flynn got a call from her father, Bobby Flynn (a Kentucky state senator), at 4 p.m.  In it, he asked her to bring some materials home from the Kentucky High School Athletic Association, of which she worked as a secretary, in Lexington.  Melanie promised to do so once she completed a doctor’s appointment she had at 5:30 p.m. that same day.  At 5 p.m., Melanie left work in her red 1975 Ford Elite.  She turned off Cooper Drive onto South Limestone Street and has not been seen since.

Localtonians wish a Happy Birthday to Owensboro native B.J. Whitmer, born in 1978.

January 25, 1981, Derrick Ramsey won a Super Bowl ring when the Oakland Raiders beat Philadelphia 27-10 in the Superdome.

January 25, 1991, the House voted unanimously to impeach Kentucky’s agriculture commissioner, six days after he began serving a one-year sentence for a payroll violation.  It was only the 3rd time in Kentucky history the state recorded an impeachment.  The Senate would have impeached him on February 5, but Ward ″Butch″ Burnette resigned before they convicted him.

January 25, 1992, Arkansas native Glen Campbell sang the National Anthem before the Kentucky / Arkansas men’s basketball game in Rupp Arena.  L.D. Gorman, a member of Kentucky’s Athletics Association board of directors, invited Glenn to the game.

On January 25, 1993, Truman Bottom unloaded used GTE telephone books for recycling that were probably never used.  The phone books made 125 tons of recycled mulch to seed strip-mine reclamation projects.  At the time, officials hoped to recycle at least 25 percent of the 250,000 telephone books in Fayette and Jessamine Counties.

January 25, 1999, the 1st U.S. hand transplant finished after a 14.5-hour operation at Jewish Hospital in Louisville.  Mathew Scott, 37, lost his left hand in an accident with an M-80 firecracker in the mid-80s.

January 25, 2005, Richmond city commissioners sent a clear message to the pentagon, “Keep your chemical weapons off our streets.”  They unanimously approved an ordinance that would ban the transport of nerve gas within city limits.  There are 523 tons of the blistering agent on site.

January 25, 2013, according to the Guinness Book of World Records, the longest abdomen hair is 16.77 cm (6.6 in) and belongs to Elaine Martin, as measured in Owensboro.

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January 25, 2018, Gulfstream Park hosted the 47th annual Eclipse Awards.  Turf writers voted Gun Runner the 2017 Horse of the Year and the Champion Older Male.  He was five for six for the year for trainer Steve Asmussen.

January 25, 2019, Governor Matt G. Bevin announced a new running mate for his re-election.  He picked Senator Ralph Alvarado from Winchester.  When asked why he dropped Lt. Gov. Jenean Hampton, he replied, “because I chose to run with Ralph Alvarado.”  Some say this and his teacher debacle cost him the election.