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On January 26, 1810, Kentucky passed the 1st scalp law, which enabled the state to pay citizens for wolves’ scalps.

January 26, 1842, the Commonwealth created Crittenden County from Livingston County and named it in honor of John Jordan Crittenden, Kentucky’s 17th governor.  The county seat is Marion.  Other localities include Dycusburg, Crayne, Tolu, Frances, Mattoon, Mexico, Midway, Shady Grove, and Sheridan.  The 91st county, Crittenden County covers 361 square miles.

By David Benbennick

On January 26, 1867, the General Assembly wanted to create Henrietta County from Trigg and Marshall Counties in Western Kentucky.  The county’s establishment went to the qualified voters in the area for final approval, but the majority voted against it.

January 26, 1869, Kentucky created Elliott County from Carter County, Lawrence County, and Morgan County and named it in honor of John Milton Elliott, U.S. Representative from Kentucky.  Sandy Hook is the county seat.  Other localities include Ault, Bascom, Beartown, Bell City, Bigstone, Blaines Trace, Bruin, Brushy Fork, Burke, Clay Fork, Cliffside, Culver, Devil Fork, Dewdrop, Dobbins, Edsel, Eldridge, Fannin, Fannin Valley, Faye, Fielden, Forks of Newcombe, Gimlet, Gomez, Green, Halcom, Ibex, Isonville, Little Fork, Little Sandy, Lytten, Middle Fork, Neil Howard’s Creek, Newcombe, Newfoundland, Ordinary, Roscoe, Shady Grove, Sarah, Sideway, Spanglin, Stark, Stephens, The Ridge, Wells Creek, and Wyatt.  The 114th county created, Elliott County covers 235 square miles.

By David Benbennick

January 26, 1869, Rowan County incorporated Morehead as the county seat.  The workers who migrated to Morehead as a result of the boom-town economy had a disrupting effect on local politics.  A shooting during the 1884 election sparked a feud that came to be known as the Rowan County War.  William T. Withers, a former Confederate soldier from Lexington, felt that education was the only answer to the problem and contributed $500 to found the Morehead Normal School and Teacher’s College, the predecessor of Morehead State University.

Friday, January 26, 1900, emotions ran strong as legislators continued to talk out their grievances.  With 13 elections pending in the legislature, the real fight for the governor’s mansion was in sight.

On January 26, 1906, State College, Lexington (UK) played Central University (Centre) in basketball for the 2nd time.  Central U hosted the series for the 1st time, taking place in Boyle Humphrey Gymnasium in Danville.  State College won 17-15.

January 26, 1922, Judge Robert Bingham of Louisville received an enthusiastic, warm welcome from the General Assembly as he spoke out against the Lee Bill, which aimed to destroy Kentucky’s Thoroughbred racing industry.  After three speeches in favor of the bill, the judge spoke next.  Representatives interrupted his speech with cheers on three different occasions.

January 26, 1936, Deputy Sheriff Frank J. Minton, Harlan County Sheriff’s Office, died while eating lunch in retaliation for an arrest he had attempted earlier in the evening in a Cumberland dance hall.  After the arrest, Deputy Minton sat in a Main Street restaurant at 2:00 am.  The subject saw him and opened fire.  The man turned himself in.

January 26, 1943, Lexington received 13.4” of snow, their heaviest snow accumulation since keeping records.

January 26, 1950, Cliff Hagan made his debut as a UK basketball player.  Hagan had nine points in 19 minutes of action as UK’s freshman team beat Xavier’s freshmen 59-46 in Cincinnati.

January 26, 1953, Army PFC Barney M. Huguley from Madison County died in the Korean War.

January 26, 1967, a Berea doctor told a U.S. Senate committee the tale of a fellow doctor who sold a poor crippled boy medicine he did not need.  “If the profit from a few pills can make a physician rob a poor ignorant cripple, I do indeed fear for the future of medicine.” Dr. William Epling warned.  The doctor in question said he was too sick to attend the hearing.

January 26, 1967, Marine Corps SGT Howard H. Dean from Harrodsburg died in the Vietnam War.

January 26, 1970, Army SP4 Larry S. Rutherford from Horse Cave in Hart County died in the Vietnam War.

January 26, 1971, the Defense Department urged the White House to seek Congressional authority to begin work on an anti-ballistic missile defense system for the nation’s capital.

January 26, 1996, Smokers Express, a new airline set up by a group of smoking rights activist, talked to Blue Grass Airport about making Lexington their home base.

January 26, 2005, a pipeline broke and spilled an estimated 63,000 gallons of crude oil into the Kentucky River in Carroll County.  According to a private advocacy group, the company that owned the pipelines had four other Kentucky spills between 1990-2203.

On January 26, 2009, turf writers voted Curlin the 2008 Horse of the Year (HOY) and the Champion Older Male, the 1st back-to-back HOY winner since Cigar.  The Fontainebleau Hotel in Miami Beach hosted the 38th annual Eclipse Awards.

January 26, 2011, a Kentucky judge dismissed a lawsuit against actress Suzanne Somers over a failed Kentucky-based meal-preparation business.  Suzanne’s Kitchen opened in 2006 in Lexington but closed a few months later.  Louisville businessman and attorney John Shannon Bouchillon sued, claiming he was lied to before or after investing $400,000.  Somers testified her name and likeness promoted the store, but former Kentucky Gov. John Y. Brown ran the company.  The suit dropped Brown as a defendant before the trial.

January 26, 2019, a Kentucky bred and Keeneland graduate won the GI $9,000,000 Pegasus World Cup.

January 26, 2021, while Kentucky confirmed its 1st two cases of a new variant spreading fast in the United Kingdom, the governor encouraged Kentuckians to mask up indoors, get vaccinated then boosted.  Meanwhile, parents requested schools focus more on the student’s mental health as the endemic continued.  In D.C., the Senate rejected Senator Paul’s request to declare Trump’s 2nd impeachment unconstitutional at the halfway point of the reality made for TV show that lasted 31 days.

January 26, 2022, Rhonda Caldwell, speaking for School Administrators stated coronavirus placed “an extra layer” on a position that is already incredibly difficult; this statement came after four Kentucky superintendents resigned early.  Meanwhile, Justice Breyer retired soon after President Biden took office in Washington.