TODAY IN KENTUCKY HISTORY

Kentucky Trivia ● Kentucky Tweets

On January 23, 1813, Nathaniel Gray Smith Hart, a Lexington lawyer and businessman, died, along with many of his men in the River Raisin Massacre.

January 23, 1843, Owsley County was created from Clay County, Estill County and Breathitt County.  The county was named in honor of William Owsley, secretary of state and later governor of Kentucky.  The county seat is Booneville.  Other localities include: Arnett, Big Springs, Blake,  Brewer Neighborhood, Chestnut Gap, Conkling, Couch Fork, Couch Town, Cowcreek, Elk Lick, Endee, Eversole, Fish Creek, Hall, Hogg, Indian Creek, Island City, Lerose, Levi, Lucky Fork, Major, Mistletoe, Moors, Needmore, Pebworth, Pleasant, Ricetown, Rock Spring, Rockhouse, Scoville, Sebastian, Shephard, Southfork, Stacey, Stay, Sturgeon, Sugar Camp, Taft, Travellers Rest, Vincent and Whoopflarea.  Owsley County was the 98th county created in Kentucky and covers 198 square miles.

1280px Map of Kentucky highlighting Owsley County.svg
By David Benbennick

Localtonians wish a Happy Birthday to Laurel County native Flemon Davis “Flem” Sampson, born in 1875.  Flem was our 42nd governor, and his term was a tumultuous one.  He wanted the dam at Cumberland Falls to generate hydroelectric power.  Instead, the General Assembly voted to accept an offer from T. Coleman du Pont to purchase the falls and turn them into a state park.  Sampson later got indicted for accepting textbook company gifts, but the charges did not stick.

January 23, 1898, Butler County native Thomas Hines died.  Hines was deeply sympathetic to the South and joined the Confederate Army in 1862.  He was taken prisoner in June 1863 and in November 1863 made a daring and complicated escape from a Union prison camp.

January 23, 1915, Kentucky basketball hosted Louisville in Woodland Auditorium, winning 18-14.  Alpha Brumage coached Kentucky and Louisville coached themselves.   Kentucky played 22 games in the Woodland Park Auditorium.

On January 23, 1924, the grand battleship, the USS Kentucky (BB-6), was sold for scrap in Philadelphia.  Her first voyage in 1900 was from New York to the Far East for the Boxer Rebellion.  This destruction was part of the U.S. Navy’s compliance with the newly-signed Washington Naval Treaty.

Jan 23 USS KY

January 23, 1930, the Kentucky Senate got a big laugh when Senator Fitzpatrick, a former Centre College student, introduced a bill to prohibit athletic teams of any state-maintained university from playing any other teams located out of the Commonwealth.  The bill was retaliation for UK dropping Centre from their football schedule.

January 23, 1936, the General assembly recommended Governor A.B Chandler fight for $15.00 a month pensions for needy Kentuckians over 65, probation of “hopeful” first offenders from state penal institutions, and a new state penal farm.

On January 23, 1943, Marvin Akers, Melvin Ticco, and the rest of the Kentucky Wildcats beat the Fighting Irish for the first time in school history 60-55.  The city of Louisville hosted the game in the Jefferson County Armory.

Localtonians wish a Happy Birthday to Carlisle native Gatewood Galbraith, born in 1947.

January, 23, 1950, Frankfort released a utility report that showed Southern Bell & Telegraph Company was granted $44,508,000 of rate increases in almost four years.

On January 23, 1956, former state insurance commissioner S.H. Goebel defended his action in letting nine new insurance companies do business in Kentucky.  He did this in the last week of the Weatherby Administration.  In one of his first actions as the new governor, Happy Chandler asked state officials to examine the companies.

January 23, 1963, a blizzard produced record-breaking cold in Kentucky as an Arctic air mass settled over the entire state, bringing four to six inches of snow.  Louisville and Lexington broke their record low temperature for ninety years with -20°F and -21°F, respectively.  Bonnieville in Hart County reached -34°F, breaking Kentucky’s record of -33°F.

January 23, 1972, about two-tenths of a mile of I-64 in Bath County, collapsed 10 feet to make it unpassable.  So the eastbound traffic got rerouted to U.S. 60 to Mt. Sterling.

January 23, 1973, the Dallas Chaparrals take on the Kentucky Colonels.

January 23, 1980, John Y. Brown Sr. vows, I’ll die before I’ll pay $40,709 in back taxes.”

On January 23, 1980, Attorney General S. Beshear proposed legislation that would give him authority to prosecute corruption cases in state government.  He also suggested making official misconduct a felony instead of a misdemeanor.

January 23, 1985, the Blue Grass Army Depot educates the public on testing nerve gas.

January 23, 1985, Apple Computer stepping up efforts to challenge IBM unveiled a networking product that allowed 32 Apple Macintosh personal computers to share information.

January 23, 1995, former Kentucky First Lady Mildred Watkins “Mama” Chandler died in her Versailles home.  Mrs. Chandler was a talented singer, pianist, teacher, writer, and a woman who voiced her opinions.

January 23, 2001, UK Trustees voted in Lee T. Todd, Jr. as president.  His salary started at $275,000.

January 23, 2006, Saint Liam, who didn’t win a stakes race until Churchill’s Clark Handicap in November 2004 was named 2005 Horse of the Year.  The 36th annual Eclipse Awards took place in Beverly Hills.

January 23, 2008, Alma Haggin, credited with creating Keeneland’s distinctive ambiance, dies at 95.  Mrs. Haggin was the daughter of Keeneland co-founder and inaugural President Hal Price Headley. Her husband, Louis Lee Haggin II, succeeded his father-in-law as President. She was also the mother of Keeneland Director and Trustee Louis Lee Haggin III.

January 23, 2012, Special Deputy James Ireland Thacker, Pike County Sheriff’s Office, was killed in an automobile accident on U.S. 460, just past Marrowbone Creek Road, at approximately 9:00 pm.

January 23, 2014, Poor Fork native Rebecca Caudill entered the Kentucky Writers Hall of Fame at an induction ceremony at the Carnegie Center in Lexington.  Caudill was the Kentucky Hall of Fame’s first children’s author.  Poor Fork is now called Cumberland.

January 23, 2020, Gulfstream Park in Hallandale Beach hosted the 49th annual Eclipse Awards.  Bricks and Mortar was voted the 2019 Horse of the Year by a landslide, to go along with his unanimous selection as Champion Turf Male.  A perfect 6 for 6 all in graded stakes company, his march to the title consisted of wins in the Pegasus World Cup Turf (G1), Muniz Memorial (G2), Old Forester Turf Classic (G1), Manhattan (G1), Arlington Million (G1), capped off with the Breeders’ Cup Turf (G1).

January 23, 2020, on the 2nd anniversary of the Marshall County High School deadly shooting, the General Assembly approved a bill that allowed school resource officers to carry a gun.  Today the bill is now a law.

January 23, 2021, Pat Willett’s legs gave out after standing in line for more than two hours.  Someone brought him a wheelchair, where the 76-year-old sat for another five hours before he received his vaccine.  Kentucky’s vaccine rollout left many frustrated.