TODAY IN KENTUCKY HISTORY

Kentucky Trivia ● Kentucky Tweets

February 18, 1815, the War of 1812 ended, advantage U.S.  The need for a formal U.S. military began.

February 18, 1861, Montgomery, Alabama, held an inauguration for Fairview native Jefferson Davis to become the provisional President of the Confederate States of America.  Immediately following the ceremony, Davis sent a peace commission to Washington.  Lincoln, committed to preserving the Union at any cost, refused to acknowledge.  When Virginia joined the Confederate cause in 1862, they held the “official” inauguration at the Confederate White House in Richmond, VA.

February 18, 1870, the first train crossed the 14th Street Bridge from Clarksville to Louisville.  It was the longest iron bridge in the U. S., with 27 spans covering a mile.  The Pennsylvania Railroad Bridge, as it was also known, is the eastern boundary of The Falls of the Ohio State Park.

Feb 18 Ohio Falls Bridge 2007
By Bedford

February 18, 1873, Louisville hosted a state education convention seeking to secure equal education privileges for African American children.

February 18, 1887, Clinton County native Preston H. Leslie became the 9th Territorial Governor of Montana.  He had already served as Kentucky’s 26th governor.

February 18, 1890, Ellison Mounts hung in Pikeville in an attempt to end the Hatfield-McCoy Feud.  Thousands of onlookers witnessed the hanging, even though laws stated executions could not be public.  The hanging took place on the site of the present-day University of Pikeville classroom building.  No one had been sent to the gallows in Pike County for forty years, and after Ellison, no one ever would be again.

February 18, 1903, the Agriculture and Mechanical College of Kentucky (UK) won their 1st basketball game in their 2nd try over the Lexington YMCA team, winning 11-10.  Their 1st season ended with a 1-2 record.

Localtonians wish a Happy Anniversary to Mays Lick native Charles Young and Ada Mills, who wed in 1904.  Mr. Young broke many barriers for African Americans, one being the 1st first black man to achieve the rank of colonel in the U.S. Army.

February 18, 1909, State University, Lexington (UK) hosted and defeated Cincinnati 28-23 to clinch their first winning season in school history.  It took seven seasons to achieve this feat.  Buell Armory Gymnasium hosted the game.

February 18, 1917, Patrolman John George Fow, Louisville Police Department, succumbed to gunshot wounds sustained the previous day when he responded to a call of boys throwing rocks at wagons as they passed a grocery store.  When Patrolman Fow arrived on the scene, he was shot by one of the boy’s father.

February 18, 1926, Deputy Sheriff Harve Pace, Harlan County Sheriff’s Office, succumbed to gunshot wounds sustained almost three months earlier when he was shot while attempting to stop an escaping prisoner.  The suspect was later acquitted in 1929.

February 18, 1933, police arrested 124 men at a 4:00 a.m. raid while gambling in a three-room luxury suite in downtown Louisville.  Two gamblers drew pistols, fearing a robbery.   Only one man didn’t make the $25.00 bond; he had a terrible night.

February 18, 1945, Lt. Ray M. Thompson’s parents received word their son was alive after 17 days drifting on a lifeboat in the Pacific Ocean.  They heard the dramatic story of “How God sent a plane” to rescue four servicemen after their plane crashed.  Ray said he learned more about God during those days than all of the days growing up in Greensburg.

February 18, 1949, the president of a highway construction firm paid $6,000 to a prominent lobbyist in the Capitol Hotel in Frankfort.  The state sued in December, wanting $100,000 from the president’s profit because he received preferential treatment in highway bids. 

February 18, 1950, in a game against Georgia Tech, which the Wildcats won 97–62, Bill Spivey broke the team record for most points in a game with 40, two more than Alex Groza scored in a game the previous season.

February 18, 1957, Deputy Jailer Luther Willis Hammond, Shelby County Detention Center, succumbed to wounds received one week earlier when he was assaulted by two inmates attempting to escape from the Shelby County Detention Center.

February 18, 1964, Col. Harland D. Sanders, 77, sold his franchising business to John Y. Brown, Jr. and Jack Massey for $2,000,000.  He also received $40,000 a year for life to be spokesperson and company trademark.  Sanders started selling franchises for his chicken at 66.
The Kentucky Encyclopedia
edited by John E. Kleber; pg: 796

February 18, 1965, Maggie Bailey’s home was raided in Harlan.  This raid, one of many, was described as a “bootlegger’s paradise.”  Nine State Troopers found $206,909 in cash and of course moonshine.

February 18, 1967, Army PFC Billy G. Conley from Flemingsburg in Fleming County and Army CPL John R. Grimes from Owenton in Owen County, both died in the Vietnam War.

February 18, 1967, with a 103-74 win over Mississippi State, Coach Rupp became college basketball’s all-time winningest coach.

February 18, 1968, Marine Corps PFC Joseph C. Andrew from Auburn in Logan County, Army SP4 Charlie A. Bratcher from Caneyville in Grayson, Army SSG Ronald L. McCollum from Covington and Army PFC Charles B. Poole from Maceo in Daviess County, all died in the Vietnam War.

February 18, 1970, Army WO1 Paul E. Ash, Jr. from Louisville and Army PFC Danny E. Blevins from Tram in Floyd County both died in the Vietnam War.

February 18, 1971, Army SGT Coley L. Kendall from Bowling Green died in the Vietnam War.

February 18, 1982, the founder of the controversial Guardian Angels arrived in Lexington to inform Lexingtonians how their form of justice worked.

February 18, 1994, the Navy decommissioned the USS Daniel Boone (SSBN-629) and struck her from the Naval Vessel Register.  The James Madison-class ballistic missile submarine launched in 1963.

Feb 18 USS Daniel Boone SSBN 629
By PH1 VARNEY, USN

February 18, 1995, three-time heavyweight boxing champion Muhammad Ali sat on the Kentucky bench during the Cats’ 87-77 win over Florida.  Muhammad was in town to promote a play called Ali, opening later that month at the Lexington Opera House.

February 18, 1995, UK retired three players’ jerseys during half-time of the Kentucky vs. Florida game, which Pitino’s Wildcats won 87-77.  Forest Sale #19 from Lawrenceburg, Vernon Hatton #52 from Lexington (Lafayette), and Kevin Grevey #35.

February 18, 2001, Owensboro native Michael Curtis Waltrip won the Daytona 500.  On the final lap, a deadly accident occurred involving Dale Earnhardt Sr, Ken Schrader, and Sterling Marlin.  Earnhardt’s car crashed head-on into the retaining wall, killing him instantly.

February 18, 2002, Point Given defeated Tiznow to win the 2001 Horse of the Year honors at the Eclipse Awards ceremony in the Fontainebleau Hotel in Miami Beach, FL.

February 18, 2011, a federal judge sentenced Karen Sypher to seven years and three months for extorting cash from Rick Pitino.

February 18, 2019, a Kentucky bred wins Oaklawn Park’s GIII $500,000 Southwest Stakes.  The winner received points toward the 2019 Kentucky Derby but none of these starters ran for the roses.

February 18, 2020, the Lexington-Herald Leader spotlights rising Kentucky Tic Tok stars such as Matt Nichols, teacher Craig Smith, and the BailyBakery in Hart County.  Meanwhile, a Whitley County man pleaded guilty to harassing a witness, via another social media platform-Facebook, in a drug case.

February 18, 2021, like states across the nation, Kentucky faced a lack of bus drivers, food servers, and teachers after covid-19, winter weather, and unemployment checks swept the state.  Meanwhile, in Jackson County, people woke up again to no electricity after an ice storm.