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President Andrew Jackson was born on March 15, 1767. While not a Kentuckian, Jackson is memorialized with a federal highway—U.S. Highway 31E—running through the state. The route through the heart of Kentucky is documented as a postal route established prior to 1820. In the 19th century, the road was a thoroughfare connecting Nashville, Tennessee, and Louisville, Kentucky, and well-known as a stagecoach route.

Robert Patterson was born in 1753 in Pittsburg.  In 1775, Patterson traveled to Kentucky and claimed land on the North Fork of Cane Run, where he built a cabin.  Later, for the military, he donated land and helped construct a fort nearby that would become the city of Lexington.

March 15, 1775, Captain James Harrod’s crew returned to Harrodstown.  After the treaty that followed Dunmore’s War, they returned to their homes and stayed; thus, Harrodsburg became the 1st permanent settlement.

March 15, 1851, locals established Beattyville as Beatty.  The city rests in a valley where the North Fork and South Fork Rivers combine to create the Kentucky River’s headwaters.  Beattyville received its name in 1843 from a local landowner Sam Beatty.

On March 15, 1870, locals incorporated Bellevue in Campbell County. The U.S. initially granted the land to General James Taylor of the War of 1812. He was also a pioneer, banker, and statesman.  He relocated from Virginia, bringing a large contingent of settlers with him.  To this day, his mansion remains on East Third Street in Newport.  Bellevue translates from French as “beautiful view,” but it refers—not to our spectacular view of the Cincinnati skyline but—to General Taylor’s family plantation in Virginia, which had derived its name from a nearby creek.

March 15, 1888, Fulton County lynched Eli Nary, a black male, for a barn-burning.  One source recorded 135 lynchings in Kentucky from 1882 to 1921.

March 15, 1944, the 1944 General Assembly adjourned for the final time.  The sine die adjournment ended at 11:42 p.m.  Veteran legislators said it was the 1st time a session had ended so early in their memory.  It was typical for a session to go well into the morning.  One of the last bills created was a separate department for alcohol beverage control.

March 15, 1951, Army PVT Earl B. Stewart from Clinton County died in the Korean War.

March 15, 1955, programming began for WLEX channel 18 in Lexington.  For the premiere, a coonskin cap signifying Lexington’s “Pioneer Station” was presented to Governor L. Wetherby.  Snooky Lanson, a star of NBC’s Your Hit Parade, was brought in for the premiere.  When he left the Campbell House for the premiere, his taxi driver knew nothing of the new station.  After convincing the driver that one existed, the cabbie took him to the WLAP transmitter site, where an engineer pointed them in the right direction.

March 15, 1961, UK took severe disciplinary actions against a hazing incident within the K Club, a social organization for athletes.  Three baseball players received injuries after an unauthorized initiation ceremony on Old Frankfort Pike.

March 15, 1965, Queen Elizabeth II ended 29 years of royal ostracism for the Duchess of Windsor when she met the American divorcee at the bedside of the ailing Duke of Windsor.

March 15, 1967, Army SP4 Donnie R. Beasley from Versailles and Army PFC Stevie R. Gibson from Roxana in Letcher County, both died in the Vietnam War.

March 15, 1969, Army PFC Donald R. Bledsoe from East Bernstadt in Laurel County died in the Vietnam War.

“This day, March 15, 1972, The Ides of March, may go down in Kentucky history as a very historic day,” proclaimed Louisville Mayor Frank Burke shortly after the Senate passed “Home-rule legislation.”

On March 15, 1984, John Y. Brown, Jr., filed as a candidate for the U.S. Senate seat held by Walter “Dee” Huddleston just hours before the filing deadline.  Six weeks later, on April 27, he withdrew his candidacy.

Localtonians wish a Happy Birthday to Danville native Jacob Tamme, born in 1985.

March 15, 1986, Quadruplets, two girls and two boys were born to Dr. & Mrs. Phillip K. Blevins at the Chandler Medical Center.  The 1st on record for Lexington.  It Happened Today In Kentucky History by Robert A. Powell pg: 30

March 15, 1992, Kentucky won their 17th SEC Tournament in Birmingham over Alabama 80-54.  UK stopped the Tide’s three-year championship run as Coach Pitino’s got his 1st SEC Championship.  Jamal Mashburn received MVP honors.  Eligible for postseason play for the 1st time in three years, Kentucky would be eliminated in the NCAA tournament by “the Duke game.”

March 15, 1997, Louisville Eastern defeated Highlands 71-59 to win the KHSAA 80th edition of the Sweet 16 Boys’ Basketball Tournament.  Rupp Arena hosted 12,276 fans for the final game.

March 15, 2000, Covington native Durward Kirby passed away.  With Alan Funt, Durward co-hosted the original Candid Camera show.

March 15, 2006, Jess Jackson sued Tom Van Meter and John Sikura in California, claiming they conspired against him to spend more money on horses than he needed to.  Additionally, Jackson claimed Van Meter and Sikura paid his bloodstock agents to make it happen.

March 15, 2010, twenty-six hundred Kentucky students participated in the 25th anniversary of the Governor’s Cup Academic competition held in the Galt House.  Paul Laurence Dunbar High School in Lexington won the Team Recall competition.

March 15, 2012, Missing, a TV series starring Ashley Judd premiered.

March 15, 2014, a Keeneland graduate won Oaklawn Park’s GII $600,000 Rebel Stakes.

March 15, 2015, Wyatt Hoefer from Louisville caught a Kentucky record Brook Trout weighting 3.65 lbs. in the Cumberland River tailwaters.

Brook Trout

On March 15, 2019, teachers announced they wanted to sue the state for “unprecedented interference with their First Amendment rights.”  The row came after the Bevin Administration requested attendance records during the Frankfort protests.  Meanwhile, the House passed a bill to strip Kentucky’s Secretary of State, Alison Lundergran Grimes, of power, while her father sat in prison.

March 15, 2020, six people tested positive, and 150 were in quarantine in Cynthiana, Kentucky’s epicenter for the coronavirus.  In Frankfort, Beshear tested negative after attending the Speed Art Museum fundraiser where people spread the virus.  With 21 cases, Kentucky canceled all significant events after the C.D.C. recommended no gatherings of 50 or more people.

March 15, 2021, after nine weeks of declining coronavirus cases, the state reported 5,000 Kentuckians had died in one year from the virus, and one million people received their vaccinations.  Also, in Frankfort, the Senate made teachers work 30 years instead of 27 to receive their full retirement benefits.

March 15, 2022, was another historic day in Frankfort when legislators passed the 1st piece of legislation inside the Old State Capitol since the creation of the current State Capitol building.  HR125 honored the contributions of the Kentucky Historical Society, among others.

On March 15, 2023, a bill to legalize sports betting crossed a historic threshold for the first time when it passed a Senate committee.  Though the Senate Licensing & Occupations Committee swiftly passed it 9-1, Senate Majority Floor Leader Damon Thayer indicated the Senate would vote on it at the end of the month.  The governor signed it on March 31 with hopes of bringing $23 million in annual revenue for the Commonwealth.