Kentucky Trivia ● Kentucky Tweets
Localtonians wish a Happy Birthday to Mason County native John Robert Proctor, born in 1844. John served as the Kentucky state geologist from 1880 to 1893 and was president of the U.S. Civil Service Commission from 1893 to 1903.
March 16, 1854, ex-President Millard Fillmore visited Frankfort and Louisville. At the latter, a large group met Filmore at the depot and escorted him to the Louisville Hotel. Later that evening, the mayor tendered him the freedom of the city and provided a public dinner.
March 16, 1878, the General Assembly approved a “resolution in regard to Dr. L. P. Blackburn” for his assistance to the victims of yellow fever in Nassau, Memphis, and Florida. Luke Blackburn had “gone into the battle, grappled with the dread enemy, and saved from the hungry pestilence thousands of lives.” For these “eminent services” Dr. Blackburn deserves public recognition “reflecting as they do much honor upon himself and upon his State.
March 16, 1895, Madame Belle’s house caught on fire in downtown Lexington while she was in New York. The finest “Mansion” in the South received heavy damage and was almost destroyed. Madame Belle by Maryjean Wall pg: 92
March 16, 1903, Phantly Roy Bean, Jr. passed over. At the age of 15, he left Mason County to follow his two older brothers West. He became an eccentric U.S. saloon-keeper and Justice of the Peace in Val Verde County, Texas, and called himself The Law West of the Pecos.
March 16, 1906, the General Assembly expressed its “profound satisfaction” at the news of the farm’s purchase on which Abraham Lincoln was born. The General Assembly passed “an act to appropriate $2,000 to assist in erecting a tablet in LaRue County to the memory of Abraham Lincoln.” They directed the tablet to be located “on the public square in the town of Hodgenville.”
March 16, 1908, the Kentucky Legislature changed the Agriculture & Mechanical College of Kentucky name to State University, Lexington, Kentucky. By the same Act, Kentucky University reverted to its pioneer name, Transylvania University.
On March 16, 1911, a jury found Night Riders leader Dr. David Amoss not guilty of murder and destroying property after an eight-day trial. Many locals supported his violent attacks against the corporate tobacco monopoly.
March 16, 1916, Bowling Green native Pete George Hampton passed away. George made more than 150 recordings during his career in the U.K. and Germany between 1903 and 1911. In 1904, he made the 1st harmonica recording by an African American, which was regarded as a pioneering example in the blues harmonica style development.
March 16, 1929, Heath High School won the 11th Scholastic Basketball Championship in Lexington by defeating Corinth 21-16. The team received a silver Loving Cup from UK’s Athletic Director “Daddy” Boyles after the game in Alumni Gymnasium. The Ashland Kittens also took the girls’ title as they did in 1928, 1924, 1922, and 1921. Team bands showed up for possibly the 1st time. Heath, in McCracken County, closed in 2013.
March 16, 1940, Deputy Sheriff Wilson Deaton, Breathitt County Sheriff’s Office, died from a gunshot while attempting to stop a fight between four men. One of the suspects involved in the fight received 15 years in prison.
March 16, 1940, Hazel Green of Laurel County, won the 23rd State High School Basketball Tournament over Ashland 35-29 in UK’s Alumni Gym. Charles Smith, Hazel Green’s center, started a family basketball dynasty. His son, G.J. Smith, played on Kentucky’s 1975 NCAA runner-up team. Trey Smith, G.J.’s son, started forward for South Laurel’s 2005 state championship team.
March 16, 1942, three Kentucky tornadoes swept through the state killing 24 people. The 1st, an F4 tornado, struck at 12:15 a.m. in Grayson and Hardin counties, killing nine people in seven different homes and sweeping away 20 other homes in Caneyville, Millwood, Leitchfield, Clarkson, and Summit. The next one, an F3, struck an hour and fifteen minutes later in Nelson County, killing four persons. The last twister, another F3, occurred in Muhlenberg County at 11:40 p.m. and devastated the mining community of Browder, sweeping away 12 small homes and causing ten deaths. Another death occurred on a farm near Drakesboro.
March 16, 1961, hundreds of basketball fans jammed the front of Memorial Coliseum, waiting for the doors to open for the 3rd session of the state high school basketball tournament. Ashland High School defeated Lexington Dunbar 69-50 to win the 1961 state title.
March 16, 1963, Glasgow naïve Diane Sawyer won the Kentucky Junior Miss Pageant and later was chosen as America’s Junior Miss 1963. Judges thought the studious teenager was perhaps too serious to represent America’s most well-rounded young women in the national pageant. However, during rehearsals, the nearsighted Sawyer, absent her glasses, walked head-first into a metal post in front of the judges and laughed it off. Seeing Sawyer’s spontaneous carefree response, the judges concluded that she was an excellent representative.
March 16, 1991, in the 74th Boys’ Sweet Sixteen Basketball Tournament, Fairdale Bulldogs won its 2nd title in a row by defeating Tates Creek 67-63 in front of 23,275 at Rupp Arena. Fairdale’s Jermaine Brown won the MVP for the 2nd year in a row as well.
March 16, 1996, the Paintsville Tigers, led by J.R. Vanhoose, defeated the Ashland Tomcats 71-53 to win the KHSAA Boy’s Sweet 16 Basketball Tournament in Rupp Arena. The 6-9 Vanhoose led the Tigers to four straight titles, three final fours, two finals, and this state championship. J.R. is #2 with 272 points in tournament history, Ritchie Farmer is #1 with 317.
March 16, 2003, after running the table in regular-season Southeastern Conference play, Kentucky defeated Mississippi State, 64-57, in the finals of the SEC Tournament to secure its 24th league tourney crown and complete a 19-0 season sweep of conference opponents. The Cats had not accomplished this in 51 seasons.
March 16, 2013, with two remaining days in the General Assembly, legislators still couldn’t decide how to tackle the state’s most pressing problem, the multi-billion dollar shortage in state pension funds.
Monday, March 16, 2020, Kentucky reported the 1st death from coronavirus when a 66-year-old Bourbon County man died in Lexington. Governor S. Beshear said the coronavirus “was only a factor” in the man’s passing. However, the state still counted it as a coronavirus death. The state tallied one new positive case, for a total of 22 individuals that tested positive.
March 16, 2021, both vaccinated and unvaccinated residents in an Eastern Kentucky nursing home contracted a new coronavirus variant. Meanwhile, Moderna said the 1st children had been dosed in a clinical trial vaccine for children between 6 months and 12 years old.
March 16, 2022, was an ironic day when the Kentucky Senate advanced a bill to pay up to $50 million to resettle Ukrainian citizens. Simultaneously, the governor vetoed a bill that ended the coronavirus emergency. The governor claimed the Commonwealth would lose $50 million in federal food stamps if he signed the bill.