TODAY IN KENTUCKY HISTORY

Kentucky Trivia ● Kentucky Tweets

March 20, 1780, the town trustees appropriated “the sum of thirty pounds gold and granted one acre of ground to build a courthouse, prison, and office, provided that court was to be held in Lexington.”  The pioneers finished the first courthouse in the spring of 1782.  The two-story building was built of logs, with two rooms per floor (each 18 by 18 feet).  A fireplace heated rooms on each end.

March 20, 1782, Wyandot Natives tomahawked 14-year-old Jennie Gass at Estill’s Station, southeast of Richmond in Madison County.

March 20, 1798, Henry Clay, who studied law in Virginia, was sworn in as a member of the bar in a two-story stone courthouse on Lexington’s Main Street.
The Squire’ Sketches of Lexington by J. Winston Coleman, Jr.; pg: 23

March 20, 1868, the Jesse James Gang got away with approximately $14,000 when they hit the Nimrod Long Banking Co. of Russellville.  One person was wounded.  Still, there were no fatalities.  This story is according to legend.

March 20, 1902, the first marine (ship-to-shore) demonstration of the “wireless telephone,” now commonly known as the radio, occurred on the Potomac River near Washington D.C. by Calloway farmer Nathan B. Stubblefield.  The first words ever to be heard over the air were, “Hello Rainey.”

March 20, 1927, Deputy Sheriff Alvin D. Tackett and Deputy Sheriff Albert Phipps Floyd County Sheriff’s Office, succumbed to gunshot wounds sustained while attempting to arrest several men for moonshining in Weeksbury.  Deputy Tackett had deputized Deputy Phipps to assist him with the arrests.

March 20, 1940, the General Assembly approved an act “to provide for the regulation of aeronautics within this Commonwealth in the interest of public safety and aeronautic progress.” The legislatures called the new Kentucky Aeronautic Commission an “urgent need.”

March 20, 1940, Harlan County Deputy Sheriff Joseph Pruitt was beaten to death while attempting to arrest a fugitive who had escaped from the State Prison Farm at LaGrange.  The convict escaped from prison a second time in September 1945.

March 20, 1942, Kentucky defeated Illinois 46-44 in Fogelman Arena, New Orleans, LA., to advance to their first Final Four.  It was the 4th NCAA tournament and eight teams participated.  Stanford beat Colorado, then Dartmouth, for the title.

March 20, 1943, Hindman defeated St. Xavier 29-26 to win the Kentucky State High School Basketball Championship in Lexington.

March 20, 1946, Ralph Beard’s free throw with 40 seconds left lifted the Wildcats to their first NIT national title, beating Rhode Island 46-45.

March 20, 1951, Kentucky played Louisville in the NCAA East Regional First Round at Raleigh, NC.  Adolph Rupp’s team won 79-68 on the way to their 3rd championship title.

March 20, 1967, Army SSG Freddie D. Jones, Jr. from Louisville died in the Vietnam War.

March 20, 1968, Army SP4 Wince I. Overton, Jr. from Pineville in Bell County died in the Vietnam War.

March 20, 1969, Kate Smith performed “My Old Kentucky Home” on The Dean Martin Show with Mickey Rooney and Barbara Eden.

March 20, 1970, Army SP4 Tinsley J. Wells, Jr. from London in Laurel County died in the Vietnam War.

March 20, 1971, Lt. Governor Thelma Stovall, acting as governor in the absence of Governor Carroll, vetoed a resolution that would have rescinded the state’s 1972 ratification of the ERA.  She had the backing of the state attorney general.

March 20, 1971, Western Kentucky University comes from 14 down and beats Ohio State in OT to advance to the Final Four.

March 20, 1971, Louisville Male wins their second in a row Sweet 16 State High School Basketball Championship over Anderson County with 17,000 fans on hand.

March 20, 1981, state environmental chief Ms. Jackie Swigart imposed a $1.7 million fine against a Bell County coal company.  The penalty went unnoticed due to the chief’s new policy against publicizing the penalties.

March 20, 1981, at least 19 Lexingtonians’ names are listed in a notebook containing the names, occupations, and sexual preferences for customers of a Louisville-based prostitution ring.  The red spiral notebook had 891 names, many of whom were prominent Kentuckians.

March 20, 1993, Marion County defeated Paul Dunbar 85-77 in front of 22,175 fans for the Sweet 16 State High School Championship.  Anthony Epps earned MVP honors.

Sweet 16 Trivia:  Jeremy Burchfield of Shelby County vs. Ashland.  Burchfield sank 10 free throws in the fourth quarter to stave off a Tomcat rally.  He connected on four shots in the final minute of the 70-64 Rocket victory.

March 20, 2000, UK athletics department named Larry Ivy to replace C.M. Newton as Athletic Director.  He would hold the position until 2002.

Kentucky Trivia:  Kentucky has employed ten athletic directors since 1912.

March 20, 2004, the Warren Central Dragons defeated the Mason County Royals, 66-56, for the State High School Basketball Championship in Rupp Arena.  

Sweet 16 Trivia: Chris Lofton of Mason County vs. Louisville Trinty.  Lofton hit a three point shot with three seconds left in regulation to force overtime.  Defending champion Mason County eventually prevailed 66-56 in a triple overtime thriller.

March 20, 2007, Cordell native Ricky Skaggs released an album with rock musician Bruce Hornsby.

Localtonians wish a Happy Birthday to Kentucky bred Animal Kingdom, born on Denali Stud in Paris in 2008.  He won the 137th Kentucky Derby before a record crowd of 164,858.

March 20, 2010, Pikeville’s Shelby Valley High School defeated Ballard of Louisville 71-63 for the state championship.  Rupp Arena hosted the KHSAA High School Basketball Tournament.

March 20, 2015, the Prince of Wales and the Duchess of Cornwall visited Louisville as a guest of Christy Brown, widow of former Brown-Foreman Chairman Owsley Brown.

March 20, 2016, it was a Louisville (Doss) vs Lexington (Dunbar) Sweet 16 Finals.  Paul Lawrence Dunbar High School won 61-52 in Lexington’s Rupp Arena.

March 20, 2020, Governor A. Beshear announced that Kentucky positive coronavirus cases “ballooned” to a total of 64.  The state also requested that public schools stay closed till April 20.

March 20, 2021, many Kentuckians are stuck in a loop waiting for jobless benefits due to the covid-19 shutdown.  Meanwhile, students across Kentucky get adjusted to wearing masks, contract tracing, hand sanitizing in between classes, and other SOP to stop the spread.

March 20, 2021, a Kentucky bred won the GII $1,000,000 Louisiana Derby at the Fairgrounds.  Hot Rod Charlie set a new track record for 1 3/16 miles.