TODAY IN KENTUCKY HISTORY

Kentucky Trivia ● Kentucky Tweets

April 5, 1792, Native Americans attacked Tucker’s Station in Green County.  The Rev. John Tucker, his wife, and two others died as they tried to escape to Casey’s Station.

Localtonians wish a Happy Anniversary to John James Audubon and Lucy Bakewell, who wed in 1808.  One biographer calls his marriage the most important event in his life because his wife was “the spur to his ambition and the balance wheel to his character.”

Localtonians wish a Happy Birthday to Richmond native Samuel Freeman Miller, born in 1816.  Dr. Miller received his medical degree from Transylvania University in 1838 and then went on to study law on his own, passing the bar in 1847.  In 1862, President Lincoln nominated him to the Supreme Court, where he served until he died in 1890.  Judge Miller was a strong abolitionist.

April 5, 1849, a circuit court in Fulton County found Col. J. Leigh guilty of accepting a challenge to fight a duel and was fined $150.00.

On April 5, 1893, the Kentucky legislature passed an act to control the corporations’ growing power, mainly aimed at the railway industry.  Along with other economic hardships throughout the eighties, increasing railroad rates pushed citizens to ask for more government control.

April 5, 1903, Constable Tom Crace, Morgan County Constable’s Office, was shot and killed while attempting to serve a warrant on a man near Wheel Rim Fork.

On April 5, 1932, Phar Lap’s groom, Tommy Woodcock, found his horse in severe pain and high temperature in his stall in the early morning.  Phar Lap hemorrhaged to death within a few hours.  An autopsy revealed that the horse’s stomach and intestines were inflamed.  Many believe the mafia poisoned the horse to stop hefty losses from gambling ventures?

April 5, 1950, a Jessamine County couple received a fine of $250 plus court for possessing gambling devices and paraphernalia located in their hotel. Confiscated were 25 to 30 punchboards and several types of small gaming machines, with a combined value of $2,000 to $3,000.

April 5, 1953, Marine Corps PFC James E. Jones from Boaz in Graves County died in the Korean War.

April 5, 1954, Patrolman Henry E. St. Clair, Jefferson County Police Department, died in an automobile crash when his patrol car struck a gasoline truck head-on.

April 5, 1960, Mrs. Minnie Cornett, a 71-year-old mother of nine, was honored as 1960 Kentucky Mother of the Year.  Minnie, who aided many in her small community of Mallie in Knott County, received a plaque from Governor Combs in person. 

April 5, 1967, Marine Corps CPL Joseph A. Scruggs from Hopkinsville in Christian County died in the Vietnam War.

April 5, 1969, Air Force MSGT John N. Edwards from Bowling Green in Warren County and Marine Corps PFC Willie L. Lowe from Louisville died in the Vietnam War.

April 5, 1973, the state announced they would begin to install devices on stoplights to enable emergency vehicles, such as police and fire trucks, to trip the red lights as they approach.

April 5, 1975, Keeneland held their opening day of the Spring Meet and 17,087 fans made an appearance with temperatures barley reaching 50.

April 5, 1981, in a dramatic ending, Agriculture Commissioner Alben W. Barkley II declined to testify on his behalf concerning the provocative sexual harassment against himself and two other department officials.

April 5, 1987, the Lexington police went to 22-year-old Meranda Bates house at 11:00 p.m. and took her to jail for not paying $3.50 of a $37.50 speeding ticket.  She spent six hours locked up.  Her story made frontline news.

April 5, 1990, state and federal officials descended on a furniture-manufacturing plant near Somerset to search for evidence that the company might be discharging hazardous waste.  The F.B.I., E.P.A., Kentucky State Police, and others spent the whole day collecting evidence.

On April 5, 1990, Governor W. Wilkerson told the press he would campaign actively against two constitutional amendments that would give more power to the General Assembly. These powers allowed the legislators to call special sessions and strike down state agencies’ resolutions immediately instead of waiting ninety days.

Kentucky Trivia:  Wallace Wilkerson’s Ponzi scheme stole $103 million from United Company, $81 million from George Valassis, $25 million from Wendy’s restaurant founder Dave Thomas, $15 million from Elmer Whitaker, $12 million from Milo Bryant, his former transportation secretary, $8 million from auto dealer Martin “Hoot” McInerney, $8 million from Hazard businessman L.D. Gorman, $5.5 million from Leonard Lawson and several million from others.

April 5, 1994, a Rockcastle grand jury confirmed that State Police acted appropriately in 1993 when they killed a man guarding his marijuana patch with a semi-automatic assault rifle.

April 5, 2000 President Clinton signed the Wendell H. Ford Aviation Investment and Reform Act for the 21st Century.  The law gave several amenities to airports.

April 5, 2001, two Kentucky legislators from Louisville and Leitchfield agreed to speak at a “massive multi-state militia meeting” in Grayson County.  The group’s website likened President Clinton to Hitler and urged their members to “track down” the lone Jewish Kentucky representative and “bring ammo.”    

April 5, 2005, the federal government gave back land to their rightful Kentucky owners after they seized it during WWII.  Fearing coastal attacks during the early stages of the war, the Army took 36,000 acres of rolling farmland in Western Kentucky’s Union and Webster Counties.

April 5, 2009, UofL advanced to the final game of the Women’s NCAA basketball championship by defeating Oklahoma in the semi-finals 61-59.  Unfortunately, the Cardinals would lose in their first title game to Connecticut.

April 5, 2014, two Kentucky breds won Keeneland’s GI $500,000 Ashland Stakes. 

April 5, 2015, J.B. Holmes won the Shell Houston Open in a playoff over Justin Spieth and Johnson Wagner.

April 5, 2017, the University of the Cumberlands hosted Shaquille O’Neal as he spoke at the school’s 12th annual Excellence in Leadership series.  He spent a few hours in Whitley County, flying into Williamsburg-Whitley County Airport late and flying out that night; his short visit impacted many.

April 5, 2020, 38 new positive coronavirus cases are announced, bringing the total to 955.  Five new deaths bring that total to 45.  Teachers, students, and families adapted to virtual education.

April 5, 2021, state’s virus numbers plateaued after 11 weeks of declining statistics while Woodford County had the highest vaccination rates (28.5%), followed by Pike and Fayette Counties.