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Kentucky Trivia ● Kentucky Tweets

On May 15, 1780, 672 inhabitants presented the Continental Congress a signed memorial of the “Counties of Kaintuckey and Illinois” for each to be a “Separate State.”  Kentucky in Retrospect by Lila Jones Kingston pg: 15

May 15, 1790, Masterson’s Station hosted the 1st Methodist Conference west of the Allegheny Mountains.   The conference took place where the federal prison is now in Lexington and lasted three days.   Historians erected a granite marker where the plain two-story log cabin stood.  The Squire’s Sketches of Lexington by J. Winston Coleman, Jr.; pg: 21

On May 15, 1792, Kentucky electors from different parts of the state selected Isaac Shelby to be the 1st governor.  On June 4, he took the oath of office.  Governors of Kentucky 1792 – 1942 by G. Glen Clift

May 15, 1841, Cassius Clay dueled Robert Wickliff on Locust Grove Farm in Jefferson County.  They chose pistols at thirty feet and fired two rounds, but no one received injuries.  Wickliffe made derogatory remarks about Mrs. Clay during a political speech.  Both parties ate and drank after the duel.

May 15, 1853, Flemingsburg native Willis Arnold Gorman became the 2nd Territorial governor of Minnesota.

May 15, 1861, Fleming County native Alvin Saunders became the 10th governor of Nebraska Territory.

On May 15, 1876, a Lexington fire destroyed 17 buildings downtown, including the Phoenix Hotel.  The hotel was full of people attending the popular Kentucky Association Track.   Madam Belle by Maryjean Wall; pg: 37

May 15, 1884, ten prominent history buffs formed The Filson Club of Louisville to conserve Kentucky’s past.

Tuesday, May 15, 1894, Chant won the 20th Kentucky Derby going a mile and half in 2:41.  There is a dispute on the winning margin, five through ten, but regardless it was a Derby record.  Winning jockey Frank Goodale, passed away a few days later when his mount stumbled and rolled on top of him.  Owners H. Eugene Leigh & Robert L. Rose and trainer H. Eugene Leigh completed the winning connections that earned $4,020.

On May 15, 1900, the U.S. Navy commissioned the BB-6 USS Kentucky.  They described her as the most powerful battleship when launched.  From bow to stern, Kentucky could fire a thirteen-inch gun simultaneously.  No European power came close.  Her 1st active service lasted from 1900-04, sailing between the U.S. and the Far East via the Suez Canal.

May 15, 1926, Bubbling Over won the 52nd Kentucky Derby in 2:03 4/5 over a fast track.  Some called the winner the 2nd Man o’ War.  However, he bowed a tendon in the race and retired with a 10-for-13 record.  He went on to a successful stallion career, including siring Edward Bradley’s 1932 Derby winner Burgoo King.  The winning trainer, Herbert J. Thompson, won his 2nd of four Derbies.  Idle Hour Stock Farm Stable and jockey Albert Johnson round out the winning connections, that earned $50,075.

May 15, 1932, Deputy Constable James S. “Sol” Saylor, Harlan County Constable’s Office, died from a gunshot arresting a man in the Wallins Creek community.

On May 15, 1954, African Americans Andrew and Charlotte Wade moved to Rone Court, a racially segregated neighborhood in Louisville.  The move occurred two days before the Supreme Court condemned school segregation.  Neighbors burned a cross and shot out windows, and the Wades endured harassment until June 27, when vandals dynamited the house.

May 15, 1966, Air Force CMSGT William L. Madison from Lexington died in the Vietnam War.

May 15, 1970, Marine Corps LCPL Douglas Carroll from Anneta in Grayson County died in the Vietnam War.

On May 15, 1971, Kathleen Mulligan, a pioneer in Kentucky law, passed over at age 81.  She attained many firsts in her professional career: the 1st woman to sit as a judge in Kentucky, 1st woman vice president of the Kentucky Bar Association, 1st woman on the Kentucky membership committee of the ABA, and 1st woman secretary of the Fayette County Democratic Committee.

May 15, 1971, watch Canonero II go for the second leg in the 96th running of the Preakness Stakes.

On May 15, 1971, two U.S. Congressmen, one from Kentucky and one from Utah, held a free throw contest at the half-time of the Kentucky Colonels and Utah Stars ABA game in Freedom Hall.  The Colonels made an exciting comeback to tie the Championship series 3-3.  

May 15, 1975, Marine Corps PFC Gary L. Hall from Covington died in the Vietnam War.

May 15, 1975, the U.S. National Register of Historic Places added the John A. Roebling Suspension Bridge.  Connecting Cincinnati and Covington, the 1st pedestrians crossed on December 1, 1866.

1906 – By Detroit Publishing Company

May 15, 1979, Deputy Sheriff Earl Smith, Pike County Sheriff’s Office, died while attempting to serve a warrant.  The suspect shot him six times; he pled not guilty by reason of insanity and was acquitted.

May 15, 1980, watch the controversial 105th Preakness Stakes where Jacinto Vasquez riding Genuine Risk claimed a foul claim against Angel Cordero Jr. on Codex for forcing the filly extremely wide in the stretch and shaking his whip in her face.  Cordero later received threats against his life and threats to burn his house.  Stewards disallowed the foul.

May 15, 1981, Ft. Knox native Len Barker, as a member of the Cleveland Indians, pitched the 10th official perfect game in baseball history.

May 15, 1992, federal authorities transferred The Queen of Mean from Lexington’s Federal Medical Center to a prison in Connecticut.  Leona Hemsley received four years in prison for not paying taxes.  She stayed 30 days in Lexington and 621 days in CT.

May 15, 2001, fire severely damaged the UK’s oldest building, the Administration Building.

May 15, 2003, Louisville native Todd Wellemeyer made his MLB debut with the Chicago Cubs.

May 15, 2004, watch the 129th Preakness Stakes.

May 15, 2012, an international tribunal charged and convicted, former President Bush, V.P. Dick Cheney, Defense Secretary D. Rumsfeld, Deputy AGs John Choon Yoo and Jay Bybee, AG Alberto Gonzales, and former counselors David Addington and William Haynes II, of being war criminals.

May 15, 2017, for the 1st time, Frankfort mandated students learn cursive writing, singling an end to Common Core Standards and a new era in Kentucky ethics laws.  Meanwhile, a former Steve Beshear administration member pleaded guilty to violating three counts of Kentucky’s ethics laws education.

On May 15, 2020, two prisoners in their 60s died at the Federal Medical Center, bringing the Fayette County total to 12.  The governor announced 380 Kentuckians were hospitalized, 218 in intensive care; however, various tourism-related activities would re-open on June 1, including State Parks and their lodges.

May 15, 2021, Hawesville native Navy Fireman Martin Young, who died on the USS Oklahoma during the attack on Pearl Harbor, was laid to rest in Lewisport after his DNA identified him in 2015.