TODAY IN KENTUCKY HISTORY

Kentucky Trivia ● Kentucky Tweets

June 26, 1861, Cynthiana native Orville Hickman Browning became an Illinois U.S. Senator.  Five years later he would become the 9th Secretary of the Interior.

June 26, 1888, Louisville native Hercules Burnett made his MLB debut with the Louisville Colonels.

June 26, 1889, Bullitt County, lynched Harry Ardell, a white male, for an alleged murder.

June 26, 1898, Logan County lynched George Scott, a black male, for an attempted rape.

Friday, June 26, 1925, a community sing-along with 300 strong occurred at the Lincoln School playground in Lexington.  Eleanor Knox, my great-grand mother played the piano.  Old-time and popular music played and as the audience gave rousing renditions of many of the numbers.

June 26, 1930, the 1930 census reported Kentucky’s population stood at 2,614,289.

June 26, 1938, Nearco ended his career, a perfect 14-for-14, by winning the Grand Prix de Paris at Longchamp.

June 26, 1951, Army PFC Chester Pritchett from Calloway County died in the Korean War.

June 26, 1957, Deputy Sheriff Willie James Lewis, Sr. Leslie County Sheriff’s Office, died in an ambush near his home by two brothers in retaliation for an earlier incident.

June 26, 1959, the first performance of the “Stephen Foster Story by Paul Green, about the life of the composer of “My Old Kentucky Home,” opened in the J. Dan Talbott Amphitheater.  A prior parade down Bardstown’s main street included a tractor-pulled float carrying singing performers from the show and speeches in front of the Nelson County Court House.  The 1st season of the production was a great success, with over 70,000 people in attendance.

June 26, 1961, Muhammad Ali (7-0) fought Kolo “Duke” Sabedong (15-11-1) in the Las Vegas Convention Center.  Clay, fighting for the first time in Las Vegas, the new mecca of boxing, won a 10-round unanimous decision against Sabedong, a strapping 6-6 Hawaiian.  Sabedong, 31, started out fighting dirty and hit Clay below the belt to try to provoke an upset.  But he lacked the speed and skill to bother Clay, who blamed his sluggish showing on trainer Angelo Dundee’s decision to fly them to Las Vegas rather than take the train.  Sabedong died in 2008 at the age of 78.

June 26, 1967, Marine Corps LCPL Aaron B. Spalding from Louisville died in the Vietnam War.

June 26, 1969, Army SGT Jackie Coots from Cumberland in Harlan County and Marine Corps LCPL James E. Short from Lexington, died in the Vietnam War.

June 26, 1970, Marine Corps CPL Otis R. Jones from Donerail in Fayette County died in the Vietnam War.

June 26, 1970, the last episode of T-Bar-V Ranch Show aired on WHAS in Louisville.  The iconic Kentucky television show 1st aired in 1950.

June 26, 1971, Shirley Jean Ford married William Riley Dexter in the 1st wedding in the Old Governor’s Mansion in over 100 years and the 2nd known to historians.  Lt. Gov. Wendell Ford gave his daughter away in the formal room of his residence.

June 26, 1978, Chief of Police Jimmy Ray Tolson, Campton Police Department, died from a gunshot by an 19-year-old youth as he sat in city hall.

June 26, 1981, Hollywood released Stripes.  The plot:  within a few hours, Louisville, cab driver John Winger lost his job, his apartment, his car, and his girlfriend Anita, who has grown tired of his immaturity.  Realizing his limited prospects, he decides to join the Army.  Much of the filming took place in the Commonwealth.

June 26, 1986, Jockey Sandy Hawley won his 5,000th career race, aboard Mighty Massa, at Canterbury Downs.

June 26, 1992, Jockey Dave Gall became the 8th rider in history to ride 6,000 winners when he rode Nanas Nice Boy to victory at Fairmount Park.

June 26, 1994, Jockey Chris McCarron rode his 6,000th  career winner, Andestine, in the Milady Handicap at Hollywood Park.  He was the 11th rider to reach 6,000 and the third-youngest, behind Bill Shoemaker and Laffit Pincay Jr.

June 26, 1996, Deputy Sheriff Eric Shane Stafford, Edmonson County Sheriff’s Office, died and another deputy received injuries after their patrol car was struck from behind by a tractor-trailer on I-65, at the Barren County line.

June 26, 2000, Hall of Fame trainer Lucien Laurin, conditioner of 1973 Triple Crown winner Secretariat, died at the age of 88.

Effective June 26, 2007, Kentucky designated Bluegrass music the official state music of the Commonwealth.

June 26, 2014, Louisville native Adam Duvall made his MLB debut with the San Francisco Giants.

June 26, 2015, a jury convicted former state Rep. W. Keith Hall, D-Phelps, of bribing a state coal mine inspector to win favorable treatment for surface mines he owned in Pike County.  Kentucky jailed him for seven years.

On June 26, 2015, the U.S. Supreme Court held in a 5–4 decision that the 14th Amendment required all states to grant same-sex marriages.  Therefore, Kentucky altered their marriage license and stopped asking the sex of each individual.  This made genealogists unhappy; they often rely on licenses for research.

June 26, 2020, Kentucky announced 256 new cases of coronaviruses and seven new deaths, bringing the totals to 14,859 and 553 respectively.  All new deaths were individuals over 85, except for a 47-year-old man from Monroe County.

On June 26, 2021, Georgetown-based Country Boy Brewing partnered with Grammy-nominated rap quartet and Bowling Green-based Nappy Roots to release Backroads Blackberry Berliner at the Kentucky Craft Bash in Louisville.  All proceeds went to the Kentucky Institute for Music Industry Development, a non-profit group founded by Nappy Roots.