I love my grandpa so much. I’ve just spent so many times with him on the golf course. He’s watched me play and win so many junior golf tournaments. Justin Thomas
August 18, 1855, Governor Thomas “Stone Hammer” Metcalfe, our 10th governor, passed away from cholera at Forest Retreat in Nicholas County, his home. Henry Clay named the estate when he 1st visited the newly-built house; he told Tom he had a veritable “Forest Retreat.”
Kentucky Trivia: Metcalfe was the 1st Kentucky gubernatorial candidate nominated by party convention rather than the caucus system. He drove the 1st spike in the 1st railroad west of the Appalachian Mountains, from Lexington to Frankfort, and was one of two governors who helped build the 1st governor’s mansion.
August 18, 1862, James F. Robertson became the 22nd governor when Governor B. Magoffin got pushed out of office and resigned. Magoffin agreed to leave if he hand-picked his successor. Governor Robertson carried out the remainder of Magoffin’s original term of one year and 14 days. Robertson drew criticism from President A. Lincoln’s administration for opposing the Emancipation Proclamation.
On August 18, 1862, Confederate General Edmund Kirby Smith took Barbourville and 50 wagons carrying provisions to the Cumberland Gap. The Civil War in Kentucky by Lowell H. Harrison
August 18, 1926, Deputy Sheriff James “Jim” Fee, Harlan County Sheriff’s Office, died by a man he had arrested earlier in the day for selling liquor. After posting bond, the man returned to Deputy Fee’s home and shot him.
August 18, 1956, Governor A.B. Chandler returned to the Capital as a defeated candidate for president but popular as ever with the home crowd. Over 500 rowdy supporters met him at the Frankfort Railroad Station in Frankfort.
August 18, 1969, Long John Silver’s 1st store opened in Lexington on 301 Southland Drive. The chain began as a division of Jerrico, Inc., a publicly owned corporation, which also operated Jerry’s Restaurants, a chain of family restaurants which also began in Lexington.
On August 18, 1974, a General Accounting Office (GAO) claimed the individuals wanting the controversial Red River dam, overstated the project’s economic benefits and requested they recalculate their analysis.
August 18, 1979, A.T. Collins and two others shot and killed George, his wife Jesse, and their daughter Phyliss Napier. For decades, the Napier/Collins family feud happened in the Elk Creek area of Clay County, 17 miles north of Manchester.
August 18, 1979, General Assembly loved the mud just as much as he loved the Spa, and as a result, he ran the performance of a lifetime. The Travers Stakes hosted one of the most unbelievable performances in horse racing history.
August 18, 1980, presidential nominee Ronald Reagan called the Vietnam War a “noble cause” and called for a massive rebuilding of U.S. military forces. He then denounced President J. Carter for betraying the nation’s veterans while speaking at the Chicago Veterans of Foreign Wars convention.
August 18, 1983, Patrolman Ricky Allen LaFollette, Louisville Police Department, drowned in a scuba diving accident on the Tennessee side of Dale Hollow Lake while on a training dive with his department.
August 18, 1995, state police acting on a tip raided former Kentucky Supreme Court Justice Dan Jack Combs’s Floyd County home and found a marijuana plant growing in his home. Both Combs and his 16-year-old son were ticketed with possessing and cultivating the plant.
August 18, 2000, a former top state education official received two years in prison for stealing $500,000 from the Kentucky Department of Education. The judge chastised the employee of 41 years at her sentencing.
On August 18, 2020, Governor S. Beshear announced that 12 people died from the coronavirus and introduced a new plan to track positive cases in the schools, adding more responsibility to an already overburdened system. The state counted over 40,000 positive cases, including Louisville’s 10,000 cases. “Our wildfire is getting more intense, and it is spreading. We’re having widespread community transmission,” Dr. Moyer, Louisville’s Public Health Department. Meanwhile, the city announced much-needed good news; Jefferson County High School graduates, would receive two years of tuition-free college.
On August 18, 2021, as the coronavirus continued to dominate the news, Frankfort felt employers had no authority to make an employee take an experimental vaccine and introduced a bill to stop the employee-driven vaccine mandate; the divisive points never seemed to run out. Meanwhile, KSU announced they needed $15 million to pay the bills.