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Kentucky Trivia

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

Localtonians wish a Happy Birthday to Prestonsburg native George B. Martin, born in 1876. George served as Kentucky’s 25th Class II U.S. Senator.

August 1884, the Rowan County War began.  The Tolliver – Martin Feud would last till 1887.

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, 1934, City Marshal Caleb Dunn, Jackson Police Department, died in a shootout at the police station.

August 18, 1943, Patrolman William Preston Bryant, Louisville Police Department, succumbed to gunshot wounds the previous day during a traffic stop while patrolling Beat 47.

August 18, 1950, Army PFC Victor Akers, Jr. from Lawrence County and Army PVT Joe Robinson from Menifee County died in the Korean War.

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.

On August 18, 1961, Humana became Extendicare Inc. in Louisville.  A few men would get filthy rich and many would go bankrupt trying to heal their sick bodies.

On August 18, 1962, a photo finish decided one of the most memorable races in horse racing history.  Two champions eyeballed each other for the entire 10 furlongs.

August 18, 1965, Army MAJ Donald G. Radcliff from Louisville and Marine Corps SSGT James A. Smith from Warsaw in Gallatin County died in the Vietnam War.

August 18, 1968, Patrolman Earl J. Bertram, Jefferson County Police Department, succumbed to injuries sustained five years earlier from an automobile accident responding to a call.

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.  

August 18, 2008, Linda Rice trained the 1st four finishers in the Mechanicville Stakes at Saratoga, dubbed the “Rice Superfecta.”

August 18, 2010, Navy Chief Special Warfare Operator (SEAL) Collin T. Thomas 33, of Morehead, died in Afghanistan fighting in Operation Enduring Freedom.

August 18, 2016, Reba opened up the Kentucky State Fair.  ABBA played the following night.

August 18, 2018, a Keeneland graduate exacta took Saratoga’s GI $600,000 Alabama Stakes.  The Kentucky bred won $330,000 for 1st place.

August 18, 2019, Justin Thomas won the BMW Championship, his 10th PGA victory by three strokes.  He shot a course record 61 on Saturday and never looked back.

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.

Positives:  627 / 40, 299
Deaths:  12 / 830 1st death March 16, 2020
50&over: 805 / 49-30: 24 / 29&under: 1

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.

August 18, 2022, Governor A. Behsear and top aide Rocky Adkins enjoyed a few hours at the Bill Monroe Museum in Rosine.