TODAY IN KENTUCKY HISTORY

Kentucky Trivia ● Kentucky Tweets

It may be that when we no longer know which way to go that we have come to our real journey. The mind that is not baffled is not employed. The impeded stream is the one that sings.  Wendell Berry

August 11, 1787, brothers John and Fielding Bradford published the 1st issue of the Kentucke Gazette.  They returned to Lexington from Pennsylvania after learning the newspaper trade and created Kentucky’s 1st Kentucky newspaper and 2nd in the Western Country.  Unfortunately, no copy of the first edition is known to survive, and at the time, Lexington had 350 citizens and 50 residences.  The earliest years of the Gazette were meager; barely two small print pages, it quickly grew into a four-page weekly.  As political parties emerged, the Gazette became a strong Democratic (Jacksonian) mouthpiece, a stance reflected in its editorials.

August 11, 1911, Patrolman Michael J. Baldwin, Louisville Police Department, died by a man he had arrested for burglary.  As he escorted the robber to the house which had been robbed to establish his identity, the suspect suddenly produced a gun and shot him.  Another officer with them shot and killed the suspect.

August 11, 1925, Sheriff James O. West, Fulton County Sheriff’s Office, died as he and the county jailer attempted to arrest a man making threats to neighbors.  As the officers walked across the man’s porch the man opened fire, striking Sheriff West in the head.

On August 11, 1932, Paducah native John T. Scopes, the defendant in the famous evolution trial, was selected as one of the eight Socialist candidates for Congress from Kentucky.  At the time of the announcement, Mr. Scopes had been living on his parents’ Paducah farm since his return from a South American geologist expedition.

August 11, 1940, Lexington native Belle Brezing died.

Localtonians wish a Happy Birthday to Campbellsville native Clem Smith Haskins, born in 1943.  Clem and fellow star player Dwight Smith became the 1st black athletes to integrate the Western Kentucky University (WKU) basketball program.  This put WKU at the forefront to integrate college basketball in the South.

Localtonians wish a Happy Birthday to Versailles native John Wayne Conlee, born in 1946.

August 11, 1950, Army CPL Charles Dickison from Boyd County and Army CPL Alvis D. Lawson from Bell County, died in the Korean War.

August 11, 1952, Army SGT Stanley E. Robinson from Jefferson County, died in the Korean War.

August 11, 1962, Norm Miracle pitched his 2nd no hitter, his 1st was August 10.  The eight-year-old struck out 12 and walked four in Louisville’s small fry baseball league.

August 11, 1972, Republican gubernatorial nominee Thomas Emberton proposed a voluntary lid on advertising spending, including the purchase of TV time.  Two of his opponents, Commonwealth Party candidate Happy Chandler and American Party representative William Smith agreed.  Lt. Governor and Democratic candidate, Wendell W. Ford, balked.

August 11, 1978, the Center for Disease Control in Atlanta announced they had found the source of the Legionnaire’s Disease.

August 11, 1982, breeder Seth Hancock and owner Henryk de Kwiatkowski announced a record $36.4 million syndication that sent Belmont winner Conquistador Cielo to Claiborne Farm.

August 11, 1983, Governor John Y. Brown, Jr. addressed the public, from his Cave Hill residence, for the 1st time since his June open heart surgery.

August 11, 1990, Mrs. Carolyn Pennebaker Hopkins, U.S. Rep. Larry J. Hopkins’s wife, christened the USS Kentucky (SSBN-737), a U.S. Navy ballistic missile submarine.  Carolyn used a custom blend of Kentucky bourbon whiskey, mixed for the occasion, rather than the traditional bottle of champagne.  The SSBN-737’s motto is “Thoroughbred of the Fleet.”

Kentucky Trivia:  There have been three Naval ships named for Kentucky:  USS Kentucky (BB-6), a Kearsarge-class battleship, sailed with the Great White Fleet, the USS Kentucky (BB-66), an Iowa-class battleship, was under construction in 1947 when she was cancelled, and the USS Kentucky (SSBN-737), an Ohio-class “Trident” submarine.  There also has been nine naval ships named for Kentucky cities.

August 11, 1995, Lebanon tobacco farmer Joe Ford spoke out against President Clinton’s restrictions on tobacco, saying the president “is some guy sitting in air conditioning in D.C., making decisions that would wreck the foundation of Kentucky’s economy.”

Sunday, August 11, 1996, Kenny Perry lost in sudden death at Valhalla in the 78th PGA Championship.  Paducah native Russ Cochran led by two strokes after three rounds but fell to 17th place.

On August 11, 2002, a Keeneland graduate exacta won Del Mar’s GII $300,000 Clement L. Hirsch Stakes.  The Kentucky bred won his 6th win in a row; in a streak of 12 consecutive wins.

On August 11, 2006, Special Judge David E. Melcher ruled in favor of Governor E. Fletcher over his personnel scandal.  The judge said Fletcher had executive immunity and could not be prosecuted until he left office.

August 11, 2011, Louisville native George Charles Devol Jr. died.  George is best known for creating Unimate, the 1st industrial robot.  Devol’s invention earned him the title “Grandfather of Robotics” as recognized by the National Inventors Hall of Fame.

August 11, 2018, a Keeneland graduate won Saratoga’s GI $500,000 Fourstardave Handicap.

On August 11, 2019, Trail’s End, a historic girls’ camp in Lexington, received admission to the National Register of Historic Places.  Established in 1913, it was one of the 1st organized camps for girls in the south.

August 11, 2020, the state reported 563 new cases for a 35,793 total.  Eight people died, the youngest being 54, and 783 had died in total.  Approximately 667 were in hospitals due to the coronavirus, with 148 in intensive care.  Two Christian schools opened in-person learning which went against the governor’s wishes.  In Washington, President J. Biden picked K. Harris as his running mate. 

August 11, 2021, Kentucky’s AG Daniel Cameron asked the State Supreme Court to reject Governor A. Beshear’s K-12 universal mask mandate, calling the emergency order an “unlawful exercise of power.”  Meanwhile, Lexington and Louisville schools opened up their doors for students to learn together with masks on.