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Kentucky Trivia ● Kentucky Tweets

December 26, 1891, City Marshal Taylor Vice, Sharpsburg Marshal’s Office, died as he struggled with two suspects.  One man stabbed him several times with a pocket knife.  Locals executed the murderer by hanging him 11 months later.

December 26, 1896, Daviess County lynched Alfred Holt, a black male for an alleged murder of a white police officer.  The frenzied crowd pulled him from jail in the early morning and hanged him from a tree in the courthouse yard.

December 26, 1942, Deputy Jailer Elisha Hoskins, Harlan County Detention Center, died from a gunshot while arresting two women for being drunk in public on Main Street.  The husband of one of the women shot Deputy Hoskins after claiming that he was not legally allowed to make an arrest.

December 26, 1945, the military took 1,250,000 plasma units from the Vietnam surplus, and The Red Cross distributed it to American citizens.  The plasma units came from 2,000,000 donations and met civilian needs for two years.

December 26, 1951, Air Force PFC John A. Robertson from Owensboro died in the Korean War.

December 26, 1952, Army PFC Billy H. Gibbs from Breathitt County died in the Korean War.

December 26, 1956, International Business Machines (IBM), opened its new 386,000 square foot factory to produce Selectric Typewriters.  The business initially employed more than 1,800 people and by 1985 that number had grown to over 6,000.  In 1990, Clayton & Dubilier, a New York investment firm bought around 80 percent of IBM’s products division and shut down the Lexington operation.

December 26, 1962, ten individuals escaped East Berlin through a drumfire of Tommy Guns from East German border guards.  The owner of the old custom armor-plated truck spent six months planning the breakout.

December 26, 1970, Army SSG Richard W. Dotson from Dorton in Pike County and Army PFC Marshall Miller from Vest in Knott County died fighting in the Vietnam War.

December 26, 1972, Harry S. Truman, the 33rd U.S. President, died at age 88 in a Kansas City hospital.  Harry dropped two atomic bombs.  He wanted to be remembered by the saying, “I did what had to be done.”

December 26, 1975, President G. Ford announced a major new attack on the flow of heroin and other drugs entering the U.S., calling it a “national tragic problem.”

December 26, 1985, a Clear Creek man from Bell County stated he would fight the Left Beaver Coal Company in court since the Cabinet for Natural Resources and Environmental Protection upheld the company’s coal washing permit.  He said he knew the fight was a losing battle and they had already destroyed everything he and his wife had built.  Experts stated the groundwater would not clean up in his lifetime.

December 26, 1985, a coin toss decided the Richmond City Commissioner race when both candidates received 1,420 votes.  The winner, Marshall McAninch, went out to dinner with Merle Winburn, the loser, after the toss, with their wives.

December 26, 1985, Muhammad Ali received a luxury face spa treatment at Louisville’s Patsy Stone’s Cosmetic Studio.  During his 2 ½ hour session, Ali spoke on various subjects and provided magic tricks for the locals and press.  “I am so proud to be from Louisville,” he said. “I’ve conquered the boxing world, and when people think of the best in the world, he’s from Louisville.”  Ali came to Louisville to visit Odessa, his mother, for the holidays.

December 26, 1990, Dr. Chandra Varia and her husband donated $100,000 to help battered women in Eastern Kentucky through a grant administered by Prestonsburg Community College.  The college stated the gift was a godsend.

December 26, 1991, the Lexington Ball announced the last dance would be in 1992.  The Ball was Lexington’s oldest and largest charitable function, which had raised $3 million since it started in 1970.

December 26, 1994, Eastern Kentucky doctors joined forces and created their own Health Maintenance Organization (HMO) group.  The good doctors did this as a response to the large corporate healthcare companies trying to take their patients away.

December 26, 1996, ex-Lee County Sherriff Johnny Mann wed in prison.  Mann was sentenced for taking bribes from drug smugglers.  He caught got on tape telling the FBI he was going “to make every dime he can for the next four years.”  

On December 26, 1996, the federal government formally adopted and approved High Definition Television (HDTV) technical standards after nine years of testing and debate.  MLB baseball televised their 1st HDTV game on opening day in 1998 when the Rangers played the White Sox in Texas.

December 26, 1997, Kentucky Derby winner Silver Charm finished 2nd in Santa Anita’s GI $200,000 Malibu Stakes against eight other three-year-olds.

December 26, 1998, an unranked Louisville team defeated #3 Kentucky in Freedom Hall 83-74.  The Wildcats lost their 2nd consecutive game.  UK had not lost two consecutive games since February 9 and 12, 1994, against Arkansas and Syracuse.

December 26, 2001, Hawesville native Benjamin E. DeJarnette, passed away.  Not only did he live in three centuries, but records show he was Kentucky’s last remaining son of a Confederate soldier.  His father was 26 when the Civil War ended and 56 when he fathered Benjamin.

December 26, 2006, Gerald Rudolph Ford died at his home in Rancho Mirage, California, at 93.  The 38th president took office in 1974 during some of America’s darkest days after President R. Nixon resigned.

December 26, 2013, America Health released a report claiming Kentucky’s drug overdoses quadrupled since 1999, with the overwhelming majority from prescription drugs.  Kentucky’s overdose mortality rate per 100,000 residents was 23.6, the third-highest among U.S. states.

December 26, 2015, Kentucky defeated Louisville 75-73 in Rupp Arena.  Pitino was caught on camera leaving the court after the game making an obscene gesture to the home crowd.  The rivalry was not kind to Pitino after Calipari came to Lexington.  Coach Cal won 8 of the 10 meetings from 2009-1016, including two NCAA Tournament meetings and one Final Four matchup.  

On December 26, 2017, a Paducah native who now lives in California admitted he was the individual who sent a gift-wrapped package of horse manure to Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin’s Los Angles home.  Robbie Strong stated on his Facebook page that he sent the “gift,” which arrived on the 23rd, as a protest against the tax bill.

December 26, 2019, Kentucky unanimously denied the 1st charter school application filed; securing another year without charter schools since being approved by the 2017 General Assembly.

December 26, 2020, President D. Trump still declined to sign the $1.7 trillion omnibus spending bill, including $900 billion for the coronavirus stimulus package.  The press claimed his lack of action delayed unemployment benefits.  The president claimed he wanted each American to receive $2,000, not the $600 congress approved.

Positives:  764 / 255,563
Deaths:  4 / 2,534 – 1st Death 3/16/20
50&over: 2,472 / 49-30: 59 / 29&under: 3

Not all counties reported during the Christmas Holidays

December 26, 2021, Russian President V. Putin asked NATO to decline membership to Ukraine and provide other security guarantees on their border.  Putin urged America to act quickly, or Moscow would have to take “aqueduct military-technical measures if the West continues its aggressive course on the threshold of our home.”