On October 21, 1788, Lincoln County Court ordered a road between William Whitley’s Station to the Lincoln County Court House. Mr. Whitley built the first brick house west of the Allegany’s. He also created the first horse track called Sportsman Hill, which was immensely popular.
October 21, 1793, Lexington’s trustees stated in the Kentucky Gazette to stop racing thoroughbreds through the streets of Lexington, this after several close encounters of flying horseshoes hitting spectators. Racing moved to “the lower end of the Commons (Water Street), where stud horses were also shown.
The Squire’ Sketches of Lexington by J. Winston Coleman, Jr.; pg: 22
October 21, 1794, the duel between General Thomas Kennedy of Garrard County and William Gillespie of Madison County took place. Trouble arose over a business transaction; the duel was fought at Paint Lick in Garrard County. Gillespie was killed on the first fire; Kennedy escaped unharmed, the bullet passing through his clothes under his left arm.
Famous Kentucky Duels by J. Winston Coleman, Jr.; pg: 4
October 21, 1831, the construction of Kentucky’s first railway began. It would be named the Lexington and Ohio Railroad. A grand parade marked the milestone that started at Transylvania University and ended at Water Street near Mill Street. Here Governor Metcalf laid a cornerstone of the rail and he also drove the first spike. Horses drove the train cars for several years.
October 21, 1861, the Battle of Camp Wildcat took place in northern Laurel County, what is now the Daniel Boone National Forest. It was one of the earliest battles in America’s Civil War and the second one fought in Kentucky. The Confederates occupied Cumberland Gap while the Union Army established a camp at Wildcat Mountain to obstruct the passing of Wilderness Road. Total causalities were 78 (US 25; CS 53). The Battle of Camp Wildcat was the first Union victory of the Civil War when the Confederates retreated to Tennessee.
On October 21, 1950, Western Kentucky played Georgetown in football for the last time. WKU won for the ninth time in a row, 41-13 at home. The series ended with a 9-1 record; Georgetown won the first game, 6-0 in 1927.
October 21, 1995, the world’s largest bat rolled into Louisville at 120’ and 34 tons. The LouisvilleSlugger stands outside Hillerich and Bradsby’s headquarters. Mr. J. F. Hillerich opened his woodworking shop in Louisville in 1855.
October 21, 1995, the 20th annual Bean Bash held in Florence took place. The founder of was especially happy to be present on this special day as he was just released from prison due to the BOPTROT scandal.
October 21, 1996, Coach Bill Curry was fired, in the middle of the season, after seven years as UK’s head football coach. His record was 23-51 and 1-6 as of the firing. The University honored the remainder of Coach Curry’s contract – two years for $610,000 and those of his assistants. The Cincinnati Bengals also fired their head coach Dave Shula who posted a 19-51 record in four and half years.
October 21, 1999, Dr. Wayne E. Oates, a Louisville theology psychiatry professor who wrote 57 books and coined the term “workaholic” passed away. He is also considered the father of pastoral care; an area of study that combines psyco-therapy with a theological interpretation.
October 21, 2002, America’s highest court refused to consider a Kentucky murderer’s claim that executing juvenile offenders is unconstitutional. The offender was 17-years-old at the time of the offense. Governor Paul Patton had the final decision and he did not execute.
October 21, 2007, Governor Ernie Fletcher and challenger Steve Beshear debated on television in the WHAS station less than a month before the election. They sparred over ethics, funding for social services, health care and casino gambling. They also argued who was a better hunter.
On October 21, 2019, Governor Matt Bevin’s flights aboard state-owned aircraft in the first 45 months of his term had a total billed cost 80% larger than his predecessor. Governor Bevin’s cost was $678,225.