Kentucky Trivia ● Kentucky Tweets
November 12, 1788, Virginia approved the creation of Woodford County from Fayette County. Named in honor of William Woodford, Revolutionary War General, it would be the last county created by Virginia. The county seat is Versailles. Other localities include Huntertown, Midway, Millville, Milner, Nonesuch, Mortonsville, Pinckard, Pisgah, Wallace, and Troy. The 9th county created currently covers 192 square miles.
On November 12, 1866, John H. Grassup and John Blair, both of Bowling Green and Confederate soldiers, dueled in their hometown over an SC girl. The agreed upon pistols at ten paces. At first fire, Grassup received a slight wound in the right arm; Blair hit through the left breast, the ball coming out of his shoulder. Both parties made up, shook hands, and parted friends. Famous Kentucky Duels by J. Winston Coleman, Jr.; pg: 145
November 12, 1881, UK played its 1st football game as A&M College or Kentucky State College. Their opponent was Kentucky University, known today as Transylvania University (UT). This was the inaugural Battle on Broadway and lasted 30 years. The game resembled more of a rugby match than football and scoring procedures are still unclear. UK beat UT 7 ¼ to 1. The UK team finished 1-2 in their 1st year, but the 2nd season would have to wait nine years.
Localtonians wish a Happy Birthday to Liberty native Carl Mays, born in 1891, who pitched 15 seasons in MLB from 1915 to 1929. During his career, he won over 200 games, 27 in 1921 alone, and was a member of four World Series-champion teams. Mays threw the pitch that fatally injured Ray Chapman of the Cleveland Indians on August 16, 1920.
November 12, 1915, Officer Rufus A. Beagle, 52, of the Cynthiana Police Department, died from a gunshot by a drunken man after responding to a public disturbance call. The suspect was arrested, convicted of murder, and sentenced to life.
November 12, 1927, the Louisville Cardinals played the Eastern Kentucky Colonels. The game took place in Richmond and the Cardinals won 21-13. Since this game, the overall record stands at 19-7-1 in favor of the Cardinals.
Localtonians wish a Happy Birthday to Louisville native Alberta Odell Jones, born in 1930. Murdered by an unknown person after becoming the 1st African-American woman to pass the Kentucky bar and the 1st woman appointed city attorney in Jefferson County.
Kentucky Trivia: Ms. Jones was Cassius Clay’s 1st attorney, taking the young boxer to California to train under Archie Moore. Alberta represented Clay when he turned professional, negotiating a contract with 11 white millionaires known as the Louisville Sponsoring Group, and insisting that 15% of the boxer’s winnings be held in trust until he turned 35, with Alberta as a co-trustee. The contract is now on display at the Muhammad Ali Center in Louisville.
November 12, 1933, Pauline Tabor opened her 1st brothel in Bowling Green. Pauline’s clientele included wealthy business people, political figures, and GIs from nearby Ft. Knox/Ft. Campbell and regional students. Around the 1980s, urban renewal took her house on Clay Street and entrepreneurs sold the bricks as souvenirs. The Kentucky Encyclopedia edited by John E. Kleber; pg: 713
November 12, 1940, locals dedicated the Livermore Bridge in a grand affair accompanied by a banquet. Governor K. Johnson gave the dedication address. The Livermore Bridge does not contain a distinctive architectural structure or a one-of-a-kind design. However, the bridge is like no other bridge in the world. The structure is claimed to be the only river bridge that begins in one county (McLean) but spans two rivers (Green and Rough) and crosses another county (Ohio) to end in its county of origin (McLean). The Livermore Bridge crosses Ohio County in only a tiny sliver.
Localtonians wish a Happy Birthday to Mount Sterling native Governor Ernie Fletcher, born in 1952. Before politics and becoming our 60th governor, Fletcher was a family physician and a Baptist minister. He is the 2nd physician to be elected governor, the 1st being Luke P. Blackburn in 1879.
November 12, 1968, Marine Corps CPL Marvin E. Gay from Lexington, Marine Corps PFC Ronald L. Reed from Benton in Marshall County and Marine Corps CPL William H. Schaeffer from Louisville all died fighting in the Vietnam War.
November 12, 1973, several hundred people gathered at Blue Grass Airport in Lexington to greet Secretariat on his flight from New York into retirement in Kentucky. A voice from the tower crackled over the airplane radio: ”there are more people for Secretariat than to greet the governor.”
November 12, 1984, Covington native Ben Lucien Burman, an author and journalist, passed away. He fought in both World Wars and graduated from Harvard University. He married Alice Caddy, who illustrated many of his children’s books, including his most popular books, the Catfish Bend books, published in eleven languages.
November 12, 1985, Rockcastle County native John Lair, pioneer country music broadcaster, music collector, and community historian, passed away. Mr. Lair supposedly wrote more than 500 songs. One of them, Freight Train Blues, was recorded by a list of talent that includes none other than Bob Dylan, Doc Watson, Roy Acuff, Hank Williams, and the Weavers. His real mark on country music was the massive impact on the Ohio and Kentucky music scene by founding the Renfro Valley Barn Dance in 1937 in Ohio and moving back to his home state a few years later.
November 12, 1988, Campbellsville University and Georgetown College met for the 1st time in football, in Georgetown. The Tigers won 51-7. Their record today stands at 27 wins for Georgetown to Campbellsville’s six.
November 12, 1988, Governor W. Wilkinson dedicated the Kentucky Vietnam Veterans Memorial. Overlooking the capitol, the memorial honors the 125,000 Kentuckians who served during the war (1962-1975) and the 1,105 Kentuckians who died. Each name is precisely located, so the shadow of the sundial pointer, or gnomon (pronounced ‘noman’), touches each veteran’s name on the anniversary of his death. Thus, each individual is honored with a personal tribute. Helm Roberts (1931-2011), a Veteran from Lexington, designed the unique memorial. Kentucky provided $100,000 of the $1 million price tag; the remainder came from private donors.
November 12, 2008, the Army began draining and neutralizing lethal nerve agent, 15 months after they identified a leak at the Blue Grass Army Depot. The project named Operation Swift Solution did not go as swiftly as the Army or Depot had hoped.
November 12, 2014, Churchill Downs announced they bought Seattle-based Big Fish Games, which billed itself as the world’s largest producer and distributor of online games, for $885 million. It would be the largest social media acquisition to date. In 2018, Churchill Downs sold Big Fish to an Australian slots manufacturer, Aristocrat Leisure, for $990 million.
November 12, 2019, Governor M. Bevin, one week after Election Day, told an audience that he was not conceding the gubernatorial election to the challenger because “people are trying to hijack our political process.” Bevin stated that he just wanted the process “legit.” His “trumpish like” term ended on this sour footnote.
On November 12, 2020, in a stunning move, Matthew Mitchell stepped down as the University of Kentucky women’s basketball coach. The winningest coach in UK’s women’s program (303-133) resigned because of a shift in priorities, not medical issues. The introspection and prayer began around the coronavirus pandemic shut down and a severe brain injury in July.