Category Archives: Newspaper Articles

Cholera Rages In Flemingsburg and the County

The following article is taken from a Fleming County newspaper (I do not have the name), giving accounts of the cholera epidemics from 1852 to 1855.  So much of this type of information would be lost if it weren’t for reports of this kind, written by people who were there, or their children who were told these stories by their parents.

July 29, 1930

The Cholera Scourge of 1852-1855

The following account of the scourge of Asiatic cholera that visited Flemingsburg and Fleming County in 1855 was given me by Horace C. Ashton, October 28, 1925.  He had a sound and capable memory.

The first case was on County Court day of June.  The victim was Mrs. Patrick Maley.  It was never discovered how she caught the disease.  As soon as it was known that there was a case of cholera in the town the people quickly dispersed.

Marcus Wallace died of the disease, the family deserted the house and L. W. Andrews, Isaac Demint and a son of Ben Young gave him burial.  Young died the next day.  Mr. Wallace’s wife died, as did her brother-in-law.  Ben Wallace and his wife lived where Hord Armstrong now lives, although the house was not completed at that time.  Thomas Wells later finished it.

The following were some of the deaths: Dr. Charles Hart, Dr. R. M. Grimes, Dr. E. O. Bell, uncle of Ed Kenner; William McDonald, father of the late Arthur McDonald; Dillon Bridges, Benjamin Harbeson, Burdman, a carriage painter.  Samuel Stockwell, who had retired to Bell Grove Springs, dispatched a note to Dr. E. O. Bell, inquiring if it would be safe for him to return to his home in Flemingsburg.  The doctor replied that the disease had abated, and all danger had passed.  Sad to relate, the doctor took the disease and died, the last victim of the scourge.  The large majority of the deaths was among Negroes and foreigners.  Several Irish families lived in dwellings where Dudley Garage now is, and where the clerk’s office now stand, were taken by the disease.  Six slaves of Benjamin Harbeson were buried in one day.  Seven slaves of Maj. Wm. H. Darnall died.  L. W. Andrews, Isaac Demott, David McGavitt, Ike and Dave Vansant buried the dead.  Peter Burke dug the graves and conveyed the bodies to the grave yard in a one-horse wagon covered to imitate a hearse.  Altogether there were 117 deaths in the county and of these 47 were in town.  A large majority of the population of the town fled to escape the fatal disease.  Grass and weeds grew in the streets until they looked like the fields.

C. L. Dudley informs me that there were some cases of cholera in Flemingsburg in 1852. He says:

‘In 1852 my father, Joseph Dudley, lived at the intersection of Mt. Sterling Avenue and Water Street, where Wallace Peck now lives.  John Pratt, a blacksmith, lived next door where George Faulkner now lives.  Mr. Pratt had three sons, James, William and Edward.  I played with William in the afternoon and the next day he took cholera and died the same day.  His younger brother, Edward, died with the same disease.  Mrs. Pratt, their mother, fell a victim to the same malady.  A Negro man who worked for Mr. Pratt, at his trade, died also.  I was eight years of age.  William Pratt was some older than I.  There were doubtless other deaths in town, but I cannot recall who they were.’

Mrs. Harriett Dudley Ashton remembers that Mrs. Pratt left an infant, about one year old, that was taken into the Dudley home and cared for till Mrs. Perrine, who lived near Elizaville, a near relative of Mrs. Pratt, took the child and reared her to womanhood.  Mrs. Perrine was the mother of two deaf and dumb daughters.  Mrs. Ashton also remembers that the Sunday before William Pratt died that he with others was in the old grave yard, now our cemetery, William climbed up into a large buckeye tree, gathered a number of buckeyes and threw down at the root of the tree and said, ‘When I die I want to be buried there,’ and it was done as he requested.  Mrs. Ashton says that when the cholera was raging here in 1855, Thomas Botts and Jackson Darnall each would kill a mutton on alternate days and bring it to her father’s home where it was cooked, and thence was distributed to the homes of the suffering people.

At the siege of the cholera in 1855 the late Arthur McDonald, father of Hargis McDonald, was stricken.  He was about 18 years old and clerking for Bishop & Morris, where the Oddfellow’s building now stands.  He was given up for dead, and a man came to the home to take his measure for his coffin.  The doctor, appearing on the scene at this juncture decided that he was not dead, and administered to him an enormous dose of calomel, which saved his life.  It was through violent vomiting and purging that cholera operated, and usually only a few hours were endured by the patient.

The most effective remedy for cholera was sulphate of copper, arsenic and camphor in very minute doses.

During the cholera of 1855, Captain L. M. Cox and his brother, Judge Cox, took their families to Mayslick, but they remained in Flemingsburg, occasionally visiting the families.  John Cox, now living in Flemingsburg, son of Judge Cox, was only three years old at that time, but gives many details of their stay in Mayslick.  This is remarkable.

Dr. R. M. Skinner says that J. W. Ball and an aunt, Miss McAtee, were attacked by cholera in 1852, at Esculapia Springs in Lewis County, and recovered.  These cases were rare.

The Louisville Daily Courier, Jefferson County, Kentucky

Friday, August 17, 1855

General Bragg’s Official Report of The Battle of Perryville

The Battle of Perryville was one of the bloodiest battles of the Civil War, and the largest fought in Kentucky.  There were so many dead that there was not enough wood to make enough coffins, and many bodies were not buried for a number of days.  Wounded were sent to surrounding cities – Harrodsburg, Springfield and Danville.  Many of the wounded died and were buried in these cities.  Confederate casualties were 3,401; Union, 4,276 – killed, wounded, captured or missing.

The Maysville Weekly Bulletin, Mason County, Kentucky

Thursday, November 6, 1862

The Battle of Perryville – General Bragg’s Official Report

Headquarters Department No. 2, Bryantsville, Kentucky, October 12, 1862

Sir:  Finding the enemy pressing heavily in his rear, near Perryville, Major General Hardee, of Polk’s command, was obliged to hold and check him at that point.  Having arrived at Harrodsburg from Frankfort, I determined to give him battle there, and accordingly concentrated three divisions of my command – the Army of the Mississippi, now under Major General Polk, Cheatham’s, Buckner’s and Anderson’s – and directed General Polk to take command on the 7th, and attack the enemy next morning.  Wither’s division had gone the day before to support Smith.  Hearing, on the night of the 7th, that the force in front of Smith had rapidly retreated, I moved early next morning, to be present at the operations of Polk’s forces.

The two armies were formed confronting each other on opposite sides of the town of Perryville.  After consulting the General, and reconnoitering the ground and examining his disposition, I declined to assume the command, but suggested some changes and modifications of his arrangements, which he promptly adopted.  The action opened at half-past twelve p.m., between the skirmishers and artillery on both sides.  Finding the enemy indisposed to advance upon us, and knowing he was receiving heavy reinforcements, I deemed it best to assail him vigorously, and so directed.

The engagement became general soon thereafter, and was continued furiously from that time to dark, our troops never faltering and never failing in their efforts.

For the time engaged it was the severest and most desperately contested engagement within my knowledge.  Fearfully outnumbered, our troops did not hesitate to engage at any odds, and, though checked at times, they eventually carried every position, and drove the enemy about two miles.  But for the intervention of night we should have completed the work.  We had captured fifteen pieces of artillery by the most daring charges, killed one and wounded two Brigadier Generals, and a very large number of inferior officers and men estimated at no less than four thousand, and captured four hundred prisoners, including three staff officers with servants, carriage and baggage of Major General McCook.

The ground was literally covered with the dead and wounded.  In such a contest our own loss was necessarily severe – probably not less than 2,500 killed, wounded and missing.  Included in the wounded are Brigadier Generals Wood, Cleburn and Brown – gallant and noble soldiers – whose loss will be severely felt by their commands.  To Major General Polk, commanding the forces; Major General Hardee, commanding the left wing, two divisions, and Major Generals Cheatham, Buckner and Anderson, commanding divisions, of this memorable field.  Nobler troops were never more gallantly led.  The country owes them a debt of gratitude which I am sure will be acknowledged.

Ascertaining that the enemy was heavily reinforced during the night, I withdrew my force early the next morning to Harrodsburg, and thence to this point.  Major General Smith arrived at Harrodsburg with most of his force and Wither’s division the next day, the 10th, and yesterday I withdrew the whole to this point, the enemy following slowly, but not pressing us.

I am sir, very respectfully, your obedient servant.

Braxton Bragg, General Commanding

Two Weddings and A Funeral

The Mt. Sterling Advocate, Montgomery County, Kentucky

Tuesday, September 4, 1894

Silver Wedding

For twenty-five years Peter Greenwade and wife have walked together down life’s rugged path.  In adversity and prosperity they have been the same congenial two and have gotten out of life all the happiness in store for them, and on last Friday, August 31, in commemoration of their twenty-fifth anniversary they celebrated their silver wedding.  A host of friends were present and numerous were the gifts.  The dinner was a most delightful spread and the two were as happy as they were twenty-five years ago when Miss Mollie Ramey became the bride of Peter Greenwade.  May their lives be together many, many years more and be crowned with blessings not a few.

It is our pleasant duty to announce to the readers of the ADVOCATE the coming nuptials of Mr. Courtland Prentice Chenault, one of the most brilliant young lawyers at our bar, and Miss May Hocker Hazelrigg, the beautiful and accomplished daughter of Judge Jas. H. Hazelrigg, of the Appellate Court.

This wedding, which is to take place Thursday, September 6, at the Christian Church in this city, has caused a great deal of commotion among our young people on account of both parties being so well known and liked here.  Miss Hocker is one of the sweetest and most accomplished, and at the same time one of the most popular young ladies it has ever been our pleasure to meet.  We have known her nearly her whole life, and from childhood up to the present time she has always been the same sweet Christian girl, and in winning her Mr. Chenault has won one of the grand prizes in the lottery of life.  Of Mr. Chenault we have to say he is ‘a Christian and a gentleman,’ and in those words we have said more than we could in whole volumes.  He is the junior partner of the law firm of Woodford and Chenault, and although one of the youngest attorneys in this district, already has a large and growing practice and we predict for him a brilliant and successful future.  Courtland has a host of friends throughout Kentucky, and as far as we know not a single enemy.  He is a man whom any woman should be proud to call husband.

Young people, we tender to you our sincerest regards and wish you a happy and prosperous journey down the highway of life in the gilded chariot of pleasure.

In speaking of the wedding the Lexington Transcript says:  ‘Miss Hazelrigg is the daughter of Judge Jas. H. Hazelrigg, of the Court of Appeals, and is quite a social favorite in this city, where she has many relatives and friends.’

Died, on Sunday morning, September 2, 1894, L. D. Wilson, aged 78 years.

for some time past Mr. Wilson has been in failing health and the tottering old remnant of his once stalwart frame was not an unusual sight, as the old man who knew everyone and was liked by old and young, was seen making his uneasy way along the street.  Uncle Dud was for many, many years a member of the Methodist Church.  He loved her service and her songs and the old paths and achievements of his church in the day when the ‘circuit rider’ was in the land.  Uncle Dud was a benevolent man, but not in an ostentatious way.  He never thrust his charities before the public gaze.  He was in a large sense a grateful man.  He never forgot a kindness done him.  Only yesterday a life-long friend said of him: ‘Dudley never tired of wanting to do me a kindness and to show me accommodations because of some kindness my father had shown to his mother when she was a widow with small children dependent upon her.’  Uncle Dudley was a successful businessman and was long identified with the business interests of this town.  His wife, the well-beloved Eliza, preceded him to the beyond by several years, and since then Uncle Dud’s chief wish has been to join her.  His desire has been gratified; and yesterday afternoon he was laid to rest by her side in our beautiful Machpelah.


Reid’s Celebrate Golden Wedding Anniversary

I believe the celebration of a golden wedding anniversary – 50 years spent living together through good times and bad – is a milestone for any couple.  My paternal grandparents lived to celebrate their 62nd anniversary; my maternal grandparents their 40th.  For my great-grandparents it was 51st, 52nd, 49th and 37th.  Not bad!  Ritchey and I were married 37 years March 22nd, well on our way to make it for many of the monumental anniversaries!

An interesting note, the writer of this story, in 1928, talks about how nice it is in these days to see a couple who did not opt for the ‘trial marriages, quick divorces and again quick marriages.’  Sounds like our time of 2018.

Forestus Reid and Catherine Withers were married in 1878.  They were the proud parents of seven children – Virgil, Catherine, Dorothy, Mrs. Henry Banford, Mrs. Robert Hogsett, Forestus and Horace.

The Kentucky Advocate, Danville, Boyle County, Kentucky

Tuesday, September 11, 1928

Brilliant Golden Wedding Anniversary

Yesterday afternoon from the hours of 5 to 7 p.m. the Golden Wedding of Mr. and Mrs. Forestus Reid was duly celebrated at their hospitable home on Main and Fifth Streets, when a goodly number of their sincere friends of long standing called to pay respect, homage, good wishes and congratulations.

The home was made unusually pretty by a wealth of beautiful flowers, most of which were yellow, carrying out the golden thread of the golden wedding.  These flowers came from far and wide, sent in by loving friends, whose cards bore words of cheer and greeting.

All of the daughters, sons, daughters-in-law and sons-in-law were present, with one little grandson and other relatives to lend their presence to the happy occasion.  Each one of these helped to make the welcome guests more welcome.

The bride and groom did not look like the bride and groom of fifty year ago, but of today.  Mrs. Reid, carrying a beautiful bridal bouquet of lovely yellow roses, looked strikingly handsome and she has carried more than her share of beauty down through this long reach of time – she seems to have the beauty and grace that do not fade, but grow more charming with the fading years.  The groom is also holding his own well and he had a warm, cordial, handshake for all who entered their happy abode.

The long years, that have lived so splendidly and so happily, have left a pleasing impress upon this couple – God has blessed their union not only with long, peaceful, fruitful, happy years, but given to them children whom they can point to with justifiable pride; children who are daily reflecting honor upon Father and Mother and the same may be truthfully said of the sons and daughters-in-law.

In these days of strange ways, where old, honored customs are thrust aside, to give way to trial marriages, quick divorces and again quick marriages, it is really a relief to find a couple who have lived under the old, respectable and honorable regime all of these years and who can now almost hear in the dim distance the blessing fall from heaven, ‘Well Done, Thou Good and Faithful Servants’ – of such, truly, is the Kingdom of Heaven.

Mr. and Mrs. Reid, the bride and groom of fifty years ago, richly deserved all of the homage, all of the good wishes, all of the congratulations that were so genuine and so generously bestowed upon them yesterday by their hosts of sincere and loyal friends.

Dainty ices, which carried out the color scheme, were served throughout the evening to those who called to pay their respects.

The occasion, a most splendid one, will long be remembered by those who were present.  May the happy bride and groom of fifty years ago and of yesterday live to celebrate their Diamond Wedding is the wish of all in this vicinity.

Merchants of Madison County

This newspaper clipping has been in my possession for so long I cannot remember from which newspaper it was taken.  It must have been a Richmond newspaper, but not sure about year – 1930?

Interesting story about the merchants of Richmond and the part they played in the early days of the city and county.  Many are buried in Richmond Cemetery.

Merchants of Madison County were its princes

By Fred Allen Engle

(Editors note:  This is a continuation of Mrs. James W. Caperton’s paper on early homes in Madison County which was written in 1930.)

Major Burnam, in his reminiscences – 1903, says that ‘the Merchants of Tyre were her princes’ and that the same might be said of the Merchants of Richmond, preceding and following the Civil War.

Four sons of Mr. William Walker built up large fortunes as Merchants of Richmond.  Mr. Owen Walker and Mr. Jason Walker married sisters – daughters of James Stone.  Mr. Owen Walker, in 1858, moved his family to the brick residence on Main Street in Richmond.  It was torn down to make way for the Methodist Church.  His daughters, Miss Kate Walker and Miss Coralie Walker were very beautiful and were among the first in Richmond to travel abroad.

The wedding of Miss Coralie Walker to Mr. Leonard Hanna of Cleveland was celebrated in this home in 1888 and was a brilliant social event.  The caterer and orchestra were from Cincinnati.  Marcus A. Hanna, brother of the groom, was here for the wedding – a guest in the home of M. and Mrs. W. W. Watts.

Marcus A. Hanna, in 1896, became the United States Senator from Ohio and was the main spring of the McKinley administration.  His vast fortune made him a useful influence to his country.

Mrs. Coralie Walker Hanna contributed $25,000 toward the endowment of the Pattie A. Clay Infirmary as a memorial to the Walker Family, having been requested by her relative Mrs. James Bennett to aid in any way she would, and she and her son have made superb gifts to the city of Cleveland.

The Jason Walker house at the end of Broadway in Richmond is one of the largest houses in Madison County.  It is built of brick and in its day was the centre of much elegant entertaining.  There were many charming daughters in this family.  Mrs. Mullins, Mrs. Pinkerton, Miss Coty Walker (Mrs. Grusby of Florida), Mrs. White, whom it is a pleasure to recall.

Mr. James B. Walker married Miss Helm of Woodford County, and they owned the house on North Street built by col. and Mrs. J. Speed Smith.  Mrs. Walker’s dinners were a tradition in Richmond.  They had two daughters.  One married Mr. Robert Stone and the other, General Benet, U.S.A.  Their grandson, Stephen Vincent Benet, wrote the prize Civil War epic ‘John Brown’s Body’.

Another Richmond merchant was Mr. John W. Crooke, whose home on West Main is still occupied (in 1930) by this three daughters and son Mr. John W. Crooke, Jr., a banker.

Mr. and Mrs. Gary Hawkins – Mrs. Hawkins is a sister of Mr. Owen Walker and his brothers and of Mrs. Sinclair Watts – lived at ‘Linwood’ on the Lexington Pike.  The house was of colonial architecture of brick and a beautiful place.  The debut hall of Miss Ida Jennings, a granddaughter, was given at ‘Linwood’ in June 1878, dancing in a pavilion on the lawn – afterward, Mrs. J. E. Greenleaf.  The present house was built in 1881 by Mr. and Mrs. Brutus J. Clay.

Mr. Howard, who married Miss Goodloe, was another merchant of Richmond who built what is now called the Bronston Place, formerly on Third Street.  It is a handsome brick structure with iron verandah.  This home was the scene of much entertaining in the 1880’s when the five daughters of Mr. and Mrs. Thomas S. Branston were en tapis.

Mr. Holloway, another merchant, built the grand house on East Main, opposite the Cemetery.  It was, for many years, a beautiful place and centre of entertaining.  It was called ‘Abberville’ for Mrs. Bronston’s home in South Carolina.

Mr. Thompson Burnam, Sr., made his fortune as a merchant and then built ‘Elk Garden’.

Solomon Smith, another Richmond merchant built the house now occupied by his granddaughter, Mrs. George Cornelius, on the Hill and which stood near Madison Female Institute.  It has a semi-circular wall in the hall to accommodate the stairway which has a round rail and delicate spirals – a duplicate of this wall and stairway is at ‘Dreaming Creek Heights’, put there in 1861.  The Smith homestead is older.  The home of Hon. W. B. Smith was located on the Summit, and here he and Mrs. Smith celebrated their Golden Wedding Anniversary in 1904, surrounded by their beautiful daughters – Mrs. John M. Park of Nevada, Mrs. W. G. White and Mrs. Robert R. Burnam.

Major McClanahan, a merchant who married the widow of Captain Ezekiel Field who was killed at the Battle of Blue Lick, built the brick residence on the Hill, afterward converted in 1858 into the Madison Female Institute.  A Tudor tower was added with a tessellated finish to the roof which made an imposing building.

This great building was used as a hospital after the Battle of Richmond in the Civil War, 1863.

Madison Institute received the patronage of many of the first families of the Blue Grass, Kentucky and other states – Illinois, Texas, Missouri – who sent their daughters to this school, not only for schooling, but for the even as important education which was to be received from association with the elegant social atmosphere of Richmond and Madison County.  This school was under auspices of the Christian Church and was discontinued some years ago after a successful period of some 50 years or more.

Letter From Son Harlan Just After the Armistice of 1918

Elmer E. Tinsley and wife Fidelia Ward Tinsley were so happy to receive a letter from their son talking about the day prior to, and Armistice Day, when all firing of World War I stopped.  It was the end of the war and everyone was gloriously happy.  The family lived in Ohio County, in western Kentucky.

The Hartford Republic, Ohio County, Kentucky

Friday, January 24, 1919

Harlan Tinsley Now In Germany

Mr. and Mrs. Elmer Tinsley, of Route 5, recently received a letter from their son, Harlan E., written from Layn, Germany, near Coblenz.  He is much impressed with the country there, which is made up of big hills, valleys and small rivers.  All of the Ohio County boys in his regiment, the 322, Division 32, with the exception of Carl Wilson, or Rockport, who was in the hospital from slight effects of gas, were well and doing fine.  The 322nd crossed the German and Luxemburg line December 1st, having marched through from near Verdun, France, which point they left November 17, crossing the Rhine December 13.  He says, ‘the hardest work I ever did was the night before the armistice was signed, we were running a telephone line up to the front and the shells and bullets were whistling all around us.  I was in an old barn the next morning trying to take a nap when the Sergeant called me and said the firing would cease at 11 o’clock.  I could hardly believe it, but at the end of the last minute all firing ceased.  I had been under shell fire so long I felt like a bird out of a cage and count myself lucky to get out at all.’

Morgan Row – Kentucky’s Oldest Row

It is a pleasure to visit the Harrodsburg Historical Society in Morgan Row.  These buildings were renovated and preserved beginning in the 1960’s.  I’m so grateful that the citizens at that time decided they were worth keeping!  So much history has passed through these rooms.

If you are in Mercer County researching those elusive ancestors, the Harrodsburg Historical Society is a must stop!

The Advocate Messenger, Danville, Boyle County, Kentucky

Sunday, July 15, 1979

It’s Kentucky’s oldest row

Harrodsburg – By 1807 Kentucky’s large game had all but disappeared.  Forts were becoming towns.  Trails were being made into roads, and farms began to dot the once wooded land.

At Fort Harrod settlers were moving out of the fort and starting to build the town of Harrodsburg.  It was a busy community with hordes of strangers passing through, and many spent a night at Harrodsburg’s finest hostelry – Morgan Row.

Facing the courthouse square on the street called Chiles, in the center of Harrodsburg, Morgan Row played its part in the economic, political and social life of Harrodsburg.

Built by Squire Joseph Morgan in 1807, its architectural plan was actually four houses side by side, connected by shared sidewalls.  Although such houses were fairly common in the eastern colonies, they were unusual this far west.

Much of the local activity revolved around the gala balls held at Morgan Row.  They were attended by some of the most handsome beaux and most beautiful belles in the county.

Stories of its gambling room, its grog shop, and even its barber shop; of political meetings and horse races as late as the Civil War days tell much of the colorful history of the tavern and the town.

Morgan built the row house fire walls of timber from the Harrodsburg area and home-burned brick.  They separated the units in the sturdy two story building and extended above the roof.

The street in front of the row house bears the name of Morgan’s son-in-law, John G. Chiles, who ran the tavern and operated stagecoach and U.S. mail routes from the hostelry.  Chiles Tavern, or Chiles Hotel as it was sometimes called, flourished until 1845.  (Chiles then sold his property and moved to Lexington to manage the Phoenix Hotel.)

Morgan Row today, a part of Harrodsburg for 172 years [now 211 years], houses several businesses and the Harrodsburg Historical Society Museum.

The historical society has restored the north end of the row to serve as a community cultural center as well as a museum.  Portraits by Kentucky artists are on display as well as early glass and silver, pioneer tools and household utensils and many documents pertaining to Kentucky history.