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Showing posts from May, 2017

Cumberland City Was A Company Town

Cumberland City was the company town of the Poplar Mountain Coal Company. It was founded by northern businessmen who came to develop timber and coal resources in Poplar Mountain, much of which was owned by the Bruce Sloan heirs. The company acquired land, opened a mine and began cutting local timber there in the early 1860's. John H. Clark was the coal company's superintendent.

Cumberland City's population at its peak in 1870, including miners, was 225, larger than Albany at the time. The town was located near the coal mines at Short Maintain, a spur of Poplar Mountain owned by the Cyrus Guthrie heirs, with a school, tavern, saddlery, boot and shoe shop. There was even a large commisary. A company store was opened. Thomas Stephenson had a grocery and tanning yard. L.G. Campbell, was the postmaster and operated a store. He was later the pastor at Cumberland City United Methodist Church. Perry Smith and Osco Anderson also operated stores. The Albany Gazette reported in …

A Public Speaking Interrupted

Aug. 29, 1935, (AP) Albany, Ky. -- "The jerking of a microphone from in front of Circuit Judge Swope, Republican nominee for Governor of Kentucky, threw a large homecoming crowd into an uproar here and resulted in the arrest of Mose Hurt Littrell, 43, on a charge of interrupting a public speaking."

The 100th birthday anniversary of Clinton County in 1935 was a really big deal. The Disabled American Veterans of the World War, chapter 10, under the command of Littrell, organized the event, which lasted four days, August 26th through the 29th, complete with a Homecoming and Centennial Jubilee, an epic event with a who's who list of speakers. Senators Alben W. Barkley and Marvel Mills Logan of Kentucky and Huey Long of Louisiana, Congressmen John Robsion of Kentucky and Ridley Mitchell of Tennessee tentatively accepted invitations to attend, provided Congress had adjourned by celebration time. Louisville Times editor Tom Wallace also accepted an invitation to speak on the op…

A Great Light In The World

Felix Adler once said, "The hero is one who kindles a great light in the world, who sets up blazing torches in the dark streets of life for men to see by."

There are other holiday's that honor all soldiers, but Memorial Day is special because of what it represents.

"Oh, tell me not that they are dead, that generous host, that airy army of invisible heroes. They hover as a cloud of witnesses above this nation. Are they dead that yet speak louder than we can speak, and a more universal language? Are they dead that yet act? Are they dead that yet move upon society, and inspire the people with nobler motives, and more heroic patriotism? Ye that mourn, let gladness mingle with your tears. It was your son, but now he is the nation's. He made your household bright: now his example inspires a thousand households. Dear to his brothers and sisters, he is now brother to every generous youth in the land. Before, he was narrowed, appropriated, shut up to you. Now he is aug…

A Kentucky Family On Both Sides

Just before he died on Feb. 5, 1941, my great, great-grandfather, George Boles, looked at my grandmother, Vada Frost Boles, and said, "I killed your uncle." What was he talking about? Who did he kill?

Because of Abraham Lincoln's stance against slavery, South Carolina, Georgia, Florida, Alabama, Mississippi, Louisiana and Texas seceded from the Union between December 1860 and February 1861. After South Carolina’s April 1861 attack on Fort Sumter and President Lincoln’s Call to Arms to put down the rebellion, four more states - Arkansas, North Carolina, Tennessee and Virginia - also seceded. The Civil War was on.


But, while Tennessee voted for succession, most of the counties in the Upper Cumberland area voted against it. The Fentress County vote was 128 for and 651 against, however, the vote in neighboring Overton County, which included the area that is now Pickett County, was 1,471 for and 364 against. While a succession vote never took place in Kentucky, 100,000 …

The Alexander Zatzepa Story: Open Thou Mine Eyes

"Open thou mine eyes, that I may behold wondrous things out of thy law." (Psalm 119:18)

One evening in 1944, as Russian soldier Alexander Zatzepa lay in his foxhole awaiting the call to battle, he came to know the Lord. Knowing he might not return to his safe haven, he wrote the following words...
"Hear me, Oh God. Never in my whole lifetime have I spoken to you but just now I feel like sending you my greetings. You know from my childhood on they always told me that you are not. I, like a fool, believed them. I've never contemplated your creation and yet tonight gazing up out of my shell hole, I marvel at the shimmering stars above me and suddenly know the cruelty of the lie.

Will you, my God, reach your hand out to me? I wonder. But I will tell you and you will understand. Is it not strange that the light should come upon me and I see you amid this night of hell and there is nothing else that I have to say. This though, I am glad that I have learned to know you. …

There Will Come Soft Rains

There will come soft rains
And the smell of the ground
And swallows circling with their shimmering sound

And frogs in the pools, singing at night
And wild plum trees in tremulous white

Robins will wear their feathery fire
Whistling their whims on a low fence-wire

And not one will know of the war, not one
Will care at last when it is done

Not one would mind, neither bird nor tree
If mankind perished utterly

And Spring herself, when she woke at dawn
Would scarcely know that we were gone

By Sara Teasdale, from her collection, "Flame and Shadow," published in 1920

My Frost Genealogy

James Frost was born about 1783 at Ann Arundel,  Maryland, probably to James Frost  and Sarah Simpson.  James Frost married Annis "Polly" Hall. He died about 1845 at Frost Hollow, Wayne County, Kentucky.

Annis "Polly" Hall was born about 1789 in North Carolina to John Hall (1758-1835) and Mary Donaldson (born about 1763). Annis shows up on the 1850 Federal Census as living in Wayne County, Kentucky with her son and daughter-in-law, Cordon and Almira (Owens) Frost and their baby son, Joseph. Annis Hall Frost apparently died abt 1851 at Wayne County, Kentucky. James and Annis likely had at least the following children:

1. John Green Frost, born about 1806 at Person, NC, died June 1829 at Wayne Co., KY; on July 1, 1826 married Jane Dabney (1805-1870) and had at least the  following children: 
a. Francis M. Frost, born April 18, 1827 KY; died Jan. 15, 1916 OR; married Martha Jane Horner (1832-1905)
b. John McDonald Frost born May 30, 1829 KY; died March 25, 1880 KS. He…

Philburd Wright Left a Proud Legacy

My 5th great-grandfather, Philburd Wright, was born in Maryland in 1750, the son of Richard and Nancy Wright. Philburd became an Associator for Fredrick Co, Maryland on Dec. 27, 1775 (a member of the Maryland Militia), and was one of 9,000 men who took the Oath of Allegiance and Fidelity to Maryland in 1778 during the American Revolution. The Oath of Fidelity, instituted by Laws of Maryland 1777, stated that every free male 18 years and older was required to subscribe to an oath renouncing the King of England and to pledge allegiance to the revolutionary government of Maryland.

According to "Indiana Magazine of History," by Emsley Wright Johnson, among the early settlers of the Territory of Indiana was a large family of Wrights, who emigrated from Randolph County, North Carolina, and settled in Union County in 1813. From Union County a portion of them went to Wayne and some to Washington County. Later, four of the sons went to Marion County. Philburd Wright took up his re…

Southern Campaign American Revolution Pension Statements & Rosters Pension Application of Dennis Hopkins

Southern Campaign American Revolution Pension Statements & Rosters Pension Application of Dennis Hopkins, my 5th great-grandfather.

State of Kentucky, Clinton County: County Court, January Term 1843.

"On this the 2nd day of January A.D. 1843 personally appeared in open court, Dennis Hopkins a resident citizen of the County aforesaid aged eighty-two years the 13th day of July last, having a record of the same being born on the 13th day of July 1760, being born in Orange County North Carolina, and raised in Randolph County said State, where he lived in time of the Revolutionary war, and after being duly sworn for that purpose on his oath makes the following Declaration in order to obtain the Benefit of the act of Congress passed 7th of June 1832. That he entered the service of the United States a drafted light horse soldier in Randolph County North Carolina in the fall of 1780, believed to be in October cannot give the day of the month with precise certainty, entered for thr…