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Features

  • If you have family pictures, but have never taken the time to identify them for future generations, you are doing the people in the photos, as well as their kin, a terrible injustice. Pictures without identifications are many times lost forever, erasing solid evidence that a family ever existed.

    Here’s a suggestion that will pay dividends to your children, grandchildren and generations to come.

  • Chili does not really sound like a summer dish, unless it’s one of those nights when you just want to pretend it is winter and crank the air conditioning. This summer, though, I found a chili that I consider to be perfect for summer, in part because it can be made with fresh ingredients.

  • Many of Spencer County’s newer residents may not be fully aware of the county’s rich and interesting history. Here’s a review of some of the county’s highlight events of the past and people who made those events memorable.

  • Of the hundreds of pictures in historian Tom Watson’s possession, several are special because of their rarity, while others are just nice likenesses that deserve to be preserved.

    Research has produced some interesting photos that have been  published in this column for the first time anywhere.

    What is offered this week are pictures this scribe just personally likes and they include some of the first-publication types.

  • Pioneers who settled along streams of water like the Salt River and Brashears Creek often decided to build a mill. The mill was a common enterprise and attracted settlers who could not build their own facility for making flour and grinding grain.

  • An 1882 atlas that pin-points cemetery, residential and business locations in Nelson and Spencer counties shows a historic burying ground on the “E.T. Holloway” farm.

  • Cemeteries don’t vanish, but when the headstones and footstones are thrown into a hollow or otherwise crushed by man or beast, evidence of their existence becomes rare.

  • The Waterford area of Spencer County has been populated for many years, dating back to the Mississippian native Americans who found life along the Salt River particularly good. There were animals to hunt through the use of spears and later the bow and arrow as hunting methods advanced into the woodland period.

  • During the Civil War, Taylorsville native Jack Allen fought for the South and rose in rank to colonel.

  • With the Spencer County Fair opening July 15, it seems a glance back at some classic photos of the fair decades ago is appropriate.

  • One local reader submitted these old receipts for subscriptions to The Spencer Courier and to The Spencer Magnet. The Spencer Courier receipt, pictured above, dates back 100 years.

  • In 1983, this scribe wrote a series of columns on one of the men of Confederate guerrilla leader William Clarke Quantrill and his infatuation with a young Spencer County girl.

  • The late Emma Wilson Brown said that old John Purdy could be heard before he was seen on the streets of Bloomfield, tapping his cane and bellowing with his strong voice.
    It wasn’t unusual for him to stop on a corner and let loose with a rebel yell.

  • The Beard family and related lines have been around Spencer and Nelson counties for a mighty long time. In The Terre Haute (Indiana) Morning Star, Oct. 17, 1904, there appeared a tribute to John L. Beard, 80, and his wife Judith Frances Wells, 75, who had been married for 56 years.
    In a copy of the newspaper appears a picture of the couple, but because of the age of the paper, the photograph is not very sharp. The couple lived in Vigo County, Ind.

  • It is said that people who seem obsessed with history live with their minds in the past. I am happy to report that I have just a passing interest in the subject and really don’t care how old everything is, who lived where and when and if their great grandparents had a pet chimp. But I wonder what the chimp’s name was?
    My uncle Gilbert had a parrot that cursed, but that’s another story.

  • Editor’s note: The following is a continuation of Tom Watson’s column last week, which looks at Spencer County family names and the history associated with them.

  • It’s not easy to find biographical sketches about Spencer County people and that’s why Perrin’s collection is so valuable. Here’s a look at some Spencer County families from “Kentucky: A History of the State.” Perrin, Battle & Kniffin, 6th ed.,1887, Spencer Co. References to the current time are to 1887.
    M.C. ALLOWAY was born in Nelson County Feb. 23, 1837, the second of a family of nine children born to Joel and Elizabeth (Grigsby) Alloway.

  • (–Based on the work of Byron Marshall of Minneapolis–)
    There is an unusual case of doctrinal interpretation regarding the marriage of a member of the Van Buren Church of Christ to her stepson.