Tuesday, July 28

L & N don't stop here anymore

When I was a curly headed baby, my daddy sat me down on his knee. He said, "Go to school and learn your letters, don't you be a dirty coal miner like me."

I was born and raised in the mouth of a Hazard Hollar, Coal cars rumbled past my door. Now they're standin' in a rusty row all empties, and the L & N don't stop here anymore.

I used to think my daddy was a black man, with script enough to buy the company store. Now he goes town with empty pockets, and his face is white as a February snow.

Well I'd never thought I'd learn to love the coal dust, Never thought I'd pray to hear that whistle roar. Oh God, I wish the grass would turn to money, and those greenbacks fill my pockets up once more.

Last night I dreamed I went down to the coal yard, to draw my pay like I'd done before. Them kudzu vines are covering all the windows, there were leaves and grass growin' right up through the floor.

Monday, July 27

According to the old timers when the Katydids and jar flies start their mournful sounds about this time of year, you can expect an early fall. Regardless it will be early enough providing you haven’t made preparations for your coal or wood for the coming winter. The old timers tell me that when these sounds appear it is high time for all to get busy in regard to making ready for the coming winter.

You fellows that are sitting on the court house square whittling on those cedar poles that you carry in your hip pocket, I dare say that those cedar shavings will carry you through a long winter. I had about forgotten that we are living in a modern age and most of you either have a gas or electric furnace to take care of your needs. 1959

Friday, July 24

Hard Tail Or Horse

Elihu Reynolds use to run a Country Store at Buckhorn, Ky., when I was a student at Witherspoon College in Buckhorn. Those are days that will never come back to the generation of this date. I can recall buying candy at Elihu's place. He also had the Post Office where we looked forward to our mail. I only wish that I had taken the time to have gotten a picture of Elihu's place those many years ago. Those were the days when you couldn't get a car near Buckhorn. The only transportation was by a hard tail or a horse. A hard tail was a fine farm mule, which there were many in that day.

I can recall the days as a teenager when I used to attend a party now and then in Mr. and Mrs. C. B. Rose's home. I was somewhat of the stand off type kid about dancing. The Rose's daughter, Elizabeth "Diz" Cloyd, did her best to teach me how. 1969

Thursday, July 23

Ornery Place To Live

Not too long ago, a young fellow came into the store. He was asking some questions about Appalachia. I am sure he was a college student. He asked me if there was any wit among the people of our region. Folks, you couldn't hem in the wit our people had with a ten foot pole plus a dozen Mother Hubbard dresses. One I recall very well, as I told this fellow, our people were always accused of being the most persistent Moonshiners of all time. Regardless of that or not, I will say that wit did them a lot of good. I can recall a certain instance that the revenuers had concentrated on one old couple that were surprised to have been engaged in this illicit affair. You know they could tell the different hoof beats of any strange horse or mule that ventured up this creek. On this particular day there were different hoof beats coming up the creek. It really took some fast thinking. Maybe they were guilty, the old lady ran out into the yard, squatted as if she was trying to relieve herself as the revenuer's rode up. She jumped up and said, "it is getting to be an ornery place to live when a woman can't get any privacy at her own home." As I am told, the revenuer's turned their horses and rode off without making any investigation regarding the old man's habits of which he had been accused. 1969

Wednesday, July 22

Folks, that old saying Time Flies has lived up to its name the past few months. We have seen many changes happen during the past year. Sputniks, missiles, everybody trying to get to the moon and various other incidents will linger in our minds for years to come.

On the court house square, you can see what a little sunshine will do for the old time traders and swappers. Noticed last Saturday the shavings were almost ankle deep. Passed Charlie Robinson and he didn’t hardly look up, believe me - he was whittling up a storm, hesitated Roy Baker was having a birthday soon, he was worse than a hen on a hot rock , trying to trade a man out of his watch, he says Roy won’t be outdone. Later I found out this was true, they traded even. 1959

Tuesday, July 21

Meet Your Friends

Lee Ann Pratt cooked my food and Mildred Grigsby set it before me while Zeda Fouts swiped around on the counter and kept track of things while I sat mostly at the counter at Don's Restaurant in Hazard. Mommy had a charge account there, as well as every other place in town. I walked down from Hazard High on Baker Hill every school day at 12 sharp and I'm here to tell you, you really had to shuffle your feet to get a seat. Oh my; a hot dog with the wiener split and fried on the grill, on a toasted hamburger bun, smothered with homemade chili, fine chopped onions, a little mustard, with a big glass of ice and coke. Mildred, one of the prettiest girls in the world, watched for you to finish so she could whisk away your empty plate and bring your homemade pie, butterscotch, chocolate, pecan, coconut cream, you name it, Zeta had it under big glass domes, and was most generous in her slabs. Don Fouts was always somewhere around, supervising, I guess, but I thought Mrs. Fouts was the heart of Don's. My meal came to a quarter a day. At the rear was THE PLACE where the elite had lunches, little bowls of red sauce with shrimp hanging over the lip of the bowl, and you had to be affiliated with a club or something to dine there. Big ceiling fans kept the air circulating, and every body who was anybody ate at Dons.

Monday, July 20

I had always wanted to be a radio announcer since I was a small child growing up in the Blue Diamond coal camp. When I was eight or nine years of age my older brother, Quentin, and I played radio. We would make up a program log, use our 78 rpm record player, read news from the newspaper and use a tin can tied to a stick for a microphone. We would spend several hours a day playing radio. After Quentin graduated from high school and joined the Air Force I continued playing radio although now I called it "practicing." When my mother died of cancer I was only 14 years old and I went to live with my grandmother on Brown's Fork. My ambition was to be a radio announcer. I enrolled in speech classes at M.C. Napier High School and Mrs. Ruby Allen, who taught at Napier at that time, worked with me several minutes a day. I heard about the "Pepsi Party" program on WKIC and I got on the program as a guest disc jockey. Harry Minnich, who was doing the program, mentioned that the following fall he would be going to college at Eastern in Richmond. The wheels started clicking in my head and I decided I wanted to be the replacement for Harry. I talked to the general manager, Ernest Sparkman, about the job. He was not too encouraging but took my name and address and said he would contact me about an audition. I was now 16 years old and was determined. Each afternoon I would hitch-hike from Napier to Hazard to hang around WKIC to talk to Harry. Finally in May of 1958 after about three months of making a nuisance of myself, Ernest noticed me hanging around and decided to give me an audition. Harry found some copy, a Pet Milk promotional, to read. Ernest told him to wait for about 15 minutes until he got home and then put me on the air. I read the promotional 15 minutes later and Ernest called Harry and wanted to talk to me. He asked me if I would come in on Sunday and just read promotionals in between the recorded programs. I said sure. He also set up an appointment to talk with me after school on Monday. I read the promotionals on Sunday and was right on time for my appointment on Monday after school. Ernest had been delayed and was not there and there was a serious problem at the station. Harry Minnich was practicing graduation at Hazard High School and had failed to mention he would be late for work. Pete Pickins was on the air and his wife was sick in the hospital. Pete was fuming and said he was going to the hospital regardless. There was no one to go on the air. Norma Strong had heard me reading the promotionals the day before and asked me if I would go on the air. I said I didn't know how to run the radio controls. She said, "you get in the small studio and do the announcing and I'll get Yancey Bowling, our Chief Engineer, to run the controls for you. I made my debut in that fashion that afternoon. An hour or so later Ernest Sparkman came in, told me he had been listening to me on the car radio, and then asked me to fill out the time sheet and employment forms with Renee Elam, the bookkeeper. The next day Ernest gave me half of Harry Minnich's shift and I fully replaced him when he left for college that fall.

Sunday, July 19

The Shamrock Restaurant was owned by Biram Caudill. It was located in a block of buildings constructed in 1958. Before they were built, one of the old houses that was there was called the "Hole-in-the-Wall" and my half-sister was scared to death of one of the ladies living there as she would come out as we headed up the hill to school and take a broom and run us off, cussing and ranting.

My half-sister took tap dancing lessons in a place called "Ryman Gardens.” That was in the early '40's. Visualize with me the old Hurst-Snyder Hospital and walking down toward Mt. Mary Hospital, you will come to what was back then an entrance to a building that fronted on Main Street with a small parking lot. That is where my sister, Anna, took her tapping lessons. Later on it was home to the Leach family and then I think the USO might have had something in there. It could have been one of Hazard's first "rec centers".

The rec center where I spent a lot of time was over what was then Engle's Flower Shop and later Dawahare's. There were steep steps leading up to the floor above the stores and it was also used for Lodge Meetings. Boy, did we ever dance till we dropped. No trouble, no drinking, smoking, carousing that I can remember, just good clean fun. I guess that is one reason we remember them as "good ole days", huh.

Saturday, July 18

Horsefly On A Mule

At 9 o’clock I reached the Log College at Buckhorn and it is beautiful. We had to climb a mountain called Bunker Hill, which was the worst I ever saw. The college sets on a mountain brow, opposite the church on Laurel Point, with a lovely valley between. Mr. and Mrs. Murdoch, with Mrs. Gordon live nearby, and Dr. and Mrs. Saunders occupy a room in the college. I wish you could see those Highland boys and girls. They come jumping out of the bushes and crowd the chapel and sing for all they are worth.

Papa preached every morning at 8 0’clock in the college chapel and at night in the church. You never saw such a path up the mountain to the church, before they made a new one. It was like climbing a tree. But they all got there and crowded the church. Would you believe it, I found a little namesake of yours up here at Mr. Jack Gross’ between two big mountains. They call her Annie Guerrant and all say she looks like you. Of course, she is a beauty. I stopped to see a woman who weaves blankets on a big loom in the front porch. It was a curiosity. The men were building the new girl’s dormitory out of great hemlock logs, all saved square. It will be beautiful. This is the only college in this big country, and the people are very proud of it. One day four hundred crowded into the chapel to hear the exercises. Well, we started home at 6 0’clock in the morning on two mules. You ought to have seen me. I know I looked like a horsefly on that big mule, but I stuck to him, and he brought me through all right. 1896

Friday, July 17

The "Popcorn Stand" was attached to the Major Store building in the alley between Major's and Sterling Hardware. It was owned by Francis Blevins, stepfather of Lettie Craft Steel. "Gramp", as he was called, worked for Home Lumber Company but was often at the stand. A woman named Ada Dison worked there along with a small crippled man, Amos "Red" Barker. The stand was a joy to the young but a nuisance to the teamsters, like the Sterling Hardware Company whose vehicles often scraped the building walls, doing damage. One day, the boxes behind the stand caught on fire and Gwyn Hayden, of Sterling, put it out. A. M. Durbin stood by and said, "Gwyn, you didn't give it a fair chance."

Thursday, July 16

Hazard's Petrified Forest

Sometime between God's geological third day of creation (Genesis 1:9 -13) and the early "hours" of the sixth day (Genesis 1:24) 300 million years ago - - long long before the arrival of mankind or beings such as Adam, Noah, Abraham or David, a great forest grew literally within a stone's throw of Hazard, Kentucky, now nestled in the ever-winding steep slopes of the foothills of the Appalachian Mountains. Pre-historic creeping animals moved about this woodland; and the continents of the world had not separated at this time. Then the land in this area was level at a height hundreds of feet below the present hilltops. Various kinds of trees, small and large grew here much like our forests today. But suddenly, something happened about 300 million earth solar obits ago. Some catastrophic upheaval rolled a great body of water over this forest. Most of the forest was broken, crushed, and obliterated, losing its identity as eternity continued to roll.

One section, at least of this original forest, remained intact except to have many of its upper parts stripped. The roots, trunks, and some limbs up as high as ten feet stayed in place long enough to harden into rock. As these trees stood upright immersed in this sea, the wood inside the bark began decaying. As sediment in the water began to slowly drop down, it gradually replaced the decayed wood fibers, thus minerals finally crystallized into rock. The outside bark on the trees, being of a tougher chemical composition lasted long enough to fossilize into coal.

In this way, the remains of the wood forest became a petrified forest, retaining its shape as sediment continued to fall around the trees, eventually forming a sea of mud that in time became strata or a layer of shale at the bottom of an ancient sea. Layer upon layer of various muds continued to pack down while stresses and strains of up warpings and down warpings of various areas of the earth were in motion in different places over the planet.

After millions and millions of years, possible shifting of the crust of the earth around its liquid core or new tilting of the earth's axis itself, volcanic eruptions, etc., caused ever changing conditions with each age laying down its own "mud" which hardened into strata. This strats eventually extended upward above where the tops of the Hazard hills now are. By this time the sea had receded, but more recently earthquakes and upheavals had created uneven terrain and cracks which became wider and deeper with each rainfall. So the rain finally cut out the valleys and left the hilltops. Proof of this can easily be found by observing the pattern of the formation and layering of minerals (coal, sandstone, limestone, etc.,) from a cut on the mountain and then going across the valley and making a similar cut at the same elevation. The pattern will be so nearly identical that you will look across the valley and know that the hills were once connected.

But back to the forest. How do we know the forest stands there waiting to be excavated? Well - a lot of us saw this forest several years ago when a cut in the mountain was made for Highway 15 (an extension of the Mountain Parkway) between the Walkertown section of Hazard and Combs, KY.

Mr. Willard Logan, then the construction foreman, noticed strange looking rocks coming from a level near the top of the present roadbed. Machinery had already pretty well mutilated them where the last grading had been done. Fossils were good enough, however geological souvenir hunters who came to Hazard from the University of Kentucky and sped away with car loads of broken parts of trees. Mr. Logan called upon me and drove me down to the "cut through" of the mountain when the road was completed.

"Here, Mr. Petrey, is a fossil they overlooked," he said as he took a hand ax out of his truck, struck the shale from around the petrified stump (machinery had previously cut the top of the tree off), and finally sliced it off above the roots and handed it to me. After washing it carefully. I sprayed it with three coats of varnish. It has withstood handling as it has been sitting on public display in Don's Restaurant in Hazard since 1969.

Mr. Logan and I stood on the highway in that cut and gazed steadily toward both mountainsides of the road. Then we began to see outlines of the fossilized trees of various sizes and different kinds of bark that happened to be partially exposed near the surface of both sides of the highway. They seemed to have sprung from a common level. We were standing in the midst of a 300 million year old forest.

"Sanders," said Willard, "I'm sure this forest extends right on into the mountain on both sides of this highway." Souvenir hunters, erosion and filling in of soil have erased all present evidence of the edges of the forest. But back in that mountain, untold numbers of trees of many different types and sizes are preserved, packed in shale, awaiting discovery.

Willard Logan, now doing construction on the Daniel Boone Parkway, and just recently promoted to Superintendent, tells me from his many years of experience, "I've seen all sorts of fossils - but I've never seen anything like this!" "Don't you think," I asked, that extensive coal tunneling has probably removed the other parts of the forest in the mountain?"

"No," he answered, "the coal is on another level entirely. It wouldn't be hard to excavate around those trees, knock the shale from around them and leave them standing. And we could coat them with some type of protective covering, preserving the different colors, resod the old forest floor, and show what it was like 300 million years ago!"

The Petrified Forest of Arizona consist of logs which washed down out of a canyon and petrified in a lying down position. The Fossilized Forrest of Hazard, though much less extensive, and small timber, is erect and intact and the trees are spaced as they were 100 million years ago awaiting excavation.

How many prehistoric creatures will be found trapped in the same fossilization?

Wednesday, July 15

One Of The Oldtimers Is Missing

Missing is a familiar figure up and down Main Street, Hazard and the courthouse square on this July 15th. Folks, our mutual friend White Jim Combs, age 93, passed away last night around 11:00 PM.

Things didn't look the same on the square, no noise or trading was going on. One of the old timers was missing. The rest of you were to me paying homage to him by your usual gathering on a Monday morning after a day of solitude at home. He went quickly without much suffering. White Jim was a mountain man that came up the hard way in the backwoods section of Eastern Kentucky, a long life had enabled him to see much progress here. He has seen with his eyes the hardships of pioneer days. It is too bad that we can never get a full story on a man's life such as Jim's. Many times he and I had talked it over, he would always say, "some day son when you have plenty of time we'll talk." He was a great character within himself, a man to be admired in regard to his philosophy of life.

The ranks are gradually getting thinner each day as the good man above is collecting his toll of our first people which you might say were the stepping stones of progress that we are treading on today. It is remarkable that a man of his age could still look forward to more progress, a man that wasn't bitter toward anyone, a man despite his age could still stand to hear the patter of little feat and cry of little children. The familiar tapping of his cane is going to be missed as he made his daily rounds.

May I say to you, all his friends, Jim's road now is at an end. Many more of us will soon have to travel over the same route, there is no turning back on this one. I am proud to have known White Jim Combs, and his many principals of what he stood for.

Yes there is a missing figure on the courthouse square today but I am sure the ones who have been so closely associated with Jim are not missing him in their minds. July 15th 1963

Tuesday, July 14

From Lower Broadway To Broadway

It was a busy day in the Circuit Court Clerk's Office, Court was going on and Grace was upstairs, people were coming and going, getting license renewed, checking on this and that and this couple walked through the door and walked up to the desk. I asked them if there was anything I could do for them. The lady answered me, "Yes, we need to find a document that I am pretty sure will be of record here in your office."

I listened to her as she told me that her daughter attended second grade at Lower Broadway and then sometime later they moved away. It has been so long ago I am not sure what the document was, but I am thinking it was a change of name document. I asked her the time frame and the names we would be looking for on the Index Book. She gave me the information I needed to start my search for the document she needed.

As I was searching she talked with me about her daughter Cora Marie. I listened to her and continued turning the pages. I did not have a hard time finding this document at all for she did a good job giving me the proper information.

I said, "Here, is this the document you are needing?" She looked at the document and pointed to the name, "Cora Marie Frye". "Yes, this is exactly what I needed, can you make me a copy to take with me?" I told her I could do that and now I wish I had taken the time to at least read over the document I had found for she continued. "Does that name mean anything to you?" I told her that I did not know the name and really had never heard of the name Frye before and that I had lived in Hazard all of my life.

She laughed as she said, "Oh, you won't know her by Cora Marie Frye, but I bet you will know her by "MARIE McDONALD". She then related to me some of the history of this famous movie star since she attended the second grade in Hazard. She had really made a name for herself, growing up and becoming "THE BODY". They dubbed her that in all the movie magazines that I had read along the way. Cora Marie Frye had moved on from our sleepy little town of Hazard to made it big. She paid for the copy of the document and she and her husband left Grace's Office, and long after she had gone I wish I had asked her questions but as I said at the beginning we were very busy that day. I have always wished I had read the document but try as I may I cannot come up with the date of the document to try to find it again, but it lies hidden in one of the big books there in Grace's Office, a piece of a famous movie star.

I will say that not too long ago I got curious after talking with Shane about this little incident and "googled Marie McDonald" and caught up on her history and her death. She went a long way from Lower Broadway to Broadway, and I wonder if somewhere in the archives there might be a picture of the second grade whereby she stands with all the rest of her classmates.

Monday, July 13

When we were little Mom would give us a spoonful of some foul tasting concoction that she swore by to cure all. It was given to us in the Spring and then in the Fall. To this day, I do not know what was in it but we screamed and kicked and then she would hold our noses until we swallowed it. I still swear that it contained turpentine...hee hee hee. Granny would laugh at us and tell us that when she was a child that every year when Spring rolled around her mother would get busy in the kitchen, humming along as she stirred and prepared her "brew" to make sure her children would receive the best medicine she could possibly make out of the herbs she had carefully chosen for their medicinal value. She proudly called it her "Spring Tonic". Granny said they were seated in a row at the table and here would come their Mother with a bowl and a spoon and she would counsel each of them, "Open up, drink fast, don't spit it out,good for you, youngans, good for you." She said they were not jumping for joy at the "potion" Mom as holding in the bowl and they all sat there grimacing at what they were about to consume.She said, "I reckon she knew what she was doing cause here I sit 92 years old telling you about her "spring tonic". I can't say what Ruby is putting in her "potion" but my mother would take sulphur and mix it thoroughly with molasses, put it in a bowl, take a big spoon and when it came our turn we knew better than turn our heads away. After the last youngan swallowed his or her spoonful, she would pat us all lovingly and say, "Good youngans, good fer you, and that is all now until next Spring, now run along and play." We couldn't wait to run around behind the house where the peppermint was growing and cram a few leaves of that beautiful plant into our mouths which would rid us of the bad taste of that "spring tonic".

Sunday, July 12

Playground of the Mountains

If you haven't traveled across the newly blacktopped Town Mountain Road, then by all means do so. It's a real treat to drive over a curving, mountainous road that is smooth as silk and wide enough for comfortable safe travel. That's the way you'll find Town Mountain just now after you cross the railroad tracks and small creek bridge near the depot. The going is a bit rough at that particular spot but the city is making plans to try and remedy the situation. The low load limit bridges at either access to the road will be prohibitive to heavy haulers if State Police enforce load limits and that should keep the blacktop in good condition for years to come. It represents five miles of distance saved for traffic into or out of Hazard via Kentucky 80. The junction with KY 80 would provide an excellent spot for a "Save 5 Miles This Way To Hazard - Shopping Center of Eastern Kentucky" sign courtesy of Hazard Merchants. The road affords some of the most spectacular views in the mountains and has unlimited possibilities for development of roadside parks, motels or drive-in restaurants. It could easily be developed into the playground of the mountains. 1961

Saturday, July 11

Welcome Home

For those of you who have recently returned to your home in Hazard to visit friends and family, we welcome you. Good to see so many of your faces once again. Many of you have been gone so long, I had forgotten your names but never a face.

You may have already noticed many of our older native boys and gals moving around a little more pert than usual, such as White Jim Combs, Jim Fields, some call him bean pole, I reckon because he can walk most any ordinary fellow down I have heard, ask Cushaw Couch. I think Charlie Robinson, Jim Cole are doing alright. They have big smiles on their faces everyday. Jim Lunce, Roy Baker, Budge Tony, and Arthur Bailey seems to have made it O.K. They are all ready to start fishing or whittling again. It is hard for them to make up their minds. Former Perry Circuit Judge Sam Ward seems to be doing right well. He was in my store on Main Street a couple of times, always had a good joke to tell.

One of these days before long I hope to see an oldtimers day or night, it won't make any difference, unless some of you have regular sleeping habits. Yes, you ladies will be invited to. I will not mention any names at this time unless I can get your consent to tell your ages. You think it over, let me hear from you. This might be the thing we need to do here. I am no spring chicken, don't claim to be one. I'm past that half century mark, you have a lot to be thankful for. Also, you have a lot to look forward to if you take care of yourself. 1962

Friday, July 10

Welcome to Hazard. You’ll find the people of our community as gracious and as friendly as those anywhere in Kentucky. During your free hours, may we suggest you tour Peter’s Peak, a subdivision carved from the side of the mountain. For those of you from Central and Western Kentucky, you’ll find this one of the most unusual housing developments within the state. And atop Peter’s Peak, there is the luxury motel, La Citadelle, one of the most publicized, half million dollar tourist ventures within Kentucky. And throughout this community, you will find new housing, new business buildings – almost all directly or indirectly the net results of the devastating flood which struck here in 1957. Along Main Street, you’ll find much the same assortment of businesses you, your families and friends own, work in, and manage in your own hometown. We are sure you’ll find Hazard a “nice place visit, and an even better place to live.” 1959

Thursday, July 9

The River Was Kind To Us

Roy G. Eversole was kind enough to say he liked my reminisces. He recalled the large white sand bar, under where the swinging bridge is now located, that in low tide jutted halfway across the river. On this white sand bar they played baseball. Roy was the catcher, Ralph Fulp was the pitcher and also on the team were Paul Coburn and Fred Gross, Bill Goad, Archie Ruschak, Loran Johnson, Joe Eversole (pharmacist and owner of a drug store in Jenkins), Cassius and Carl Eversole as well as others. Those were Happy Days. The river had pure, clear water. The North Fork was kind to us but alas we were not kind to it, as the building fever of the Roaring '20s came with a rush. We filled in the river with mud, mortar and bricks and in 1927 it repaid us with our first flood in 50 years.

Wednesday, July 8

Mountain Blackstone

A dapper little man with snow-white hair and an almost boyish face, despite his 80 years, sits at his office desk here every weekday practicing law and expounding on the principles of jurisprudence. In his remarkable memory, there is a library of case histories and a storehouse of Kentucky lore.

He is the only surviving member of the original faculty that started the University of Kentucky's College of Law. And he is the last man alive of the battery of lawyers who crossed legal blades in the celebrated trial of Caleb Powers for the murder of Governor William C. Goebel at the turn of the century.

Despite his advanced age there's noting senile about T. E. Moore Jr., the "Mountain Blackstone" who first came to Hazard when this Perry County seat was but a village with a muddy Main Street only two blocks long, and the business houses were one-story frame buildings constantly threatened with fire and flood.

An omnivorous reader, Moore keeps posted on the news, and he is an avid U.K. sports fan. He is sorry that Babe Parilli won't be back next fall to do the passing but is sure Kentucky will have a good football team anyway, built around Bunky Gruner. And while Hagan and Ramsey are still around he isn't worried about the fate of the basketball team.

A conversation with the spruce little attorney is more or less a one-way proposition, with him doing the talking, he is as deaf as James Whitcomb Riley's "Grandfather Squeers, who often wore lightning rods over his ears." He doesn't bother with a hearing aid, but a written question will set him off on a dissertation on almost any subject. He loves people and he likes to talk between puffs on his pipe. The pipe is kept polished, as black and shiny as his well kept shoes. And his neat, blue suit never seems to get the slightest bit rumpled.

Young Moore, a Bourbon County native, made his first trip to Hazard on horseback from Olympian Springs in Estill County shortly after he had been admitted to the bar back in 1896. He still chuckles - and no doubt aches a bit - in recounting that rugged journey through the mountains, following dim trails across the ridges and creek beds up and down the hollows.. Although raised in the horse country, he hadn't done much riding before he took that trip, so he took it easy the first day - to Cutshin in Leslie County, tired and sore. Another day's agonizing riding and he hit the head of Leatherwood in Perry County. He was ready for a rest when he rode into the village of Hazard on the evening of the fourth day. Then he rode to Hindman, 22 miles away, and down swift-running Troublesome Creek to Jackson and back to Olympian Springs. Moore was inspecting vast timber acreage of his father-in-law on that trip. He recalls that there was on tract of 23,000 acres in Breathitt County, as well as huge expanses in other mountain counties, all bought for about a $1 an acre. It was a saddle-sore young man who finished that trip after averaging more than 50 miles a day on horseback for a week.

Not long after his mountain trek, Moore took a shot at politics and was elected Bourbon County attorney. He was practicing at Paris when Caleb Powers, later to serve for many years as congressman from the original 11th District, went on trial at Georgetown as one of those accused of assassinating Governor Goebel. As one of the lawyers in the case, it was Moore's job to help select a jury from the 400 veniremen summoned. "Which side were you on?" he was asked (there's always a pencil and pad on his desk for that purpose). "As the son of a Rebel soldier," he replied, "you ought to know I wouldn't have been defending that Republican." From Moore's point of view, it was an excellent jury. It returned a verdict of guilty and fixed Powers' penalty at death. But the Barbourville Republican got a new trial. Next time it was life, then a pardon, and Powers lived to represent his district in the House of Representatives. Moore can remember most of the details of those trials of 1900, even to questions asked jurors and witnesses and the names of the many attorneys who asked them.

When the law school was organized at the University of Kentucky in 1908, Moore was chosen as one of three professors. Still entranced with the Kentucky mountains, he came to Hazard in 1916 to stay. 1952

Tuesday, July 7

I can remember as a small boy I had a lot of ambition to make music on a french harp or juice harp. I reckon the reason we called it a juice harp was because it was played in your mouth (I guess the tobacco juice must have run down the corners to have produced such tones as they did). I beleive the French Harp is coming back because I heard a long tall lanky boy, none other than Tommy Sizemore from 16 Mile way, play one a few weeks ago. He said he was in town to play on the George Davis Show at the Virginia Theater on WKIC. Folks, if you remember such pieces as "Ground Hog," "Sour-Wood Moutain," and many others. He gave a good demonstration to a crowd before he went on the show.

Another instrument that always kept me spell-bound was the dulcimer, as I understand is one of the old time musical instruments that was favored by our mountain people. Yes, it is so popular that Jean Ritchie, one of our mountain girls from up around Viper-way, is teaching this and other folklore of our mountains in New York. Ritchie has made a name for herself on Radio and TV.

I am interested in getting hold of a dulcimer and understand that there are some around our area. No folks, I don't want to learn to play the thing, I just want to be sure to keep one of the old original types in my collection. Boys, don't bring the price along with it. 1958

Monday, July 6

Appropriate Name

All was not well at WKIC today. WKIC's transmitting tower is located high upon Town Mountain in Hazard, some 16 or 17 hundred feet above sea level. Guarding this mountain top is a dog called "FM" that came to the site while the tower was being constructed in 1958. Since WKIC at that time was installing it's new FM broadcast equipment (WSGS) the staff and management of the radio station took in the homeless dog and decided "FM" would be the appropriate name for her. "FM" is a black Cocker Spaniel and has been true and loyal as a watch on the lonely mountain top. A small dog house was constructed for her with insulating materials and all in the wall. Broughton Construction Company constructed the building for "FM" and she has been living there alone now for several months. The radio station employees take their turn in seeing to it that "FM" is fed and watered once each day even though it sometimes requires a special trip to the mountain top for that purpose only.

Late this afternoon, WKIC's Chief Engineer - Doug Slough noticed "FM" wasn't at the gate to greet him upon his arrival at the tower site. A search was made and "FM" was found in a thickly wooded area, under a log cuddled with seven little black puppies. A slanted hole had been dug downward into the ground, under the log, causing the puppies to roll under their mother and five of the little fellows had suffocated. Chief Engineer Slough carried the two remaining pups and their mother to the new home that had been prepared for them. He placed them in a cozy spot at the base of WKIC's 300 foot transmitting tower. So the mother and her two pups are doing fine. If you happen to hear the cries of a puppy on your radio loud speaker, you'll know where they're coming from. 1959

Sunday, July 5

Old Relics

On display in the front plate glass window of Davis Brothers Kenyon Auto Store in Hazard are several old relics, such as a frow that was brought in by Tug Fields over Big Creek way, an old fashion shoe last, iron kettle and etc. I really didn't realize that it meant so much to people. One tea kettle I could have sold many times. All this brings back memories of the days of our forefathers. To all you people that reside in our mountains, I was thinking since so much interest had been shown by such a small amount of items, just think what a museum would mean, not only to our people but to the tourist. I am confident that here in Perry and surrounding counties that there is enough left to make one of the best tourist attractions anywhere. This is something to think about if you are interested in the welfare of Eastern Kentucky. Civic clubs should start making plans to give the tourist trade something to look forward to. Folks, it is coming as soon as our roads are bettered. I predict that you are going to see them get better. Eastern Kentucky is on the move. 1958

Saturday, July 4

Happy 4th Of July

Mrs. Bartle Melton says that she recalls the days when she visited Hazard once a year, which was on the Fourth of July when they held a big picnic up around Cedar Craig. Well, I remember those days. Mrs. Melton says at that time she lived over on Big Willard Creek. When this season of the year rolled around she usually rode to town on a horse. The crowd she was with always made it a point to ride the train back down Yerkes way. She admits times have changed somewhat. Now she wonders how mothers with large families managed, such as ironing the clothes with a flat iron, yes, heated on a four cap coal stove. Not counting the many meals that were fixed on it, to cook a pot of beans was an all-day ordeal.

Mrs. Melton, I think along the same lines as you, people were happy and content, not too many worries, such as taxes. All they needed was some salt, pepper, sugar, coffee and flour. The winter was made if they had these items. As you say, modern times, modern cookers such as the pressure cooker makes a lot of ornery cusses. Of course time marches on, soon we will be on the moon. 1958

Friday, July 3

Guess You Might As Well Know ...

My Dad, Howard, and his sister, Laura, were two of the early telephone operators. I think I was very young then. Auntie would get the biggest kick out of telling about a man in Jenkins who fell in love with my Dad's voice, thought he was a girl, and sent him flowers. After that, she said if a gentleman caller got sort of "frisky" Dad would use his girlie voice to prank with him and then at the end of the conversation it was "Guess you might as well know, my name is Howard, not so and so (he used some girlie name).

Shorty Combs had one of the best skating rinks that ever was. It was in the area of the old Coca Cola building and right on the river bank. I guess you might say I spent a lot of time there and my dad and I learned to dance on skates and we could do the dip, the waltz, the jitterbug, all the dances of that day on skates, sort of what they do now on ice.

Thursday, July 2

Daylight Never Found Me In Bed

Nancy Maw lived at Rowdy in Perry County. Born in 1864, she had five sisters and three brothers, all who helped make a living by planting big fields of corn, large vegetables, gardens and making molasses. They canned their own food. Nancy did all the plowing with oxen. Also, during the winter months, she and her brother cut logs for railroad ties and she added with a twinkle, “but we always kept a jug of shine near the log skid, just to keep us warm on the colder days."

The coming of darkness did not end the day. She says they would sit up until 9 PM picking wool and spinning yarn. They made all their own clothes. A trip to “town” (Hazard) was always looked forward to and was made on horseback.

A brother dug coal for the winter supply; there were no retailers then. An idea of a big evening was a corn husking or a square dance.

She recalled that one of the great pleasures of growing up during this period was that people really loved each other and worked together. “Nowadays, kids think ‘bout movies and drive-ins, where we spent our time clearing ground and planting," she said. When asked what she thought made the older generation stronger than today, she said that daylight never found her in bed. "Everyone was up at dawn ready to work. The food in those days was better. We had dried pumpkin, dried beans, plenty of milk and molasses and we worked harder. I don’t know how we lived through those days considering what little we had to work with. I guess the Lord just blessed us all.”

Wednesday, July 1

Perry County's own Bobby Davis Park opened on July 1st 1946. Let’s take an imaginary tour of the place…but instead of turning directly into the library, let us walk down the stone steps to the Reflection Pool to see the heart of the Bobby Davis Park…the Memorial. Plaques at either end of the pool read “May Time Never Erase the Memory of the Perry County boys who were killed in action in World War II. “ Around the stone wall surrounding the pool are bronze plaques in memory of the Perry County boys who were killed in action in World War II. Individual plaques bear the name of each boy and the country where he lost his life. A more fitting memorial cannot be imagined. The quiet and the simplicity are overwhelming. Re-tracing our steps back to the entrance level, we find Bobby Davis Memorial Library which was donated by Mr. And Mrs. L. O. Davis in memory of their son, Robert Oren Davis, who was killed in German July 13, 1945. Their donation was like a dream come true because for years, interested Perry Countians had met to discuss ways of securing a Library for our area.