Tuesday, March 15

Spending Ourselves Into Prosperity

It seems that the County Judge and Fiscal Court have decided to tear down the Court House and build another one on the same spot. To me it is a shame, and I think the public generally feels the same way I do about it. The Court House we have has ample room, good heat and good lights and is substantial building. It seems wrong to me to just destroy valuable property; but there are a lot of people who seem to feel it to be their duty to get all the money they can out Federal Treasury. Wonder what they will do when the Government goes broke? We can not always keep spending ourselves into prosperity.

Well, the old Court House was destroyed by fire in the Fall of 1911, along with the Jailer's residence. By hard work, the records of the two Clerk's offices were saved. That was before any train had come into Hazard and the bucket brigade kept the fire from spreading to other buildings. I remember that Si Wright had his barber shop in the old Eversole store building, where the Fuller building occupied by Citizens State Bank and others is now located. The boys jokingly said that Si got so excited that he carried his barber chairs and equipment down to the edge of the river. Well, J.G. Campbell was the County Judge. He and the Fiscal Court went to work immediately to get a new Court House. The cost would and did exceed the indebtedness permitted by the Constitution, but Judge Campbell was able to get a contractor to build the Court House. A bond issue was voted by the citizens to pay for it. As I remember it was completed in the latter part of 1912. I can remember that I filed for nomination for County Attorney in 1913 and it then had been constructed and was in use, and Judge L.D. Lewis presided over the Circuit Court terms in that year.

Well, it would seem to me now, that it will take at least two years to erect a new Court House. It is my information that they plan to move the offices down to the Lincoln Hotel building. It is going to be hard on me and Scott Duff and Vernon Faulkner and Ernest to have to walk all the way down there every time we have to go to one of the Clerk's offices.

All of it seems to me to be a foolish and unwise step, but I guess I am a little bit old fashioned. In my younger days we did not have any Government hand-outs. We had to pay our own way. Let us just hope that it will turn out for the better. 1964


  1. Seems like Judge Ward could forsee the future.

  2. Bless his heart, he told me years ago, "Idy, I doubt that when you get old enough to retire that there will be a thing called "Social Security" because it is already out of hand..."

    I, too, think he could foresee.

  3. I wish they had kept the courthouse with the clock tower on it.