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Bonnie Strassell - Owen County Historical Society

  • Owen Historical Society News: Characters color Owen County history

    Louisville Courier Journal columnist Alan Trout described him as “a grizzled specimen of cantankerous benevolence.”
    He relished life as a Owenton publisher, Middlesboro banker, U.S. marshal at Covington, and Bryan Democrat.
    Most knew him as a “keen judge of human nature,” and R.C. Ford made a name for himself in the annals of Owen County history.
    Their traits ranged from whimsical to wise to outrageously funny.

  • Owen Historical Society News: Hunting was a necessary skill in Owen County

    When I was about 12 years old my father gave me a shotgun. He decided to do so when he discovered that I had been borrowing a gun from an older boy and gone huntin’ on my own. Game was plentiful in those days and within a half hour after school was out I could be scaring up rabbits. I also had a trap line. I used snares and deadfalls, which I made myself and baited with apples.

    (Reminisces of Kentuckian William Dorman)
     

  • Owen Historical Society News: Grandpas made a difference in Owen

    The little girl’s eyes danced at the sight of the bright red dress. No princess could have been more pleased nor could she have dressed more elegantly than in that scarlet wonder. As the light gently skipped over the soft folds of the dress, it captured the little girl’s heart; and she was delighted with this special gift from her grandparents.

  • Owen Historical Society News: Family tree has deep roots in Owen

    When schools closed that bad winter, a young boy spent his days in the stripping room on the farm.
    Amid the pungent odor of tobacco, the lad listened to his granddad’s stories.
    Those narratives, along with a love of farming, created an intense yearning in the young man; and he followed a life-long dream which included his supportive wife, his family and his beloved Southdown sheep. 
    Kentucky has embraced the Forsee family for eight generations.  Owen countian Brian Forsee, who is a seventh generation Forsee, was the special guest speaker at the historical society meeting last week.

  • Owen Historical Society News: Churches made it easy to attend

    The smooth wood of the newly constructed structure stood forlornly beneath the trees near the church. Its surface displayed  no evidence of use. No worn away areas suggested years of diligent watch over those under its care.
    But the hitching post erected at Long Ridge Baptist Church several weeks ago served as a reminder to many Owen countians of years ago when horses throughout the county spent their Sunday mornings in front of community churches.

  • Owen Historical Society News: Treasured powder horn returns to Owen

    Engravings snaking their way around the aged powder horn reflected the soft lights of the room; and their story embraced over 200 years of American history.
    The horn belonged to Jacob Hesler of Heslerville, the first county seat in Owen County.
    Traveling to the territory of Texas with Jacob’s descendants, it was eventually  purchased by broker of fine Americana, Kentuckian Mel Hankla.

  • Owen Historical Society News: Author shares tales of Native Americans

    A fringed linen frock wrapped itself around his lean, lanky frame. A decorated sheathed knife, suspended from a cord around his neck, and a powder horn cradled along his side produced an image of the early American frontier.
    His diminutive Shawnee wife, her calico shirt displaying trade silver, accompanied her husband; and 250 years of history surrounded these two figures of the past as they made their way into the present

  • Owen Historical Society News: Small communities had a big impact

    Most Owen countians are familiar with the names of Claxon Ridge, Pink Ridge, Stewart Ridge, Buffalo Ridge, Riddle’s Ridge, Divided Ridge, Fortner Ridge, Ball Ridge, Harris Ridge, Bethel Ridge and Long Ridge. Some of these hilltops took on the names of the families who first settled along their crests, while the origin of the names of others may have been lost over the years.

  • Owen Historical Society News: Newspapers reflected a prosperous community

    “To look at the (news) paper is to raise a seashell to one’s ear and to be overwhelmed by the roar of humanity.”

    These words by Swiss author Alain de Botton described the undeniable influence a newspaper has upon its readers.
    Newspapers have been a part of our daily life for centuries. They were not only an avenue of advertisement and of distributing information to the public, but were also a means of providing entertainment through satire or storytelling.

  • Owen Historical Society News: Post offices were hubs of activity for residents

    “Dillender hauled the mail in a covered freight wagon. On the trip to Eagle Station, he carried produce, poultry, animal skins, rabbits (in season) and sundry other farm products to the L & N depot for shipment to Louisville.
    On the return trip, he brought the day’s mail, staple and sundry stock for the stores and huge baskets of fresh bread, stacked in unwrapped loaves, a luxury directly related to Moxley’s close proximity to the railroad.”