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Bonnie Strassell - Owen County Historical Society

  • Owen County Historical Society: Community wasn’t immune to ravages of disease

    Even into the 20th century, Owen countians were not immune to the “speckled monster.” 
    It attacked young and old alike, and many did not survive its devastating assault. Through the 18th and 19th centuries, pioneer villages and towns were decimated by its onslaught, and many succumbed to the effects of this dreaded disease called smallpox.
    Owen County records show that in December of 1902 a smallpox epidemic was raging in the area, and many died as it made its way from household to household.

  • Owen County Historical Society: Press your nose against the window and remember

    The carolers, dressed in early 20th-Century attire, cluster together and silently mouth the words of timeless Christmas carols. This scene is reminiscent of early Owen County years when carolers would gather under the dim gas lights in Owenton to offer songs and hymns of the Christmas season.
    Jim Jump was the town lamplighter at that time, and every evening at dusk Jim would take his long pole and light the lamps along Owenton streets, illuminating the town.
    At dawn, Jim would return to extinguish the lights and welcome another Owen county day.

  • Owen County Historical Society News: Churches offer unique insight into history

    I must offer my apology to Don and Clay Crupper and their families. Several weeks ago I introduced you to the Crupper brothers, who are caretakers of the Smith Cemetery in Breck.

  • Owen County Historical Society News: Displaying old toys brings Christmas nostalgia

     “We are a blessed people, chosen by God, and given the opportunity to respond to the offer of His grace.”
     Burlington pastor, Todd Toole offered these words of thanksgiving and promise at the historical society’s annual Thanksgiving dinner Nov. 10. 
    At times evoking laughter from the audience, the gregarious, silver-haired minister reminisced about some of his childhood years in Poplar Grove where his father, Gayle Todd, pastored the Poplar Grove Baptist Church.

  • Kay's Branch News: Remember the veterans Friday

    I must start off with a correction. It was not Jeannie Williams Baker who went to the dance with Joyce, Cig and Coleman. It was Jeannie Barber Jones. I’m not sure if it was me reading it wrong or Wanda’s mistake. I do have a tendency to anticipate when I read the e-mails late at night. I may have read “Jeannie,” and because the only Jeannie I know is Jeannie Williams, I just typed in her name instead of actually reading the sentence verbatim.

  • Remember the veterans Friday

    I must start off with a correction. It was not Jeannie Williams Baker who went to the dance with Joyce, Cig and Coleman. It was Jeannie Barber Jones. I’m not sure if it was me reading it wrong or Wanda’s mistake. I do have a tendency to anticipate when I read the e-mails late at night. I may have read “Jeannie,” and because the only Jeannie I know is Jeannie Williams, I just typed in her name instead of actually reading the sentence verbatim.

  • Owen Historical Society News: Cemeteries are part of a family’s legacy to the future

    Age does not deter 80-year-old Don Crugger and his 76-year-old brother, Clay, from their dedication to the preservation of the Smith Cemetery in Breck. Breck was always a small community in Owen County, originally comprised  of several homes and a grocery. Today, all that remains of Breck is a couple houses, the Smith Cemetery, and some who are determined to keep alive the history of the people who lived, died and are buried there.

  • Owen County Historical Society News: Those childhood memories are the basis for our history

    Some of the memories we hold most dear are those of our childhood; and those reminiscences of the past are significant pieces of our history to be shared with others.
    Larry Dale Perry and Peggy McDannell Trinkle remember growing up on East Adair Street, better known as “Dog Hill.” No one knows for sure where the area got the name of Dog Hill, but perhaps the numerous dogs wandering about the streets at that time contributed to its fame.

  • Owen County Historical Society News: Fay Shelton continues to share with community

    After Fay Shelton suffered from a bout of rheumatic fever at the age of 5, her mother sold a cow to purchase a piano for her daughter. Thus began a life-long love of music, which included a career as a music teacher in the Owen County School System.

  • Owen County Historical Society News: Music and memories preserved at museum and on display

    One could tell that the river is in his blood, and his love of the Kentucky was reflected in the glint of his eyes and the resonance of his voice as he recalled his life near its banks. Along with many Owen countians, some who also made their homes by the Kentucky River, “Boss” Kemper attended the Owen County Historical Society Museum’s dedication of the Kentucky River Room and calliope.