Bonnie Strassell - Owen County Historical Society

  • Preston recalls life on the Kentucky at historical society event

    With a bit of nostalgia, she wove a colorfully vibrant tapestry of life along the Kentucky River; and as her words created powerful images, Amalie Preston captured the quintessential soul of the Kentucky.
    Amalie is the great-granddaughter of riverboat captain Squire Jordan Preston, whose many years on the Kentucky made him something of a celebrity. She grew up and still resides along the Kentucky River in Mercer County, and her stories delighted a roomful of visitors at the historical society’s River Day April 27.

  • Owen countians often looked to the woods for ailment relief

    Turpentine, sassafras tea and coal oil (kerosene) were common ingredients in home remedies used for generations of Kentuckians who grew up under the knowledgeable tutelage of grannies or local herbalists.
    Though some may think it strange to look in the woods and meadows for ailment relief, Kentucky soil embraces a wealth of healing herbs and grasses.

  • Kentucky River has proved both old friend and nemesis

    Meandering through the heartland of Kentucky its history boasts of heroes such as Daniel Boone, George Rogers Clark, Isaac Shelby, John Harrod and Benjamin Logan. Yet, most times it just quietly murmurs stories of the common folk who settled along its banks and who, despite ravaging floods, were inescapably drawn back to Kentucky’s ancient song. 

  • Owen County favorite Hattie Hill passes away at 93

    She knew life inside and out, and though she had her share of hard times, most days found her at the Owen County Senior Center capturing moments of the past, evoking smiles, generating laughter and offering a colorful collection of reminisces.
    Hattie Hill never let the grass grow under her feet. Growing up on a farm she knew first-hand the endless work involved in keeping food on the table, and through the years she worked as many as eight jobs to support her family.

  • Colorado Grant’s ‘Wild West Show’ and historic Sparta

    Though it doesn’t often make headlines, and some of its residents might think of themselves as Owen County’s red-headed step-children, the community of Sparta (half of which sits in Owen, the other half in Gallatin) embraces an early rich history of the area.
    Many may not be familiar with Sparta history or the fact that the community was first called Ross Mill, named after David Ross who built what is believed to be the oldest mill along Eagle Creek.

  • Music of the ‘common folk’ highlighted during Celtic celebration

    As slender fingers glided along its strings, the spirited violin beckoned the deep-throated viola and perky piano to join in and melodious notes, chasing each other around the room, captured hearts and created picturesque images of ancient Celts in their homelands of Ireland, Scotland and Wales.
    Last week the Owen County Library meeting room was transformed into a Celtic celebration by a trio of talented musicians from Northern Kentucky. The Owen County Historical Society and Owen County library sponsored the event.

  • Recounting the history of Mountain Island Baptist Church

    In the 1801 presidential election, both Thomas Jefferson and Aaron Burr received the same number of electoral votes. The election was thrown into the House of Representatives which chose Thomas Jefferson as the third president of the United States.
    That same year hundreds of thousands of people gathered at Cane Ridge, Ky., to participate in what would become known as the greatest revival in American history.

  • Stack cake speaks to the strong-willed people of Kentucky
  • Historical Society News | Frontier preachers embraced by pioneers for fiery sermons

    They came from the same stock as the early pioneers who settled the frontier in Ohio, Indiana and Kentucky. Though not college educated, they preached the gospel whenever they were moved by the spirit, and Kentucky was fertile ground for early circuit riders to sow the word of God.
    Frontier preachers were zealous and their fiery sermons were embraced by the pioneers whose indomitable ruggedness had forged homes in the wilderness.

  • Owen County’s first justices met nearly 200 years ago

    The War of 1812 ended in 1815 and Americans looked forward to an era of peace and freedom unhindered by British interference and tyranny.