Wednesday, October 27, 2010

102 Years Ago in Dycusburg: Henry Bennett Sues for Sum of $100,000

Henry Bennett, of Dycusburg, has filed suit against the parties, whom he names, and alleges burned his factory and distillery at Dycusburg, last Febuary [sic], and at the same time abused him unmercifully. The suit is filed against near one hundred citizens, of Trigg, Lyon and Caldwell counties and is for the sum of one hundred thousand dollars.

Source: Oct. 29, 1908 Crittenden Record Press, p. 5

Preserve the Courthouse: Smithland Event to Raise Awareness, Support Preservation Movement

IN THE WORKS: The new county office building is under construction in this photo dated Sept. 2010. Courtesy/Brenda Joyce Jerome.
The Livingston County Historical and Genealogical Society and its Preservation Committee are planning a Halloween event at the Livingston County Court House in Smithland on Friday, Oct. 29, 2010. The theme is "Haunting Tales From the Past." The evening will begin with music at 5 p.m., followed by stories of the Night Riders, murders and Civil War activities in Smithland and other stories of the area. Kentucky Supreme Court Justice Bill Cunningham will be on hand for a book signing. The Livingston County High School FFA will have food available for purchase.

The new Livingston County Justice Center opened in 2009 and a new County Office Building, which will contain the county clerk's office, is currently being constructed next to the old Court House. When this happens, the old Court House will be empty for the first time since it was built in 1845. The purpose of this Halloween event is to make residents aware of the movement to preserve the Court House and adjoining old clerks' offices (built circa 1853) and provide the opportunity to contribute to the future of the Court House. This is the perfect way to have a family-friendly good time and support the preservation movement.

(Editor's Note: This post was used with permission from, a site dedicated to history and genealogy from Western Kentucky).

Dycusburg News: Oct. 28, 2010

Submitted by Matthew T. Patton

The L.B. and Sarah (Parsley) Patton reunion was held on Sunday, Oct. 10, at the Fredonia Lion's Club Building with many descendants in attendance. The family has been gathering for many years, always enjoying an afternoon of visiting and fellowship. The Pattons moved to Crittenden County in 1878 from Laurel County, Ky.

This Saturday (weather permitting), the Dycusburg Community Group (DCG) will clean the town of Dycusburg, starting at 10 a.m. Those who wish to help should meet at the site of the future park. The DCG will provide bags and bottled water. If you live in Dycusburg and you need help removing trash, debris or other items from your property, please call 988-2758 or meet the group at the site and they will direct their efforts as they are able.

Volunteers are also still needed to help with the set up of the park, particularly after the land survey is done and after the drainage culvert is installed. Until those items are complete, the park construction cannot begin. In the meantime, be thinking about ways you can volunteer to help the community.

Share your news by e-mailing

Dycusburg News: Oct. 14, 2010

Submitted by Matthew T. Patton

Parker Holsapple was honored with an 80th birthday celebration at the Dycusburg Baptist Church fellowship hall on Saturday with a large crowd in attendance.

Owen Matthews, son of Chase and Jennifer Matthews, was treated to a first birthday party at the Calvary Baptist Church in Crayne on Saturday.

Dycusburg Day, sponsored by Dycusburg Ladies Auxiliary, will be held at the Dycusburg Baptist Church from 2-4 p.m., Oct. 16. There will be a cake walk, two-liter ring toss, games, gospel singing and country music street dance. "Homecooking on the Cumberland" cookbooks will also available for $10. A large yard sale will also be held that day in Dycusburg.

Are you missing a dog? Star Mahns found a small, black dog with a collar and no tags on Brown Mines Rd. Call 988-3004 to claim her.

Our sympathies are extended to the families of Rhea Stinnett, Carlos Bailey and Ann Tabor.

Share your news by e-mailing

Thursday, October 21, 2010

Tuesday, September 21, 2010

Dycusburg News: Sept. 16, 2010

By Matthew T. Patton

The Dycusburg cookbook, compiled by the Dycusburg Ladies Auxiliary, has arrived from the printer. The beautifully bound book, with 208 recipes, titled "Homecooking on the Cumberland: The Love and Traditions of Dycusburg, Kentucky" is $10. It's available for purchase at Dycusburg Grocery. For more info, call Starlena Mahns at 988-3004.

The next Dycusburg Community Group meeting (an informational meeting on park plans and future group initiatives) will be Monday, Sept. 20 at 6 p.m. at the grounds of the future park adjacent to the Baptist church fellowship hall. In the event of rain, it will be held at the home of Michelle Henderson.

Mark your calendars: Dycusburg Day is slated for Saturday, Oct. 16. A community yard sale will also be held in conjunction with the festivities that day. Vendors, live music, crafts, a BBQ, fire department activities and several other events are in the works. Anyone who would like to get involved can call 988-3004.

Carol and George Strilko recently visited the area from the Chicago suburbs.

Dan and Michelle Henderson and Jake and Jody Selph and several of their friends enjoyed a camping trip to Land Between the Lakes during Labor Day weekend.

Only two copies of "Dycusburg, Kentucky: A Glance at Her Past" are available from the most recent reprint. Copies are $75 and should be reserved by e-mailing or calling 215-285-0920.

A family reunion for the descendants of L.B. and Sarah (Parsley) Patton will be held Sunday, Oct. 10 at the Fredonia Lion's Club Building. A potluck lunch will be served around noon. Family members are encouraged to bring photos to share. Friends of the family are also welcome to attend.

An October family reunion (date TBD) is also in the works for the Ollie and Emma (Bennett) Matthews family. For more information, e-mail or call 988-2758.

Share your birthdays, anniversaries, news and other items by e-mailing

Tuesday, August 24, 2010

Dycusburg News: Aug. 26, 2010

By Matthew T. Patton

Gail Bannister asked us to share this news: The Dycusburg School Reunion will be at the Dycusburg Methodist Church grounds on Sept. 5 at 1 p.m. It is potluck with barbecue and soft drinks will be provided. Please bring your lawn chairs and old photos. All students and their families are invited. Friends of former students are also encouraged to attend. Bannister said this will be an event with lots of good food, good people and good memories.

Becky Stinnett Jarrett asked us to share the following: The Stinnett-Travis Reunion will be coming up Oct. 10 with lots of games, prizes and an auction. Jarrett said the reunion will be "lots of fun and good food." She also wrote, "Don't miss Jimmy Stinnett calling out the Bingo numbers, also live music from Tony Stinnett and Gage Hill from North Carolina."

Gearldine Shouse reported that the Tabor reunion was held in late July with several in attendance. Penny Christman reported that the Holder family reunion was also held in late July with more than 80 in attendance. The family, descendants of Perce James and Mary Belle Holder, covered five generations of the Holder family.

Dan Linzy reported that he took his father (Lafe Linzy) to Dycusburg on Sunday, Aug. 22. Dan wrote, "We made several stops and visited. We also made a run through the cemetery and had a great day."

Martha Stinnett reported that Rodney Stinnett came in 1st place in his division for the 5K run at BBQ on the Barkley. Several from the area enjoyed attending the festivities in Kuttawa during the weekend.

A Dycusburg cookbook has been compiled by a few residents of Dycusburg and is available for $10. Proceeds will benefit next year's fireworks show and other upcoming projects according to Peggy Johnson and Star Mahns. For more information, call the Dycusburg Grocery at 988-3004.

The health, safety and general welfare of the residents of this area would improve by significantly reducing the number of stray dogs and cats. Not only is it cruel for the animals, but the town of Dycusburg has also used county funds and donations from several residents to clean up our little village on the river. Unfortunately, stray dogs are ruining the cleaning efforts in the early morning hours before the trash company comes, leaving yards full of garbage for residents to clean up. Help end this vicious cycle of irresponsible pet owners who allow their dogs and cats to run wild and breed uncontrollably by calling the
county dog catcher.

Share your news by e-mailing

Tuesday, August 17, 2010

Dycusburg School Reunion Slated for Sept. 5

Gail Bannister posted the following:
The Dycusburg School Reunion will be at the Methodist Church grounds on Sept. 5 at 1 p.m. It is potluck with barbecue and soft drinks provided.

Please bring your lawn chairs and old photos. All students and their families are invited.

We also welcome friends of former students. This will be an event with lots of good food, good people and good memories! Hope to see you all there!

Thursday, July 22, 2010

Dycusburg News: July 22, 2010

By Matthew T. Patton

A dedication of a shooting deck at the Henderson cabin was held July 4 in memory of Rick Fondaw who passed away on May 17. He was honored with a 21-gun salute. More than 300 were in attendance throughout the weekend.

Our sympathy is extended to the family of Pat Holsapple, 76, who died on June 18.

The Dycusburg community was saddened when Travis Conditt, 19, drowned in the Cumberland River on June 23. Recovery crews found his body only a few feet from where he went under while swimming with a friend.

As part of a community grant, the Dycusburg Community Group will be building a park in town within the next 1-2 months, including concrete picnic tables and grills. The equipment has been delivered, but due to the extreme heat, construction will begin at a later date. For progress details, visit or find us on Facebook by searching ""

Copies of "Dycusburg, Kentucky: A Glance at Her Past" are available for purchase at $75. To order a copy, mail a check or money order to: Matthew T. Patton, 4798 Abberley Ln., Johns Creek, GA 30022. Questions? E-mail

If you haven't checked out the Dycusburg Facebook fan page, you're missing out. Scores of historic photos have recently been added. A special thanks to Becky Brightwell Howard for her hard work on getting these photos added. Find the link for the page at

Friday, June 25, 2010

Obituary: Pat Holsapple, 76

Pat Holsapple, 76, of Marion died Friday, June 18 at Lourdes Hospital in Paducah.

She was a homemaker and member of Emmaus Baptist Church.

Surviving are her husband of 59 years, Parker Holsapple of Marion; a daughter Darlene Peterson of Chesterton, Ind.; sons, Jimmy Holsapple of Chesterton and Rickey Holsapple of Dycusburg; five grandchildren and five great-grandchildren.

She was preceded in death by her parents, Litt and Pauline Mittchel Ferguson, a brother and one grandchild.

Funeral services were Sunday, June 20 at Myers Funeral Home in Marion with Rev. Lonnie Knight officiating. Burial will be in Asbridge Cemetery.

Source: The Crittenden Press, June 24, 2010

Drowning in Cumberland River at Dycusburg

DYCUSBURG - Rescue personnel from several area agencies are at Dycusburg, dragging the Cumberland River for the body of 19-year-old Travis Conditt of Marion, who is believed to have drowned while swimming with a friend Wednesday afternoon.

Conditt and 19-year-old Jordan Wadsworth of Marion were swimming in the river near the boat ramp while two friends, Jacob Pitman of Possum Trot and Stormy DePriest of Benton were sitting on rip rap on the riverbank.

The boys had been swimming in the area for about 30 minutes when they tried to swim to a green buoy marking the river channel, about 100 feet from shore. Conditt was the first to reach the buoy, and as the two turned to swim back, he began to cramp. His companion tried coaxing him onto his back in a floating position, but Conditt went under. Pitman went into the river, but the victim was already under water.

Wadsworth got out of the water called 911 and tried to crank a small boat parked nearby but it would not start.

The boys had been swimming in that part of the river before, just three days earlier.

Rescue personnel say that with the water temperature of the river at 88 degrees, the victim's body should come to the surface within about 24 hours if he is not found sooner. The Area 2 Dive Team was expected to arrive and begin searching at about 7 p.m.

From The Crittenden Press Breaking News blog (used with permission)

Monday, May 10, 2010

Travis Sosh: Candidate for Magistrate District 5

Magistrate Candidate Travis Sosh coordinated the sandbag effort at Dycusburg last week to prevent the Dycusburg Baptist Church and fellowship hall from flooding. Pictured here is Travis hard at work (courtesy of The Crittenden Press).

Sunday, May 9, 2010

Dycusburg Ferry

Click image for larger version.

Brenda Underdown shared this photo with Larry Bragdon who e-mailed it to share on this site. It is from the Crittenden County Pictorical History Book. Brenda wrote: "Marian Hina Stuart submitted the picture when we did the book. She lived somewhere in Tennessee then. She was from the Hina family that lived at Lafayette Heights during the Lafayette Mines era."

Behind the tree is the Dycusburg ferry. Year unknown.

Saturday, May 8, 2010

Neighbors Helping Neighbors

Jerry Marshall (L) and Danny Sharp await their next passenger on a flooded section of KY 295/Dycusburg Road just south of the Dycusburg community in southern Crittenden County.

Cumberland River floodwaters have turned an area along the Crittenden-Lyon County line into an island. The two ways in and out are covered by water. Marshall and Sharp are using a Jon boat to help their neighbors get in and out to go to and from work.

Thursday, April 22, 2010

Genealogy Query: Lyon

"Looking for info/documentation about Thompson A Lyon b. 1833or 1835 in Eddyville d. 1899 m. Julia Frost. I believe he was a child of Chittenden Lyon and his second wife.

"Also info/documentation for the son of Thompson A Lyon a Wallace Chittenden Lyon born in Paducah KY-9 March 1893. Married Emma then moved to Hyattsville MD/Family did stained glass windows.. I have other Lyon information and would appreciate any assistance. My email has changed so please respond to"

Thursday, April 15, 2010

Dycusburg News: April 15, 2010

By Matthew T. Patton

Our sympathies are extended to the family of Helen Brasher Ramage, 87, of Murfreesboro, Tenn., formerly of Dycusburg, who died March 22. She was the wife of J.B. Ramage, who died just a month before on Feb. 22.

We also extend our sympathies to the family of Jamie K. "Pug" LaRue, 38, of Dycusburg who died on March 17. Both were buried at the Dycusburg Cemetery.

Happy birthday to Mike Tosh (4/3); Brandee Bowman (4/3), Jody Beth Selph (4/8); Justin Noffinger (4/17); Regina Matthews (4/18); Justin Sutton (4/21); Jeannie Griffin (4/22), Amanda Oliver and Dylan Strilko (4/23); Bobbie Davenport (4/25); and Dennie Davenport (5/2). Share your birthdays and anniversaries by e-mailing

As part of a community grant, the Dycusburg Community Group will be building a youth park in town within the next 1-2 months. For starters, the group desperately needs volunteers for labor to help construct and place playground equipment. Please consider investing your time in the youth of the area by helping. If you're interested, please call the DCG at 988-2758.

If you haven't checked out the Dycusburg Facebook fan page, you're missing out. Scores of historic photos have recently been added. Find the link for the page at

Thursday, April 8, 2010

Crossing From Crittenden Into Lyon County, KY (Hwy. 295)

Filmed April 5, 2010

Cumberland River at Dycusburg

Filmed April 5, 2010

Dycusburg Baptist Church

Filmed April 5, 2010

Dycusburg Methodist Church

Filmed April 5, 2010

Monday, March 22, 2010

Dycusburg News: March 18, 2010

By Matthew T. Patton

I received a few e-mails regarding the ferry at Dycusburg after posting a query in last week's issue. If anyone has photos or information, several are eager to learn about the ferry and its operation at Dycusburg. Please e-mail to share what you know.

A historic photo of John Anthony Greenlee and Lurie Emeline (Doom) Greenlee was added to last week. The couple are ancestors or relatives of many people in this area.

Happy belated birthday to Star Mahns (Feb. 19) and Jennifer Matthews (Mar. 14). They were accidentally omitted in last week's issue.

Get well wishes are sent to Randy Rushing, Lonnie Knight, J.E. Brasher and Parker Holsapple. Also, Patty Walker submitted this notation on the Dycusburg Facebook page: "Hadley Beth Peek, daughter of Todd and Ginny Beth Peek needs all the prayers we can send her. Her grandparents Steve and Eunice Peek are from Dycusburg." For more information about Hadley's condition, visit

Congratulations to Heather and Perry McDowell on the birth of their daughter, Eryn McDowell and to Misty and Brad McDowell on the birth of their son, Lucas J. McDowell.

We extend our sympathies to the family of Bobbie Jean Ramage, 76, who died Thursday, March 4. Burial was at Dycusburg Cemetery. We also received word at this writing that Millie Cole passed away on Monday morning.

Share your news by e-mailing

Thursday, March 18, 2010

Death Notice: Jamie "Pug" LaRue, 38

RIP Jamie "Pug" LaRue, 38, of Dycusburg who died March 18, 2010

Thursday, March 11, 2010

Greenlee Photo

Click image for larger version.

John Anthony Greenlee and Lurie Emeline (Doom) Greenlee, daughter of Chittenden Lyon Doom and Mary Ana (Templeton) Doom.

Lurie was born 3/29/1868. John was born 10/28/1853. They were married (at Chittenden and Mary's home) August 8, 1886. (Crittenden County, Kentucky Marriages Vol. II 1866-1886, pg. 166)

They had 15 children, including 2 sets of twins.

Arnie Harrison Greenlee (1888)
Gladys Hartland Greenlee (1890)
Mount Etna Greenlee (1891)
City Zimmru Greenlee (1893)
Halbert Greenlee (1896)
Homer Greenlee (1896)
John Hulet Greenlee (1899)
Alonzo Oatman Greenlee (5/30/1903)
Malissa Oatman Greenlee (5/30/1903 - 3/17/1981)
Norvel Anthony Greenlee (1905)
Harley Hodge Roosevelt Greenlee (1907)
Hugh Siasby Greenlee (1910)
Clara Greenlee (1911)
Amazi Greenlee
Eulessess Greenlee

Photo and information provided by Diana Hollingsworth who is a Greenlee and Doom family researcher. Contact her at

Dycusburg News: March 11, 2010

By Matthew T. Patton

Birthday wishes are extended to Barbara Ethridge (Feb. 7); Anna Patton (Feb. 22); Donna Davenport-Walker (Feb. 13); Courtney Smith (Mar. 1); Brad McDowell (Mar. 3); Verna Mae Kinnis (Mar. 5); Demetrius Kinnis (Mar. 6); Juana Mae Stone (Mar. 6); Wilma Allen (Mar. 10); Robert Millikan (Mar. 12); Samson Pleasant (Mar. 13); Tyler Guess (Mar. 15); Melissa Asbridge (Mar. 18); Joann Peek (Mar. 20); Connie Travis (Mar. 24). Anniversaries celebrated this month are: Ronnie and Phyllis Blake (Mar. 7), Lonnie and Helen Travis (March 15) and Bob and Shelia Wilkinson (Mar. 23). Was someone left out? Send an e-mail to for inclusion.

Sympathies are extended to the families of J.B. Ramage who died Feb. 22 and Howard "Pluto" Martin who died Feb. 27. Both were buried at Dycusburg Cemetery.

A reader of was inquiring about the ferry at Dycusburg. If anyone has any news articles or photos of the ferry, please contact Matthew T. Patton by e-mailing The site is updated frequently with news and updates.

Thursday, February 25, 2010

Obituary: J.B. Ramage, 87

J.B. Ramage, 87, of Murfreesboro, Tenn., formerly of Dycusburg, died Monday, Feb. 22, 2010 in Alvin C. York VA Medical Center in Murfreesboro.

He was retired from Kentucky Stone in Livingston County, was a member of Dycusburg Baptist Church, a member of Dycusburg Masonic Lodge 232 for 50 plus years and a World War II U.S. Navy veteran, who served on the USS Bennington.

Surviving are his wife of 61 years, Helen Brasher Ramage; one daughter, Michele Manning of Murfreesboro; two grandchildren, Shelby and Davis Manning, both of Murfreesboro; one sister-in-law, Bobbie J. Ramage of Marion; and several nieces and nephews.

He was preceded in death by his son-in-law, Chris Manning; three sisters, Ardell Myers Johnson, Rudell Myers Baker and Ada Mae Ramage Belt; three brothers, Charles Myers, Fred A. Ramage and Chuck Ramage. His parents were Frank Ramage and Zemrhu Greenlee Ramage.

Funeral services at 11 a.m., Friday, Feb. 26, 2010, at Lakeland Funeral Home Chapel in Eddyville with Dr. Mark Gregory and Rev. James Oates officiating. Burial will be at Dycusburg Cemetery with graveside military rites.

Visitation will be 5-8 p.m., Thursday at the funeral home with Masonic rites at 7 p.m.

Online condolences may be sent to the family at

Monday, February 22, 2010

Genealogy Query: Wells Family

The Rev. William Jasper Wells fought for the Union, enlisted at Smithland, Kentucky, December 10, 1861 as a Private in Co I, 41st Illinois Volunteer Infantry and was discharged June 18, 1862 at Corinth, Mississippi. He was a Baptist preacher. He first married Henrietta McKee on October 14, 1863 in Crittenden, Kentucky and secondly married Mary Jane Grace on November 9, 1871 in Christian County, Kentucky. Mary Jane Wells passed away in 1899 in Dycusburg, Crittenden, Kentucky. Later he married Cleopatra Lindsey Ball, the daughter of Aaron Lindsey and widow of William Ball. Jasper was admitted to the Western State Hospital in Hopkinsville, Crittenden County Kentucky on May 20, 1915 for Ivy Psychosis related to bipolar mania and died there on May 29, 1915. He was buried in the cemetery land beside the Hospital, at one time there were wooden markers marking the graves that were made by some of the patients, but a fire swept through the cemetery and now no marker marks his or any other grave. Cleopatra Lindsey Ball Wells died on April 26, 1918.

The ministerial directory of the Baptist churches in the United States of America
By George William Lasher
Published: Ministerial directory co., 1899
Wells, William Jasper, Kelsey (Fredonia), Ky. - Born, Farmington, St Francois County, Missouri.; Licensed 1875, Ordained Dec. 29, 1889, Dycusburg Church, Dycusburg, Crittenden County, Kentucky.; South Dycusburg, Crittenden County, Kentucky; Hebron, Boone County, Kentucky; Liberty, Casey County, Kentucky; Caldwell, Caldwell County, Kentucky; Macedonia, Jackson County, Kentucky; Fredonia, Caldwell County, Kentucky; Emmaus.

Contact: Jason Townsend:

Thursday, January 21, 2010

Dycusburg News: Jan. 21, 2010

Submitted by Matthew T. Patton

Mary (Linzy) LeFan was the honoree of a surprise 80th birthday luncheon on Saturday, Jan. 9 at the Christian Activities Center at Mexico Baptist Church, with approximately 40 in attendance. Mary was the daughter of Ray and Vada (Ralston) Linzy. Her late husband is Sanders "Cotton" LeFan.

Attending were her sons and their wives: Philip and Jeretta LeFan; Dennis LeFan and Jamie King; and Kevin and Vivian LeFan; grandchildren: Jessica and James Gibbs; Paige and Daniel Adams; and Alison LeFan; and her siblings: Lafe Linzy and wife Inez; Juanita Green; and Betty Young.

Other family and friends included Donna and Larry Haire; Rita and Mike Templeton, Hunter and Molly; Phyllis O'Neal; Deitra Beavers; Marilyn and Katie Jones; Mary Helen Christian; Ella Mae Mitchell; Anna Lois Campbell; Mabel Campbell; Linda McGuckin; and Bro. Tim, Joyce, Jonathon and Lydia Burdon.

The Dycusburg Grocery will now be open for adjusted winter hours: Tuesday-Friday, 7 a.m. to 6 p.m. Normal hours will resume in the Spring.

Michelle Henderson and Makanda Rolfe went on a week-and-a-half vacation to visit Dan Henderson and Jason Smith while they are working on a job in Corpus Christi, Texas. They also visited with John, Pati and Emily Floyd from Texas and some other friends from Illinois. They visited South Padre Island and toured the aquarium and the U.S.S. Lexington. On the return back home, they stopped in Hot Springs, Ark.

Birthday wishes are extended to: Livinia McGinnis (Jan. 11), Jason Smith, Jr., (Jan. 14), Levi Burris (Jan. 13), Travis Sosh (Jan. 16), Ethan Paddock (Jan. 21), James Artist (Jan. 24), Cheyenne Burris (Jan. 24), Jenny Patton (Jan. 26) and Gina Noffsinger (Jan. 29).

We extend our sympathies to the families of Betty Glenn and James Robert Dorroh.

Please share your community news by e-mailing

Saturday, January 16, 2010

Obituary: Betty Glenn, 70

Betty Lou Glenn, 70, of Marion died Thursday at her home.

Mrs. Glenn was a member of Seven Springs Baptist Church.

Surviving are one daughter, Tammy Brantley of Marion; two sons, Kenneth Penn and James Penn, both of Marion; two sisters, Loisteen Canada of Princeton and Thelma Lynn Brown of Marion; eight grandchildren; and 13 great-grandchildren.

She was preceded in death by her husband, Virgil Glenn; three brothers; and two sisters.

Services will be at 2 p.m. Sunday at Seven Springs Baptist Church. Burial will be at Asbridge Cemetery.

The family will receive visitors from 5 to 9 p.m. today at Gilbert Funeral Home in Marion.

Expressions of sympathy may take the form of contributions to Seven Springs Baptist Church, 219 Seven Branch Church Road, Marion, KY 42064.

Source: The Paducah Sun, Jan. 16, 2010

Thursday, January 7, 2010

Digging for Roots: Local Residents Provide Genealogy Tips

By Matthew T. Patton

Fredonia resident Pamela Faughn has always been interested in family history and enjoyed hearing her grandparents tell stories about their own childhoods.

“I always loved projects in school where you had to make a family tree. I was so excited to go to my parents and grandparents to get names of people I wished I could have known personally. I always thought someday I would learn more about them. But with other life obligations, I never seemed to get around to fulfilling that wish,” she said.

In 1994, with a little push from her mother, Dot Rogers, Faughn’s wish came true. That year, First Baptist Church of Fredonia was celebrating its 100th anniversary. Rogers was compiling a booklet about the charter members of the church for its centennial celebration.

“I agreed to help her research the charter members. I remember my first trip to the George Coon Library Genealogy Room in the basement of the library. I loved finding bits and pieces of history about our charter members long hidden away,” Faughn recalled. “As soon as I finished the research for the members, I began researching my family nonstop. I spent every spare minute at the library, cemeteries, courthouses and on my computer. It was this great big puzzle, and I thought I had to find every piece.”

Faughn is among the thousands across the world known as genealogists, those who study families and trace their lineages and history.

Getting Started
Brenda Joyce Jerome, CG, is a certified genealogist and avid Caldwell County researcher who has authored several books on the county and region, including compilations on marriages, births, deaths, vital statistics, court orders, wills and estate records.

To begin, Jerome suggested asking questions of older family members. “Record everything you are told and list who told you, where (by phone, in person at what location), and the date plus the age of the person,” she explained. “This may play a part in the validity of the information.”

She noted other documents may provide a name, date or location (such as a Bible record, school report card, newspaper obituary or baby book). “Always begin with yourself and obtain copies of all records (e.g., birth, marriage, confirmation records). Then work backwards to your parents and then grandparents to get started. When you have done as much as possible on your own, it is time to start checking census records,” Jerome said.

Most importantly, Jerome stressed new researchers should not believe everything family members say. “Oral tradition often is based on a bit of fact, but you will need to do some research to learn what is fact and what is not,” she said.

Jerome also suggested beginners “write down where you found every bit of information.” She recommended rather than writing something generic, like “Marriage Record, Caldwell County” that researchers instead document the book and page number and the title of the book, plus the location of the record. “If the record was in the county clerk’s office, state that. If the record was read on microfilm at the library, state that,” she said.

Additionally, genealogists should photograph tombstones and record every word of the inscription, along with the date of the photo. “Old tombstones have a way of disappearing and you never know if the stones for your ancestors will be there later,” Jerome said.

Faughn added that one of the best pieces of advice she received is to always validate Internet information.

“The Internet is valuable and gives us access to much more information than researchers could access years ago. However, there is a much greater likelihood it may not be accurate,” she said. “It is imperative to document the sources for every piece of information you find. I have seen information printed in books for which I have documents to prove its inaccuracy. But once the error is out there, it is perpetuated by others for generations.”

She also warned against “chasing rabbits.” In other words, don’t get sidetracked when you’re researching. “Have a plan when you go to the library or courthouse or archives and stick with it,” Faughn said.

Rewards and Progress
When it comes to repositories for local genealogical information, Caldwell County ranks high among Kentucky’s counties, according to some historians and genealogists. Understandably, maintaining its treasure chest of material requires teams of both paid and volunteer genealogists.

Linda Ward is a Caldwell County genealogy assistant at the Glenn Martin Genealogy Center along with Jane VanHooser. “We both help people research their family history. We also answer questions and help search for pictures and historical facts concerning this area,” Ward said.

She also offered tips for beginning genealogists. “Don’t try to walk before you can crawl. In other words, start with what you know: yourself, your parents and grandparents and then continue working back. Remember, only to a genealogist is a step backwards considered progress,” she said.

For Faughn, progress is “when you discover a missing piece of the puzzle or when you find a photograph of your great-great grandfather or when you discover, as I did, an ancestor who has the same name as you do. Those kinds of things are adrenalin rushes for a genealogist.”

Meeting new cousins is also rewarding. “Through genealogy, I’ve met countless people who have turned out to be distant cousins I would never have met were it not for being a genealogist,” Faughn said.

Ward did offer up a caveat. She said beginning genealogists should understand information about your ancestors may not be revealed through documents. Agreeing with Faughn, she reminded, “Everything is not on the Internet, and what is there is not always correct.”

Ward also gave one final warning: “Beware. Genealogy is addictive.”

Matthew T. Patton descends from the Lamb family, one of the earliest families to settle in Caldwell County. He is a journalist living in Philadelphia and has written several books on his family and the local area.

Monday, January 4, 2010

Genealogy Query: Yearout/Stinnett

I am trying to find where Harriett Stinnett was after the 1870 census in Crittenden Co. She and her husband Wm. Stinnett had gone to the Union area to visit her brother and family (My g grandfather John Joseph Yearout) and were there during the time of the 1870 census.

I then find William back in Blount Co., TN on the 1880 census rolls, but nothing anywhere on Harriett at all in Blount Co., or Seiver Co., TN. No obits, burial records, nothing. It's like she disappeared off the face of the earth, so I thought I would try here and see if maybe she had passed away in Crittenden Co., while out here visiting g. grandfather, and maybe was buried out here.

If any one might have any info where I might start to look I would really appreciate it. This has become a big "thick brick wall" for me. My e-mail is

Thank you in advance for your help.
Martha Stokes

Sunday, January 3, 2010

Waiting for 3G

By Adam Shull (

Having an iPhone and not having 3G service for it is like having a Ferrari but not the keys.

At least that’s how Alex Roman of Paducah feels.

“You can still do all the same stuff on your phone but with the 3G it’s so much better,” Roman said.

But iPhone users, and other AT&T customers, in Paducah will have to wait a little longer for 3G to come around.

Paducah and the surrounding area does not receive 3G service from AT&T and won’t until sometime in 2010, according to Cathy Lewandowski, AT&T spokeswoman.

“We plan to launch 3G in Paducah in 2010,” Lewandowski wrote in an e-mail. “We’ve been working for several years to bring 3G to our customers in Paducah.”

Lewandowski said she couldn’t comment on exactly when the service will be available in Paducah.

She said part of the reason it is not offered now is because of Federal Communications Commission guidelines that kicked in after the merger of Cingular and AT&T Wireless in 2005.

“We would have launched Paducah sooner, but we were required by the FCC to divest part of our spectrum, at the time of the Cingular-AT&T Wireless merger, and we did not have enough spectrum remaining to launch 3G even though Paducah was high on our priority list.”

Cell phone companies pay for rights to use the finite spectrum of wireless frequencies, and the FCC regulates how much of the spectrum companies own as part of anti-trust laws.

The 3G service from AT&T is available in most major cities, and as close to Paducah as Hopkinsville, Madisonville and Cape Girardeau, Mo.

It takes its name from being a third generation telecommunications service. It allows people to download and upload photos and video via the Internet with their mobile phones at speeds consistent with a cable modem. It also uses a larger network of cell phone towers to prevent dropped calls and enhance the voice quality during calls.

Verizon Wireless began offering 3G service in Paducah in November 2007, according to Michelle Gilbert, Verizon Wireless spokesperson.

But the iPhone, created by Apple, is only offered on the AT&T network. The phone revolutionized the way people access the Internet and share multimedia data with phones, which is what drew Roman to the iPhone.

“I bought my first (iPhone) in early 2008,” Roman said. “I work at Regions Bank and use the mobile banking where I can go online (on the phone) and check my balance and send e-mails.”

Roman can access the phone’s functions without 3G, just at much slower speeds.

“Speed is the biggest issue,” Roman said. “When you go to Nashville (Tenn.) or Atlanta, which have 3G, the Internet works so much faster. It’s so much nicer.”

Some iPhone users in the area are particularly irked since their phones, costing between $100 and $300, are marketed to take advantage of Web applications and Internet browsing, functions that require longer download times if not operated on a 3G service. One iPhone model even carries the 3G title in its name, the newer Apple iPhone 3GS.

Matthew T. Patton wouldn’t have an iPhone without 3G service.

Patton, who lives in Philadelphia, visits family in Crittenden and Lyon counties.

“I travel home to Kentucky to visit my family several times a year,” Patton wrote in a message on Facebook.

“The lack of 3G service (on his iPhone) is incredibly frustrating when I’m there. It’s nearly impossible to conduct any type of data transaction like sending an e-mail or uploading a photo to Facebook.”

“Certainly, if I moved back to Kentucky, I think it would be impossible to have an iPhone since I’m so used to using it with a 3G network.”

The good news for Patton and local AT&T customers is that 3G is coming sometime in the next 365 days.

Lewandowski said AT&T will also either upgrade or install new equipment in the Fremont area and just southwest of Lovelaceville in 2010 to enhance cell phone coverage.

Contact Adam Shull, a Paducah Sun staff writer, at 270-575-8653.

(Source: The Paducah Sun, Jan. 2, 2010. Photo by John Wright. Used with permission).