Looking Back: Reminiscences of older times

BY BRENDA EDWARDS

Community columnist

(Editor’s note: The information contained in this article was gleaned from “Reminiscences” first published in the Kentucky Tribune” in 1846 and in the Kentucky Advocate in 1894. The writer was identified as W.E.G. The four-page-newspaper with two and half pages devoted to advertisements of former businessmen in town who were deceased with the exception of Scott McGrorty, and volunteers in the Mexican War (1846-1848.)

The “Reminiscences” column in Kentucky Tribune published in 1846 contained some interesting information on local businesses and owners, land sales, and Mexican War volunteers. The writer was identified as W.E.G. The Advocate-Messenger reprinted the column 48 years later.

The principal businessmen were:

• Druggists —  G.A. & J.M. Armstrong and D.J. Thompson; grocers, J. Weisiger Jr., Dudley & Bronston, D. Griffith, J.T. Armstrong & Jeremiah Fresh, W,R. Orear & Co. and A.W. Edwards;

• Dry goods and notions — A.S. McGrorty & Barbour J. & J.D. Yeiser, Southern & McDowell, R.Shields, Thomas B. Read & Thomas B. Nichols; Firm; D.A. Russell, W.M. Fields, S.W. Warren, J.&T. W. Gore, C. Bloomindale, David Bell, Speed Fry & Richard Russell, Davidge & Caldwell; and William Richards & Company;

• Confectioneries, whiskey, etc.—  Friderici & Craig, F. Ripperdan Jr.; Boots & shoes, W.F. Marvin, James Bentley and F.P. Whitcher; stone cutting, C.L. Crow.

• Watches, clocks and dentist —  Samuel Ayers; watches and clocks; Frederick Yeiser and George Nichols; Stoves and tinware, George W. Collins & Co.; Tanyard, Charles Yeiser; and Livery stable, H.S. Frisby & John Dunks.

President John C. Young of Centre College also advertised for a lost cow, described as a “small, light, red and white, with crumpled horn, and white along her back.”

M.G. Younce and William Batterton, executors for Michael Hope and Benjamin Prall, deceased, advertised 4,500 acres of knob land, 7 miles southwest of Danville.

Timothy Burgess advertised 480 acres of land in Lincoln County, 6 miles from Danville and 5 miles from Stanford, adjoining Evan Shelby on the east.

Volunteers head to Mexico

Two columns in the Tribune contain the official dispatcher news from General Taylor from “the seat of war on the Rio Grande.”

A.S. McGrorty also reported that war in England was inevitable, therefore, anticipating in that event not be among those who will remain in “masterly inactivity” at home, he hopes all indebted to him will immediately call and settle the same.

A meeting of citizens in Boyle County was held May 21, 1846, in the courthouse to raise money for equipping a local volunteer company. C.H. Rochester organized and chaired the session, with Jno. R. Ford and Thomas B. Nichols, vice presidents, and V.H. Smith, secretary.

The group voted to raise subscription funds sufficient to uniform and equip a local volunteers to go to war whenever called on.

S.F. Southern, Thomas Cotton, J.T. Coyle, C. Gore, O. Garrett and James Hopkins were on the solicitation committee.

Depart for Louisville

At the Adjutant General’s order, the volunteers departed a few days later to Louisville. A large crowd of local citizens assembled to bid the volunteers farewell and to see them leave.

About 9 a.m. the encampment broke up, sufficient time given the soldiers to bid farewell to relatives and friends, when they were formed and headed by the Danville Amateur Band took up the line of march. The departure was a stirring and affecting scene.

Charles Caldwell hosted a dinner prepared to a large number of people and they left for Harrodsburg where they were received by the volunteers from there and escorted into town.

Later, the Harrodsburg and Danville companies departed for Munday’s Landing and camped for the night.

The next morning the volunteers left on the steamer Kentucky and headed to Louisville.

Lincoln, Garrard follow

Captain Daugherty’s companies from Lincoln County followed the next day and were entertained with a dinner by Danville residents.

“The company is quite large, and seems to be as daring and gallant a set of men as ever shouldered a musket. Old Lincoln will be represented in the ‘Halls of the Montezuma’s.’”

Captain Price and his mounted volunteers, and volunteers from other counties in southern Kentucky also came through Danville to go to Louisville.