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JIM: News from 100 years ago June 1911: James Garnett wins

A century ago there were glory days for Adair County in state politics, with Mr. James Garnett winning the Democratic nomination for Attorney General. The West Side of the Square was a "Happening Place." And flood relocation was underway in Gradyville, four years after the Gradyville Flood of 1907

By "Jim"
The likeness of Adair County native James Garnett the younger (1871-1939) appeared on the front page of the News 100 years ago this week. He was one of two Democratic candidates for Attorney General of Kentucky, and with the primary election looming (it was to be held on Saturday, July 1st) the News pulled out all the stops to push Mr. Garnett's candidacy. The lengthy cutline for the photograph stated, in part,

Kentucky has never presented a worthier or more competent man for this important position he seeks. We must nominate and elect him, but to do this we must vote next Saturday. Home pride ought to stir every Democrat in this all this section and Adair and adjoining counties should give him the strongest endorsement possible. Give Mr. Garnett your vote, and you will never have cause for regret.

Elsewhere on the front page it was noted that "Every Democrat in Adair is for Garnett...," and when the smoke cleared that Saturday a century ago, the prognostication proved very nearly accurate. An overwhelming majority of the Adair County Democrats turned out to vote, and the final tally on the home front stood at 1,018 ballots for Mr. Garnett and 14 for his opponent, Mr. Pollard. "With a little help from his friends," Mr. Garnett won the statewide nomination for Attorney General.

Meanwhile, the folks at the Columbia post office reported a busy May, having handled some 116,000 pieces of mail. Of that, over 70,000 pieces were first class; there were almost 19,000 newspapers outgoing from the post office; and there were over 2,000 pieces of Congressionally franked mail that passed through the doors of the post off. Of the latter, the vast majority was correspondence to and from veterans of the Civil War (and a few of the Spanish-American War) veterans concerning applications for, continuances of, and requests for increases in pensions.

The west corner of the Square in Columbia was a happening place. The Messrs. Sims were busy putting up the walls both of the Paull Drug Company store house and the Sinclair & Dillon business house, the two structures being adjacent. (These building are now 130 and 132 Public Square.)

Up at the Graded School grounds, Yates & Jessee had drilled for water and hit a fine stream at a hundred and one and a half feet. The News commented that this would "prove valuable to the school," then added this (now) puzzling bit of information: "The Board of Trustees are not all deep water people but all believe in the purity of the fluid used. They have now provided as pure supply of water as earth affords." (One must wonder if any of the Trustees ever ran on the Shallow Water ticket.)

Four deaths were reported on the front page of this edition, the saddest by far being that of 20-year-old Miss Artilia Coffey, who, had long been in a low state of health, being a victim of pulmonary trouble (a euphemism for tuberculosis). In the week prior to Miss Coffey's passing, "She realized her condition, and waited patiently for the summons." (She was one of 16 Adair County females between the ages of 16 and 25 whose deaths were recorded that year.)

Mont Kearnes had appeared before Judge Moss, charged on four or five different warrants with disturbing lawful assemblies, "and when the cases were called, he confessed judgement in each case." Judge Moss lightened Mr. Kearnes' wallet to the tune of a ninety-five dollar fine and gave him twenty days lodging in the county bastille.

The Gradyville correspondent reported that Messrs. Pemberton and Combs of Horse Cave had recently been in town, "looking after moving the dwelling houses that are so close to the creek." He then added, "We take it that our people have come to a wise conclusion in this matter. The time to prepare for the enemy is in time of peace."

From Cyclone came the news that the Cundiff Bros. had sold their 1910 dark tobacco crop to R.L. Faulkner, and that "The singing at Pigg Tail last Sunday was largely attended and enjoyed." The Ozark reporter informed readers that the Russell Springs baseball team traveled to Adair County to cross bats with the boys from Ozark, the latter winning the quite exciting game 9-8.

This story was posted on 2011-06-26 07:26:36
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