Maysville Kentucky Blog

The Maysville Kentucky Blog is your guide to the beautiful and historic small town of Maysville Kentucky, snuggled into the rolling hills along the Ohio River. Though this blog has been discontinued, you can get your Maysville Kentucky fix over at Ken Downing's Mason County Kentucky Blog @

Sunday, December 03, 2006

Arduous Journeys

Ken Downing said...
The trip down the river from Wheeling took 30 to 40 days and could only be done in the spring or fall. Winter the river froze and summer it was too shallow in many places for the flatboats to float. Then there was the Indians on the north side of the river. A constant threat.

On our trip to Washington D.C., we stopped in one place along I-68 in Maryland called "Sideling Hill". It was part of the original US 40 that way back in the 1700s formed part of the National Road. Still, as late as 1930, it was considered a dangerous crossing. To get across just this area you had to cross five mountains in just 40 miles. According to the markers put up, many stagecoaches fell off the side of the mountain, killing the passengers. And that's just one part of the trip. The entire journey from the civilized East coast to the frontier lands of Kentucky was not something you'd likely forget.

The frozen river mentioned reminded me that I had this picture bookmarked:

Doesn't that look like fun? The caption reads: "Despite warnings from police that rescue would be almost impossible, strollers get fish eye view as they walk across the ice on the Ohio River." The picture was taken January 19, 1977 in Cincinnati.

In response to our article The Thank God I Made It Town.


Jeremy said...

That's crazy cold! I end up wearing five layers of clothing anytime the temperature drops to 30. I think I'd be heading south for the winter if it got like that again.

5:19 PM
Ken Downing said...

The coldest winters on record.

The winters 1976-77 and 1977-78 were the two coldest winters recorded in Ohio. The winter 1976-77 was the colder of the two winters and January 1977 was the coldest month known in Ohio. Average temperatures during December 1976 were about 7 degrees below average. January 1977 was the coldest month with a statewide average temperature of 11.9 degrees, 17 degrees below normal. Temperatures remained below freezing through the entire month in northern Ohio. The impacts of the cold were intensified by snowfall that was twice the average and a blizzard at the end of January. The cold peaked on January 17 th with lows of 25 below zero at Danville and Milford and at Cincinnati where a new cold record was set. Cars would not start, some water pipes were frozen, and furnaces malfunctioned. Shortages of natural gas caused some businesses, industries, and government offices to close or curtail their hours of operation. Extreme cold continued into the first half of February with temperatures falling to 20 below at some locations. Temperatures of 60 by the end of February brought an end to this extraordinary winter.

6:34 AM

Post a Comment

« Home