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 @ http://masoncountyky.blogspot.com

Tuesday, February 28, 2006

Black History Month: John Rankin

 
John Rankin Portrait
From Wikipedia: John Rankin (1793 - 1886) was a Presbyterian minister, educator and abolitionist. Upon moving to Ripley, Ohio in 1822, he became known as one of Ohio's first and most active "conductors" on the Underground Railroad. Prominent pre-Civil War abolitionists William Lloyd Garrison, Henry Ward Beecher and Harriet Beecher Stowe were influenced by Rankin's writings and work in the anti-slavery movement.

Early in his time in Ripley, Rankin learned that his brother Thomas, a merchant in Augusta County, Virginia, had purchased slaves. He was provoked to write a series of anti-slavery letters to his brother that were published by the editor of the local Ripley newspaper The Castigator. When the letters were published in book form in 1826 as Letters on Slavery, they provided one of the first clearly articulated anti-slavery views printed west of the Appalachians. Thomas Rankin, convinced by his brother's words, moved to Ohio in 1827 and freed his slaves. By the 1830s, Letters on Slavery had become standard reading for abolitionists all over the United States. In 1832, William Lloyd Garrison printed them in his anti-slavery newspaper, The Liberator. Garrison later called Rankin his "anti-slavery father," saying that "his book on slavery was the cause of my entering the anti-slavery conflict."

John Rankin's Book, Letters on Slavery (click to read online version)

Rankin's home, high on a hill overlooking the Ohio River, was the escaped slave's first stop in free territory and one of the most famous of the Underground Railroad stations. The home is a National Historic Landmark, open to the public today.

Monday, February 27, 2006

Black History Month: John P. Parker


Photograph of the John P. Parker House, dated May 1910

John Parker (1827-1900) was a free African-American inventor who served as a conductor on the Underground Railroad. Most of what is known about him comes from his autobiography entitled His Promised Land.

According to the autobiography, Parker's father was a wealthy white man and his mother was a slave like him. In 1845, at the age of eighteen, he purchased his freedom. In 1848, he married his wife and the next year they moved to nearby Ripley, Ohio.

The Duke University web site writes:

It was in Ripley, a hotbed of abolitionist activity, that his work on the Underground Railroad began and flourished. By his own count, he helped over 400 slaves to freedom. By day, however, Parker was a successful businessman; in 1865 he purchased an iron foundry, and he patented several popular inventions.

To find out more about John P. Parker, read the excerpts from His Promised Land and visit the John P. Parker Historical Society

Sunday, February 26, 2006

Black History Month: Harriet Beecher Stowe

 
(1852) was one of the most influential books of its time and was the first major American novel to have an African-American as its hero. Written by , the novel became a best seller in 1852 and created a surge in anti-slavery sentiment. According to the Washington Kentucky web site, President Lincoln once met the author and remarked, "So this is the little lady who started the big war."

When Harriet Beecher Stowe was a young teacher in Cincinnati, Colonel Marshall Key of Washington Kentucky sent his daughter to study at her school. In 1833 Miss Beecher went to visit the Key family at their home in Old Washington. It was there that one day Mr. Key invited Harriet to visit the nearby slave auction at the Washington Courthouse.

According to the Washington Kentucky web site, "She was much distressed and this vivid scene so impressed Harriet Beecher that she never forgot it, and twenty-odd years later she wrote her book, 'Uncle Tom's Cabin.' She received the inspiration for her characters, 'Uncle Tom' and a 'Topsy,' on this visit. Topsy's real name was Jane who later married Isham Anderson. Aunt Jane and Uncle Isham lived in a little frame house on the corner of William and Green here in Washington."

Today, the Marshall Key House is the Harriet Beecher Stowe, Slavery to Freedom Museum, open all Festivals and most Saturdays 12-4, Sundays 1-4.

Saturday, February 25, 2006

Black History Month: New Road Honors Rosa Parks

The Ledger Independent recently reported that a new road that is being built near Meadowview Regional Medical Center will be named "Rosa Parks Drive" in honor of the woman that the U.S. Congress has dubbed the "Mother of the Modern-Day Civil Rights Movement".

From the Wikipedia article on :

Parks is famous for her refusal on December 1, 1955 to obey a bus driver's demand that she give up her seat to a white passenger. Her subsequent arrest and trial for this act of civil disobedience ignited the Montgomery Bus Boycott, one of the largest and most successful mass movements against racial segregation in history, and launched Martin Luther King, Jr., one of the organizers of the boycott, to the forefront of the civil rights movement. Her role in American history earned her an iconic status in American culture, and her actions have left an enduring legacy for civil rights movements worldwide.

The idea for naming the road after Rosa Parks came from Isaac Jones, a local resident, who approached city commissioners at the February meeting to suggest naming a street after Parks. According to the Ledger, Jones said, "I wanted to do this because she was a great inspiration to Americans. She started one of the strongest movements in our country."

Rosa Parks passed away in October of last year.

Friday, February 24, 2006

Black History Month: Slavery a Heated Topic

In the autobiography of John Gregg Fee (1816-1901), Fee recounts an anti-slavery meeting that was being held in nearby Lewis County on July 4, 1846. The meeting was held to ensure that no slave owners had the ability to vote. Accompanying the invitations was a letter that read, "The anti-slavery sentiment of the community will soon be embodied, and it will be made known that no man, Whig or Democrat, can have their votes who is a practical slaveholder, or an apologist for slavery."

According to Fee's biography, "this stirred the slave power, especially in Mason County, the adjoining county. An article appeared in the Maysville Eagle, which in some respects misrepresented the statement of the former, by saying: 'This is as rank Abolitionism as was ever uttered by Birney or Tappan. No slaveholder is hereafter to receive the votes of these simon-pure liberty men; and they who dare to apologize for the institutions of our country are thus denounced and proscribed, and this is heralded forth as the sentiments of Lewis County.'"

In essence, the Maysville Eagle denounced abolitionists and nearby Lewis County as being ran by abolitionists. On one hand, anti-slavery supporters were calling for slave owner votes to go uncounted, and on the other hand the Eagle was calling for abolitionist votes to be uncounted.

People who were to gather at the meeting in Lewis County were met with "threats of violence" including the destruction of their homes. Fee himself was shot at, at one point, and not many showed up at the meeting because, as Fee said, they were "afraid to be seen listening to me in public audiences."

Dismayed at the small turn out, Fee decided to write an anti-slavery handbook, have it printed, and distribute it to door-to-door. He chose to have it printed in Maysville, Kentucky, but, Fee wrote, "a man of wealth and influence in that city wrote to me a letter, saying that if I should come to that city and attempt to publish an anti-slavery book he would head a band of sixty men, ride me on a rail and duck me in the Ohio river."

The Autobiography of John G. Fee can be found here.

Thursday, February 23, 2006

Black History Month: Rev. Elisha W. Green

 
Portrait of Elisha W. Green from his autobiography 
Elisha Winfield Green fought for human rights and equality throughout his life, eventually buying his freedom in the 1840’s. Green founded Bethel Baptist Church in 1845. In his biography, Green wrote, “I believe that the stain of slavery and its degrading impressions will long linger in the minds of generations yet unborn.”

According to the subtitle of his biography, Rev. Elisha W. Green was one of the Founders of the Kentucky Normal and Theological Institute, now the State University at Louisville. He was also the moderator of the Mt. Zion Baptist Association for eleven years and spent five years as moderator Consolidated Baptist Educational Association. For over thirty years he was Pastor of the Colored Baptist Churches of Maysville and Paris.

His autobiography was published in 1888 by The Republican Printing Office in Maysville Kentucky. The full text of that autobiography is available online here.

Wednesday, February 22, 2006

Cabin Fever Arts Festival

Got Cabin Fever? Here's a cure. This Saturday, there will be a Cabin Fever Arts Festival at the Appalachian Gateway Center on the south campus of Southern State Community College in nearby Sardinia, Ohio (12681 US Route 62, Sardinia, OH 45171).

This is the perfect event for the individual or family looking for a great excuse to get out of the house. The festival will feature the presentation and sale of fine arts and crafts from members of the Appalachian Artisans Guild and several juried guest artists. Stained glass, wood furniture, Shaker boxes, wooden toys, watercolors, ceramics and lavender gifts are just a few of the creative pieces that will be available from over 25 artists. The festival will feature several local musicians playing live, traditional music. A new menu of tasty Appalachian style food will be available throughout the day. In addition, door prizes, donated by the artist participants, will be awarded! Admission is free and donations are welcomed.

Saturday, February 25, 2006 10:00 am - 5:00 pm. Call 937-587-2394 or 937-603-3128 for more details.

Tuesday, February 21, 2006

Audio Americana Web Cast

Audio Americana is the American roots music band based on the traditions of country with a little rock and roll, folk, and bluegrass mixed in. It's not only an American band, but they have a distinctly Kentucky sound as well.

They recently played a show at Maysville's own O'Rourkes pub in downtown Maysville. Missed it? Not a problem. The Ledger Independent is providing a free web cast of the show over at their site. (Near the bottom)

Catch the Audio Americana web cast.

Monday, February 20, 2006

Bill to Ban Internet Hunting in Kentucky

Well, it seems sort of topical, arriving on the heels of a national awareness of the dangers in hunting with the recent accident involving Vice President Cheney, and it has to do with Kentucky, and it has to do with Internet technology. All wrapped together, how could a Maysville Kentucky Blog skip comment?

The technology side of it involves using the Internet and robotics to allow someone to "hunt" via computer. The idea originated from a company in Texas that, although it doesn't involve live game yet, more or less let's people anywhere fire a real rifle at targets on their Texas gun range. This includes residents of Kentucky.

The new bill in Kentucky's General Assembly would ban such computer-aided hunting before it ever gets started in the bluegrass state.

Most of the criticism for the operation comes from sportsmen's groups who feel that the experience isn't really sporting at all and is more like a video game than actual hunting. Other criticism comes from those who are skeptical that a system that fires real bullets from an Internet controlled device can be safe, and that it may have serious safety concerns.

I'd have to agree with them (it should be noted that I don't hunt). Still, how cool is the tech? Is it real or is it virtual? Actually, it's sort of both if you think about it and I'm having fantasies of less violent applications like Internet-remote-controlled mini-submarines. That would be neat.

Full Story

Sunday, February 19, 2006

Maysville Kentucky Photograph, Early 1930s

This photograph is of Maysville in Mason County, Kentucky, most likely during the early 1930s.

The caption reads, "Maysville (then known as 'Limestone') the pioneer port of entry to Kentucky. A highway bridge, now being built across the Ohio River here, is to be named 'Simon Kenton Memorial Bridge' if a request made by the D.A.R. prevails."

Saturday, February 18, 2006

Ripley Photo History Coming to Barnes and Noble

Thanks to the efforts of the Ripley, Ohio couple Greg and Lisa Haitz, we can expect a photo history book of Ripley and the surrounding areas to hit shelves at Barnes and Noble sometime later this year, hopefully by Christmas. The enterprising couple signed a deal with Arcadia Books, a publisher of more than 1,200 books on various histories of communities across the United States.

According to the Ledger Independent, "the book will display old photos with captions under each, describing the event, building or person portrayed in the picture."

More on the book and its collaborators can be found in this article. There's definitely some interesting stories to be found in this book it seems. We can't wait until it hits the shelf.

Friday, February 17, 2006

Winchester Bryon Rudy: 1840-1960

Winchester Bryon Rudy was born March 27, 1840 in Maysville, Mason County, Kentucky. He enlisted in Company "C" of the 16th Kentucky Volunteer Infantry on August 10, 1861 and served in the army until January 27, 1865 when he was discharged. The 16th Kentucky Volunteer regiment was mustered-into U.S. service on January 27, 1862. In January 1864 Rudy was reassigned to the 13th Kentucky, 23rd Army Corps for which he served in a Division headquarters position until his discharge. He then returned to Maysville where he lived until his death on February 27, 1920. He is buried in the Maysville and Mason County Cemetery.

From October 17, 1861 until June 17, 1864, Sgt. Rudy maintained a daily diary which is now in the possession of his great grandson, Harry T. Voige. It traces his travels from Maysville through eastern and central Kentucky, to eastern Tennessee, and then to northern Georgia. Sample entries from that diary have been donated to the University of Kentucky and scanned versions can be found at the following link:

Winchester Byron Rudy Civil War Diary
October 17, 1861 - June 17, 1864

Thursday, February 16, 2006

A Haunted Weekend at Blue Licks State Park

This weekend there will be a nifty little paranormal investigation of the battlefields of Blue Licks State Park in Kentucky near Mount Olivet. The Battle of Blue Licks happened on August 19, 1782, ten months after Cornwallis had surrendered at Yorktown. This bloody frontier encounter is usually noted as the last combat of any size of the Revolutionary War. This weekend, ghost hunters are invited to come out and look for evidence of ghosts and spirits, with an emphasis on catching these ghosts on camera.

Paranormal Investigator Denita Ross will be leading the expedition with other guest speakers, including Starr Chaney who is known internationally for her work with the paranormal.

Both skeptics and believers alike are invited to attend. Contact Paul Tierney 859-289-5507 for more information and you can also check out this Ledger Independent article.

Also on the web is an article from Paranormal Magazine about paranormal events in Maysville, Kentucky.

From the article:

If you ever find yourself in the small town of Maysville Kentucky, nestled along the Ohio River in northern Kentucky, keep your eyes out for otherworldly visitors. Whether you're looking for UFOs, ghosts, or Bigfoot, this town of 10,000 people has seen it all.

The article goes on to describe specific sightings of ghosts, UFOs, and Bigfoot in the area. Definitely an interesting read. Full Article

Wednesday, February 15, 2006

Civil War Round Table Meeting

The second installment of the Civil War Round Table will meet at the Homefront Cafe, 34 W. 2nd St., Maysville. This month's subject: The Union's Overall Military Strategies for Winning the 'War' with the Confederates. The guest speaker will be Ernie Parnell and the meeting is always free and open to the public. 6:30 pm to 8 pm. For more information, contact the Homefront Cafe at 606 563-1009 or www.homefrontcafe.com

Tuesday, February 14, 2006

Happy Valentine's Day! 1861 Harper's Weekly

Civil War Harper's Weekly, February 16, 1861

 

The February 16, 1861 edition of Harper's Weekly featured a vast array of news on Fort Sumter, and information related to the opening days of the Civil war.

Be sure to stop into the Homefront Cafe on Second Street today and pick up their special Valentine's Newsletter that contains poetry, history, and traditions of this special day. It also contains some love coupons that you can give as a gift to your special someone.

Monday, February 13, 2006

Maysville Kentucky & the Railroad

Maysville has the fortunate position of not only being located on one of the nation's major waterways, but also on the rail service. This has played an important role in Maysville history as a center for traffic throughout the region. Its position along the Ohio River and the railroad is probably the leading cause for settlement in the area. The railroad is just as important today as the Maysville Depot is an active stop for those touring the United States by rail.

Here's a look at Maysville's Railroad history:


The Old C&O Depot, Maysville. Before being used as a depot, it was the C. B. Pearce home. Acquired for the depot on June 22, 1887.


C & O Passenger Train in Maysville.


The New C & O Depot, Maysville, circa 1930. This became the depot on October 16, 1918.


Louisville and Nashville Depot, Maysville. Currently the Maysville Police Department.


President Eisenhower's Funeral Train passes thru Maysville, April 1, 1968.

Sunday, February 12, 2006

Special Thanks: We've Been Waterblogged

We love feedback. Today, a special thanks goes out to the writers over at Waterblogged, the OhioBoating.net blog that aims to "discover the people and towns and marinas and harbors and industry that make our region sing and provide Ohio River boaters with hundreds of destinations and activities." While it's probably not exactly boating season right now, we encourage everyone to pop over there when things get warmer, especially if you have plans to explore the river by boat.

Here's what they had to say about us:

"We always like to direct your attention to new docks and marinas along the Ohio River, thus we are pleased to refer you to Jeremy Parnell's Maysville Kentucky Blog's report on Ripley,Ohio, and, if you're like us, you'll be inclined to stay and browse awhile. Mr. Parnell does a mighty fine job covering his neck of the woods and more."

Thanks folks! If you find yourself in Maysville, I owe you a cup of coffee : )

Saturday, February 11, 2006

Ohio River Valley Artists Guild Lecture Series

The Ohio River Valley Artists Guild will be having an Art Smart Lecture series beginning Sunday, February 12th at 2 pm at their 504 Duke of York Street, Washington location. Admission is free and open to the public. The first guest speaker will be Marlene Steele, an artist who teaches in Cincinnati and has been an instructor with Art Academy of Cincinnati Community Education Program. Classes include watercolor landscape in the parks, beginning figure drawing, the figure in watercolor, the calligraphy foundation series and colored pencil. More Info at The Ledger Independent

Friday, February 10, 2006

Mah Old Kentucky Home

When the autumn leaves are droppin',
     An' the fros' fall every mawn;
When the punkins am a-ripenin'
     'Mid the scattered shocks of cawn,
Then mah tho's they go a-stealin',
     No mattah twha ah roam,
To the hills of old Kentucky,
     An' mah old Kentucky home.

When the days grow melancholy,
     An' the spirit's ebb is low;
When the burdens of this living,
     Seem heavier to grow,
Then mah mind turns back in fancy
     To the fields ah used to roam -
Turns back to old Kentucky,
     An' mah old Kentucky home,

When this weary strife is ended,
     An' life's struggles almost past;
When this weary body's ready
     To lay down its load at last,
May ah once more turn mah footsteps
     To paths ah used to roam,
And lay me down to slumber
     In mah old Kentucky home.

- Anonymous
From All that's Kentucky : An Anthology
edited by Josiah Henry Combs, 1886-1960

Thursday, February 09, 2006

Kentucky Author: Garry Barker

Garry Barker is a local Kentucky writer who has written several acclaimed books about Appalachian culture. From his web site, a must read:

Kentucky author Garry Barker was born in Otway, Ohio, in 1943, grew up in Elliott and Fleming Counties of Kentucky, graduated from Berea College and has worked since 1965 as an arts administrator and writer.

He recently retired as University Editor at Morehead State University and lives at Bald Hill in Fleming County.

Barker is the author of 9 published books and of “Head of the Holler,” a newspaper column that has run in regional newspapers since 1988. This site is columns, fun or fanciful, angry or sentimental, always concise and clear and related to rural Kentucky.

As a writer of fiction, poetry, history, essay, and humor, Garry Barker has earned much recognition and numerous awards, most recently the Kentucky Arts Council, a $1,000 Professional Development award.

His University of Tennessee Press books are The Handcraft Revival in Southern Appalachia, 1930-1990, and Notes From A Native Son: Essays On The Appalachian Experience.

He is currently collecting information for a new book about Elliott County, Ky., and putting together a new short story collection.

What critics say about Garry Barker:

"Rural life is a wonder of small and large events that would maybe seem strange to urban dwellers, and it is the unique country lifestyle, or the 'country' life, that occupies the pen of Garry Barker. His humorous conflicts with mice, hounds, briars and vines, underbrush, snakes, and things that go bump in the night and day have been a staple of his words for years."

To order books by Garry Barker, click here. To read his "Head of the Holler" column, click here.

Wednesday, February 08, 2006

Simon Kenton Family Bible

Simon Kenton, who lived April 3, 1755 - April 29, 1836, was a famous United States frontiersman and friend of Daniel Boone. He was also a prominent figure in local history which earned him memorials in the Simon Kenton Bridge and the Annual Simon Kenton Festival in Old Washington Kentucky. He is particularly remembered by his descendents who keep his memory alive through geneaology.

Part of the collection of historical artifacts owned by his descendents include the Simon Kenton Family Bible. Family Bibles have traditionally been handed down through generations as family heirlooms. They often contain important family records such as births, marriages, and deaths. A great deal of modern geneaology research either begins or ends with these bibles, depending on how well they were kept up. Below are excerpts from the Simon Kenton Family Bible:

Tuesday, February 07, 2006

Comedy Caravan at The French Quarter Inn

The French Quarter Inn and Tippedore's Restaurant will be hosting the Comedy Caravan on February 11th beginning with dinner at 6:30 pm. The show starts at 8:30 pm. Featured comedians are Bob Batch and John Richardson.

From Bob Batch's bio at ComediansUSA.com:

Bob Batch makes people laugh He can't help it. While working on his communications degree, at the University of Louisville, he had to read a newscast and be critiqued by his classmates. The entire class broke out laughing and the professor told him that he was a brilliant comedian. "I was trying to read straight news." He soon was telling jokes at colleges from Harvard & M.I.T. to U.C.L.A. As well as Casino's in Atlantic City, Tahoe & The Bahamas. Ray Charles, Blood Sweat & Tears, Chicago, Stanley Jordan, The Oak Ridge Boys, REO Speedwagon and Ann Murray are among the diverse musical acts that have chosen Bob to share the concert stage with them.

Although Bob is a southern corn c his style was developed in the fast paced clubs of Boston. He says crazy things the: make sense. His T.V. credits include the Today Show on NBC, Good Morning America, Showtime Comedy Club Network, A&E's Comedy on the Road and America's Funnies: People.

When he first started touring the comedy clubs he was asked to do a show at a conference of the governors of the Fifty United States. He has been busy ever since cracking up State Legislatures, NBA Teams, National Conventions, Professional Associations, Trade Unions and every imaginable group of people that can be sat together.

From John Richardson's bio at the Comedy Soap Box:

In just a few short years Big John's comedy career has taken him from an open mic to appearances at some of the finest comedy clubs in the country. The Stardome in Birmingham Alabama, The Improv in Cleveland Ohio, The Punchline in Atlanta Georgia to name just a few.

Mixing social commentary and stories from his own life, John has developed a unique perspective with a delivery that is best described as "Cosbyesque". With the slogan "Clean Comedy for Dirty Minds", because he does not believe comedy needs to be bleeped, a huge stage presence and unique ability to befriend audiences make him a favorite wherever he performs.

Big John has appeared on the FOX Network, WB Televison, the nationally syndicated Bob & Tom radio show. Big John will soon be appearing on the new Sprint Comedy Network.

A Seafood Buffet will also be served. Reservations are requested. More information can be obtained by calling (606) 564-8000.

Monday, February 06, 2006

Art Exhibit Honors Black History Month

The 12th Annual African American Art Exhibition in Louisville celebrates Black History month by displaying artwork from African Americans throughout the state of Kentucky. While it may be a bit of a drive for those in the Maysville area, it is certainly worth the trip. Our own Sha-Reese Cunningham of Maysville Kentucky will be displaying some of her work there.

Sha-Reese's paintings are Afro-centric, Judeo-Christian in theme. For example, her painting "Touch of Faith" which depicts a woman touching the foot of Jesus. The painting is remarkable in that it focuses on the woman's devotion to Jesus rather than on Jesus Himself. Jesus is only hinted at in the painting through a clever use of light reflecting off the ground.

From Sha-Reese's bio at Art-Exchange:

I’m a 36 yr. old Wife of a Loving Husband and Mother of two Precious People. I’m a Born-Again, Lord Loving Woman of God who acknowledges and actively pursues God’s Presence in my Life. I recall reading somewhere that “Our Talents are Gifts from God, What we do with that Talent is our Gift to God”. I’ve chosen to give back what he has so lovingly given to me and I pray that all I do glorifies Him.

I completed my first paintings in the spring of 2001 afterwards I joined the Ohio River Valley Artists Guild. I enrolled in Maysville Community College in August of 2001 and completed 1 year during which I was blessed to be able to refine and polish my approach to the creation of art under the direction of Jeanette Dickinson.

During and since that time I’ve exhibited in every available local venue including the Mason County Museum, the juried, Art Riverwalk Show and as a member of the local Art Guild I have participated in shows for our school system. I’ve also shown work through Cultural Art Expressions Gallery in Lexington, KY.

I reviewed the Art in Healing show for Maysville Community College. The review was published in the Ledger Independent Newspaper. Also, I was featured in The Ledger as a special report for Black History Month.

Currently I’m working diligently on some commissioned works, which will be displayed, at various shows late Spring, early Summer 2004.

As an emerging artist I’m looking forward to walking the path that has been laid before me and when necessary cutting a path as God grants me wisdom. And, because of him who is able to do exceedingly and abundantly above all we can ask or think, I feel assured that the best is yet to come!

The exhibit will continue through Febuary 25th.

Full Story

Sunday, February 05, 2006

Two Friends Share an Inspirational Lifetime

A sad and also heart-warming story comes to us from the Cincinnati Post about two local women who shared a lifetime of friendship that lasted even unto death, and perhaps beyond. Both Hilda Stewart Brown and Ann Kirk Burnette, lifelong friends, passed away recently.

The Post writes:

"They were friends throughout their long lives, playing together as children, staying in touch when circumstances separated them and renewing their friendship in their later years."

Remarkably, both women passed away within a day of the other. The circumstances surrounding their passing seem to show how close they were in other ways as well. One of the ladies passed away at an extended care facility in Ripley, Ohio. The other, at a nursing center in Maysville, Kentucky, just a few miles away seemed to sense that the other had died. The day that Mrs. Burnette died, Mrs. Brown talked of an urgent need to be in Ripley, although she was not informed that her friend had passed away.

"She talked of needing to be in Ripley," said Mrs. Burnette's daughter, Glenna Fossitt of Maysville. "Just before she died, she opened her eyes and said she saw her own mother, and then she saw herself and Hilda playing as children in her mother's yard."

Neither friend even knew that the other was seriously ill, the article wrote. Although, "Mrs. Burnette, a dozen miles away from Ripley in a Maysville nursing facility, somehow sensed it."

A friendship that lasted 80 years, beginning on Second Street as children and never truly ending, even in death, obviously.

Full Story

Saturday, February 04, 2006

2006 Webby Awards: Local Web Site Awards

Recently the Maysville-Mason County Chamber of Commerce held their annual excellence awards for chamber members. Curiously, one of the categories missing was the best web site award. The closest thing they had was a Printing/Marketing category, which is not even close. This isn't surprising since web technology is still catching on in the local area, but in the greater scheme of things, it is so 1990s to not include the web. That's why the Maysville Kentucky Blog is presenting its very own 2006 Webby Awards. These are web sites in and around the local area that showed a little something extra during the 2005 year. It may be possible that we missed a site or two, but our coverage of local web sites is pretty extensive. If you feel something is missing here, please feel free to add a comment with the web site and why you feel it deserves an award.

Best Local News Web Site - Maysville-Online (Ledger Independent)
Hands down the best local news web site. Maysville-Online dominates the local news scene on the web. Many of the other web sites in town that offered news often had to resort to linking back to the Ledger Independent's web site as its source for the article. Not surprising. Maysville-Online is the original Maysville web site.

Best Local Discussion Web Site - Maysville Kentucky BBS
The Maysville Kentucky BBS site really picked up this year. While other sites were publishing information, this site allowed people to talk about what they read with others from the community, often times providing more background information about a topic than available elsewhere.

Best Business Directory - Maysville-Mason County Chamber of Commerce
The Chamber of Commerce web site has long been a great source of information about local businesses and houses the most comprehensive directory of local businesses on the web. You can waste a lot of time at other sites looking for local business information, or find what you need here in a matter of seconds.

Best Tourism Web Site - City of Maysville
No other web site offered as much information for the area in regards to what a tourist may want to see than the City of Maysville's web site. From a comprehensive calendar of events, to tour information, to Maysville history, anyone thinking about visiting the Maysville area would benefit greatly from visiting the City of Maysville web site.

Best Historical Web Site - Museum Center
Maysville Kentucky and its local areas are steeped in history. You can find that out readily enough by visiting the Museum Center in the real world. Still, if you're not from around here, what better way to learn about our community's rich history than to visit them online. Obviously they must know this because they have taken the time to provide a great deal of historical resources through their web site.

Best Non-Profit Web Site - Limestone YMCA
We are always impressed by those who take the time to use their web site to provide information to us netizens. Limestone YMCA does just that. You can find loads of great information about their programs and activities. Besides being a clean site that is easy to use, they get our "Best Non-Profit" award for sheer wealth of information.

Best Online Store - Sunflower Sundries
Surprisingly there are very few online stores in the area. That is not to say that our winner for this category wouldn't have won anyway, it's just an observation. Best online store goes to Sunflower Sundries, the local crafter of handmade soaps, jellies, and other unique items, most of which you can purchase securely from their web site. They provide truly unique gift items that now the rest of the world can enjoy as well.

Best Personal Web Site - James D. Werline
While I'd love to include my own personal web site as the winner for this category, to be fair the James D. Werline site truly takes better advantage of web publishing to promote his water color paintings far more than any other personal web site we came across.

Best Blog - Maysville Kentucky Blog
We really would like to consider other blogs for this category, but to be honest the ones we came across weren't updated regularly or weren't topically Maysville. I guess we win by default : )

Congratulations to all the winners! You make the online Maysville world a better place. 2005 was a great year for the web and Maysville's place in it.


And now, two unofficial categories that certainly merit inclusion here:

Worst Maysville Web Site - Wikipedia's Maysville Article
Considering how great Maysville is in contemporary times, and at least how important Maysville has been historically, Wikipedia's article about Maysville is horrible. To make matter's worse, anyone can contribute to the article to make it better. As of the writing of this blog post, Wikipedia's Maysville Kentucky page is sorely lacking in information, especially concerning our local history.

Who to Watch - Mason County Beat
The Mason County Beat got its start in the print world this past year offering news and commentary about the local area. They even won several awards from the Kentucky Press Association. We have the sneaky suspicion that in 2006 the Mason County Beat's web version will turn some heads.

Friday, February 03, 2006

Ripley Ohio to Get New Boat Dock

Many of the charming things about nearby Ripley Ohio comes from it being a river town, so naturally they've paid some attention to their boat ramp in recent years. New plans are underway to make the area more attractive to pleasure boaters along the Ohio River. Recently the Village Council unveiled their plans for the second phase of the existing Freedom Landing River Walk, which will include a new boat dock. The new boat dock plans to accommodate roughly two dozen boats, with expansion capabilities built in so they can dock more boats, like when they have their annual Tobacco Festival.

They also hope to attract some river boat tours in this fashion.

The entire project is expected to cost $550,000. The Village Council hopes to offset that price by selling engraved bricks to area family and businesses. These bricks will go into the construction of the project, forming the sidewalks along the river. Also available will be plaques on the back of benches for people to sit on. I might buy one of those. During the summer, I personally enjoy getting a butter pecan waffle cone from the Rockin' Robbins ice cream parlor, sitting at one of the current benches, and watching the boats on the Ohio River.

Thursday, February 02, 2006

Valentine's Day Celebrations

In honor of Valentine's Day, the Homefront Cafe on Second Street will be hosting a Romantic Valentine Dinner for Two on saturday, Feb. 11th between the hours of 6 pm and 10 pm. The menu consists of a tasty salad, choice of either delicious rosemary chicken or robust roast beef served with savory roasted vegetables, fresh homemade dinner rolls and a tempting dessert served with French press coffee or (hot or cold) tea and sparkling cider. Live music will be playing with Larry Puccini on guitar. Make your reservations by Feb. 7th as there is limited seating. Please contact the Homefront Cafe at 606.563.1009 for more information.

Also at the Homefront Cafe throughout the month of February is their special latte drink, "Love Potion #9" (reference to The Searchers song by the same name). The Love Potion #9 is steamed lowfat chocolate milk with espresso and strawberry syrup swirled throughout topped with whipped cream showered with valentine sprinkles and drizzled with chocolate syrup. I think I have a new love : )

Wednesday, February 01, 2006

Get the Word Out, Get Some Coffee

Who would ever want to write something that isn't read? Me neither : ) So, I've got a proposition for you. If you'll take the time to tell one other person about the Maysville Kentucky Blog, I'll buy you a cup of coffee. Imagine, your very own hot, aromatic, smooth cup of java. Now go outside in the cool January air and try that visualization again. Yep, it could all be yours if you just tell one other person about the Maysville Kentucky Blog.

Now doesn't that just look tasty? Come on. You know you want it. Go spread the word.