The following article by David Strange originally appeared in The Courier-Journal on 3 Jan 2012. It is archived here with additional information for your reading enjoyment.
Happy New Year everyone!
As we begin this new year of 2012, let us recall just a few of the many historical anniversaries that this special year will mark.
An obvious one is the "War of 1812". Actually lasting from 1812 to 1815, the War of 1812 was a virtual rematch between the U.S. and Great Britain. But unlike the Revolutionary War, far more fighting was done in the frontier, including Kentucky. In fact, Kentucky, including Bullitt County, lost more of its citizens in that war than any other state. The Bullitt County History Museum will be producing displays and information on this later in the year.
Another well publicized anniversary is the American Civil War. Though that war started in 1861, the most activity in Bullitt County was in 1862, when the railroad bridge in Shepherdsville was attacked three times and many skirmishes took place all over the county. Again, the Bullitt County History Museum will be presenting some information and activities on that as the year progresses. In fact, the museum already has a small display about the war in the southwest display room at the courthouse.
And then there are several smaller anniversaries that you might not be aware of.
For example, one hundred years ago, in 1912, a huge fire broke out in Lebanon Junction, destroying three dry goods stores, a drug store, a cleaners, a pool room, two houses, and the Knights of Pythias meeting hall.
Also in 1912, Saint Aloysius Catholic Church in Shepherdsville was dedicated.
Seventy-five years ago this month, the 1937 flood, the worst flood in regional recorded history, hit our region. The water level was over six feet deep at the courthouse.
Seventy years ago, in 1942, the Mount Washington Fire Department was organized.
Sixty years ago, in 1952, some of the first right-of-way was purchased in Bullitt County for construction of the Kentucky Turnpike, which later became Interstate 65. Happy Chandler won election for Governor a couple of years later in part for opposing that construction as a waste, saying that it was a road to nowhere that no one would use. Of course, that prediction did not prove entirely correct. The toll on the Kentucky Turnpike paid for the construction years ahead of schedule, becoming a vital link for Bullitt County, the state, and the nation.
Just thirty years ago, in 1982, wild turkeys (I'm not talking about government or politics here.) were first successfully introduced at Bernheim Forest. Turkeys are so common now that you might not realize that just a few decades ago they were basically non-existent in Kentucky. That Bernheim population became an important foundation stock for reintroducing turkeys throughout Kentucky. Bernheim Forest, right here in Bullitt County, continues on the national forefront of wildlife management and conservation.
And just eight short years ago, in October 2004, The Bullitt County History Museum, of which I am personally very proud, first opened its doors. Since that time, the Museum and its Volunteers have received eight state-wide awards, and numerous citations, including ones from the Kentucky Legislature and from the U.S. Congress.
You can find these anniversaries, and many more, on the museum timeline web page here.
Oh, and June 2012 will also mark the fortieth wedding anniversary for me and my wonderful wife Bonnie!
My, how time flies!
May your 2012 be a wonderful one for you. No doubt, it will be one to remember.
Copyright 2012 by David Strange, Shepherdsville KY. All rights are reserved. No part of the content of this page may be included in any format in any place without the written permission of the copyright holder.