February 17, 2014
Editor’s Note: An email error prevented last week’s Logan County community column from appearing in Friday’s edition of the News-Democrat & Leader.
Hello friends all over Logan County. It seems that where ever I go people from Logan County recognize me. Guess I had better not do anything bad. Last week I was in Bowling Green, Springfield and in Nashville attending the movies and ran into folks in each of those towns that are from Logan County. Last year I was in New York City and a lady on the Staten Island Ferry called out and asked if I was Dick Dickerson from Logan County, Kentucky. I guess I am going to have to loose another 50 lbs. before they quit recognizing me. I thought about telling them, no, that I was OJ Stapleton, the editor of the News Democrat Ledger. That would really confuse them!
I run into people every few days that tell me they would love to see my house on Cornelius Ave. in Russellville. I have promised an open house at the end of March to help the Logan County Humane Society. The price of admission will be $5, dog food, cat food, animal crate or something that will help the humane society. More publicity will be forth coming.
One thing I found out about the historic brick house on Cornelius is that in 180 years apparently no insulation had ever been put in the ceilings or floor of the house. $1,000 in supplies later and with free labor that task is done. $2,000 in plumbing has been done and I did have to pay for the labor. $1,000 in shrubbery has been put in and I had free labor. About $2,500 in painting and other repairs have been done with free labor. A 600 lb bathtub was removed from the second floor and a new shower added with free labor. (It took eight people to remove the tub.) Somewhere $28,000 more dollars went. Not sure where. Oh yes, we had a huge water leak that took three or four months to find. (I thought we were going to have to dig up the entire property before we found it.)
So far I have purchased some 50 new rose buses and sixty other plants. I took after both grand fathers and I guess as long as I live I will be planting. I plan to plant lots of vegetables and have gourds growing everywhere. Guess I almost forgot but have ordered some ten different varieties of fruit trees including peaches, pears, plums, apricots, cherries, apples, nectarines, plumcots, pecans, chest nuts and almonds. If you see me or one of the boys out digging just honk your horn. I plan to load up the ladies at city hall with plenty of fruit and vegetables.
A big thank you to 7 year old Jaxon and 9 year old Karson Kener and their pretty mother Kristal Kener for helping me at checkout at the grocery. What kind and well mannered young boys. Their parents have taught them well. If I were still teaching school after all these years I would be tempted to give them an At for good manners and politeness.
I also met Christina Long and her two children Christopher, 8 years and Carolyn (I think), 18 months, from Elkton. What sweet well mannered children. She can be very proud of both of them.
My dear sweet friend Bertie Mae Angel Hall died last weekend. She was 96 years of age. (The same age my mother would have been if she were still alive.) To know Ms. Bertie was to love her. Born in the early part of the 1900s she and her sister lived through the 1900 and the first decade of the 21 Century. They both were living walking historians. Bertie Mae loved history and poetry. She quoted songs and poems in a beautiful sing song Scot Irish trill. Her sense of humor was famous. With the passing of Ms. Mildred two years ago and Ms. Bertie last month the end of an era has come. They knew the last 200 year history of South Logan County inside and out. No one living knew the history like they did. They had incredible minds.
Two years ago Ms. Bertie was on Don Neagles’ radio show on WRUS. Mildred got stage fright and would not go so I served as Ms. Bertie’s straight guy. I fed her the lines and she told the jokes. One was about the snake that got in the rafters at the Red River Meeting House and ended up clearing the house – once Bertie announced it was over head. Another funny was Bertie telling about the ticket seller at the train depot in Oakville dying and his wake being held at his home. How he swelled up and the nails started popping out of the casket and how the crowd ran out of the house. When the crowd finally came back in the house they heard what they thought was moaning coming from the casket. That emptied the house again. It turned out that one of the deceased’s sons had drunk some corn liquor and he had a stomach ache. His bed was in the room just above the casket in the living room.
The final funny story Ms. Bertie told was of her and Mildred going to Vanderbilt Hospital a few years ago. Mildred always drove in the big city. She was younger being only 94. It seems that at the hospital the doctor decided to keep Mildred. Bertie was horrified. She did not drive in the city. Finally she decided to drive back to Oakville. At first ever thing was fine. It was 4 o’clock traffic and everyone drove at a nice 10 to 20 miles per hour. It was not until Ms. Bertie got outside of Nashville. She was still driving at 10 to 20 miles per hour and could not understand why everyone was honking their car horns.
Time to go. Good night Ms. Mildred and Ms. Bertie where ever you are! With love.