Old-Fashioned Spirit Still Alive
At Essie Post Office In Leslie Co.
Bowling Family Has Served
80 Years At Community Post Office
By James Bowling, Jr. - 2004
In 1924 a small community in Leslie County, located at the head of Stinnett Creek, was about to see a change. James Bowling, my great-grandfather, who was a magistrate in the community, wanted to get a post office established. He wrote to the postal service in Washington D. C., requesting the establishment of a post office in the Stinnett Creek area. At that time there were probably only five or six families living there. The postal service asked James to submit four names for the post office. He had four daughters: Marie, Mellie, Essie, and Ludeema; so he submitted their names. The postal service chose the name Essie. A building was soon erected, and the Essie Post Office was established. On October 13, 1924, the post office opened for business and James Bowling served as the first postmaster. James held that position for about 13 years when he suffered a stroke and had to give it up. On August 30, 1937, James's daughter Essie, for whom the post office was named, was appointed postmaster. Essie held that position for about three years, when she became ill, and had to give up the position. On Feburary 16, 1940, Sarah Bowling, James's daughter-in-law, was appointed. Sarah had held her position for 37 years when she retired on March 24, 1977. I, Sarah's grandson, worked as her replacement for a few years. When Sarah retired, Lola Harrison was appointed officer-in-charge. Lola was going to have a baby, so she did not work very much, so I worked most of the time. On October 1, 1977, I was appointed postmaster, and I still hold that position. The post office has moved twice from it's original site and has been at its present location for about 45 years.
James Bowling, Jr., Essie, KY 40827, shares this article and photographs with our readers.