Each month, The Kentucky Explorer magazine receives literally scores of letters from our faithful readers. Whenever possible, we try to publish as many of them as possible in the 12 pages we have set aside for "Letters to the Editor."
Here are actual letters from November 2007
Interested In Aviation
Thanks for including my request for information concerning the P-47 crash in Johnson County, Kentucky, on March 28, 1948, in the September 2007 issue of The Kentucky Explorer. I hope to hear from someone soon.
I am interested in everything aviation related, especially during WWII. I'm the historian for a museum located on a former B-17 Flying Fortress training field located in Halls, Tennessee. One of the bombers from this field crashed near Princeton, Caldwell County, Kentucky, on March 6, 1944.
The crew of the B-17 got lost in bad weather, ran low on fuel, and were forced to bail out. Some parachuted down near Farmington. The pilot landed in a corn patch on Hafford Paschall's farm and proceeded to Murray to call the training field and report the crash. Another crewman landed in a swamp in Cold Water. The pilot and co-pilot received minor injuries. The other nine on board were not injured.
I would like to hear from anyone who may have witnessed this incident, met and helped any of the airmen, knows where the plane crashed and what happened to the wreckage.
Also, I would like to hear from anyone who may have picked up any pieces of the wrecked airplane and still have them. I realize cameras were not as commonly owned then, but if anyone has any photos pertaining to this crash, I'd like to obtain copies.
Thanks to the magazine's staff for all the help, past and present.
I would also like to hear from anyone who trained at Dyersburg Army Air Field, which operated from 1943 to 1945, or their family members.
5080 Upper Finley Road
Dyersburg, TN 38024
Info. Wanted On
Mountain States League
In the 1950s there was a Class D Professional Baseball League called the Mountain States League. In the league were the towns of Jenkins; Hazard; Harlan; Newport; Morristown, Tennessee; and others.
I am looking for records or history of this league, including players and other data.
I remember that Virgil Q. Wacks was the head of the league. Others involved were Tony Harm(?), Ranson Jordan, Sam Hancock, Ray Russell, others in Jenkins, and many others throughout the league. The teams played night baseball and produced, among other players, Johnny Padres.
I know there is a baseball buff out there who will have information about this league.
1803 Haygood Drive
Atlanta, GA 30307
Old Railroad Hotel
At West Van Lear
I am interested in any information or photos of an old railroad hotel that was located at West Van Lear, Johnson County, Kentucky, on what was then known as Railroad Street. The building was two stories high and had a facing of large gray stones and was directly across the street from the railroad tracks. I have heard that at one time, possibly the late 1920s and 1930s there was a restaurant, general store, and post office, all on the street level and rooms to rent upstairs.
The hotel was owned and operated by the maternal great-grandparents of my three sons (from my first marriage). Their names were James "Jimmie" A. Howard and LaDeski (Higgins) Howard. After Jimmie's passing, LaDeski and her daughter, Minnie Howard Thompson, lived there. Jimmie died January 9, 1940, according to the Kentucky Death Index, but possibly not in Johnson County. A great-grandson thinks Jimmie is buried in a family cemetery in a place called Boogler Hollow near West Van Lear, and other family members may be buried there, also.
I do not know if LaDeski Howard and her daughter, Minnie, are buried at the Cumbo Cemetery at West Van Lear, Kentucky.
I would appreciate any help from readers.
Sara Combs Cercone
414 W. Herr Street
Englewood, OH 45322
Too Many Volunteers?
Someone told me that so many men volunteered for the draft or enlisted from one particular county in Kentucky that the government refused to take any more volunteers.
I would like more information on this.
James M. Steed
2465 Eastway Drive
Lexington, KY 40503
Hominy Recipe Wanted
I really enjoy The Kentucky Explorer.
I am looking for a recipe for making homemade hominy using soda instead of lye.
Also, I would like some pictures of the Spears School and children who went there. It was a one-room school located at Endicott, Floyd County, Kentucky.
I will pay for any costs of copying the photos and the postage.
Emma Lee Hunt
60 Hickory Flats
Prestonsburg, KY 41653
Old Regular Baptist
Minute Books Wanted
I am searching for old Old Regular Baptist minute books.
I am looking for minutes from the following associations: Old Indian Bottom (the Frank Fugate/Murl Caudill side), Indian Bottom (the J. W. Pratt/Edwood Cornett side from 1960-1975), New Salem, Union, Old Friendship, Philadelphia, and Mud River. The older the minute book, the better.
If anyone has any minute books of any of these Old Regular Baptist Associations, and they would like to part with them, I would be glad to get them.
I would be willing pay for or reimburse any postage and handling, if necessary.
425 Lisle Road
Georgetown, KY 40324