Readers of The Kentucky Explorer have been introduced to the
Rev. John J. Dickey in past issues. Remember that he was a traveling
preacher throughout the eastern part of the state during the
years between 1880 and 1925. He helped to establish numerous
churches and at least two colleges. He was also a teacher and
a newspaper editor. However, his most enduring gift to us today
may well be his diary that he kept faithfully during some 50
years of his later life beginning in the 1880s. In all, over
6,000 pages written in his own hand make up this interesting
In this journal of his, Dickey often wrote down accounts of events
daily. Much of the material concerns his day to day life. However,
during the late 1890s he began to gather family history on various
families he met in his travels. We are offering these interviews
to our readers in the hope that they will be appreciated in the
sense that Rev. Dickey intended. These interviews were written
word for word as they were given to Rev. Dickey. Nothing has
March 7, 1898
I am the
son of Hugh White. My father came to Kentucky before Alex (1799),
Margaret (1800), John (1802) and Susan (1804) were born. More
were born after we came here.
I have always understood that Bollings first made salt at the
Upper Lick in pots. My grandfather's name was William White.
He died on Yellow Creek. My grandfather was Irish. I had an Uncle
Washington who lived and died in Louisiana; Uncle James; Uncle
Alexander; Uncle John; and Aunt Isabella, married first, Benson
then Felix Gilbert, Sr. Nancy married _______ Baugh. She died
on Goose Creek.
I have a sister, Sallie Russell, now living in Richmond, 84 years
old. John Gilbert said he loaned my father $360 when he was starting
in business not knowing whether or not he would ever get it again.
Claiborne White was not related to our family. Uncle James White
sent him here to sell goods for him on the hill in Manchester.
He married my sister, Susan. My uncle, James, was a man of great
energy and sagacity. He was a good judge of men and said he was
rarely deceived. He used everybody to carry out his purposes.
He had ten children, and I think he left them about $100,000
each. My father was poor when he began life. My grandmother owned
some slaves when I knew her in her old age on Yellow Creek in
Dr. T. M. Hill, Sr.
I was born in Jefferson County, Kentucky, on January 28, 1842.
My father was Carey A. Hill. He was born in Queenstown, Ireland,
I think. He died in October 1845. His father was Clement C. Hill
and his uncles, Thomas and John Hill, came with him. Tom settled
in Perryville. His father, Clement C., settled in Marion County
now. They came with him, his mother, Nancy Douglas Hill, and
her brothers, Samuel Mathews and William Douglas.
My father had a brother, George Douglas Hill, who settled in
Texas before Texas was a state. W. Douglas Hill of Williamsburg
was maybe my relative, I do not know. My mother's name was Sarah
Marshall. She was reared in Franklin County, Virginia, but she
came to Kentucky the year before she was married, about 1829.
She lived and died in Jefferson County as did my father. I came
to Clay County in 1869. I began my study of dentistry with Dr.
Rudd of Cincinnati in 1858. I practiced in Louisville, first
till 1861, then at Lebanon till I came here. About 1878 or 1879,
after Bob Potter had made an assignment, Robert Bradley of Lancaster
father of Governor William O. Bradley came to the Clay Circuit
Court. He had formerly visited this court but had not been here
for a long time. I got him a fee of $600 from Robert Potter's
mother; James Potter, brother or husband of Mrs. Lou Simpson.
They had all sold their interest in Barton Potters estate for
$5,000 each and had never paid anything to them. They were about
to lose all they had. Mr. Bradley took the case and made perhaps
the speech of his life before the court, Judge Randall. At that
time he was old, his hair was white as cotton and very long.
He showed the court the law and then to win this community he
led out into a speech which passed at the bar of Clay County.
It was published in the Mountain Echo. Judge Robertson of Lexington
defended Dr. Baker who was hanged here. He made one of the greatest
speeches of his life.
Gen. Hugh White was very ill and had Dr. Letcher of Richmond
to see him. He could do nothing for him, could give no encouragement.
Dr. William Reid who had been refused his daughter, Susan, by
the general was sent for. He was playing cards with Col. John
Lucas when he received the message. "Let him die and go
to hell," exclaimed Dr. Reid. Col. Lucas expostulated and
prevailed on him to go. He told Mrs. White to come to the door
at midnight, and he would report. She did so, and he said, "He
will recover." He did recover. Gen. White met Dr. Reid in
Manchester and asked for his bill. "I will make it out promptly,"
responded the doctor. He did so and presented it to him, "One
visit $500," was the way it read. "Why is that too
much?" asked the General. With an oath the doctor said,
"General went to Col. Lucas and asked him to see if he could
get the doctor to relent. Col. Lucas told him that he had gone
at his earnest solicitation, and he did not feel at liberty to
interfere now, but for him to pay it as that was the only way
out." He did so. I got a fee for $1,000 for Robert Bradley
of Barboursville, after the Potter fee, here.