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
M. H. Horton's
Goose Creek, Kentucky
July 3, 1898
I stayed at Dr. Burchell's near Manchester last night. This morning
I attended Sunday School at the Burchell schoolhouse. I preached
at town at 10:30 on "Missions," dined at Dr. Manning's
and tonight I am at Brother Horton's, one of our oldest members.
About 9:00 this morning, as Gilbert Garrard and his wife were
on their way to the Pace's Creek schoolhouse to hold Sunday School,
two shots were discharged at him, one piercing his coat and the
other cutting his horse. He cried out, "Oh Lord, I am shot."
His wife said, "No, you are not, get away from here quick."
He obeyed, and she looked around and saw where the smoke was
23 yards distant. The parties were concealed in the undergrowth
with a mountain of timber behind them. Upon examination, the
place where they were secreted showed that two or three men had
been there. There were chicken bones and wrapping paper where
they had eaten breakfast. They ran as their tracks showed and
were worse scared than either Mr. Garrard or his wife. There
has been a very bitter feeling between the Garrards and the Whites
with greater or less intensity for many years, but it has never
been so bitter as during the last eight months. The cause of
this is the race for sheriff between Gilbert Garrard and B. P.
White, just last November. Since then there have been frequent
clashes that came near ending in death. Since the Whites have
suffered in the death of William White, Fr (?). This feeling
has been more intensified by the fact that Gilbert Garrard went
on Tom Baker's bond last November when he was indicted for arson,
though this was before the Whites and Bakers became enemies.
The Whites hold this against him, I have heard some of them say.
Last week General Garrard went on John Baker's bond who is in
the Barboursville jail. This I think has caused the smoldering
embers to blaze up, and the assault this morning is the result.
M. H. Horton's
July 11, 1898
The Garrards think they are drawing a coil around the would-be
assassins of Gilbert Garrard. They have evidence that implicates
six persons. Three they think were in ambush. A man who has no
interest whatever in Sunday Schools asked some children in the
neighborhood when the Paces Sunday School meets, whether morning
or afternoon. I changed from morning to afternoon about a month
ago. The 16-year-old daughter of this man was heard to say, "I
would not go to Pace's Sunday School on Sunday for $2,000."
The father is capable of doing such a deed. Circumstances throws
suspicion on others. The Bakers must be bad men. They have that
name. They have always escaped punishment. They have been on
rather intimate terms with the Garrards though so far beneath
them socially. Both are Democrats and both are active in campaigns.
The Bakers are now at war with the Whites, and the Whites interpret
the action of the Garrards in going on bonds of the Bakers as
an effort to destroy them. The Garrards deny the charge, saying
it is only to repay them for past favors and that the Bakers
have never been proven to be bad men in the courts. On my arrival
here yesterday afternoon, I found that Mr. James Carnahan, a
tenant on Mr. Horton's place, was very low with the flux. I went
to see him last night and have been with him a good part of today.
He says he is ready. His father was born in County Down, Ireland,
and fought under Wellington at Waterloo. He is a good man. This
is the 4th of July, the birthday anniversary of American independence.
It is well to celebrate such anniversaries. The distracted condition
of society makes it impracticable here. The nation will celebrate,
today, this event with a view of the future never before seen.
The last few months of national experience have completely turned
the views of our people around. They are now looking for a future
of helpfulness to other nations. We behold England against whom
we rebelled in 1776, folding us to her embrace not as a child
but as a sister asking for an Anglo-American alliance and standing
behind us in our present benevolent work of freeing Cuba, ready
to interfere if any other European hand is laid upon the contests.
How things change! Chauncy DePew, at a meeting of his club in
New York City a few nights ago said, "I am just home from
a trip to Europe. The deeds of Dewey and Hobson have done more
to elevate us as a nation in the eyes of the world than any diplomat
could accomplish." Now is added the destruction of Admiral
Cervera's fleet at Santiago, which was accomplished yesterday.
At 9:00 a.m., the fleet or part of it slipped out of the harbor
and attempted to escape. It was pursued by Admiral Sampson. At
2:00 p.m, the rest came out, and every ship was destroyed and
1,300 prisoners taken, Admiral Cervera being one of them. There
was but one man lost of the Americans and one wounded. Shafter
has given the Spaniards 24 hours to surrender Santiago, and if
that is not done in that time, he will begin to bombard the city.
It will certainly be surrendered. Today, the news came that General
Anderson had reached Manila with reinforcements. On the way,
the Ladrone Islands were captured. The fall of Manila will be
looked for every hour till it surrenders. Perhaps the nation
has never had so much to rejoice over, in addition to the great
fact of her own independence, as today. Pemberton surrendered
Vicksburg to Grank July 4, 1863. This was a great event in the
history of the Civil War. It may require a great deal of fighting
to conquer the Spaniards on the Island of Cuba yet, but there
will be great pains taken to prevent the sacrifice of human life.
Havana will probably be besieged and bloodshed thus averted.
General Blanco, Governor General of Cuba, has declared his intentions
of committing suicide rather than fall into the hands of Americans.