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."
actual letters from March 2014
Tragedy In Lincoln County
For the last several years, each month I have anxiously awaited
the arrival of The Kentucky Explorer. My first introduction to
the magazine was when my sister-in-law, Hester Leece, gave me
an issue. I was hooked. My daughter ordered a subscription for
me, and I have kept it coming.
I was born and reared in the wonderful and beautiful state of
Kentucky, and it is still home. Many of the articles I have read
seem to carry me back home. I plan to write of my own experiences
at a later time.
On January 11, 1935, a terrible tragedy occurred between Crab
Orchard and Brodhead, Lincoln County, Kentucky. This was in the
vicinity of where I grew up. In fact, three Leece families owned
farms which adjoined the Helton farm where the tragedy took place.
Five members of the Helton family were shot to death and various
others were wounded. The Helton family members who were killed
are buried at the Brindle Ridge Family Cemetery in Lincoln County.
The entire story concerning all the details of this event can
be viewed at http://freepages.genealogy.rootsweb.
104 W. New Melville Road
Willard, MO 65781
Old Maryland Ancestors
My mother's (Ruby Lillian Boyd) family names were Calvert and
Boyd. They arrived in America with the group that settled Baltimore,
The Calverts and Boyds began moving west. My mother's family
moved to Allen County, Kentucky, and some of them still live
Mother married Herman Hammond in Simpson County, Kentucky.
H. D. Hammond
1427 Lebanon Pike #109
Nashville, TN 37210
Formerly Of Lee County,
I am the daughter of the late H. B. and Elizabeth Barker Hobbs
who lived in Lee County near Beattyville, Kentucky. They were
both reared in Kentucky. Dad's parents were John and Margret
Hobbs, and Mom's parents were Joe and Sarah Barker, all of Lee
I was born in 1930. In 1945 I was in boarding school in Wolfe
County. I was married in 1949 and had three children: Bob, Susan,
and Jeff. We lived in Lake Orion, Michigan, for ten years and
then returned to Kentucky to help care for my husband's dad,
Jesse Combs, who was married to Frona Gabbard, the daughter of
Arch and Lela Gabbard, who ran the post office at Filmore in
At the age of 62, I had moved to an apartment in Beattyville.
I lived there until I was 80 and then moved to Indiana where
my son, Jeff, lives. This is where I am today at the age of 83.
I am a happy person who likes to cook and have company. I also
have been a Jehovah's Witness for 20 years.
Geneva "Jo" Combs
503 E. Forest Home Street, Apt. 9
Roachdale, IN 46172
The Herrington Lake Mystery
I was fascinated by an article that appeared in the September
2013 issue of The Kentucky Explorer.
It was entitled "The Herrington Lake Mystery: Is Harry Really
There?" and was written by Dennis Feeback.
A lifetime ago, I used to swim and waterski at this lake. It
used to be a popular recreation area.
The Dix Dam was built by Kentucky Utilities in the 1920s to provide
electricity for that area. The area has many sinkholes, which
indicates there could be many caves surrounding the lake.
The people who live in the area say the lake has a false bottom,
because the trees and buildings were not removed when the lake
was filled. They think limbs and debris settled and created the
In Mr. Feeback's article, he tells about the great mystery of
It was reported that a monster was sighted in the lake by numerous
people in the 1960s and 1970s. The monster was described as
being 20 feet long with a snout-like face and a curly tail.
There have been no reports of any sightings of the monster for
about 20 years.
If any reader knows of someone who has seen the monster, I would
like to read about it in The Explorer.
Also, there was a photo published in The Explorer of a man who
caught a 75-pound catfish at Herrington Lake. I bet that fish
put up a heck of a fight.
James M. Steed
2465 Eastway Drive
Lexington, KY 4050
just samples of the many letters in each issue of The Explorer.