Letters To The Editor

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 February 2015


"The Monument" In Livingston County
Dear Editor:
Thanks so much for the article "Monument Honors Lucy Jefferson Lewis" and the photos on page 17 of the October 2014 issue of The Kentucky Explorer.
This very familiar site is just a few miles west of my home in Burna, Livingston County, Kentucky. I enjoyed the information provided by Charles Bogart and, as a native Livingston Countian, would like to add to his account by telling readers the rest of the story.
The location is a unique landmark in this area known simply as "The Monument." On heavily traveled U. S. Highway 60, many people pass it every day, but as we do with most familiar sites, we seldom consider its importance. As a lover of history, I was very impressed many years ago when I learned that Thomas Jefferson's sister had actually lived and was buried here in our rural county. Later I climbed Rocky Hill, with a Sunday School class of young people, to Lucy Jefferson's gravesite. The hill is now privately owned.
In addition to the Jefferson Monument and Memorial Plaque shown in the article, one can also see a flagpole holding the United States flag and the flag of Kentucky. As a U. S. Army veteran with a deep love for the American flag, my husband, J. L. Culver, had desired to see the flagpole erected for a long time. For years, he, as well as other local citizens, has kept the area mowed at their own expense.
The other item not shown in Mr. Bogart's photo, which is also sitting on this little triangle of land, is a smaller monument, similar to a gravestone, showing the name of Col. John Montgomery, Revolutionary War soldier. The small flags standing on either side of this stone were placed several years ago by J. L.
Research shows that Colonel Montgomery was an early pioneer in Western Kentucky, as well as being credited with founding Clarksville, Tennessee, and having Montgomery County, Tennessee, named for him.
In the summer of 2013, J. L. acquired the help of our son, Joel, and Burna's former fire chief, Rodney Hall, to set the pole and fly the flags in honor of these long ago citizens.
It was very gratifying to see Bogart's article.
Parthenia Culver
1477 US HWY 60
Burna, KY 42028


"Log Cabin" In Letcher County
Dear Editor:
Thanks for publishing my "Log Cabin" story about the Cooks and Bentleys of Letcher County, Kentucky. It was well done, as I knew it would be.
I received a phone call from a cousin who lives in Indiana. I have never known her. She read my story and knew that we were related.
I am working on a story about Grandpa Cook, of whom readers may be interested.
Keep publishing The Kentucky Explorer, it's really great.
Lois Wilcox
1612 W. High Street
Piqua, OH 45356


More On Butter And Molasses
Dear Editor:
I grew up on a farm at Lodiburg, Breckinridge County, Kentucky.
My mother, Ethel McKinney Keys, who was from Green County, and I milked cows, and she made butter. The milk was put in stone jars and let set until the cream came to the top and was then skimmed off, or the whole milk was run through a hand-powered separator to extract the cream. The cream was then churned to separate the butter from the buttermilk. Whole milk does not make butter.
My dad, John Keys, was a mill operator for Reynolds Metal in Louisville, Jefferson County, Kentucky. This was during the WWII years. He took the butter to sell to customers at work.
We also had a sorghum mill, powered by one horse, where we made sorghum molasses.
The mill was passed down from my grandfather. My nephew now owns the mill.
D. J. Keys
3269 Highway 477
Webster, KY 40176


Army Sgt. John R. Jones
Dear Editor:
I enjoy The Kentucky Explorer and family history. I took pleasure in visiting Eastern Kentucky in 2013, especially Breathitt County, where my ancestors had settled.
I would like to share the following information with Explorer readers.
Sgt. John R. Jones' name, which is etched on the Kentucky Vietnam Veterans Memorial, was dedicated during a ceremony on Tuesday, November 11, 2014, in Frankfort. Officials say little is known about the soldier.
The remains of Army Sgt. John R. Jones of Louisville were confirmed in 2012. He is buried at Arlington National Cemetery.
The 22-year-old soldier died in Vietnam in 1971, while defending a radio-relay base. His name is among more than a thousand on the state memorial.
I do know that John Jones was with my cousin's, Jon R. Cavaianai's, company in Vietnam. At the Battle of Hickory, Jones would not board the helicopters and leave my cousin alone. Jon went back in 2011 with the group looking for John Jones' remains.
I'm hoping there is family of John Jones who reads this and finds out that he was brought home, identified, and buried in Arlington National Cemetery so many years later.
Debby Fowler
P. O. Box 1333
Chiloquin, OR 97624


These are just samples of the many letters in each issue of The Explorer.