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 July-August 2015
Old School And Library Photos
Have Special Meanings
My wife and I have subscribed to The Kentucky Explorer for almost
as long as the magazine has been in publication. The May 2015
issue contains two photos that have unique special meanings to
On page 107 there is a photo of the Melvin Grade School, a three-room,
"T"-shaped, white wooden building located in Melvin,
Floyd County, Kentucky, where I attended my first year of school,
at the age of six, in 1949-1950. During that year a new eight-room
brick school building and an attached gymnasium were being built
just to the right of the white wooden building. The old school
was heated by potbellied stoves, and the desks were the very
old-fashion- shaped desks with the desktop attached to the desk
in front of it. The desktop contained an ink well and an open
space beneath the top for holding the students' textbooks. In
the summer of 1950 the white-wooden school was demolished.
I met my future wife, who had just entered the first grade, in
the fall of 1950 in the new Melvin Grade School building. In
December 1954, when my wife was 10 years old, and I was 11, we
appeared in the school's Christmas play, and we had the lead
parts. We played brother and sister, Abraham and Rebecca, who
were small children telling the story of Christmas, and as we
would narrate the events, others would act out the scenes behind
us. Ten years later the brother and sister actors became husband
and wife and now have been married for more than 50 years.
The other photo that is unique to me appeared in the May 2015
issue on page 60. The photo was taken in 1908 and is of the Spencer
County Public Library in Taylorsville, Kentucky. The old library
building now serves as the location for the Spencer County Adult
Education classes. I currently serve as a part-time teacher for
the program and conduct classes in the building.
These two photos in the same issue of The Explorer can be considered
to reflect the "Alpha and Omega" or beginning and the
end of my education lifespan.
52 Little Woods Court
Taylorsville, KY 40071
60th Smith Family Reunion
I would like to inform Kentucky Explorer readers that the Joe
and Mudie Smith family reunion will be held September 12-13,
2015, at the old homeplace at Goose Rock, Kentucky, five miles
south of Manchester, just off Highway 421 at the 12 mile marker.
There will be signs placed on the roadside.
Come, bring a covered dish, and join us for live music, games,
and fun for all. I hope to see you there.
Maynard B. Smith
The Rainbow In Whitley
A while back it had been raining and had just stopped. I was
about 25 yards below my house, working on an old camper top.
My wife was sitting on the porch. She said to look behind me.
A rainbow came across the sky as far as I could see. It came
down to the ground right behind me.
I told my brother, James, about this incident, and he said I
was not telling the truth. I guess the good Lord meant for him
to see that I was not lying.
About two weeks later James and his wife were down for a visit.
They, along with my wife, were all sitting on the porch. I was
still working on the camper.
It had been raining, and James' wife said, "James, you said
Silas wasn't telling the truth about that rainbow. Now, what
is that?" The rainbow came down just as it did before.
James said he would not have believed it if he hadn't seen it
This was just another beautiful sight in Kentucky.
Silas E. Owens
1507 Day Ridge Road
Whitley City, KY 42653
These are just samples of
the many letters in each issue of The Explorer.