Tuesday, March 31, 2015

Baptizing in Crooked Creek

Being dunked in your local creek used to be the standard way of getting baptized, but not much anymore.  Today modern churches have the baptizing done in their churches with the water tank built right in the pulpit.
In 1903 a large baptizing was taking place at Crooked Creek.  Rev. Blackburn and Rev. Conway immersed 24 young people in the presence of an audience of 600 people who had gathered on both banks of the creek and crowed every inch of space on the bluff over-looking the pool.

The candidates were led into the water in strings of six by the officiating ministers, each tier of six being placed behind the last one led in.  When all were in the water and ready, the photography firm of Steward & Ringo, who were on the ground for the purpose, photographed the group.  It was indeed a sight to be be long remembered.

The baptizing then proceeded and all passed off pleasantly.  The exercises were very interesting.

 Those baptized were:  Mr. and Mrs. Henry Gass, Allie Hughes, Bayles Paris, Fred Guess, Herbert McMican, Mesdames Lizzie Pope, Della Ford, Josie Gass, Laura Gass, and Misses Pearl Morrill, Eva Driver, Connie Ford, Bessie Hurst, Lillie Guess, Allie Woodall, Ellen Gass, Lucy Gass, Minnie Gass, Kittie Howerton, Duke Howerton, Ina Butler and Bertie Ford.

Here is another wonderful old baptizing picture shared by Glenn Newcom of Louisville, Ky., who was born and raised in the Weston area of Crittenden County.

Crooked Creek probably had more baptizing's than any other in the county.

Tuesday, March 24, 2015

Family Photographs

The old family photographs of long ago are a treasured item, especially so if they are identified.  Here are a couple that have the people named.

This picture was scanned from an old Crittenden Press.  It is the family of George Robert and Elexzea Catherine Brown.

Pictured are (back row) Daisy Pearl, Providence, Elmore Roe, Alvey Edward, Rebecca Jane, Frederick Udolphus.  (front row) Iler, Elexzena Catherine, John Clarence, George Robert, Martha Anne and Trovel Walker Brown.

It was taken it 1895, and was taken at the their farm west of Crayne, in the community of View, in 1895.

The family moved to Crayne in the early 1900s but retained ownership of the farm until the 1930's.  

George Robert Brown, died Jan. 28, 1911 and is buried in the Union Cemetery.  His wife, Elexzana Catherine (Fuqua) Brown died 1933 and is also buried at Union Cemetery in Levias, Ky.


          The Cochran Family about 1896.  (picture donated to the Museum by Don Foster, Burna, Ky)

The Cochran and Rochester families were prominent families in Marion in the early 1900's, associated with the city and county government and local businesses.
Front row: Healy Haynes Cochran, Nannie Rochester, Joseph Rochester, Nathaniel Gray Rochester, Nannie Moxley Cochran, Emmett Rodgers, John Thomas Cochran, Leona Miller, Mary Cochran Miller, Nannie Miller and Herbert Rodgers.
Back row: Elva Crider Cochran, Thomas Henry Cochran, Anna Cochran Rochester, Robert William Cochran, John Watts Cochran, Samuel George Cochran, Luther Miller, Dora Cochran Rodgers, and Robert Rodgers.

Tuesday, March 17, 2015

A Look Back at Fords Ferry, KY

Once a busy bustling little river community located near the mouth of Crooked Creek where it flows into the Ohio River.  

In it's early days it was associated with the river pirates and evil doings that was part of our history during those years in the early 1800's. 

 There was a ferry here that carried pioneer folk from the Kentucky side over to the southern Illinois side.  

James Ford owned the ferry and had a ferry house here.  Thus the name was born for the town of Ford's Ferry.

By the 1900's Fords Ferry was a nice quiet village with several businesses located there and families that  called it home.

This picture shows how the town looked in the 1920's.  The first building on the right is a dwelling, middle building was the village store, post office and living quarters.  The last building was a millinery shop.  Picture shared by Patsy Ledbetter of Cave-In-Rock, Il.  Her mother grew up at Fords Ferry.  

There was even a hotel located here.  It was advertised in the local paper as the Bell City House, Fords Ferry, Ky.  M. D. Coffield, Prop.  Good rooms.  Dining room supplied with everything the market affords.  Special accommodation for commercial travelers.  Wish there had been a picture of it made and preserved for us to see today.
The Fords Ferry Post Office.  Sitting on the steps are: Virgie Price, with her daughters, Gertie and Elsie.  

Being so close to the river, the town got flooded several times.  It finally was the end to it after the 1937 flood.  Most folks moved away and didn't rebuild. 

Today there isn't anything left of the once busy river town of Fords Ferry.  A part of our forgotten passages.

Monday, March 9, 2015

Remembering Marion's Potter & Brumfield Plant

It was an exciting time for Marion and Crittenden County when the news of another plant was going to locate in Marion.  The hope of new jobs for our young people that could help them stay at home and have a good paying job.

The Potter & Brumfield Division of American Machine and Foundry Company first came to Marion in 1959.  It first opened in the former Southern Sates building on Hwy. 60.  

By January 1960 the firm relocated to a larger building that had formally housed Moore's Business Forms, on Moore Street.  Jack McWilliams was the plant manager.

In 1967 the plant employed about 400 employees.  They had outgrown the building they were now in and was going to built a new much larger plant on the Chapel Hill Road.

The new plant was started in 1969.

In Sept. 1984, the Potters and Brumfield plant celebrated with an open house.  Allen Summers was then plant manager.  

At this time the plant made thermoplastic moldings and electroplating for the P&B division of AMF. 

In 1985, the beginning of the end started when Siemens, A. G., a West German electronics conglomerate purchased the company.

Although it was several years before the company finally had closed, it never had the hometown feeling company it had been at the start, as many people from the new owners had leading positions in the company.

It was a sad day when we lost the Potter & Brumfield plant, later known as Siemens.  

Tuesday, March 3, 2015

Remembering Marion's Moore Business Forms, Inc. Plant

                        Moore Business Forms -  1950-1984
It all started in March 1950, when citizens of Crittenden County, members of civic clubs, namely, Kiwanis, Rotary and Business and Professional Women's Clubs realized the economy of Crittenden County was dwindling, the population decreasing and our young people, especially young high school graduates, were leaving the county and even the state to make their ambitions a reality. 

The fluorspar industry was dwindling and there were no other industries to take it's place.  At that time all major fluorspar mines in the county except one, had closed for future use.  This affected more than 1,000 people directly or indirectly, and caused the number of unemployed to surge to a high number.   These were desperate thoughts and the time was right for doing something.

Then with the efforts  of the clubs and combined efforts of Boyce Moodie, Jr., Salem, and R. E. Rodgers, Marion, a search was started for new industries.  Moodie and Rodgers purchased the site and building of The Corod Minerals Corporation, on the outskirts of Marion hoping to interest an industry as a tenant. (This building is located on, what is today, Moore St.  Later this same building would house the new Potter & Brumfield plant)

Negations were made with several companies but nothing was available until May 1950 when an ad appeared in The Paducah Sun Democrat, the name of the concerned was not disclosed, but it was for a company in search of a location for a branch site within 75 miles of Cairo, Illinois.  The always alert Business and Professional Women's Club answered the ad with Rodgers' and Modie's permission to quote dimensions of their available building.  

Rodgers and Moodie and other citizens of Marion were successful in their negotiations and about Sept. 1, 1950, it was disclosed that Moore Business Forms, Inc., had chosen Marion to locate its branch plant.  Thus, the first industry to bolster the waning economy of the fluorspar industry.

 It wasn't long until the company had outgrown it's first location and a new, larger, more modern building was built near the main Highway, Hwy. 641.  It was a wonderful business to have in Marion, it provided jobs for many Crittenden County families, and gave the opportunity for people to stay and live in their own hometown.

The plant continued until the end of 1984, when the management announced that it's manufacturing plant here would could be the end of the year.  Many people lost their positions or had to be transferred to other locations if they wanted to continue their jobs with the company.  It was a devastating blow to the county and many surrounding families as well.