November 6, 2014

An 1872 Description of Pulaski County, KY


Click here for a list of my other Pulaski/Rockcastle/Laurel County KY articles


[September 6, 1872] -


Crops, Etc., in "Little Bourbon"--Pitman Creek--Reliable Traders--Pulaski Fair--Improvements--Court--Fire--Suicide--Absentees--Politics--Interior Journal and its Mission

SOMERSET, KY., Sept. 2. 1872.

Correspondence Interior Journal:

Your correspondent has recently traveled over a good portion of our county, and never has there been such a bountiful corn crop in these parts, which the recent rains will mature.

Benjamin Ham, who resides twelve miles from Somerset on South Fork, will make 1,000 barrels of corn on mountain lands this season, while many of our farmers will exceed this quantity. Our lands generally will produce this year from eight to twelve barrels to the acre. Corn, wheat and oats are excellent, and of course stock of all kinds are doing well, and will be in fine condition for our fair; and when looking back over past unfruitful years, truly should we be thankful to the Giver of all good gifts, who has in His divine wisdom bestowed so profusely His blessings. Although Pulaski is classed with the mountain counties, she has many, very many, enterprising and thrifty farmers, who are now wearing cheerful countenances, and take pleasure in extending a general invitation  to all those who place a light estimate upon the farming lands of our county to pay them a visit during a year which has given them the needful rains. Come out and enjoy for a few days the hospitalities of 


and look at her beautiful farms and fine stock, then the lands bordering on the Cumberland  river; then to the western part of the county as far as Fishing creek, where you will meet with Uncle Alex. Dye, always full of fun and anecdotes, and surrounded by some of the most productive lands in the State; then to the east and view the valley farms on 


some of them containing from four to six hundred acres.  These lands are adapted to the growth of all kinds of grass, and cannot beat for stock farms in the State.  The lands on 


are splended, and since the freedom of the negroes our farmers are learning to improve their lands and have come to the wise conclusion that an acre well tilled is worth three or four cultivated under the old fogy system.


We have more territory than any other county in the State, and the greater number of our citizens have more land than they can manage. Hence, they want to divide and sell cheap to encourage the immigration of a scientific farming class.  A number of them have recently come among us and are well pleased with the lands and citizens.


No county can produce a greater number of energetic and reliable traders than Pulaski. Such men as uncle Bob Murphy and son, Dr. S. R. Owens, W. O. Newel, David Rankin, Monroe Floyd, Harvey Sloan, and a host of others, who are now purchasing for the Southern market. Men of this character who take your stock, never break and pay promptly for what they get, are truly a mine of great value to our stock raising class.  Ours is [...] stock county and will do her part in supplying the trading men this fall, as cattle and mules are plenty here now.


Come to the Pulaski Fair, which commences on the 10th inst., and continues three days.  Great preparations are being made to make it both interesting, beneficial and amusing to all classes, and profitable to the stock men and traders in particular. Come with your fine stock--take our premiums if you can and then sell us your stock.  Our farmers are needing more fine horses and cattle, and intend to have them, and this is certainly the year, while dame fortune is smiling upon us, for those wishing to sell their stock to come to Pulaski fair.  From the best information received, many of the blue grass counties will be presented here with their excelsior stock.


Notwithstanding the destructive fire here some months since, the spirit of improvement has been shed broadcast over our town again.  The burnt district is being rebuilt; the brick work of the business blocks almost completed, and other buildings now under contract.


is the city of the mountains, and contains nine dry goods stores, three grocery stores and confectioneries, one boot and shoe store, and a No. 1 drug store, one National Bank, two hotels, Masonic college, six churches, four Sabbath schools, and not a single whisky shop. We have but little use for a courthouse, yet as it is fashionable to have one, our honorable county court will take some decisive steps toward rebuilding this fall. [1]


[1] Excerpt from "From Somerset." The Interior Journal, Stanford, KY. September 6, 1872. Page 3. LOC.


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