More than once I have joked that I come from a long line of horse thieves, card sharks, shady ladies, and other assorted riffraff. I’ve always claimed that in jest, but it appears I wasn’t that far off the mark.
As I mentioned before, I recently got a subscription to Newspapers.com to do research on a book project I have been kicking around in my head. Yesterday I was looking through some old Cincinnati newspapers and plugged in the name of John Sanders Stephens, my great-grandfather, who lived across the Ohio River from Cincinnati, in Ludlow, Kentucky. I didn’t find anything new on him, but I did find some information on one of his grandsons, a first cousin one time removed, also named John.
Most of great-grandfather Stephens’ family seem to have been great citizens who made a lot of contributions to the community, including one of his sons, James, who was president of the First National Bank of Ludlow, as well as the City Treasurer of Ludlow for many years.
But not my ne’er-do-well cousin. According to newspaper records, in 1936 his wife divorced him on grounds of desertion. Two years later, he was hauled before the judge and given 30 days for failure to provide child support for the two children of that union. The newspaper article reported that the judge said the defendant had been in his courtroom for the same charges several times previously. Then, in 1939, he was charged with cutting another man in a barroom fight. And as if that was not enough, that same year he was sentenced to a year in prison for stealing 47 chickens. Again, the newspaper said it was not the first time he had been charged with theft. I had to stop reading about that time, because I didn’t know whether to laugh out loud or to hang my head in shame.
I guess when you shake your family tree, you have got to expect a few nuts to fall out, don’t you?
After an endless round of frustrations with KDP, Amazon’s book publishing division, the new covers for the print editions of the first four Big Lake books have finally been changed. And, for those of you who prefer a printed book over an e-book, the print edition of Big Lake Wedding is now available. You can order it at this link.
And finally, here’s another chuckle to start your day from the collection of funny signs we see in our travels and that our readers share with us.
Over 125 people have entered our latest Free Drawing. This week’s prize is an autographed copy of Terry’s popular cookbook, Miss Terry’s Kitchen. I don’t care if you can’t even boil water, if you follow her recipes and directions, you’ll be the hit at any campground potluck dinner or with your own family every time they sit down at the table. To enter, click on this Free Drawing link or the tab at the top of this page and enter your name (first and last) in the comments section at the bottom of that page (not this one). Only one entry per person per drawing please, and you must enter with your real name. To prevent spam or multiple entries, the names of cartoon or movie characters are not allowed. The winner will be drawn Sunday evening.
Thought For The Day – If you think I’m crazy, you should meet my relatives. I had to adapt to my surroundings to survive!