Encyclopedia of Northern Kentucky in partnership with NKY.com Introduction | A | B | C | D | E | F | G | H | I | J | K | L | M | N | O | P | Q | R | S | T | U | V | W | Y | Z | Index
The Enquirer/Patrick Reddy
NEWPORT AQUARIUM. The Newport Aquarium is located in Newport-on-the-Levee... (contâ€™d on pg. 654)
The Encyclopedia of Northern Kentucky Contents Introduction, Foreword, Acknowledgments and Guide for Readers Chapters: A, B, C, D, E, F, G, H, I, J, K, L, M, N, O, P, Q, R, S, T, U, V, W, Y, Z Index, Bibliography, Illustration Credits
Edited by Paul A. Tenkotte and James C. Claypool THE UNIVERSITY PRESS OF KENTUCKY Republished for the World Wide Web by NKY.com and Enquirer Media
A Project of the Thomas D. Clark Foundation, Inc. Mark A. Neikirk, President Sherry Jelsma, Vice President
Dave Adkisson, Treasurer Melanie J. Kilpatrick, Secretary
Thomas R. Brumley, Immediate Past President Michael J. Hammons, Past President
Dave Adkisson, Frankfort Jane Beshear, Frankfort Thomas R. Brumley, Lexington John S. Carroll, Lexington Sara W. Combs, Stanton
Board of Directors Michael J. Hammons, Park Hills Sherry Jelsma, Shelbyville Martha C. Johnson, Melbourne Mark A. Neikirk, Highland Heights Alice Stevens Sparks, Crescent Springs
Robert Ted Steinbock, Louisville Mrya Leigh Tobin, New York City James M. Wiseman, Erlanger
Editorial Staff Editors in Chief: Paul A. Tenkotte and James C. Claypool Associate Editors: David Hatter, John Schlipp, David E. Schroeder, Robert Stevie, Michael R. Sweeney, John W. Thieret (deceased), Thomas S. Ward, Jack Wessling Topical Editors: Agriculture: Lynn David & James Wallace; Art: Rebecca Bilbo; Biography: Michael R. Sweeney; Business & Commerce: John Boh; Counties & Towns: David E. Schroeder; Ethnology: Theodore H. H. Harris; Government, Law, & Politics: John Schlipp; Literature: Danny Miller (Deceased); Medicine: Dennis B. Worthen; Military: James A. Ramage; Music, Media, & Entertainment: John Schlipp; Religion: Thomas S. Ward & Alex Hyrcza; Sports & Recreation: James C. Claypool; Transportation Joseph F. Gastright (Deceased); Women: Karen Mcdaniel. Maps: Jeff Levy at the Gyula Pauer Center for Cartography & GIS, University of Kentucky. Copyright © 2009 by The University Press of Kentucky, 663 South Limestone Street, Lexington, KY 40508-4008 www.kentuckypress.com. Print editions: Library of Congress Cataloging-in-Publication Data The Encyclopedia of northern Kentucky / edited by Paul A. Tenkotte and James C. Claypool. p. cm. ISBN 978-0-8131-2565-7 (hardcover : acid-free paper) ISBN 978-0-8131-2585-5 (limited leather edition) 1. Kentucky, Northern— Encyclopedias. 2. Kentucky— Encyclopedias. I. Tenkotte, Paul A. II. Claypool, James C. F451.E55 2009 976.9'3003—dc22 2009027969
NAACP. The Covington branch of the NAACP (National Association for the Advancement of Colored People) was formed in 1919, when the national office sent Walter White around Kentucky to establish local chapters that would collaborate with other organizations to oppose lynching, mob violence, and Jim Crow laws. During the next 40 years, the organization’s Covington branch saw periods of both activity and inactivity. Founded in 1909, the NAACP has worked primarily to obtain legislative and judicial solutions to civil rights issues. Using courtroom and legislative victories, it has brought about dramatic changes in the educational, legal, and economic conditions of African Americans. Legal counsel provided by the Covington NAACP proved beneficial in numerous cases, helping African Americans avoid unjust jail sentences and the death penalty. In 1930, during a time when the local NAACP was inactive, the Anderson McPerkins case caused it to revive and gain McPerkins’s release from prison. In 1934, with the case of Huston Mosler, who was charged with murder, the NAACP was able to persuade the courts to decide on life imprisonment rather than execution. In cases involving John Pete Montjoy (1935) and Harold Van Vension (1938), in which the men were convicted of raping white women, the NAACP, the ACLU (American Civil Liberties Union), and the ILD (International Labor Defense) failed in attempts to alter the death sentences. Both were hanged in front of the Covington city-county building. In late 1938, after two decades of antilynching efforts, the NAACP and other organizations were successful in persuading the Kentucky legislature to outlaw public hangings. For the next 10 years, the NAACP’s Covington branch was again inactive, but it revived in 1948, when the national NAACP received a letter from Louis Brown of Covington, expressing the desire to reorganize the branch. In 1949 Jack Delaney of Covington was elected as a board member to the state conference of the NAACP. Nevertheless, the branch slipped into inactivity again. The 1954 U.S. Supreme Court decision in Brown v. Board of Education signaled the end of “separate but equal” schools and brought about the integration of public schools in Northern Kentucky. This victory by the NAACP national legal defense team inspired the local chapter to reorganize in April 1959. Rechartered as the CovingtonNewport branch, it elected Mrs. E. Conley president and Mrs. M. Miles secretary. The group investigated, negotiated, and provided legal advocacy when incidents of abuse, loss of jobs, and other forms of racial discrimination were experienced by African American students, teachers,
staff, and faculty during the early years of school integration. Another area of interest to the NAACP was housing discrimination. City urban renewal programs and discrimination by lending institutions had forced many African Americans to leave Covington and Newport and seek housing in Cincinnati or other cities. After considering a lawsuit, the local branch instead worked with officials to dismantle discrimination practices; such cooperation led to open-housing ordinances and commissions. In July 1960 the NAACP organized community meetings at Covington’s Fouse Center (see Elizabeth B. Cook “Lizzie” Fouse) to protest a “white only” bathroom sign at Coppin’s department store that had been there for more than 45 years. These community meetings did not move into direct action until November 1960, when the Congress of Racial Equality organized a chapter in Northern Kentucky. While some people were members of both organizations, CORE during the next three years galvanized the local movement and successfully desegregated public accommodations in Northern Kentucky, before the Civil Rights Act of 1964. In addition, CORE and the NAACP worked to eradicate discrimination in employment, housing, and educational access faced by African Americans during that era. CORE closed its chapter in Northern Kentucky in 1963, and the NAACP, guided by Mrs. E. Conley, president; Rev. Edgar Mack, executive secretary; and Fermon Knox, reemerged as the primary civil rights organization in the region. It worked closely with the Cincinnati NAACP, the Greater Cincinnati Commission on Religion and Race, the Human Rights Commission, and the Catholic Interracial Council on issues such as education, employment, and housing. The Northern Kentucky NAACP was an active participant in the Allied Organizations for Civil Rights in Kentucky, which sponsored the Freedom March on Frankfort, held on March 5, 1964. The march was called to show support for a publicaccommodations bill being considered by the Kentucky legislature. That demonstration involved more than 10,000 people, with 300 participants from Northern Kentucky. When Martin Luther King Jr. was assassinated in 1968, the Northern Kentucky NAACP collaborated with numerous local groups to hold memorial ser vices for the purpose of healing the community and quelling any possible violent responses. During the next few years, the NAACP worked on racial injustices in housing, education, politics, and employment. On August 14, 1983, the NAACP organized a march across the John A. Roebling Bridge to dramatize the need for African Americans to register and vote. The speakers included Benjamin Hooks, executive director of the NAACP; activist Julian Bond; and Fermon Knox, president of the local and state NAACP. Often accused of being too moderate or distant from the acute conditions of urban life, the NAACP has most recently been involved in economic development and youth programs, while continuing to be the organization for legal advocacy on civil rights issues.
“Getting Blacks Involved,” KP, February 3, 1984, 4K. The Papers of the Congress of Racial Equality, 1941–1967. Frederick, Md.: University Publications of America, 1983. Microform. Available at the Univ. of Kentucky, Lexington; the Univ. of Louisville; and the Univ. of Cincinnati. Papers of the NAACP. Microform version available at Univ. of Virginia Library, www.lib.virginia.edu (accessed January 14, 2007). “A Voice on Civil Rights,” KP, July 6, 2000, 4K. Wright, George C. A History of Blacks in Kentucky. Frankfort, Ky.: Kentucky Historical Society, 1992.
NAPOLEON. Nestled in eastern Gallatin Co., near Grant Co., along what is now Ky. Rt. 16, is the tiny village of Napoleon. Today it consists of one grocery store and about a dozen private residences. In 1803 the area was settled by a group of families who came down the Ohio River by flatboats, most likely from Pennsylvania. Initially their community was called Connors, in honor of one of the first settlers, Samuel Connor (1777–1863). Connor married Catherine Spenser, and both were buried in the Ten Mile Cemetery, just behind the presentday Ten Mile Baptist Church, approximately one-quarter of a mile to the west of the church. Myrix J. Williams was appointed the first postmaster of Connors sometime before 1831. He was born July 14, 1811, and was buried in the Williams Cemetery at Glencoe. On January 30, 1841, while Philip Hanna was postmaster, the post office at Connors was renamed Napoleon and the town’s name was changed accordingly. The post office at Napoleon was discontinued before 1913. There were several medical doctors who practiced and lived in Napoleon during the mid-1800s and into the early 1900s. A young doctor named J. W. Shupert began his practice there. Later, he moved with his family and practice to Warsaw, a more populated area. Family names mentioned at Napoleon in those days were Bledsoe, Brashear, Carleton, Lillard, McNeeley, Skirvin, and Turley. During the early 1900s, mail was delivered to Napoleon from Glencoe. John Hall, a federal employee, had the mail route to Napoleon, daily delivering the mail from a horse-drawn wooden wagon. Between 1844 and 1850, a Presbyterian church, the Napoleon Presbyterian Church, existed in the hamlet. Around 1900 the road servicing Napoleon (Ky. Rt. 16) was nothing but mud, with a scattering of rocks. There were two grocery stores: one owned and operated by Holt Wallace and Andrew McGee and another belonging to Nolan Richardson. These stores were stocked with the usual commonly needed articles, such as 100-pound burlap bags of coffee beans (often the coffee beans were still green and required a quick roasting in the oven before grinding). Stalks of bananas hung from overhead at seasonal times, such as just before Christmas. Every grocery also sold kerosene and wicks for lamps and lanterns. Walker W. Spaulding owned the blacksmith shop, the hub of activity for the village. In addition to his metal work, Spaulding ground wheat for
644 NATIONAL GUARD, POSTWORLD WAR II TO IRAQ WAR flour and corn for meal. In the late 1920s, telephones came to Napoleon, for the few who could afford them, but it was not until the late 1930s that rural electrification arrived. Bogardus, Carl R., Sr., The Story of Gallatin County. Ed. James C. Claypool. Cincinnati: John S. Swift, 2003. “Center of Town,” KP, November 14, 1975, 4K. Gray, Gypsy M. History of Gallatin County, Kentucky. Covington, Ky.: Privately published, 1968. Rennick, Robert M. Kentucky Place Names. Lexington: Univ. of Kentucky Press, 1984. Rider, Jack. Interview by Joy Higgins, April 14, 2005.
On October 1, 1985, Company A, 206th Engineer Battalion, of the Kentucky National Guard was activated in Mason Co. On October 1, 2002, the unit became the 301st Chemical Company (Smoke/Decontamination). This new unit was ordered into federal ser vice on November 29, 2004, and was sent to Iraq. While there, they trained the Iraqi police, provided base security and guarded detainees for the U.S. Army. The unit returned home January 9, 2006. Alfaro, Armando J. Paper Trail of the Kentucky National Guard. Utica, Ky.: McDowell, 2003.
NATIONAL GUARD, POST–WORLD WAR II TO IRAQ WAR. Boone Co. has had a Ken-
NATIONAL GUARD, SPANISHAMERICAN WAR. The men of the common-
tucky National Guard unit since November 1, 1975, when the 118th Maintenance Company was established in Burlington. Exactly one year later, this unit was transferred to Walton, underwent a few reorganizations, and was redesignated the 130th Maintenance Company and Detachment 1, 207th Engineer Company. On March 6, 1999, the present-day Detachment 1, Battery A, 2nd Battalion, 138th Field Artillery, was formed. On October 1, 2002, the 940th Military Police Company became the second unit assigned to meet at Walton. The 2nd Battalion, 138th Field Artillery, served on federal duty from May 5, 2003, until May 4, 2004, providing post security for Fort Campbell’s 101st Airborne Division. The 940th Military Police Company was placed on federal duty November 29, 2004, and after some additional training was assigned to ser vice in Iraq. Campbell Co.’s Battery A, 242nd Field Artillery Battalion, was organized on November 10, 1956, at Fort Thomas Military Reservation. In September 1959 federal recognition was withdrawn when the unit fell below its required troop strength. On November 1, 1980, Company B (Medical), 103rd Support Battalion, 149th Armored Brigade, was established, and on November 1, 1985, this unit was transferred to Louisville and redesignated. The Carroll Co. National Guard unit was organized on October 15, 1949, as Company A, 201st Engineer Battalion. During the Korean War, it served on active duty from May 1, 1951, until April 30, 1953. The unit was stationed at Fort McCoy, Wis. On October 1, 1959, it was redesignated as Battery A, 2nd Battalion, 138th Field Artillery Battalion. On May 13, 1968, the battalion was activated for combat ser vice in Vietnam. It was in Vietnam from October 1968 until October 1969. This artillery battalion is the only Kentucky National Guard unit to serve in Vietnam. The battalion fired over 150,000 rounds at enemy targets. On March 6, 1999, the unit was redesignated Battery A (Less Detachment 1), 2nd Battalion, 138th Field Artillery, with the detachment’s drill meetings held in Walton. The 2nd Battalion, 138th Field Artillery, served on federal duty from May 5, 2003, until May 4, 2004, providing post security at Fort Campbell. Mason Co., the oldest county in Northern Kentucky, has had a military presence since 1788.
wealth of Kentucky demonstrated their loyalty to the nation when the “sinking” of the battleship USS Maine on February 15, 1898, in Havana Harbor, Cuba, sparked the Spanish-American War. A naval investigation on March 28, 1898, revealed the ship had hit a mine. However, it gave the United States a pretext to try to free Cuba, Puerto Rico, and the Philippines from Spain’s control. The United States declared war on Spain on April 25, 1898. Kentuckians clamored to enlist in the Kentucky State Guard units of the 1st, 2nd, 3rd, and 4th Army Infantry Regiments, plus Troops A and B of the Army’s 1st Cavalry. The initial strength mandated by the governor of Kentucky was 104 men per company. It appeared there would not be enough weapons and uniforms to supply that many troops, so he decreased each unit’s size to 84 men. When the Presidential Proclamation requesting states to meet their respective federal troop quotas reached Governor William O. Bradley (1895–1899) , the Kentucky State Guard was ready. Capt. Thomas W. Woodyard, commander of Company G, 2nd Infantry Regiment, Kentucky State Guard, was actively recruiting members from Newport and the surrounding counties in preparation for the unit’s activation into federal ser vice. On May 6, 1898, this company moved by rail to the south side of Lexington, Camp Collier at the Tattersall’s horse farm. The horse barns were used as living quarters because no tents were available. On May 20, 1898, the regiment was mustered into federal ser vice as Company G, 2nd Kentucky Volunteer Infantry Regiment (U.S.). On May 25, 1898, Kentucky’s federalized 2nd Volunteer Regiment made a 250-mile journey by rail to Camp George H. Thomas, at Chickamauga Park, Ga., arriving the next day. The regiment, along with the New York 9th Infantry and the Arkansas 1st Infantry, comprised the 1st Brigade, 2nd Division, 3rd U. S. Army Corps. During its stay at Camp Thomas, the Kentucky unit engaged in sham battles, routine training, and regimental reviews. The infantry regiment was issued new weapons and uniforms, and the cavalry troops were issued horses and spurs. The U.S. 2nd Kentucky Volunteer Regiment was eventually sent to Anniston, Ala., for additional training. A peace protocol signed in Washington, D.C., on August 12, 1898, ended all hostili-
ties. Company G, along with other U.S. 2nd Kentucky Volunteer Regiment units, traveled by rail on September 12, 1898, to Lexington, arriving the next day. On September 19 the unit was placed on regimental furlough for 30 days. The regiment reassembled at Lexington on October 18 and performed routine duties until being mustered out of federal ser vice on October 31, 1898. The unit returned home as Company G of the 2nd Infantry Regiment, Kentucky State Guard, on November 1, 1898. Alfaro, Armando J. Paper Trail of the Kentucky National Guard. Utica, Ky.: McDowell, 2003. Works Progress Administration. The American Guide Series: Military History of Kentucky. Frankfort, Ky.: State Journal, 1939. Reprint, Utica, Ky.: McDowell, 2003.
NATIONAL GUARD, WORLD WAR II. The organizational charts used by the Kentucky National Guard in World War II date to 1860. Records for that year show that Covington had a militia unit named the Covington Light Guard, Maysville had the Mason County Guards, and Carroll Co. had the Butler Guards. During World War I, while the National Guard’s mobilized troops were on federal active duty, a security force of five other guard units was activated across the state. Covington’s Company D, Kentucky State Guard, was orga nized and frequently activated between August 5, 1917, and March 20, 1921. On March 21, 1921, this unit became a part of the U.S. 38th Division Tank Company. In June 1932 the new division was moved to Harrodsburg, in Mercer Co. Two other military units remained in Covington, and on July 10, 1929, and May 1, 1930, the Headquarters 2nd Squadron and Troop F 123rd Cavalry Regiment, respectively, were designated federal units. Just before entering federal ser vice, on February 24, 1940, these units were reorganized. Troop F 123rd Cavalry Regiment was converted into Battery C 103rd Coast Artillery Battalion (anti-aircraft), and the HQ and the HQ Company, 2nd Squadron, 123rd Cavalry, was converted into HQ and HQ Company, Battery 106th Coast Artillery Battalion. Both battalions served in the European theater of operations during World War II. Their tours of duty lasted from February 24, 1940, until December 3, 1945. Troop F of the 123rd Cavalry Regiment left New York on April 30, 1942, and arrived in Northern Ireland on May 15, 1942. The unit was later sent to North Africa, arriving on December 8, 1942, where it was attached to the 34th Coast Artillery Brigade (anti-aircraft). On July 2, 1943, Covington’s cavalrymen landed in Sicily and participated in the Sicily Campaign from July 9 to August 27, 1943. On November 13, 1943, the unit was redesignated as the 103rd Automatic Weapons Battalion. From December 1943 until September 1944, the battalion was stationed in England. On November 25, 1944, it was assigned to the 1st U.S. Infantry Division; then, from October 1944 until April 28, 1945, it became part of the 3rd U.S. Infantry Division in Ger-
NATIVITY, CHURCH OF THE EPISCOPAL, MAYSVILLE
many. After a short tour of occupational duty in Czechoslovak ia, the battalion arrived in Germany on May 6, 1945. The unit departed Marseilles, France, for home on November 20, 1945, aboard the USS Bardtown Victory. It arrived in New York on November 30, 1945, and on December 1, 1945, the 103rd AW Battalion was deactivated. The second Covington unit, the HQ and HQ Company, Battery 106th Coast Artillery Battalion, was activated into federal ser vice on January 6, 1941, at Covington. It trained at Camp Hulen, Tex., from January 15, 1941, until March 31, 1942. The battalion was assigned to the 5th Army Corps in February 1942. It departed New York City and arrived in Northern Ireland on May 15, 1942. On November 7, 1942, it landed in North Africa. The unit participated in the Tunisia Campaign from November 17, 1942, until May 13, 1943. It arrived in Sicily on July 10, 1943, and was attached to the 2nd Army Division, participating in the Sicily Campaign between July 9, 1943, and August 17, 1943. The battalion left Sicily on September 16, 1943, and moved to the Italian peninsula to participate in the Naples-Foggia Campaign. On July 14, 1944, the unit reorganized as an automatic weapons battalion. On August 15, 1944, the newly formed battalion landed in southern France. Upon arrival, the unit was relieved of its North African theater of operations responsibilities, instead becoming part of the European theater of operations. On December 20, 1944, the battalion departed France for Germany. On November 1, 1945, the unit shipped home on the USS David Shanks, arriving in New York City on December 2, 1945. The battalion was deactivated on December 3, 1945. The Maysville National Guard unit, HQ and HQ Company, 2nd Battalion, 149th Infantry, became a federal unit on June 1, 1934. On January 1, 1941, President Franklin D. Roosevelt ordered the entire National Guard (nationwide) into federal ser vice for a year of intensive training, later changed to 18 months because of the military emergency brought about by the outbreak of World War II. Accordingly, on January 17, 1941, all Kentucky National Guard units were activated. The 149th Infantry Regiment unit was assigned to Camp Shelby, Miss., and trained with the 38th Infantry Division (Cyclone). The division consisted of guardsmen from Kentucky, Indiana, and West Virginia. On January 20, 1944, the troop ships carry ing the 38th Infantry Division passed through the Panama Canal and landed at Oahu, Hawaii. On Thanksgiving Day 1944, the 38th Infantry Division left New Guinea for Leyte, in the Philippines. The 149th Infantry landed there December 6, 1944. While the unit was at the airport, the Japanese dropped paratroopers on the airfield, and for six days, in a torrential rain, the 149th Infantry fought their enemies before gaining control of the airfield. In January 1945 plans for the attack on Luzon were being formulated; this was where the infamous Bataan Death March had occurred in 1942. The 149th Infantry found itself able to liberate the 38th Tank Company, from Harrodsburg, Ky. (some of which had been members of Covington’s Company D), from the Japanese prison camp.
The attack on the prison camp started on the morning of January 29. This operation consisted of four separate campaigns over the next five months: Zigzag Pass (January 29–February 14); Bataan and the adjacent islands in Manila Bay (February 11–April 7); the Stotsenburg area (March 7–April 30); and the territory east of Manila (April 30–June 30). At the end of these operations on June 30, the division’s statistics were 20,547 Japanese killed and 645 taken prisoner, 37 officers and 527 U.S. personnel dead, and 109 officers and 1,950 U.S. men wounded. The Kentucky 138th Field Artillery Regiment fired 54,375 rounds of ammunition during these battles and was a part of the division given the nickname “The Avengers of Bataan.” By the end of October 1945, the troops from Kentucky who had fought in the Philippines, as well as the liberated prisoners from Kentucky, were on ships destined for Los Angeles. Once back in the United States, the soldiers were transported to Camp Atterbury in Indiana, and within 48 hours most were separated from the ser vice; some of the liberated prisoners remained because they needed additional medical care. The anticipated 12-month call-up to federal military ser vice had turned into a 58-month commitment. Alfaro, Armando J. The Paper Trail of the Kentucky National Guard. Utica, Ky.: McDowell, 2003. Craft, Joseph R. “Kentucky National Guard History, 1937–1962,” War Department Records, Frankfort, Ky.
NATIONAL UNDERGROUND RAILROAD MUSEUM, MAYSVILLE. Because of its proximity to the Ohio River, and because it contained one of the largest holding pens for recaptured slaves along the North-South border, Maysville was a hotbed of pro- and antislavery forces during the first half of the 19th century. A movement was begun by many concerned individuals, churches, and organizations to assist slaves attempting to escape to the North. Maysville and nearby Ripley, Ohio, were among the first communities to support antislavery societies and to set up Underground Railroad stations. The Underground Railroad consisted of a vast network of people who worked together to provide assistance to the fugitives. The operation was risky, and many whites and free persons of color were jailed or fined, or both, for aiding or encouraging the flight of slaves. Secret codes and special railway jargon often were used to protect the participants and to conceal their operations. “Conductors” took fugitives to safe houses, situated about 20 miles apart, where they could get food, clothing, and rest for a short time before moving on to the next station. Two stations set up in Maysville were Phillip’s Folly, at 227 Sutton St., and the Bierbower House, at 38 W. Fourth St. Carriage-makers Frederick and Jonathan Bierbower owned the Bierbower House and were known to hide slaves in their home, which soon became an important stop on the Underground Railroad. The Bierbower House is now the home of the National Underground Railroad Museum of Mayville. The building has been re-
stored to closely resemble the way it may have looked when slaves were hidden there. Many photos, slave artifacts, and memorabilia are on display at the museum. Crawford, Byron. “Maysville’s Own Underground Railroad Museum Tells Story of Slavery,” KE, September 14, 1998, B1. PBS. “The Underground Railroad.” www.pbs.org (accessed January 23, 2007). Welcome to . . . Maysville, Kentucky. “The National Underground Railroad Museum.” www.cityof maysville.com (accessed January 23, 2007).
NATIVITY, CHURCH OF THE (EPISCOPAL), MAYSVILLE. The Right Reverend William Meade, the Episcopal bishop of Virginia, considered establishing an Episcopal church in the Maysville area when he visited in 1831. In 1838, when Bishop B. B. Smith, the first ordained bishop of Kentucky, assigned Deacon N. Newlin Cowgill to begin a church in Maysville, progress began in earnest. The original group of Christians attending Episcopal church ser vices met in the council chamber of the Maysville Market House. Deacon Cowgill was successful in raising $1,500 in pledges for a building, but when he was transferred, the building plans were put on hold. From 1839 to 1847, the congregation met in a private room. By February 1850 ser vices were being held in an unfi nished building that later became the church. In 1854 the completed church building was consecrated as part of the Diocese of Lexington. That same year, the church purchased a Louisville-made pipe organ, the first one in Maysville. In the 1860s Father Frank M. Gregg, attempting to forestall a church division, advised his congregation never to discuss Civil War issues on church property; throughout the nation many congregations were dividing over war issues. About a century later, the church in 1955 gained possession of the Old Opera House bell that was originally used in 1873 to summon fi remen in Maysville for an emergency. The bell was dedicated and blessed by the Right Reverend William R. Moody. In 1961, the church made plans for an alcohol rehabilitation center to address the problems of men in the community who were addicted to alcohol. The rehabilitation center, founded by Dr. Robert Blake and others, became St. Luke’s Hostel. It was able to help about 110 patients in only two years, closing in July 1965 because of a lack of funding. Barr, Frances Keller. Ripe to the Harvest: History of the Episcopal Diocese of Lexington, 1895–1995. Lexington, Ky.: Diocese of Lexington, 1995. Moore, T. Ross. Church of the Nativity: A Historical Sketch. Maysville, Ky., Privately published, 1977. “Old Opera House Bell Becomes Church Bell Here,” Daily Independent, February 8, 1955. Swinford, Francis Keller, and Rebecca Smith Lee. Great Elm Tree: Heritage of the Episcopal Diocese of Lexington. Lexington, Ky.: Faith House Press, 1969.
646 NATLEE NATLEE. Natlee is an Owen Co. community in the southern part of the county near the Scott Co. border. It was named after Nat Lee, who helped build the covered bridge that was once located nearby. Natlee, at the intersection of Ky. Rt. 2018 and the New Columbus Rd., is about two miles west of New Columbus. According to the best information available, there has not been a school at Natlee. The Pleasant View Baptist Church is close by, and the 1883 Lake atlas suggests that there was a winery and distillery at Natlee, along with a tollhouse on the way to New Columbus. Natlee is the birthplace of one of Owen Co.’s most famous military sons, Vice Adm. Willis Augustus Lee Jr. An Atlas of Owen County, Kentucky. Philadelphia: Lake, 1883. Houchens, Mariam Sidebottom. History of Owen County: “Sweet Owen.” Louisville: Standard, 1976. Rennick, Robert M. Kentucky Place Names. Lexington: Univ. Press of Kentucky, 1984.
NAZARENES. Probably the oldest Nazarene congregation in Northern Kentucky is the Newport First Church of the Nazarene, founded in 1904 as the Apostolic Holiness Church at the home of Mr. and Mrs. Daniel Blott of Newport. The congregation later acquired the old German United Brethren Church building at 210 W. 7th St. In 1909 it joined the nascent national Church of the Nazarene and by 1910 purchased a lot at 317 W. 6th St. in Newport, building a church and worshipping there until moving back to the W. 7th St. location in 1913. From 1919 until 1922, the members worshipped in a rented hall at 7th and York Sts., and in 1922 they purchased a lot at the southeast corner of W. 7th and Putnam Sts., where they built a frame structure. In 1928 the congregation replaced the frame building with a new brick church, designed and built by church member J. M. Wilson and containing a large auditorium surrounded by 11 classrooms. By 1930 the church had grown to 300 members. The present church at 830 York St. was dedicated on May 28, 1950, and the Educational Annex was constructed in 1965. Founded in 1935, the Covington First Church of the Nazarene began renting the old Scott Street Methodist Church at 530 Scott St. (now the parking lot of the Kenton Co. Public Library) in Covington in 1939 and purchased it in 1944. In 1967 the congregation dedicated a new 300-seat church along the Dixie Highway in Park Hills, and further additions were completed in 1985 and 1991. The Central Church of the Nazarene in Fort Wright began as the First Church of the Nazarene Ludlow in 1939. In May 1941 the congregation broke ground at the southeast corner of Oak and Davies Sts. in Ludlow for a new church; that building is now the headquarters of the Duro Bag Manufacturing Company. In 1966, after many of the congregation’s members had moved from Ludlow to other suburban communities in Northern Kentucky, the church’s pastor, Rev. Arthur O. Little, began construction of a new 26,000-square-foot facility on a four-acre tract of land on Pieck Ln. in Fort Wright, alongside I-75. Little drew the blueprints for the church, which
was built entirely by the labor of church members and officially dedicated in April 1972. The East Side Church of the Nazarene, now at 2505 Eastern Ave. in Covington, was founded in 1940 by Rev. John Knapp, the brother of Rev. Martin Wells Knapp, founder of God’s Bible College in Cincinnati. Originally located at Bird and Garrard Sts., the congregation moved to its present site in 1965. In Northern Kentucky there are a number of Nazarene congregations that belong to the Eastern District of Kentucky, including Augusta, Central Church (Fort Wright), Covington First (Park Hills), Crittenden (Dry Ridge), Dayton, East Side (Covington), Elijah (Hebron), Erlanger First, Florence Community, Immanuel (Highland Heights), Maysville, and Newport First. The Church of the Nazarene, an international Christian denomination founded in the early 20th century in the United States and headquartered in Kansas City, Mo., has more than 14,000 congregations worldwide. A descendant of the Holiness Movement that arose among some U.S. Methodists in the mid-19th century, the Church of the Nazarene stresses “entire sanctification.” To Nazarenes, the process of repentance and acceptance of Jesus Christ by persons of responsible age precedes justification and regeneration, made possible by the Crucifi xion of Jesus. Justification and regeneration, in turn, precede “entire sanctification,” which frees believers from original sin through the baptism of the Holy Spirit as they strive to grow in “holiness” throughout the remainder of their lives. “Building Anniversary,” KP, June 22, 1951, 3. “Church of the Week,” KP, October 16, 2003, 5K. Covington First Church of the Nazarene. www .covingtonfirstnazarene.com/ (accessed December 3, 2006). “Erlanger Church Work to Begin,” KP, July 17, 1958, 24. “First Ser vice: New Church in Newport Will Be Opened Sunday,” KP, January 23, 1928, 1. Little, Rev. Arthur O. Interview by Paul A. Tenkotte, December 4, 2006, Fort Wright, Ky. 100 Years. This Is Our Story: First Church of the Nazarene, Newport, Kentucky. Newport, Ky.: First Church of the Nazarene, 2004. “Plan New Church in Ft. Wright,” KP, May 20, 1966, 2K. “Reverend, Church Both Have Big Days Sunday,” KP, June 19, 1999, 7K. Tenkotte, Paul A. A Heritage of Art and Faith: Downtown Covington Churches. Covington, Ky.: Kenton Co. Historical Society, 1986. “To Break Ground Sunday for New Ludlow Church,” KP, May 3, 1941, 1. “Wesleyan Interpretations of Gospel Taught by Nazarene Church: Congregation Is Housed in New Tabernacle,” KP, April 8, 1930, 1–2.
Paul A. Tenkotte
NEAVE. Located in southwestern Bracken Co. along Ky. Rt. 22, Neave was once known as Holton’s Corner, a tribute to Abner Holton, who had the first general store there during the mid-1800s. The Holtons operated a store at Neave for several decades, and perhaps they were the first to refer to the settlement as a “string town.” Many of the
homes and barns in this area were destroyed by a tornado on March 12, 1923; another tornado ripped apart the general store in 1927. As in most small towns, there were blacksmith shops and produce storehouses before the modern buildings in town were constructed. Many of these sturdier brick buildings were ruined too, however, in the tornadoes that struck the town during the 1940s and by another that struck in 1968, killing two people and destroying dozens of buildings. Little remains of the once-thriving town of Neave except for a few hardy citizens who farm the nearby fields or commute to work in larger communities elsewhere. There was a school at Neave, but it was closed in 1940 when the county school system was consolidated. Bracken Co. Extension Homemakers. History of Bracken County. Bicentennial ed. Brooksville, Ky.: Bracken Co. Extension Homemakers, 2002.
Caroline R. Miller
NEEDMORE (BRACKEN CO.). The Bracken Co. Needmore, Ky., is located at the intersection of Dutch Ridge and the Augusta-Minerva Rds., just southeast of Augusta. Originally, a tollhouse was located at Needmore. Over the years, several large Victorian-style homes were constructed near the Frolicher windmill, which supplied well water to the area. This water was at times sold in bottles at the house currently owned by the George Kelsch heirs. The winery, at the west end of Needmore, is a massive and impressive structure (see Viniculture). The vaulted limestone cellar is 100 feet long, 40 feet wide, and 37 feet high. The entrances have keystone arches and timbers that are 12 inches by 12 inches. This enormous structure is being restored to recapture its former beauty and reestablish its nationally ranked wine production. Perhaps the best account of Needmore can be found in the book The Natural Man, by Bracken Co. native Ed McClanahan. McClanahan was born in Brooksville and is the author of several books. Bracken Co. Extension Homemakers. History of Bracken County. Bicentennial ed. Brooksville, Ky.: Bracken Co. Extension Homemakers, 2002.
Caroline R. Miller
NEEDMORE (OWEN CO.). The Owen Co. village of Needmore is one of at least five places in the commonwealth of Kentucky sharing that name over the years. It is on the eastern edge of the county, along the Grant Co. boundary, where Ky. Rt. 22 and Fortune Ridge Rd. meet. Needmore is just east of the village of Sweet Owen. According to the best information available, there has not been a school at Needmore. The Mount Hebron Baptist Church is located here. An Atlas of Owen County, Kentucky. Philadelphia: Lake, 1883. Houchens, Mariam Sidebottom. History of Owen County: “Sweet Owen.” Louisville: Standard, 1976.
NELSON, GEORGE EATON (b. January 31, 1899, Covington, Ky.; d. July 8, 1985, Covington,
NELSON, THOMAS HENRY
Ky.). George Nelson, an army colonel and a longterm member of the Kentucky National Guard, was the son of Nathan Ulysses Nelson of Paducah, a traveling candy salesman, and Mammie Eaton Nelson. He attended the Ohio Military Institute in Cincinnati from 1910 to 1914 and the Staunton (Va.) Military Academy in 1914 and graduated from the old Covington High School in 1916. He entered World War I in 1917, not long after his 18th birthday. He embarked for England in 1918, near the end of the war, and was discharged in January 1919. Nelson married Grace Galvin, the daughter of Maurice L. Galvin, a prominent Republican driving force who was also Kentucky commonwealth attorney from 1903 to 1905, and the Nelsons had two children, a daughter, Grace Galvin Nelson Auge, and a son, Maurice Galvin Nelson. Between the wars, from 1924 to 1940, Nelson served in the Kentucky National Guard. During that period he organized Horse Cavalry Troop F, which manned barracks and stables in Sanfordtown and also, between the wars, provided a social fabric for Northern Kentucky and Greater Cincinnati. Judges, bookies, company owners, doctors, lawyers, and grocery store owners made up the troop. It even sponsored a polo team. For a short time, when martial law was declared during the Ohio River flood of 1937, Nelson served as police chief in Covington and Troop F provided security. Next to swimming in the Licking and Ohio rivers as a boy, commanding Troop F on horseback was Nelson’s greatest joy outside his family, he wrote in his autobiography. Activated for regular duty by the U.S. Army in May 1941, as World War II was brewing, Nelson entered the army a second time. He became a lieutenant colonel and served in the Adjutant General’s Office of the 100th Division; he held the same office with the 22nd Corps at Camp Campbell, Ky. Nelson sailed for England in November 1944. On the transatlantic ship passage, he caught pneumonia. He returned to the United States in January
George Nelson as a cadet at Ohio Military Institute, ca. 1911–1912.
1945, retiring from the army as a colonel on January 21, 1945. The Nelson home was at 411 Wallace Ave., Covington, from 1928 to 1994. George and Grace Nelson belonged to the Queen City Club, the Cincinnati Country Club, and the Fort Mitchell Country Club, where Nelson served as president in 1966–1967. Nelson managed the KosmosPortland Cement Company’s regional office, based in Cincinnati, between 1945 and 1964. He worked in public relations and sales for the H. C. Nutting Company from 1965 until his retirement in 1976. In 1983 Nelson was named a Kentucky Colonel, an Ambassador of Goodwill, and an Admiral of Kentucky Waters by Kentucky governor John Y. Brown Jr. (1979–1983). In 1985 Nelson died at St. Elizabeth Hospital North in Covington and was buried in St. Mary Cemetery at Fort Mitchell, next to his wife of 65 years. “George Nelson, Family Patriarch,” KP, July 9, 1985, 3D. Nelson, George E. “Autobiography,” typewritten manuscript in the possession of Roger Auge II. ———. “My Ser vice in the U.S. Army, World War II, January 6, 1941, to November 21, 1945,” typewritten manuscript in the possession of Roger Auge II.
Roger Auge II
NELSON, ROBERT W. (b. April 3, 1845, Alexandria, Ky.; d. January 9, 1927, Newport, Ky.). Robert William Nelson, a mayor and a state legislator, was the son of John H. Nelson. Robert Nelson was educated in local schools and then studied law under John G. Carlisle in Covington. He began his law practice in Alexandria but in 1869 moved it to Newport. At various times, he served as mayor of Newport, Campbell Co. attorney, state representative, and state senator. He played a major role in securing funds to construct the Central Bridge from Newport to Cincinnati, the streetcar line (see Streetcars) from Newport to Fort Thomas, and the Latonia Racecourse. During the Pearl Bryan murder trial in 1896, he was one of the prosecuting attorneys and presented the closing arguments, in which he sought the death penalty for the defendants, Scott Jackson and Alonzo Walling. Nelson was also instrumental in organizing the German National Bank in Newport, later known as the American National Bank. His home in Newport was on the corner of Park Ave. and Nelson Pl., where the St. John United Church of Christ now stands. Nelson Pl. was named in his honor. He was married twice; his first wife, Maria Sallee, died October 30, 1878, after just 15 months of marriage and shortly after giving birth to a daughter. His second wife, Mary Winston Berry Nelson (married 1893), was a niece of Albert Seaton Berry and a granddaughter of James Berry, founder of Jamestown, Ky. (now Dayton). She was also a great-granddaughter of Washington Berry and Alice Taylor Berry, sister of James Taylor Jr., founder of Newport. Nelson died at age 81 and was buried in Evergreen Cemetery in Southgate. His wife and two daughters, Judith Nelson and Mary Nelson Jordan, survived him.
“Elected County Judge,” CJ, August 12, 1854, 2. Kerr, Charles. History of Kentucky. Vol. 4. Chicago: American Historical Society, 1922. Reis, Jim, “Robert William Nelson,” KP, January 29, 1996, 4K. “Robert W. Nelson Dies,” KP, January 10, 1927, 1. “Will Probated,” KP, January 13, 1927, 1.
NELSON, THOMAS HENRY (b. October 20, 1820, Mason Co., Ky.; d. March 14, 1896, Terre Haute, Ind.). Ambassador Thomas H. Nelson was the second child of Dr. Thomas Washington and Frances Doniphan Nelson. He was educated at Maysville Academy and became a lawyer. Nelson married Elizabeth Key, daughter of Marshall Key and Harriet Sellman Key, on December 11, 1843, and the couple relocated to Rockville, Ind., in early 1844. He made a significant impact on the western Indiana legal community. Already a dynamic public speaker though only 25 years old, Nelson was drafted to represent the Whig Party in the 1846 congressional election; however, he withdrew as a candidate in favor of former Indiana congressman Richard W. Thompson. In 1847 Nelson relocated his law practice to Terre Haute, the major city in western Indiana. A chance meeting there with Illinois congressman Abraham Lincoln in 1849 altered his life. Though he later lost the 1860 congressional election to Democrat Daniel W. Voorhees in a campaign marred by the death of two of Nelson’s children, Nelson was lauded for mapping out a successful strategy at the Indiana Republican convention. Soon after the election, Lincoln, the newly elected Republican U.S. president (1861–1865), asked Nelson to serve as the nation’s ambassador to Chile. Nelson was residing in Santiago when he learned that his brother, Gen. William “Bull” Nelson, had been killed in an argument on September 19, 1862, at Louisville, by fellow Union general Jefferson Columbus Davis, a native of Indiana. While serving in Chile, Ambassador Nelson was declared a Chilean national idol for fearlessly saving the lives of trapped postulates during a catastrophic fire, which consumed the Catholic Church of the Compania in Santiago on December 8, 1863. Despite Nelson’s heroism, more than 2,300 people, mostly young women, perished. Nelson also drew praise later for his adroit diplomacy during Spain’s bid between 1863 and 1865 to reclaim its Latin American empire. He resigned from his duties in Chile and, on March 12, 1866, returned with his family to Terre Haute. Nelson later toured the country, giving lectures and advising presidents Andrew Johnson (1865– 1869) and Ulysses S. Grant (1869–1877) on Latin American affairs. During this period Nelson maintained residences in both New York City and Washington, D.C. President Grant, concerned about Mexican president Benito Juarez’s unstable government, in 1869 persuaded Nelson to become the U.S. ambassador to Mexico. When Elizabeth Nelson died on March 22, 1872, in Maitrata, Mexico, the grieving Thomas Nelson tendered his resignation. However, because President Grant was unable to find a suitable replacement, he did not honor Nelson’s request until 1873. Nelson died in
648 NELSON, WILLIAM “BULL,” MAJOR GENERAL 1896 and was buried at Terre Haute’s Woodlawn Cemetery. Bradsby, H. C. History of Vigo County, Indiana, Illustrated. Chicago: S. B. Nelson, 1891. Davis, William Columbus. The Last Conquistadores: The Spanish Intervention in Peru and Chile, 1863–1866. Athens: Univ. of Georgia Press, 1950.
NELSON, WILLIAM “BULL,” MAJOR GENERAL (b. September 27, 1824, Mason Co., Ky.; d. September 29, 1862, Louisville, Ky.). The peculiar death and controversial bearing of this Civil War general have caused him to be greatly misunderstood rather than praised for his selfless actions that helped keep Kentucky loyal to the Union. Characterized as an ox of a man, William Nelson stood six feet four, weighed some 300 pounds, and had flashing black eyes that accented his excitable temperament. He was the son of Dr. Thomas W. Nelson and Frances Doniphan. His maternal grandfather, Dr. Anderson Doniphan, influenced Nelson toward his dreaded anger, whereas his paternal grandfather, “Captain” Thomas Nelson (ca. 1770–1841), provided him with invaluable social and political connections. William Nelson attended the Maysville Academy and graduated from Norwich Academy (university) in Vermont. In 1840 he was appointed a midshipman in the U.S. Navy. The impressionable 15-year-old Nelson set off and, for the next five years, sailed the South Seas and experienced the hard ways of Navy life. In fall 1845 Nelson reported to the newly established Naval School (academy) at Annapolis, Md. He graduated as a midshipman in July 1846 and was posted to serve in the Mexican War. He saw duty at Naval Battery No. 5 in the siege of Vera Cruz, Mexico, and with the 2nd Artillery Division in a military action known as the Tabasco Expedition. At the conclusion of the war, Nelson was given a sword for his heroism and proficiency as an artillerist. By February 1848 Nelson had become acting master on the Scourge. He was serving in that same capacity when the famed Hungarian revolutionary Louis Kossuth boarded the Mississippi at Smyrna, Turkey, on September 1, 1851. The following December Nelson became an escort for Kossuth’s famous tour of the United States. Nelson joined U.S. commodore Matthew C. Perry’s second voyage to Japan in 1854, becoming a sailing master on September 19, 1854, and a lieutenant on April 18, 1855. He then commanded the store ship Fredonia at Valparaiso, Chile, an assignment of civil charity that endeared him to the people of that country. In September 1858 he joined the steam frigate Niagara and helped return captured slaves to Monrovia, Liberia. When Nelson became an ordnance officer at the Washington Navy Yard in 1860, Kentucky’s allegiance to the Union appeared suspect. In April 1861 he went to Louisville and reported on how the political currents seemed to be running, and his report led to a meeting with President Abraham Lincoln (1861–1865), at which Nelson received permission to distribute federal arms within Kentucky. On May 7 he met with Union leaders at Frankfort and arranged for 5,000
“Lincoln Guns” to be put in the hands of loyal Kentuckians. Soon afterward, the U.S. War Department detached Nelson from the Navy to organize a military campaign into East Tennessee. He recruited Union soldiers throughout July, and on August 6, 1861, those volunteers marched into Camp Dick Robinson in Garrard Co., Ky., under his orders. Nelson became a brigadier general of volunteers on September 16, 1861, and in the months that followed, he drove the Confederates from the Big Sandy Valley of Eastern Kentucky. He then joined the Army of the Ohio and received command of its 4th Division. Nelson became the first to enter the Confederate stronghold of Nashville, and his extraordinary performance at the battle of Shiloh in Tennessee led to a promotion to major general. The 4th Division led the way into Corinth, Miss., and Nelson soon had the key command for the ill-fated Chattanooga, Tenn., Campaign. The Confederates’ Heartland Offensive into Kentucky brought Nelson to Louisville on August 22, 1862. He took command of the newly organized Army of Kentucky at Lexington, and seven days later his field commander committed raw Union recruits against a seasoned Confederate army. Nelson raced to the field, receiving a serious thigh wound when he desperately tried to rally the panicked troops. He managed to elude capture but could not escape the severe criticism connected to this horrendous defeat. By September 18, 1862, Nelson had recuperated enough to command the forces at Louisville. Days later he gave Brig. Gen. Jefferson Columbus Davis (1828–1879) responsibility for organizing the Home Guard troops. Davis considered the assignment demeaning, and when his view became apparent to Nelson, the fiery Nelson became incensed. On September 29, 1862, Nelson publicly shamed Davis in the main lobby of the Galt House in Louisville. In response, Davis obtained a pistol from a lawyer friend and shot Nelson in the heart. Davis was returned to duty and never received any punishment for this perceived “affair of honor.” Out of respect for the victim, however, authorities named the newly formed Camp Nelson in Jessamine Co., Ky., in the slain commander’s honor on June 12, 1863. Nelson was buried in the family plot at the Maysville Cemetery. The Camp Nelson National Cemetery, established below Nicholasville in 1868, represents a lasting memorial to the praiseworthy ser vice of Kentucky’s “quarterdeck general.” Ellis, Anderson Nelson. “Sketch of William Nelson.” In The Biographical Cyclopedia and Portrait Gallery with an Historical Sketch of the State of Ohio. 6 vols. Cincinnati: Western Biographical, 1894. Fry, James B., Killed by a Brother Soldier. New York: G. P. Putnam’s, 1885. Stevenson, Daniel. “General Nelson, Kentucky, and Lincoln Guns,” Magazine of American History 10 (August 1883).
Donald A. Clark
NEW. The Owen Co. community of New is seven miles south of Owenton, along Highway 607 west of Ky. Rt. 227. Sandridge Creek flows through the area,
and there was once a post office in town, established in 1895 by William J. New. There is no evidence that there was a school at New, but the 1883 Lake atlas depicts the town as lying within the old Monterey Precinct and shows a tollhouse on the edge of town. At that time there were two churches nearby, the Sandridge Church and the Elk Lick Church. An Atlas of Owen County, Kentucky. Philadelphia: Lake, 1883. Houchens, Mariam Sidebottom. History of Owen County: “Sweet Owen.” Louisville, Ky.: Standard, 1976. Rennick, Robert M. Kentucky Place Names. Lexington: Univ. of Kentucky Press, 1984.
NEW BETHEL BAPTIST CHURCH. New Bethel Baptist Church was founded in March 1840 by 25 people who had separated from the Salem Baptist Church to establish a new church in the Verona area of Boone Co. On June 22, 1840, the founding members, along with delegates from the Ten Mile, Mount Zion, Poplar Grove, and New Salem churches, named the church the Regular Baptist Church of Christ at New Bethel. The founders wrote the Church Covenant, adopted articles of faith, and copied their Rules of Decorum from the Salem Church’s book. In July 1840 the church called David Lillard as pastor, and he held ser vices on the third Saturday of each month. Initially the congregation met at members’ homes. When the church quickly outgrew the homes, meetings were held in Zadock Stephenson’s barn. On August 2, 1845, Zadock and Delphia Stephenson donated one acre of land to the trustees of New Bethel for construction of the first church building. Today, that building site is on the grounds of New Bethel Cemetery. In March 1880, with only 70 cents in its treasury, the church voted to construct a new building on the donated land. During construction, ser vices were held at the Verona Methodist Church. The new building was completed for $2,036, with members hauling supplies by horse and wagon and donating many hours of labor. After all of the bills were paid, the balance in the church treasury was $2.95. In July 1926 the trustees purchased the old Verona Methodist Church building in downtown Verona for $1,000. In 1950 the New Bethel congregation voted again to construct a new building, which is still being used by the church. Subsequent additions include a nursery and youth building added in the 1960s, a steeple and chimes added in the 1970s, and a new sanctuary and fellowship hall added in 1980. New Bethel has about 300 members. Deed Book 66, p. 15, Boone Co. Court house, Burlington, Ky. History of New Bethel Baptist Church. Homecoming program, 1971. Minutes of the New Bethel Baptist Church. Book 2, 1859–1889. New Bethel Baptist Church, Verona, Ky. Phillips, Bob. History of New Bethel Baptist Church. Dedication program, 1980. Roy McCubbin Diary. Used with permission of his daughter, Faye Morrisey, Verona, Ky.
Karen L. Leek
NEW HORIZONS MEDICAL CENTER
NEW COLUMBUS. New Columbus is about three miles west of the point where the Kentucky counties of Grant, Scott, Harrison, and Owen meet in southeastern Owen Co., along Ky. Rt. 607, some 10 and a half miles southeast of Owenton. The first settler at New Columbus is thought to have been John Guill from Carolina Co., Va., who had fought for three years during the Revolutionary War under the command of Colonel Holcomb. Guill arrived in the area in 1780. He built a home on a small stream that emptied into Big Eagle Creek in the area that came to be known as Guill’s Branch. Soon Ben Franklin Parr from Scotland, a Mr. Hughes and his wife from Culpepper Co., Va., and Billy Radcliffe joined families named Jones, Lee, Marshall, Prather, True, and Works, who, with some other families, settled in the New Columbus area. Many descendants from these founding families still reside in the vicinity. About two miles southeast of New Columbus, as the crow flies, is Eagle Creek, where several grist mills were once located, including mills operated by the Mallory, Lee, Hammon, and Lusby families. Lee’s Mill was the name given to the area’s first post office, established in 1840; however, in 1854 the name was changed and the post office moved to New Columbus. The post office was discontinued in 1864, reestablished in 1868, and permanently discontinued in 1908. Thereafter mail was delivered from Corinth, in Grant Co. Over the years, New Columbus grew large enough to support, at one time, two general stores, several doctors, a drugstore, a millinery shop, some blacksmiths, an undertaker, and two churches. The Methodist church had its beginning in prayer meetings that were taking place during the early 1800s. After the church moved from one building to another several times, its final site, in 1888, was across the road from the Baptist church. The community’s cemetery was chartered and opened in 1882. Records of the sales of lots and of burials there were destroyed by fire in 1920; however, during the early 1990s a survey team walked through the cemetery and recorded information from all identifiable monuments. Houchens, Mariam Sidebottom. History of Owen County: “Sweet Owen.” Louisville, Ky.: Standard, 1976. “New Columbus,” vertical fi les, Owen Co. Public Library, Owenton, Ky.
NEW EAGLE MILLS/WITHER’S MILLS. The community once known as New Eagle Mills or Wither’s Mill (1810–1920s) was centered on the mill at the mouth of Clark’s Creek, where it flows into the Big Eagle Creek, in the west central portion of what is now Grant Co., Ky. The community at and around the mill was of such importance that its road, Wither’s Mill Rd., was mentioned in Pendleton or Grant Co. court orders for decades, as neighbors were assigned the duty of maintaining its roadbed. The Wither’s Mill Rd. stretched all the way to Williamstown, along Clark’s Creek. The mill site was first mentioned in March 1810, when John Weathers or Withers asked for permission to
build an “inbutment” for a water grist mill on the east side of Big Eagle Creek, apparently on land that was owned by heirs of Allen Withers. In 1868 John and Julia Clark Collins from Crittenden, Ky., bought 100 acres on the west side of Big Eagle Creek and built a mill store and dwelling on the property, changing the mill’s name to New Eagle Mills. A post office operated there (1870– 1905), and according to the 1876 Kentucky Gazetteer, New Eagle Mills was “five miles from Elliston Station” and had a blacksmith, a general store, a miller, and a wool carder. In 1890 the Thomas Pettit family bought the mill property. They operated a wool-carding mill (Pettit’s Mill) at the end of the Eagle Mill Ford Rd. until the 1920s. Nearby were the Pettit School (1856–1937) and the Wesley Chapel Methodist Church (1855–1945). One of the most scenic views in Grant Co. is from the vantage of Mount Pisgah United Methodist Church. From there one can look down on the beautiful bottomlands of Eagle Creek and the creek’s horseshoe bend where water flows toward the old site of New Eagle Mills. Conrad, John B., ed. History of Grant County. Williamstown, Ky.: The Grant Co. Historical Society, 1992. Hutzelman, Tom. 1858 Atlas of Grant County. Williamstown, Ky.: Grant Co. News, 1998. Pendleton Co. Court Order Book, Falmouth, Ky.
NEW ENGLAND DISTILLERY. The Covingtonbased New England Distillery became one of the largest distillers in Northern Kentucky. It was originally located at 61 Pike St. and later moved to a building that partially remains at 115 Pike St., across the alley (which was once a rail siding) from the parking lot where the Louisville and Nashville Railroad had its freight depot. The New England Distillery operated from 1885 until the 1960s. It survived during Prohibition by making specially exempted distilled alcohol products for medicinal purposes. In 1926 the officers of the corporation were Herbert Hoffheimer, president; Lester E. Jacobi, vice president; and Maysville resident Henry E. Pogue, secretary and treasurer. In 1935 the enterprise was sold to a giant distilled-spirits conglomerate, the Shenley Distillery Corporation. The Covington division then became one of the world’s largest producers of industrial rum for the baking industry, for confectionery additives, and for use in tobacco products. The smell of its production output permeated the surrounding parts of Covington’s downtown. The warehouse remains as a large concrete structure with few windows, along the north side of W. Eighth St., just east of the railroad overpass, and is now used for other types of storage. Covington City Directories, 1927–1937, Kenton Co. Public Library, Covington, Ky. Geaslen, Chester. “There Ran a Distillery or Two in Covington,” KE, December 15, 1966, 2. Reis, Jim. “Distilleries a Vital Part of Northern Kentucy’s Past,” KP, January 6, 1996, 4K.
NEWHALL, JUDSON L. (b. March 26, 1870, Louise, Quebec, Canada; d. July 23, 1952, Park Hills,
Ky.). Judson Lincoln Newhall, who became a congressman, and his parents moved from Quebec, Canada, to Covington in 1874. Judson was educated in local public schools and later graduated from Covington’s Martin Academy and, in 1898, from the Indiana University Law School at Bloomington, Ind. In 1905 he became music director of the Covington Public Schools (see Covington Independent Schools). Newhall married Nellie J. Kinsley on September 1, 1891, in Covington, and they had three children, Elwood, Lucy, and Gail. During World War I, Newhall ran a YMCA canteen in St. Nazaire, France, for the entertainment of American ser vicemen. Upon the war’s end, he returned to his former position as music director of the Covington Schools. He took several academic courses at the University of Cincinnati from 1926 to 1928. Newhall entered politics in 1928 and was elected as a Republican to the U.S. House of Representatives (1929–1931). At the end of his twoyear term, he ran for reelection but was defeated by Fort Thomas Democrat Brent Spence. Although Newhall ran for Congress several additional times, he was never again elected to public office. Later in life, he owned and operated a Standard Oil gasoline station in Erlanger. Newhall was a member of the First Baptist Church of Covington for more than 70 years; he served there as choir director. He died at age 82 at his home at 1152 Old State Rd., Park Hills. He was buried in Forest Lawn Cemetery in Erlanger. His wife, Nellie, and their three children survived him. Biographical Directory of the United States Congress. “Newhall, Judson Lincoln (1870–1952).” http:// bioguide.congress.gov (accessed December 31, 2005). “Daughter Born,” KP, June 2, 1892, 4. “Honor Newhall,” KP, February 8, 1930, 1. Reis, Jim. “Bracken Native Overcame Long Odds,” KP, November 23, 1998, 4K.
NEW HORIZONS MEDICAL CENTER. There has been a hospital in Owen Co. at Owenton since July 1951. Designed by Louisville architects Thomas J. Nolan and Sons, the original 21-bed Owen Co. War Memorial Hospital was housed in a 45-by-145-foot building. It has been expanded a few times over the years and has had several owners and operators. The New Horizons Medical Center is the present name of the hospital. A 24bed, 24-hour-a-day, 7-day-per-week operation, it is located on the north side of town along U.S. 127. It is in the center of a triangle of hospitals at Carrollton, Frankfort, and Williamstown, and its mere existence has been life-saving for trauma cases in which a patient needs attention within that critical first hour after injury. Dr. O. A. Cull arrived in Owenton in 1951 and was still practicing at the hospital in 2005. For 15 years, beginning in 1956, Herbert Lee “Hub” Smith was the hospital facility’s administrator. The hospital is fully certified and operates with a staff of seven doctors. Most medical problems can be treated there, and trauma cases needing more specialized care can be airlifted via helicopter to major medical centers in Northern Kentucky, Lexington,
650 NEW LIBERTY or Louisville. Over time, this medical center has suffered the same fate as most small rural hospitals in the United States: its inherent diseconomies of scale make the facility’s per-unit costs higher than those in larger facilities. In the world of modern private insurance and governmental reimbursement caps, some treatment procedures simply are not adequately reimbursed, resulting in red ink for the hospital. However, for the patient passing through its emergency room door, the New Horizons Medical Center still provides critical ser vice. New Horizons Medical Center. www.newhorizonsmedicalcenter.com.
NEW LIBERTY. Although the exact date of the first house built in New Liberty, Owen Co., Ky., is unknown, the town was large and thriving in 1800, 19 years before the county was created. Located about 10 miles northwest of Owenton on Ky. Rts. 227 and 36, the community continues to be a place of tranquil residential living. For many years New Liberty was the largest and most prosperous town in the county. It is believed that the first building was a two-story, 10room log house built by John Gayle and his slaves in 1806. A portion of the structure remains standing and has been converted into a barn. Early commercial goods were shipped to New Liberty via boat on the Ohio River to Ghent and via wagon from Ghent. After the Louisville and Nashville Railroad was built, merchandise was shipped to Liberty Station (Sanders) and transported from there by wagon. The Owen Union Agricultural and Mechanical Association Fairgrounds was the center of much interest and many varied attractions. Organized in 1859, the fairgrounds remained quite active until 1886, except for a period during the Civil War; it comprised several buildings, including stables and a large dining room for visitors. Horse racing became popu lar, and many of the local gentlemen owned horses that proved to be exceedingly fast. During the Civil War, when Union soldiers used the fairgrounds as a camp, a smallpox outbreak resulted in the death of many of them. It is reported that the soldiers used the bell tower of the New Liberty Baptist Church for target practice. One of the earliest schools in New Liberty was a combined school already existing by 1850. Concord College was established in town in 1867 for both male and female students. The last building of the college was constructed in 1921. The town’s first high school opened in the 1906–1907 school term. When the county’s high schools were consolidated in 1951, this building was converted to an elementary school, which closed in 1970 owing to further consolidation. The town’s first bank, incorporated in 1886 as Citizens Bank, remains a vital part of the community. At one time the businesses in town included a tanning yard, a woolen mill, the Gayle House Hotel, the first newspaper in Owen Co. the Owen News (1868), a tobacco warehouse, stores, livery stables, an undertaker, churches, and a bank. In 1864 the most important business and residential parts of town
were destroyed by fire; another fire in 1904 destroyed much of the rebuilt section of the town. The first church, established in 1801, was the Baptist Church of the Twins, called that because of its location between two creek branches known as Little Twin and Big Twin. By 1965 it was known as the New Liberty Baptist Church. During the early 1830s, there was a large Christian Church (Campbellites) revival movement in Kentucky, and some members of the Baptist church joined together to become part of the Christian Church denomination. The resulting New Liberty Christian Church is believed to have begun in 1833. There are no records about the first church building, except for the knowledge that bricks from it were used to construct the Second Baptist Church between 1919 and 1921. Today New Liberty no longer shows its former prosperity. It never totally recovered from its two devastating fires. A bank, a general store, a firehouse, a post office, and three churches remain in the town. Houchens, Marian Sidebottom. History of Owen County: “Sweet Owen.” Louisville, Ky.: Standard, 1976. “New Liberty,” vertical fi les, Owen Co. Public Library, Owenton, Ky.
NEW LIBERTY BAPTIST CHURCH. This church was originally known as the Baptist Church of the Twins, for the two branches of the Kentucky River, Big Twin and Little Twin creeks, that flow through New Liberty, Ky. The church dates back to 1801, when ser vices were held in the homes of its members. In 1810 a log building was constructed with a balcony for slaves to sit in during worship ser vices. A brick building, erected in 1819, burned in 1836, but the members lost no time in rebuilding; they reused the bricks from the walls of the previous structure. This building, with some modifications, remains the house of worship for the church. The church name was changed in 1842 to the Baptist Church of New Liberty; by 1965 it was known as the New Liberty Baptist Church. Up to that time, a total of 39 pastors had served the church, and it had functioned as the mother church for 10 other Baptist churches. The congregation has supported strong programs in Sunday School, Bible School, and mission ventures in its morethan-200-year history. “History of the New Liberty Baptist Church,” 1951, New Liberty Baptist Church, New Liberty, Ky. Houchens, Mariam Sidebottom. History of Owen County: “Sweet Owen.” Louisville, Ky.: Standard, 1976.
NEWMAN, ERICA (b. August 31, 1904, Oberkirch, Germany; d. February 20, 1992, Covington, Ky.). She was known as Erica A. Newman by her acquaintances in Northern Kentucky, where she spent two decades in her later life, after her performing career had ended. Erica’s father was Maximillan Herrmann, and all that is known of her mother is that her maiden surname was Ebner. As a dancer, model, singer, and actress, Erica Herr-
mann was one of the most photographed persons of the 1920s. She arrived in Hollywood in 1933 and appeared in movies with James Cagney, Bette Davis, and Edward G. Robinson. She was in I’ve Got Your Number (1934) with Joan Blondell and Pat O’Brien and in Strike Me Pink (1936) with Jimmy Durante. In 1939 Herrmann appeared in Wife, Husband, and Friend with Caesar Romero and Loretta Young. She became a good friend of Shirley Temple. Herrmann had two different Hollywood performing names: for her early years at Warner Bros., she used the screen name Rickey Newell; for Fox Studios, at the end of her Hollywood career, she was billed as Alice Armand. Herrmann appeared on Broadway in Flo Ziegfield’s rendition of the musical Showboat (1927). In January 1939 she was one of eight studio starlets to make a 12,000-mile airplane promotional tour in connection with Twentieth Century–Fox’s release of Tail Spin. She retired from entertainment in the mid-1940s and later married New York City policeman Vincent Joseph Newman. She moved to Northern Kentucky in the mid-1970s to be near her son and lived in Florence and then in Covington, in two nursing homes, the St. John Nursing Home and the Garrard Convalescent Center. She remained vibrant, sharp, and interesting until her very last days, recounting stories about her career and sharing items from her scrapbook. She died at St. Elizabeth Hospital in Covington and was cremated. “Erica Newman,” KP, February 21, 1992, 6A. Kentucky Death Certificate No. 4288, for the year 1992. “Passages,” KP, January 1, 1993, 1K–2K. “Screen News Here and in Hollywood,” NYT, February 7, 1939, 23. “Time Can’t Face a Startlet’s Luster,” KP, May 28, 1990, 1K.
NEW PERCEPTIONS INC. For more than 50 years, the organization now known as New Perceptions Inc. (NPI) has served the special needs of individuals in Boone, Carroll, Gallatin, Grant, Kenton, Owen, and Pendleton counties. NPI has been a leader in promoting the advancement of people who have developmental disabilities and other personal barriers. NPI was founded by a group of concerned parents in 1952 because no appropriate ser vices for their special-needs children existed. Its origins were in the Riverside School, in the basement of the First Presbyterian Church (now Community of Faith Presbyterian) in Covington. A similar school, Good Counsel, opened soon after in two locations: the Corpus Christi Catholic Church in Newport and the St. Aloysius School in Covington. Both schools were successful, and in order better to serve their clients, they merged in 1960. Then, as public demand grew, Riverside– Good Counsel built its own school building in 1972, offering grades K–12 and related programs. During the next years, Riverside–Good Counsel brought developmental education into the home, so that families could participate in preparing their children for the future. It also opened an
activity center that engaged adults in meaningful employment. During the 1970s it was federally mandated that school-age students be transitioned into public school programs by 1976. Riverside– Good Counsel then began to focus on expanding adult employment programs, as well as offering more preschool education to individuals with mental retardation or other developmental disabilities. Riverside–Good Counsel officially changed its name to NPI in 1985. Infant and toddler clients benefit from a variety of programs, which include physical, occupational, and speech therapy. NPI offers developmental intervention, provided by staff educators specializing in early childhood education. Children and their families are given the foundation they will need to be successful in life. Adult clients receive the support and learn the skills necessary for employment within the community or in site-based work programs. One example is a local collaborative effort with St. Elizabeth Medical Center and the Kenton Co. School District for work transition programs providing evaluation, training, and ultimately employment in a medical setting. NPI also runs a community-based supportive employment program, which offers in-depth one-on-one job placement and support in organizations throughout the community. The site-based employment program, located in Edgewood, offers clients assembly and packaging jobs, as well as other on-site ser vices such as the life skills program, in which clients have the opportunity to transition away from full-time work so that they are able to set and achieve personal, recreational, and social goals. NPI provides a ser vice throughout the stages of life to hundreds of Northern Kentucky families, supplying them with the confidence and tools to be able to set and reach their goals. The organization believes in the abilities of clients with developmental disabilities to achieve success, and to that end it provides opportunities for education, growth, and employment in a normalized setting in order to facilitate each individual’s achievement of his or her maximum potential. Today NPI serves more than 700 children and adults with developmental disabilities. What began as concerned parents wanting the best that life had to offer for their disabled children has become an organization driven by concern for those individuals who at one time were lost within a system that did not understand their special needs.
is one of the two county seats in Campbell, Co.; the other is Alexandria. Newport’s physical size is 3.5 square miles. Until 1792, Kentucky was a part of the Commonwealth of Virginia. After the French and Indian War, a Virginia aristocrat named Col. James Taylor Sr. purchased 2,700 acres from fellow Virginian George Muse; it was land awarded to Muse for his ser vices during the Revolutionary War. James Taylor Sr. never visited these lands but sent his sons, Hubbard and James Jr., to survey and settle the area. When Hubbard Taylor arrived in 1785, he discovered pioneer Jacob Fowler already settled in the area. Hubbard laid claim to the land that is now Newport (as well as Bellevue and Dayton, Ky.) and in 1791 laid out the first streets of Newport. He named the city after Christopher Newport, captain of the first ship to land at Jamestown, Va., in 1607. James Taylor Jr. arrived in town in 1792 and quickly became Newport’s leading citizen, businessman, and developer. His first major accomplishment was obtaining from the Kentucky legislature a charter establishing the City of Newport on December 14, 1795. Newport thereby became the first incorporated city north of Lexington. The federal census of 1800 listed a population of 106 for Newport. In 1805 Taylor persuaded the U.S. government to locate a military barracks and arsenal in Newport. The presence of the Newport Barracks was a significant influence upon the city’s early economic and social atmosphere. In its day, the barracks was the most important military post on what was then the western frontier of the United States. Newport grew between 1831 and 1870. Taylor built his residence in town in 1840. The availability of first river transportation and later railroads and
“Long Wait for Skills Training—Program Helps Disabled Find Jobs,” KP, July 24, 1997, 2K. New Perceptions, Inc. www.newperceptions.org (accessed March 14, 2006). “New Perceptions—Riverside Good Counsel Renamed New Perceptions, Inc.” KP, January 2, 1985, 8K.
Robin Rider Osborne
NEWPORT. Newport is a second-class city located in Northern Kentucky at the confluence of the Ohio and Licking rivers, directly south of Cincinnati and east (upriver) of Covington. Newport
Newport Finance Building, also known as Campbell Towers, southeast corner of Fourth and York Sts., Newport. It was built in 1927 and demolished in 1999.
its proximity to markets in states to the north made Newport an attractive location for both manufacturing and retail businesses. Textile factories, which had begun to appear on the banks of the Ohio and Licking rivers, eventually were replaced by iron and steel factories. By 1870 Newport had become the center of iron manufacturing in Kentucky and ranked 22nd in the country in this industry. Even into the 20th century, Newport had the secondhighest concentration of heavy industry in Kentucky. These factories have long been closed, with the exception of the Newport Steel Company, which remains as a descendant of Newport’s Andrews Steel Mill, founded in 1891. Slavery was not a big factor in the economy of the city of Newport. James Taylor Jr. brought his slaves with him from Virginia, and slaves accounted for 28 percent of the city’s population in 1820. However, by 1840 only 4 percent of the city’s residents were listed as slaves, and most of them were house servants or factory workers. As elsewhere in Kentucky, Newport had divided loyalties during the Civil War. After several civil disturbances between the differing partisans, Newport was placed under martial law for most of the duration of the conflict. The bitterness created by the war remained a dividing factor among Newport’s citizens for several generations. By the end of the Civil War, the number of residents in Newport had grown to 15,000. The construction of several bridges over the Ohio River in 1872 (see L&N Bridge) and 1892 (see Central Bridge) facilitated both residential and commercial development of the city in the later part of the 19th century. The period of 1870 to 1900 was critical in developing the broadest range of municipal ser vices, urban infrastructure, and public transportation. Modern utilities were also introduced, with the most important being the construction of city water and sewerage systems, begun in 1873. These systems made urban living cleaner and safer and accounted for dramatic increases in Newport’s population during this period. Taylor opened the first facility for the education of the city’s youth as the Newport Academy in 1800, and several other private schools operated for the first half of the 19th century. The first public schools in town opened in 1847. By the 1870s, three separate educational systems existed side by side in Newport: public schools for whites, segregated public schools for blacks, and parochial schools for Catholics. The first Catholic schools were begun in 1848 and provided elementary education to approximately 30 percent of the city’s school-age children through the end of the century. Newport’s public high school opened in 1860. The Southgate St. School for black children began operation in 1873 and continued until the entire public school system in Kentucky was integrated in 1956. The institution that evolved into Newport Central Catholic High School began educating males in 1929. Females attended Our Lady of Providence Academy, located on Sixth St. in town. From its beginning until 1868, Newport relied on volunteers for firefighting. The first organized
652 NEWPORT ACADEMY volunteer outfit was the Washington Fire Engine and Hose Company, which formed in 1850. A fulltime professional paid firefighting ser vice was established in 1868. In the city’s formative years, law enforcement was provided by a town marshal who was elected for a two-year term and the deputies of his choosing. The first full-time police force was formed as an emergency measure during the Civil War. The office of police chief was created in 1873, and a more professional police force dates from that period. All employment with the city suffered from the negative effect of the spoils system of political patronage, which allowed a mayor to replace employees after every election. A change in Kentucky’s constitution in 1891 forced mayors to share this appointment power and established a clearer line of authority between the executive and legislative branches. A formal civil ser vice system based on merit was not adopted until 1939. In 1930 the people of Newport voted into place a city-manager form of government, which assigned the daily operational and financial responsibilities to an appointed public administrator. Sentiment in the city was so evenly split on this issue that it was approved by a margin of only 2 votes. Although having access to two rivers was crucial to the city’s economic and commercial development, it also forced city leaders to deal with the sometimes-severe problems caused by periodic flooding. Between 1859 and 1900, the Ohio River overflowed flood stage 24 separate times. Major floods occurred in 1883, 1884, 1898, and 1913. Besides causing substantial human and economic suffering, back-to-back floods during the 1880s persuaded the federal government to relocate the army post from Newport to Fort Thomas in the 1890s. The most damaging flood on record occurred in 1937 (see Flood of 1937). It covered 25 percent of the city’s surface and displaced 40 percent of its residents. This level of destruction spurred the construction of a floodwall in 1947, which continues to protect the basin area of the city. During the first 50 years of Newport’s existence, the makeup of the city’s population reflected the ancestry of its founders—mostly people of English heritage. Since most of the early prominent residents of the city were from below the MasonDixon Line, the culture of the city also had a flavor of the Old South. This began to change after the Civil War when a huge influx of German and Irish immigrants gave the city a more cosmopolitan flavor. By 1880, 46 percent of residents had been born in Europe, 43 percent were of German ancestry, and 14 percent had Irish roots. This pattern continued until the Great Depression of the 1930s forced the migration of Appalachians, mainly of Scotch-Irish descent, from the mountain regions of Eastern Kentucky. The arrival of the automobile in the early part of the 20th century eventually spurred the movement of people to the suburbs, and the city’s population leveled off at 30,000. Newport began a series of annexations of the neighboring cities: Cote Brilliante in 1924, Clifton in 1935, and Ingalls Park in
1936. These annexations doubled the city’s land area to its present size. The period from 1900 to 1930 could be considered the golden age of Newport. Its population of 30,000 made it the third-largest city in Kentucky. By 1910 its retail economy had also become the third-most-robust in the state. Its industrial base was second-largest in Kentucky. The 1920 passage of the 18th Amendment to the Constitution, banning the sale and consumption of alcoholic beverages, led to the growth of the bootleg liquor industry and the arrival of organized crime syndicates, which exerted considerable influence over the city’s economy and politics for the next 40 years. After Prohibition was repealed in 1933, the crime syndicate moved its resources into bars and nightclubs that provided entertainment and gambling. By the 1950s, Newport had gained a national reputation as the Sin City of the Midwest. The pervasiveness of this reputation has tended to obscure the importance and accomplishments of the other parts of Newport’s history, both before and after. In the decade of the 1950s, a local citizens’ effort in Campbell Co. to eliminate the influence of organized crime caught the attention of U.S. attorney general Robert Kennedy. A combined effort of federal and local law enforcement efforts eventually resulted in the closing of the gambling and prostitution houses. These businesses came to be replaced by other adult-oriented businesses, which proliferated during the 1960s and 1970s, continuing Newport’s reputation as a regional center for that type of activity. By 1960 the city was experiencing its share of the general decline in business and residential communities that was adversely affecting many older urban areas in the country. Added to the suburban flight was the demolition of many homes in otherwise stable neighborhoods to make way for the construction of the I-471 expressway. The opening of the Newport Shopping Center in South Newport in 1956 further weakened the older central business district. Between 1960 and 1990, Newport’s population declined from 30,000 to 18,000. The percentage of persons living below the poverty line increased from 16 percent in 1970 to 26 percent in 1990. The city’s economy received two severe blows when its two largest employers closed their businesses: Interlake Steel (later named Newport Steel) in 1980 and the Wiedemann Brewing Company in 1983. With its oldest neighborhoods declining and its economy on the ropes, Newport reached a low point. The decade of the 1980s saw resurgence in the city’s vitality. A core of young urban pioneers began buying up some of the historic homes on Newport’s East Side at the same time that the Newport Citizens Advisory Council began holding meetings in all sections of the city to consider ways to improve the quality of life. This rebirth of civic activity eventually led to a more overtly politically active organization called NEWPAC, which began supporting its own candidates for election in local races. In 1982 a reform-minded city commission began a campaign to clean up the city’s neighbor-
hoods and its image in order to attract new businesses and homeowners. The demographic slide seems to have ended as a result, and the population is stabilizing. Newport has moved decisively to rehabilitate its reputation, housing, and economy. A historic district was established in 1982 and has grown into the largest contiguous such district in Kentucky. Tours of the renovated historic homes are annual events. A coordinated effort of city, county, and state officials gradually closed most of the adult businesses. Economic development efforts have led to the development of restaurants and corporate offices along the city’s riverfront, culminating in the opening of the Newport Aquarium in 2000, the Newport-on-the-Levee entertainment complex in 2001, and the Hofbrauhaus Restaurant in 2003. In 2004 the former L&N Bridge was converted from vehicular traffic to a pedestrian-only structure. Many outdoor festivals are held in the city’s new Festival Park on the banks of the Ohio River. The most spectacular is the gigantic fireworks display on Labor Day Weekend known as Riverfest, attended by huge crowds. In 2000 the city’s population was officially stated as 17,048. City officials later challenged the accuracy of that figure and estimated that the correct figure was closer to 22,000. Donnelly, Joseph. Newport Barracks—Kentucky’s Forgotten Military Installation. Covington, Ky.: Kenton Co. Historical Society, 1999. Mueller, Jan. Soul of the City: A Centennial History of the Newport Public Library. Highland Heights, Ky.: Self-published, 2004. Neff, Judy L., and Peggy Wiedemann Harris. Newport. Charleston, S.C.: Arcadia, 2004. “Newport’s Old Story: City’s Rise Spurred by Army, Dampened by Flood,” KP, August 12, 1985, 3K. Purvis, Thomas L., ed. Newport, Kentucky: A Bicentennial History. Newport, Ky.: Otto Zimmerman, 1996. U.S. Census Bureau. “American Fact Finder. Data Set. Census 2000 Summary File 1 (SF1) 100-Percent Data. Custom Table.” www.census.gov (accessed July 19, 2006).
NEWPORT ACADEMY. The first public school in Northern Kentucky was the Newport Academy, chartered in 1798 and opened in 1800 in Newport. It was the fi rst academy in the Cincinnati area. The State of Kentucky gave the City of Newport 6,000 acres of land, south of the Green River in Western Kentucky, and empowered the town’s government to sell the land to help finance the construction and operation of the school. The Newport Academy was erected on a two-acre site along the north side of Fourth St., between Monmouth and Saratoga Sts., which had been donated by James Taylor Jr. The state charter required that a 12-member board of trustees be appointed to run the school. The first trustees included Washington Berry, Thomas D. Carneal, John Grant (see Grant Family), Thomas Kennedy, Thomas Sandford, Richard Southgate, Rev. Robert Stubbs, and James Taylor. Stubbs, an Episcopal minister, was hired as principal and given a house, 15 acres of cleared land, and a salary of 75 British
NEWPORT AND COVINGTON SUSPENSION BRIDGE
pounds sterling per year. Many of the school’s first teachers held other jobs, such as surveying or serving as clergymen. Stubbs resigned after just one year and opened a private boarding school for boys in Campbell Co., near the Two Mile House on Alexandria Pike. A subscription drive was conducted in 1800 to raise funds for construction of a one-room stone school house for the Newport Academy; the school building measured 20 by 32 feet. Newport Academy’s early curriculum consisted primarily of reading, writing, and arithmetic, coursework for which students were charged tuition of $8 per year. However, some advanced instruction was also given, at a cost of $20 per year, in English grammar, the Latin and Greek languages, geometry, astronomy, logic, and rhetoric. The Newport Academy was technically a public school, even though it charged tuition. It operated successfully until 1850, when it was merged with the Newport Independent Schools. The original school house was used until 1873, and then it was demolished and replaced by a new building to house the Newport High School. The Fourth Street Elementary School now occupies the site of the original Newport Academy. Cobb, James L. “History of the Public Schools of Newport, Kentucky,” MEd thesis, Univ. of Cincinnati, 1939. “History of Campbell County.” Paper prepared and read by Mary Keturah Jones at the Independence Day Celebration, July 4, 1876, Newport, Ky. Newport Independent Schools. “Our History—A Great Tradition.” www.newportwildcats.org (accessed October 17, 2006). Purvis, Thomas L., ed. Newport, Kentucky: A Bicentennial History. Newport, Ky.: Zimmerman, 1996. Tenkotte, Paul A. “Rival Cities to Suburbs: Covington and Newport, Kentucky, 1790–1890,” PhD diss., Univ. of Cincinnati, 1989.
NEWPORT AND COVINGTON SUSPENSION BRIDGE. The Kentucky legislature incorporated the Licking Bridge Company on January 27, 1830, with a capitalization of $15,000 on 30,000 shares. Despite the support of leading citizens in Covington and Newport, on both sides of the Licking River, stock sales were insufficient and the corporation failed. In 1844 the bridge issue was raised again, and this time a wire suspension bridge was recommended as ideal for the high banks of the Licking River. Support for the proposed suspension bridge over the Licking River was much higher on the Campbell Co. side of the river, where the bridge was promoted for its effect on commerce and real estate in Newport. The newspapers reported that 2,000 shares of the bridge company’s stock had been sold, but money ran out before the bridge was completed; only a pier on the Newport side stood in testimony to the project. In February–March 1849, the noted bridge engineer Charles Ellet came to Northern Kentucky to revive the project, apparently being given all the privileges of the original charter, on condition that construction of the suspension bridge begin by April 1 and be completed
Newport and Covington Suspension Bridge.
by December 1, 1849. Again, however, the project languished. In January 1852 the Kentucky General Assembly granted a bridge charter to the Newport and Covington Bridge Company, with the provision that either Newport or Covington, or both cities, could purchase stock in the corporation. By June 1853 a wire suspension bridge to link Newport with Covington was well under way at the end of Fourth St. in Covington, under the supervision of George C. Tarvin. The on-site engineer was John Gray of Pittsburgh, who may have been a protégé of Charles Ellet. At least Gray was using Ellet’s bridge-building methods, which included fabricating the bridge cables on the ground rather than spinning the cables in place (bridge-builder John Roebling’s practice; see John Augustus and Washington Augustus Roebling). Ellet also generally used six to eight cables instead of two, and he did not consider it important to stiffen the floor with a heavy truss, as Roebling did. From 1850 to 1853, Ellet was the chief engineer of the Virginia Central Railroad; in case Gray was associated with Ellet, Ellet’s crowded schedule could be the reason John Gray, instead of Ellet himself, had the contract at Newport. After all the delays, work on the Newport and Covington Suspension Bridge proceeded rapidly. The eight 902-foot-long cables for the bridge were fabricated on the streets of Newport. The wire was pulled around two vertical poles set up in the streets. Six of the eight cables contained 350 wires each, while the other two contained 308 wires each. The anchorages were built on the riverbanks by constructing boxes 15 by 20 feet by some 30 feet high, using one-foot oak pilings. Wrought iron anchor plates, cast to receive anchor chains, were buried at the bottom of the boxes, which were filled with rock to hold the cables. (During the 1870s, the southwestern anchorage of the bridge began to slip, and an additional layer of iron-tipped oak pilings was added to stabilize it.)
The 93-foot-tall towers were built of brick. They were located at about the low-water point on each shore, to assure the widest possible span over open water. At some time, the towers were painted and advertisements were applied on them. (In the 1870s galvanized metal caps were fabricated to cover the lubricated rollers on top of the towers.) The cables were attached to the anchor chains on the east side, and at the other end they were attached to a heavy rope and pulled to the Covington shore, where they were attached to a wagon pulled by six horses. Then, aided by pulleys on the Covington side and rollers on both sides and on steamboats on the Licking River, the cables were pulled into place and attached to the anchor chains in the bridge’s westside anchorages. The suspenders were then attached to the cables, and the floor beams were attached to the other end. On December 28, 1853, superintendent Tarvin and Covington mayor Bushrod Foley rode across the bridge in a buggy to open the bridge. On January 16, 1854, less than three weeks after the opening, at 5:30 p.m., the toll collector left his small toll booth to watch 15 cattle start across the bridge, when without warning, the roller from the top of the east tower plunged through the booth behind him. The bridge floor flipped to a vertical position, hanging from the southern towers. Eight of the 15 cattle were killed in the fall, and butchers were summoned to the shore to use the beef. Because the stonework had not been damaged, work began immediately on repairs. The damage was estimated at $14,000, and the span was reopened in May at a total estimated cost of $81,000. As early as the 1860s, the need for strengthening the bridge was apparent. Washington Roebling was fi nishing up the Covington- Cincinnati Suspension Bridge when he agreed to provide plans and specifications for improving the cable for a fee of $150. He ordered $307 worth of cable from the J. A. Roebling Company, castings from
654 NEWPORT AQUARIUM Miles Greenwood, and iron from D. Wolf. It is likely that he wrapped the four cables into one, since he did something similar a few years later on the Wheeling Bridge. In 1868 the Roeblings supplied another $1,107 worth of wire and service. W. Morton, a civil engineer, was hired in 1872 to develop further plans to strengthen the bridge, and an assistant was hired to help him. Washington Roebling supplied materials and plans for cable stays. Morton was the on-site engineer at a salary of $100 per month. The J. A. Roebling Company was paid $900 for wire and advice. Weight limits were promulgated for the bridge: no more than 12 head of cattle at a time were permitted on the bridge. In 1875 the bridge board decided to employ an engineer to develop plans and specifications to build a central pier on the bridge and other features to strengthen it. The pier construction was awarded to a local company at a cost of $21,478. The ironwork contract went to John Gray for $3,559, and he agreed to supervise the pier construction for free. The pier was located 404 feet east of Fourth and Garrard Sts. in Covington. B. R. Morton and John Gray carried out the engineering ser vices, and the total cost of the new pier was $39,061. The pier construction firm sued the bridge company for nonpayment. When Gustave Bouscaren, the chief engineer for the Cincinnati Southern Railroad, was employed to inspect the bridge condition, his verdict about the quality of the work just completed was that it was unsatisfactory. Arrangements were made to advertise for plans and specifications for two new bridges, one a suspension bridge and the other a truss bridge. Morton was authorized to spend almost $4,000 to repair the f loor of the bridge scheduled to be replaced. A Colonel Payne of Brooklyn, N.Y., who was Washington Roebling’s assistant on the Brooklyn Bridge, was employed to inspect the bridge and comment on Bouscaren’s negative report. The suit about the new pier was not settled, and the Covington City Council warned the bridge board to take no action before obtaining the city’s permission. Payne’s report was far more negative than Bouscaren’s, and he advised immediate replacement of the bridge. The bridge board was so negative by now about suspension bridges that they advertised only for a truss bridge. Five companies responded, and the bridge board decided in favor of the sturdiest option, which was provided by the Keystone Bridge Company of Pittsburgh. The consulting engineer was C. R. Stroebel. B. K Morton was hired at $100 per month to oversee the construction. Morton agreed to run a ferry for passengers and vehicles for the period when the bridge was shut down. The old bridge was demolished in the summer of 1886, and the new bridge was opened the same year. In 1934 the 1886 span was demolished, and in 1936 a new bridge dedicated to veterans was opened. Burns, John E. “A History of Covington, Kentucky through 1865,” vol. 3, Kenton Co. Public Library, Covington, Ky.
Coley, Jeannette Cabell. “A Biography of Charles Ellet, Jr.” Smithsonian Associates Civil War Newsletter 5, no. 5. http://civilwarstudies.org (accessed August 21, 2006). Reis, Jim. “World War Veterans Memorial Bridge: Providing a Vital Link,” KP, July 19, 2004, 4K. Tenkotte, Paul A. “Rival Cities to Suburbs: Covington and Newport, Kentucky, 1790–1890,” PhD diss., Univ. of Cincinnati, 1989.
“Aquarium Symbol of Rebirth,” KP, November 20, 1997, 1K. Newport Aquarium. www.newportaquarium.com. “Prep Work Begins for Aquarium,” KP, December 24, 1997, 2K. “Sweet Pea the Shark Is Moving to Newport,” KP, June 9, 2005, K3.
Joseph F. Gastright
NEWPORT BARRACKS. By 1800 it was evi-
NEWPORT AQUARIUM. The Newport Aquarium is located in Newport at Newport-on-theLevee, a commercial center situated along the Ohio River and made up of retail stores, restaurants such as Mitchell’s Fish Market, and entertainment facilities including the AMC movie theater. Newporton-the-Levee was designed as a place where people could gather in a social setting. The levee is widely acknowledged as the major force in the recent renaissance of the city of Newport. One of the levee’s biggest attractions is the Newport Aquarium, which was begun by five businessmen in the Greater Cincinnati area, doing business as Aquarium Holdings, who wanted to build something that would express their shared concern for sea life. It took nearly 10 years for the aquarium to come to life, however. Initial plans, as discussed in 1990, called for building the aquarium on the Ohio side of the river, but the owners were persuaded by Newport city officials to change their plans and place the facility in Newport along the Kentucky shoreline. Ground was broken in 1997, and on May 15, 1999, the aquarium opened to the public. Its stated mission was “to captivate, educate, and advocate conservation.” Consistent with its goal of promoting interest in conservation of the world’s sea life, the aquarium is populated with fishes, mammals, birds, and other water animals—housed in 1 million gallons of water—that take visitors on a visual tour of the world’s oceans, seas, straits, channels, and other waterways. The aquarium has five seamless underwater tunnels made of solid acrylic, see-through floors, two and a half viewing levels, 7,000 marine animals from 600 species, and 66 separate exhibits, to offer visitors a unique and memorable experience. Throughout the building are 17 murals designed and created by Eric Henn, an artist from Franklin, Ohio, and 16 original musical soundtracks play daily throughout the facility. The aquarium has been a commercial success and continues to grow. In 2004 a permanent exhibit of Asian river otters, lorikeets, and pythons was opened as part of a $4.5 million expansion. Further exhibit development in 2005 took the shape of a “summer of sharks.” The new, worldrenowned exhibit both displays sharks and provides new ways for visitors to learn facts about them. The Shark Central exhibit allows visitors to touch sharks. In 2008 a new Frog Bog exhibit opened, featuring 20 species of exotic frogs from around the world. At the waterfront in Camden, N.J., in summer 2005, a corporate sister aquarium of the one in Newport opened.
Michael J. Poehner
dent that the city of Cincinnati neither needed nor wanted the military installation located on its riverfront, Fort Washington. The fort occupied increasingly valuable land as the city’s downtown grew. Clearly, it was only a matter of time before Fort Washington would be shut down. Meanwhile, just across the Ohio River in Newport, James Taylor Jr., Newport’s founder, recognized an opportunity to capitalize on and profit from this situation. Taylor was from an influential family; he was a cousin of future presidents James Madison (1809–1817) and Zachary Taylor (1849–1850) and was the wealthiest landowner in Campbell Co. James Taylor carried on a lively correspondence with his family, the U.S. Army, and the federal government and in spring 1803 learned that Gen. Charles Scott (governor of Kentucky from 1808 to 1812) had been chosen to seek a suitable location for an arsenal. Scott concluded that the best location was near the mouth of the Licking River, and the U.S. secretary of war authorized him to purchase four to six acres there. The land was expected to accommodate a boat landing within the Licking River and to be at an elevation high enough to protect the arsenal’s buildings from the spring freshets, even if it meant locating a mile or so up the river. The story of the Newport Barracks, and indeed of the village of Newport, would have been different if this instruction to build the arsenal upstream on the Licking River had been heeded. On November 10, 1803, Scott completed negotiations for “a magazine at the mouth of the Licking.” Taylor was informed that the most eligible site was on the land he had generously donated, rather than the upriver site first considered, and that he (Taylor) should superintend the construction. The U.S. Treasury issued him money to pay for the materials and labor required to begin construction of the arsenal. He was instructed to erect three buildings, a brick two-story arsenal with a cellar, a barracks, and a circular brick powder magazine. The facility was under construction when Capt. Meriwether Lewis, the coleader of the Lewis and Clark Expedition of 1803–1806, passed on his way to Big Bone Lick in nearby Boone Co. to collect specimens for President Thomas Jefferson (1801–1809). Lewis was traveling to meet Capt. William Clark to explore the still undefined lands acquired by the United States in the Louisiana Purchase of 1803. By 1806 a detachment including a sergeant and 12 enlisted men had arrived at the arsenal in Newport, led by an inexperienced Pennsylvanian, Ensign Jacob Albright. Because the barracks were unfinished, Albright had to bed down his men at first in the cellar of the arsenal.
NEWPORT CENTRAL CATHOLIC HIGH SCHOOL
There was no general kitchen; each room in the barracks had a fireplace fitted with a spit and pothook so that the men could cook their rations in their rooms. They slept in wooden, double bunks on ticks stuffed with straw. Poor food, dimly lit quarters, and monotony were consistently the lot of the soldiers stationed at the Newport Barracks. Desertions were frequent even though deserters faced the threat of harsh punishment. Soon Capt. Thornton Posey, the senior U.S. Army officer in Kentucky, was ordered to the Newport Barracks to assume command. Newport was an arsenal and an ordnance depot for its first 15 years, but it was also a recruiting station and remained so until the installation was deactivated. The Newport Barracks was of great importance during the War of 1812 as a mustering and supply post, particularly in the gathering of troops on their way to fight the British in Canada. Gen. William Henry Harrison’s victory at Moravian Town in Canada in 1813 brought about 600 British and Canadian prisoners to Newport Barracks for internment for the duration of the war. The Newport Barracks remained a small but important installation through the Civil War and even, for a time, included a school for military bands. The post was perennially threatened by floods, however, and was viewed as an undesirable posting, since the facility often smelled of mold and was in need of reconstruction after each flood. The Newport Barracks had lost its usefulness following the Mexican War. During the Indian Wars in the West, the post served as a supply depot as well as a recruiting center. Military company posts were, by this time, giving way to larger installations. Moreover, the Newport Barracks’ days seemed numbered after the installation was flooded in three consecutive years, 1882, 1883, and 1884 (see Flood of 1884). These floods made some of the buildings uninhabitable; the resulting warped floors also made for cold and draft y lodgings. In 1887 the post surgeons recommended that the barracks be abandoned, and the general-in-chief of the U.S. Army, Philip Sheridan, concurred. The U.S. Congress directed the U.S. secretary of war to
purchase a nearby tract of land of about 112 acres located on a hill above the Ohio River in the District of Highlands (Fort Thomas). Suffering through yet another flood in 1889, the Newport Barracks was kept open while the new military installation was being constructed. A drought followed that year, which lowered the level of the Ohio River, adding to the stench and unhealthful conditions. Not until November 1894 were all personnel and equipment transferred from the Newport Barracks to the new military facility located above the Ohio River. Congressman Albert S. Berry labored to have the Newport Barracks retained on the military’s active list and then, when that failed, to have the facility presented to the City of Newport. The Newport City Council argued over the value of the gift, and six of its members even opposed accepting it. However, on New Year’s Day 1896, the mayor of Newport signed a receipt presented by Col. Melville A. Cochran, commandant of the military’s new post nearby, confirming that the former Newport Barracks and their grounds were now city property. Because of the cold weather, no public celebration was planned, and the Newport Barracks unceremoniously receded into history, later serving as a Newport city park for many years. Donnelly, Joseph. Newport Barracks—Kentucky’s Forgotten Military Installation. Covington, Ky.: Kenton Co. Historical Society, 1999. “Newport Barracks Supplied the West during War,” CE, November 17, 1996, D7. “Newport’s Old Story: City’s Rise Spurred by Army, Dampened by Flood,” KP, August 12, 1985, 3K. Reis, Jim. “Newport Barracks Both Blessing, Curse,” KP, November 29, 2004, 4K.
NEWPORT CENTRAL CATHOLIC HIGH SCHOOL. This high school is an amalgam of several other schools. After World War I many people came to recognize the need for secondary education, and public and private secondary schools were established nationwide during the 1920s. In the Cote Brilliante neighborhood of Newport, the St. Francis de Sales parish operated an eve-
ning commercial school for students of high school age in 1924. Elsewhere in Newport, both the Corpus Christi parish and the St. Stephen parish (see Holy Spirit Catholic Church) opened high schools in the 1920s. In 1927 the St. Stephen High School graduated four male students and the Corpus Christi High School graduated 16 students, 8 females and 8 males; in 1930 the St. Stephen High School produced 23 graduates, both males and females. By 1932 the Corpus Christi High School had closed, and the high school operated by St. Stephen parish had evolved into the Campbell Co. Catholic High School for Boys. For the school year 1932–1933, enrollment was 94 students. In 1934, because of overcrowding, the school was moved to the building of the former Immaculata Academy on W. Fift h St. near Columbia St. in Newport, and the school’s name was changed to Newport Catholic High School. In 1945, faced with the continual growth of its student body, Newport Catholic High School moved to the campus of Corpus Christi Church in Newport, on the corner of Isabella and Ninth Sts. Some students came to Newport Catholic High School from Kenton Co., since Covington Catholic High School did not offer football until 1968; Newport Catholic High School itself lost potential students to the highly selective Covington Latin School and to the prestigious St. Xavier High School in Cincinnati. On December 15, 1954, Newport Catholic High School’s basketball team played the first game in its new gymnasium, the largest in Northern Kentucky at the time, and on May 8, 1955, the school’s new $857,000 building, on the hill behind Mount St. Martin’s in South Newport, was dedicated. Until 1964 the school was administered by the Diocese of Covington (see Roman Catholics) and many of the teachers were priests and sisters. The Right Reverend Msgr. John V. Hegenauer was a longtime principal who did much to keep the school solvent. He had an uncanny ability to get donations from local mobsters. Annual tuition at the school in the fall of 1963 was $125 for students coming from one of the 10 supporting parishes. In September 1964 the Christian Brothers, a Catholic order of teaching brothers (today known as the LaSallian Brothers), assumed administration of the school. Brother Julian Mark Sullivan F.S.C. was the first principal during this period. The graduating class of 1965, numbering 198 and made up of baby boomers, was the largest in the school’s history. When enrollment peaked at 752 students in 1968, almost all usable space was occupied. In 1982 Newport Catholic High School merged with Our Lady of Providence Academy (formerly the Academy of Notre Dame of Providence, also in Newport), becoming the coeducational Newport Central Catholic High School. The 1955 building on the hill was retained for the combined school. Demographic changes in Campbell Co. and financial reasons led to the merger. The 1978 appointment of Carl R. Foster, a 1964 alumnus (and at one time the leading basketball scorer in the school’s history), as principal marked the end of the Christian Brothers’ administration of the school;
656 NEWPORT CITIZENS ADVISORY COUNCIL the last Christian Brothers (Brothers Phil Jones and Richard Merkle) departed in 1992. The teaching order, suffering from declining manpower, was no longer able to staff the school. In 2004 enrollment at the school was about 450. In 2008 the school broke ground on a $7.5 million construction and renovation project. DeBord, Matthew. “Newport Catholic: The Steps on the Way to the Hill,” manuscript written for the History Senior Seminar, Thomas More College, Fort Mitchell, Ky., November 2004. “Ground Is Broken,” KP, September 4, 1954, 1. Ryan, Paul E. History of the Diocese of Covington. Covington, Ky.: Diocese of Covington, 1954. Schroeder, David E. “From the Formation of High Schools to a College,” Kenton County Historical Society Bulletin, January 1997, 2–4.
Michael R. Sweeney
NEWPORT CITIZENS ADVISORY COUNCIL. The Newport Citizens Advisory Council (NCAC) was formed by a resolution of the Newport City Commission on April 26, 1976, to comply with federal regulations involving a Community Block Grant the city received in 1974. The NCAC’s initial responsibility was to provide input pertaining to the expenditure of those funds. However, the organization’s responsibility was soon expanded to include providing citizen input on all matters of city life. It is in this capacity as a mechanism for civic involvement in Newport that the NCAC has played a major role in helping to change the direction of the city, beginning in the 1970s and continuing to the present. The organization’s first meeting was held in September 1976. Newport was divided into nine geographical neighborhoods, and the interested residents of each neighborhood elected the neighborhood’s representative. Three at-large members were appointed by the NCAC Board of Commissioners. Each neighborhood eventually adopted a name of its own choosing: Two Rivers I and II in the northwestern part of the city, Buena Vista in the southwestern part, Taylor’s Landing in the Central Business District, Mansion Hill and Gateway in the eastern sections, Cote Brilliante to the southeast, and Clifton and Cliff view to the south. The first neighborhood representatives were Herbert Bass, Laura Bradley, Rev. Anthony Deye, Tom Ferrara, Robert Freking, Thomas Fromme Sr., Kenneth Mullikan, Anna Murphy, and Rev. Robert Ryan. Staffi ng assistance in the initial years was provided by Brighton Center and the Northern Kentucky Area Development District. At first, each neighborhood was granted $500 per year to promote neighborhood events. Later some neighborhoods began fundraising on their own and were influential in orga nizing the city’s participation in the annual River Fest fireworks display as a way of raising funds for neighborhood groups. Each neighborhood unit met monthly. The original concept was for the NCAC to be a conduit of information on city business—neighborhood representatives conveying information to their communities from the Newport City Commission and bringing information back to the City Com-
mission. Eventually, the NCAC was granted a permanent seat at Newport City Commission meetings and a regular place on the agenda. This task of acting as a liaison quickly required the NCAC to maintain a delicate balance between maintaining its independence and at times advocating a position that was not favored by some members of the City Commission. However, as neighborhood meetings continued, some began independently to address problems of concern to them. At first, these activities involved events that would improve residential life without causing much controversy. They included such things as organizing litter cleanups, voter registration, education drives, tree plantings, historic home tours, and leadership training programs. Several neighborhoods also began publishing their own monthly newsletters, and several of these publications continue today. The Mansion Hill Neighborhood was instrumental in advocating for the placement of the entrance and exit ramps for I-471 in a way that would not further damage the historic buildings in the eastern part of the city. But the NCAC and its member neighborhoods also began to push for more aggressive action on issues that inevitably caused conflict between the organization and certain elected officials. The late 1970s and early 1980s was the time during which the most confrontations erupted. Disagreements arose over issues involving housing-code enforcement, bars in residential neighborhoods, access by citizens to public information, hiring and firing of city employees based on merit and not on political connections, protection of residential zones from encroachment by business interests, and methods of controlling the operation and expansion of adult-entertainment businesses within the city. The NCAC was crucial in providing initial support for the adult-entertainment ordinances the Newport City Commission passed during the 1980s and 1990s that have proved so effective in changing the image of the city and laying the groundwork for the economic development that followed. In 1980 the NCAC was recognized by the regional field director of HUD (Housing and Urban Development) as one of the best-informed and most active organizations of its kind in Kentucky. In 1979 the NCAC was also featured on a regional television program broadcast on WCET in Cincinnati, called The People Speak. In addition to providing opportunities for civic involvement and action, the NCAC has acted as a training ground for people who were interested in running for political office. Thomas Ferrara, Jan Knepshield, Kenneth Mullikin, and Laura Roberts were all active members of the organization’s Advisory Council before being elected to the Newport City Commission. Many of the neighborhood activists who later went on to form the core of the Newport Political Action Committee got their initial exposure to civic involvement and political organizing as members of neighborhood councils and the NCAC. As the issues in Newport have evolved, the involvement of the NCAC has also changed. While the organization still maintains its seat at the New-
port City Commission meetings and continues to sponsor several civic events, its role as a controversial driving force behind civic improvements has waned in recent times. Throughout its history, there has been an ebb and flow of activity, and the neighborhood organizations have always had differing levels of participation and organizing ability. At times, certain neighborhood associations may have even eclipsed the NCAC itself in terms of political influence. But the NCAC remains to function as a source of resident input in Newport and as an example of what can be accomplished in government by residents banding together to improve the quality of life in their communities. “Advisory Council’s Opposition Sets Up Debate on Shelter,” KP, September 10, 1983, 2K. “Building Codes Divide Newport City Leaders,” KP, May 3, 1983, 1K. “Council Marks Birthday—Newport Group Remains Strong,” KP, April 1, 1986, 3K.
NEWPORT HIGH SCHOOL. In 1856 Newport had five public common schools and one high school. However, the Newport High School did not come into existence until 1860, when it was chartered by the state. The school’s first location was in town on the north side of Fourth St. between Monmouth and Saratoga Sts., where the Newport Academy once stood. In those early days, attending high school was a luxury that few could afford; in most families the children became workers after completing the sixth grade. The parents who could afford some form of higher education thought of high school as a sort of “people’s college.” In the Newport High School’s earliest years, its curriculum consisted of such a large number of required courses that it was virtually impossible to meet the graduation requirements in four years. Therefore, the school board decided to reduce the number of subjects required and shorten the length of high school training to three years. Under the old standards, no graduation exercises were held at Newport High School between 1856 and 1874. However, under the new, lowered standards, 519 students graduated between 1874 and 1900. In 1872 a new home in Newport was built for the high school, on Columbia St. between Eighth and Ninth Sts., where a cemetery was located. Before construction began, the graves were moved to Evergreen Cemetery in Southgate. Because the site had once been a graveyard, many superstitious people claimed that the building and grounds were haunted; numerous sightings of ghosts were reported. In 1880 the population of Newport was 20,433, with 2,972 students enrolled in various schools, but only 108 at Newport High. By 1900 the population of the city had grown to 28,301, with 3,646 students enrolled in schools and 195 of these in Newport High School. Between 1906 and 1908, Newport High School’s boys were required to take military training with a unit called the Hammond Rifles. In 1908 the high school’s course of study
NEWPORT HOME OWN ERSHIP
was changed back to four years, and a commercial course of study was added. In 1925 the school board decided to build a new high school and a new building for Arnold Elementary School. When the Arnold Elementary School’s building on Central Ave. in Newport was completed, it was used for high school classes while the new high school was under construction at Eighth and Columbia Sts. in town. By 1925 the city’s population had reached 29,420, and 416 students were attending the high school. In 1928 a new gymnasium was added to the high school, and in 1939 a sports stadium was built nearby in Taylor’s Bottoms. At that time Newport was operating one high school, a junior high, and nine elementary schools. After many years at the Eighth and Columbia Sts. location, Newport High School moved in 1980 to a new, modern building in town at 900 E. Sixth St., next to the elevated I-471. Over the years, Newport High School has been dedicated to providing quality education to its students. Among the school’s graduates who have become leaders in their chosen professions are 2000 Republican presidential primary candidate Gary Bauer, Ohio River historian Virginia Bennett, famed basketball coach Jim Connor, comedian and author Greg Fields, civic leaders Lambert Hehl Sr. and Lambert Hehl Jr., Miss Kentucky of 1936 Charlotte Hiteman, Newport mayor– city manager Ralph Mussman, rocket scientist Eugene Jimmy Palm, noted physician–historian Alvin C. Poweleit, medical doctor and suff ragette Sarah M. Siewers, Judge Fred Warren, noted architects Edward and Christopher Weber (see Weber Brothers Architects), Judge Otto Daniel Wolff Sr., noted architect Otto Daniel Wolff Jr., and novelist Ruth Wolff. Newport High School was the runner-up state basketball champion in 1935 and 1954. The school won two state baseball championships during the early 1940s, one with Jim Connor as a player. Over time, the school produced a number of star athletes, including right-handed pitcher Tommy Reis, a major league baseball player; basketball’s John Turner; Ohio State football All-American Bob White; and army football quarterback Zeke Zachella. Cobb, James L. “History of the Public Schools of Newport, Kentucky,” MEd thesis, Univ. of Cincinnati, 1939. The Newportian. Newport, Ky.: Newport High School, 1999. 1999 yearbook. Newport Independent Schools. “Our History.” www .newportwildcats.org (accessed October 17, 2006). Reis, Jim. “Newport Public School Heritage,” KP, January 29, 1990, 4K.
NEWPORT HOME OWNERSHIP. High rates of home ownership were a feature of Newport’s early years as a major Ohio River Valley iron and steel town. With expanding industrial employment in companies such the Swift Iron and Steel Works, Newport in the early 1870s was a prosperous city of more than 15,000 inhabitants (see Steel and Iron Manufacturing; Andrews Steel Mill;
Newport Steel). Industrial jobs brought large numbers of immigrants, and the city became distinctively German and Irish (see German Americans; Irish Americans). Owning a house rather than renting was possible for a great many families: about 35 percent of male-headed households owned (or were paying for) their own homes, and 54 percent of those who had lived in the city five years or more (for the period 1870–1874) were home owners. A comparable commercial city of similar size at a similar point in its prosperity (Alexandria, Va., just before the Civil War) had home-ownership rates half as high as Newport’s. In terms of home ownership, Newport was, comparatively speaking, a “stakeholder community.” Moreover, Newport home ownership was also quite equally spread across economic groups. Even among the least skilled of Newport’s residents, nearly 30 percent owned their own homes, compared with 9 percent in Alexandria. Wealth was also more equitably distributed in Newport than in Alexandria. There was, to be sure, a great gap between the wealth of those at the top and those at the bottom, and the poor did not have much, but the gap between rich and poor was smaller in Newport and the poor had more. Home ownership meant fewer moves, a growing association with place, and a sense of belonging. These advantages are associated with fuller participation in community life, including voting. Perhaps these factors also help explain why in Newport more people, even those employed in unskilled and semiskilled occupations, went to the polls than in Alexandria. Why was home ownership so widespread in Newport? Three factors stand out. First, James Taylor Jr., the founder of Newport, and his family frequently sold off sections of land platted into small lots, and the City of Newport quickly adjusted the city boundaries to take in these sections. For example, the Buena Vista Addition, named by Taylor for the great Mexican War victory of his cousin Gen. Zachary Taylor, was platted into 750 lots, almost all of which were very small, measuring 30 by 93 feet. Second, local builders saw an opportunity to build very large numbers of modest houses—oneor one-and-a-half-story structures, wood or brick, with shingle roofs—on these small lots. Henry Schriver established a carpentry firm on Columbia St. between Fift h and Sixth Sts. especially for this type of building, putting up houses of his own design. Thus Newport came to have single-family homes in large numbers. As a result, sometimes there were 17 homes on a single block face, as on the west side of Columbia St. between 10th and 11th Sts. Workingmen intent on home ownership found the small, locally designed houses on small lots attractive, but there remained the problem of money. The third factor that made home ownership widespread in Newport was that local savings associations served as intermediaries in the purchase of a lot and the building of a home (see Savings and Loan Associations). For this purpose there were
five building associations in Newport in the early 1870s, each with capital of about a half million dollars. Henry Schriver served as treasurer of one of the two German building associations. Such arrangements were also conducted within churches, especially those associated with the city’s large immigrant populations. Associations within immigrant groups were important, for in the 1870s more than a quarter of all Newport’s residents and nearly half of all adults had been born overseas. The largest groups were the Germans (one-third of all adults) and the Irish (one-seventh of all adults). Not surprisingly, land sales were advertised in both English and German. Facilitating home ownership through informal savings associations was not without its peril, however, as the case of Father Patrick Guilfoyle illustrates. He was born in Kilkenny, Ireland, immigrated to the United States at age 25, studied at St. Thomas Seminary in Bardstown, Ky., and in 1854 was ordained at St. Mary’s Catholic Church in Covington. Three years later he became pastor of Newport’s newly created Immaculate Conception Catholic Church, the city’s first Englishspeaking Catholic congregation, where he undertook to build the church’s membership and its infrastructure. Guilfoyle saw an opportunity to accomplish his goals using Newport’s economic expansion and land availability; he devised a plan that would increase parishioners’ savings, contribute to home ownership for parish members, and turn a profit with which to build the parish’s physical plant. Initially, the plan worked well; by some estimates Guilfoyle was involved in the building of more than 500 homes in Newport, and for his parish he built not only a rectory, a convent, and schools but also the beautiful Immaculate Conception Catholic Church on Fift h St. between Central and Columbia Sts. The church was dedicated in 1873, just in time to witness the panic of that year, which set off a profound economic depression. Wages were reduced at the iron mills, Swift’s workers went on strike, violence flared, and economic calamity spread. The parish quickly found itself in an impossible economic situation. Guilfoyle resigned in November 1874 and left Newport for Chicago, and many parishioners lost their hard-won homes. Newport became a workingman’s city not by accident or because of great social forces but because of the actions and vision of individuals, such as great landowners like Taylor, self-made entrepreneurs like Schriver, and leaders of community groups like Guilfoyle. But there was always the possibility that gains achieved locally could readily be destroyed by outside forces. City of Newport, Municipal Poll Books, March 2, 1874, Division of Archives and Records, Frankfort, Kentucky. City of Newport, Municipal Tax List, 1874, Campbell Co. Tax Lists, Division of Archives and Records, Frankfort, Kentucky. Purvis, Thomas L., ed. Newport, Kentucky: A Bicentennial History. Newport, Ky.: Otto Zimmerman, 1996.
658 NEWPORT IN DE PEN DENT SCHOOLS Ryan, Paul E. History of the Diocese of Covington, Kentucky. Covington, Ky.: Diocese of Covington, 1954. Thernstrom, Stephen. Poverty and Progress: Social Mobility in a Nineteenth Century City. Cambridge, Mass.: Harvard Univ. Press, 1964. William’s Newport Directory for 1873. Williams, 1873.
NEWPORT INDEPENDENT SCHOOLS. Newport has a long history of providing quality education for its citizens. The tradition began with the chartering of the Newport Academy in 1798, and its opening in 1800. The academy was the first public school in Northern Kentucky and preceded the first similar academy in Cincinnati by 16 years. Before 1839 most schools were privately owned and were usually available only to the elite and wealthy. Many of those early schools were located in private homes. The first “free school” opened in Newport in 1805. Free schools were usually subsidized by wealthy individuals and were meant to provide rudimentary education to children of the poor. A Professor Blinn, Thomas Lindsey, Ira Root, and Charles Thornton started the first free school, and classes were held in rented quarters at Newport’s Methodist Episcopal Church. In 1815 a three-story brick schoolhouse was erected in town between Eighth and Ninth Sts. on Columbia St. as a permanent home for the school. In 1836 a new, larger school was built in Newport on Central Ave. between Fift h and Sixth Sts. and was named the Cabot Free School. Only 25 students enrolled that first year; however, enrollment more than doubled to 54 the second year. In about 1890 the name was changed to the Arnold
Newport Free School, Fourth St., Newport.
School, likely for James M. Arnold, president of the Newport Board of Education. In 1847 a state law was passed authorizing the taxing of real estate to fund public education. In Newport a property tax of two cents for every $100 valuation was assessed to support schools. The date of that legislation is now used as the official starting date of the modern Newport independent public school system. In 1856 Newport was operating five free schools and one high school. The progress of public education suffered during the Civil War, when attendance fell, funding suffered, and public interest waned. After the war, interest in education was renewed. Additional schools were built, better textbooks were provided, and the first meaningful effort was made to educate black children. L. T. Hubbard was named the first superintendent of Newport Public Schools in 1869. Over the years, some of the other superintendents have been A. D. Owens, Ellsworth Regenstein, James L. Cobb, and the present one, Michael Brandt. In the fall of 1875, a night school was opened to accommodate those unable to attend daytime classes. From 1906 to 1908, military training was required of all Newport High School boys in a military unit known as the Hammond Rifles. By 1900 Newport citizens had a much higher literacy rate than the rest of the state and the nation. In addition to quality schools, a factor that contributed to the literacy rate was the area’s many newspapers, which were widely read. In 1904 a new 16-room Newport High School building was built at Eighth and Columbia Sts. and a 4-room school at 10th and Patterson Sts. Weber Brothers Architects designed these two buildings. A new Arnold School was built as an addition to the old one and was opened in September 1926. Another project undertaken that
year was construction of the York Street School on 11th St. Two schools became part of the Newport system as a result of annexation: in the 1920s the Cote Brilliante School, a former county school at Park and Grand Aves., joined the Newport Schools, as did the Clifton School when Clifton was annexed by Newport in the 1930s. Both of those schools left the Newport system in September 1960; they were consolidated into the new Mildred Dean School along Grand Ave., adjacent to St. Luke Hospital. Arnold School was razed in 1997 and replaced by a Campbell Co. Jail complex. The Newport Independent School district now operates five schools, with a student population of about 2,200. In 1980 Newport High School moved into a new building in the city at 900 E. Sixth St., next to the I-471 expressway. Energized by the recent renaissance of the city, the high school’s staff has embarked on a five-year plan to improve the curriculum and ser vices offered. Cobb, James L. “History of the Public Schools of Newport, Kentucky,” MEd thesis, Univ. of Cincinnati, 1939. Newport Independent Schools. “Our History.” www .newportwildcats.org (accessed October 17, 2006). Tenkotte, Paul A. “Rival Cities to Suburbs: Covington and Newport, Kentucky, 1790–1890,” PhD diss., Univ. of Cincinnati, 1989.
NEWPORT MINERAL WATER COMPANY. Th is company, located at 18 E. Sixth St. in Newport, produced and distributed soft drinks long before the national consolidation of the industry. The original business was founded in 1886 by Baron H. Woodbury and Dietrich Theodore Buschmiller as the Woodbury and Buschmiller Company; it was sold in 1912 to the Newport Mineral Water Company. The firm manufactured soda water, mineral water, and seltzer water and delivered its products mainly to groceries and drug stores. The drinks were sold in 6.5-ounce emerald or white bottles and 24-ounce light green bottles imprinted with the company name. The bottles have become collector items. The product line was expanded to include other soft drinks, ginger ale, vichy water, litihia water, and similar carbonated and noncarbonated beverages. Soft drink flavors included cream soda, Hawaiian punch, lemon-lime, orange, root beer, and sarsaparilla. The company seldom had more than eight employees. For special events, an extra delivery truck would be loaded and driven to the site of an outing; it would remain until the truck was out of stock. Stiff competition from the national brands began during the early 1950s, and the company tried to compete by introducing two new drinks in 12-ounce bottles, “Mr. Newport” and “Th in,” but the company ceased operations in the summer of 1955. In late August of that year, both the company’s equipment and its real estate were sold at auction. “Going Going Gone,” KP, September 1, 1955, 19. Reis, Jim. “Records and Memories of Bottling Company Pour a Sip of Local History,” KP, October 14, 1991, 4K.
NEWPORT PUBLIC LIBRARY
NEWPORT-ON-THE-LEVEE. Newport-onthe-Levee, a 350,000-square-foot regional entertainment complex, was the catalyst for the redevelopment of Newport’s Ohio River shore. A city-built, 4-level parking garage beneath the development has capacity for 1,800 vehicles. Newport Aquarium was the first venue to open, in May 1999. Although the complex had not yet been fully completed, a number of restaurants and shops opened in fall 2001. Major anchors include the aquarium, a two-level Barnes and Noble bookstore, a 20-screen movie theater (see Movie Theaters), specialty shops, gourmet and ethnic restaurants (American, Chinese, Irish, Italian, Japanese, Latin American, and Turkish), two amusement game centers, and live performance venues like the Shadowbox Sketch Comedy and Rock-n-Roll Club and the Funny Bone Comedy Club. A hotel is planned for the future. Newport-on-the-Levee is owned by the Price Group of La Jolla, Calif. Newport- on-the-Levee. www .newportonthelevee .com/ (accessed June 19, 2008). Rutledge, Mike. “Newport Ties Rebirth to Levee,” KP, July 19, 2001, 1K. Wood, Roy. “Newport’s New Face,” KP, April 7, 2001, 1K.
Thomas S. Ward
NEWPORT POLITICAL ACTION COMMITTEE. The beginning of the 1980s was a tumultuous time in Newport politics. A majority with a reputation for wanting to reform city government was elected to Newport’s City Commission in 1970 and then voted out of office in 1979. In its place was a new majority that supported various policies of the past, including tolerating the alcohol and sexually oriented businesses that were abundant throughout the city. Public conflicts between the new majority and supporters of restricting these businesses became a frequent topic on local television stations and in the newspapers. Some citizens were prevented from speaking at city commission meetings, and when they tried, they were shouted down by their elected officials. One particularly vicious verbal attack caught the media’s attention. Neighborhood activist Ian Budd was an immigrant from England, where he had been involved in political organizing, and had been promoting civic events in Newport, including the city’s initial involvement in the tri-state WEBN fireworks festival. While making a presentation for the 1980 event, Budd was attacked by then Newport commissioner A. J. Tony Warndorf as a “damn Limey” and a “Communist,” who had no right to speak at commission meetings. Budd eventually resigned from his post, but the fallout from this attack, which had been aired on local television, had a profound influence on the future direction of Newport politics and government. The intensity of the political conflict led some citizen leaders to believe that a new force was needed to bring stability, civility, and continuity to Newport government. This desire for a new way led to the formation of the Newport Political Action Committee (NEWPAC) in 1981. Budd was instrumental in forming and directing the early
activities of the group. Other influential founding members were Allen Dube, local businessman Peter Garrett, and Owen Kramer. All had had extensive experience in organizing community events sponsored either by their local neighborhood association or by the Newport Citizens Advisory Council. Word of the group’s formation attracted likeminded citizens from throughout Newport. Membership was open to all citizens and business owners in the city. Three officers were elected to plan the overall strategies for the organization, subject to approval by the membership. Their purpose was to develop a policy platform for the future of Newport and to endorse and support those candidates for city offices who seemed likely to support that platform. A questionnaire was developed and sent to each candidate for office, who was given an opportunity to address the group’s membership. Not all candidates cooperated, but the meetings themselves were very well attended. Eventually, NEWPAC decided to endorse Laura Bradley, Steve Goetz, Tom Ferrara, and Fred Osburg as candidates for city commissioner. There was no race for mayor that year. While NEWPAC provided no money to any candidates, its members did use their human resources to organize three different citywide flyer drops before the primary and the general election. In addition, on election day they provided volunteers to stand at the exits of the bridges leading from Cincinnati with signs encouraging citizens to support the reform group’s slate of candidates. All four candidates won. Once the 1981 election was over, NEWPAC members took only a limited role in influencing government policies, leaving that task primarily to the people they had helped elect. Most members continued their involvement with their neighborhood associations and the Newport Advisory Council, which continued to have an impact on the development and execution of new policies for the city. The commissioners adopted much of NEWPAC’s platform, including restrictions on adult entertainment and hiring personnel to foster economic development in the city. Some tension developed between the four commissioners and NEWPAC members, mostly over the board’s decision to retain Ralph Mussman as city manager, but by 1983 enough progress had been achieved that the same four persons plus candidate Irene Deaton, who had been mayor, were endorsed and elected. According to newspaper accounts of this election, the reelection of four incumbent commissioners was a feat that had not been accomplished since 1941. By 1985 many NEWPAC members had decided that city government in Newport was on a good course and that a new spirit of political cooperation existed. Deciding that NEWPAC’s political ser vices were no longer needed, the group decided to disband. But the group of candidates that NEWPAC had supported provided much of the stability and staff needed to launch the city on its path to restoration, which began in the 1980s and had
reached a high level of success by the turn of the century. “Mayor Won’t Seek Group’s Endorsement,” KP, March 17, 1983, 12K. “New—PAC to Politick,” KP, January 29, 1983, 2K. “NEWPAC Has Key Election Role,” KP, February 14, 1983, 1K.
NEWPORT PUBLIC LIBRARY. The Newport Public Library officially opened on January 16, 1899. By April of that year, the increasing patronage and circulation numbers at the library necessitated the hiring of an assistant librarian. Henrietta Litzendorff was selected to fi ll the newly created position; she remained a faithful employee of the library for 52 years, eventually becoming the third and longest-tenured head librarian. The library’s board of trustees next set their sights on obtaining a grant from the Andrew Carnegie Foundation to fund the construction of a new facility. In a letter dated October 10, 1899, board member and Episcopal minister W. G. McCready solicited Andrew Carnegie, the Scottish-born philanthropist, for library construction funds. The following month, Rev. McCready was notified that Carnegie had approved a $20,000 grant, which would finance the building with an auditorium. Though exceedingly generous, Carnegie’s munificence came with a few stipulations. Grant funds were to be used solely for building construction, and they would be disbursed only after library trustees, city officials, and citizens had secured a suitable site, either through donations or by utilization of public funds. Carnegie also insisted that, since the community owned the building, the city’s residents had to agree to an annual maintenance fund pledge equal to at least 10 percent of the total amount he had granted. Though buoyed by Carnegie’s generosity, Newport encountered one of the most frequent problems experienced throughout the country by previous recipients of Carnegie library grants: disputes over the selection and location of a mutually agreed-upon site for the new facility. Because Newport had been the first city in Kentucky to receive a Carnegie library grant, an honor the city did not want to lose, a concerted effort was made to mobilize a subscription drive to fund the purchase of land for a building site. In May 1900, a 77-by-66foot lot at the southeast corner of Fourth and Monmouth Sts. in Newport was, at last, agreed upon; the site, which had been offered by U.S. congressman and Newport native Albert S. Berry, was purchased for $3,350. Once this lot at 403 Monmouth St. had been secured, the building’s design and appearance now had to be decided. The library trustees eventually selected a simple yet classically elegant Italian Renaissance facade designed by Cincinnati architects Werner & Adkins. As the construction phase drew to a close, and the costs began to exceed original estimates, the trustees again appealed to Andrew Carnegie for an
660 NEWPORT REFORM GROUPS additional funding; a second grant, in the amount of $6,500, was approved. The library board’s cash shortfall was further alleviated after Newport’s city council passed a resolution allocating $22,650 in funds for library use. The library board’s members were at last able to procure the furnishings and accoutrements befitting the library’s grand exterior: interior embellishments included an ornate spiral staircase leading to the second-floor auditorium (named Carnegie Hall), a marble-countered circulation desk framed by twin columns, and vaulted ceilings adorned with dentil, egg-and-dart, and reed moldings. The new Newport Public Library was dedicated on June 25, 1902. At its opening, the library had a collection of 2,202 volumes; by 1905 the library’s holdings had increased to 6,588 volumes, of which 191 were in German. Though Newport’s citizenry was comprised of many ethnic backgrounds, especially Irish and Italian, according to the 1880 census, those claiming German ancestry formed a large percentage of the city’s population. Newport’s embrace of its ethnic diversity was further evidenced by the library’s early efforts to provide racially integrated ser vice to black patrons. Despite ongoing budgetary concerns and financial shortfalls, by 1928 the Newport Public Library had become a firmly established municipal institution; that year’s annual report noted that 6,527 registered library patrons were provided with access to 17,534 volumes, amounting to a respectable circulation total of 72,908 items. In the aftermath of the October 1929 U.S. stock market crash and the subsequent onset of the Great Depression, the Newport Public Library sought to serve its dedicated patron base by participating in the Campbell Co. Association’s “make-a-job” program, though its effort to employ citizens in a building renovation project via the federal Works Progress Administration were denied because the library’s interior had already been painted within the previous 15 years. Though the Ohio River floods of 1913 and 1937 exacted a terrible toll from the city and its residents, the Newport Public Library and its fragile contents survived both events. Later, the library provided a much-needed place to escape the daily tribulations Newport’s citizens encountered throughout the Great Depression. In March 1941, the PTA in Bellevue had unsuccessfully attempted to organize a countywide library system. Later that year, a decade before the U.S. Congress passed the Library Ser vices Act to supply funding for the establishment of library ser vices to rural areas, the Newport Public Library sought to extend borrowing privileges to Campbell Co. residents living outside the Newport city limits. Rural residents of Campbell Co. could borrow library materials by paying a one-dollar annual fee and by having their library card application signed by a Newport property owner. Over the next several decades, Newport experienced a substantial outmigration, which, by the late 1960s, had begun to impact the library’s patron base. The formation of the Northern Kentucky Regional Library System in 1968 was fol-
lowed by renewed efforts to establish a countywide library district, though initially these efforts were met with failure. Furthermore, by 1971, Newport’s Public Library, the county’s first home of free public library ser vice, was facing a financial dilemma: how to pay for costly renovation and modernization projects with shrinking municipal funds. In 1976 county officials and residents initiated a well-organized demonstration project to secure funds for a multibranch, countywide library district. Legal concerns and turf issues kept the Newport Public Library from participating in the project. The newly formed Campbell Co. Library Board overcame this difficulty by opening its own Newport branch within a leased mobile home unit located at the Newport Shopping Center. The successful passage of a three-cent library tax levy in 1978 marked the end of the Newport Public Library’s long-held and closely guarded autonomy. The new District Library Board purchased the contents of the library, though the city maintained ownership of the building; an arrangement was made whereby the newly established Campbell Co. Public Library System would lease the Newport Public Library’s building from the city for one dollar per year. Thus, after 76 long and memorable years, Newport’s Carnegie Free Library, as of January 1, 1979, became known as the Newport Branch of the Campbell Co. Public Library. In May 1982, an ordinance was passed by the Newport City Commission deeding the library building to the Campbell Co. Library Board in return for its trustees’ compliance with two conditions: the fi rst required the county’s library board to complete at least $100,000 worth of improvements over the next five years; and the second noted that if the library building on Monmouth St. were ever to be sold, all proceeds from the sale would be allocated for the construction of new library within Newport. By 1984 initial improvements had been made, including the purchase and paving of an adjacent lot for additional parking as well as the installation of new stairs and handrails at the library’s main Monmouth St. entrance. In early 1987, the county library board approved a major renovation project for the Newport branch; the cost of the aging facility’s extensive interior and exterior modernization and remodeling totaled over $260,000 and took two years to complete. The automation of the Campbell Co. Public Library System’s card cata log in 1987 precipitated a technological avalanche that soon overwhelmed the facilities available within Newport’s 9,700-square-foot Carnegie building. By November 1997, banks of public-access computers had been installed throughout all the county’s library branches, and the system’s holdings had rapidly expanded to include compact discs, books on tape, CD-ROMs, and informational and educational movies on videocassettes and later on DVDs. As a result, the Newport branch library’s quaint charm no longer camouflaged its sadly outdated condition. As staff and patrons turned out to celebrate the Newport branch library’s
100th anniversary in April 1999, its future was in question. Throughout the remainder of the 1990s and into the new millennium, rumors abounded regarding the possible relocation of the Newport branch library and the potential sale of the Carnegie building at Fourth and Monmouth Sts. In April 2000, the rumors were confirmed when the county library board of trustees took legal action to secure a site for a new library facility to be located at 901 E. Sixth St. in Newport, near the city’s border with Bellevue. The rectangular brick structure there had once been an A&P Supermarket and had since become the home of the 471 Antique Mall. By October 2001 the trustees had successfully acquired the location. Despite the interest of other perspective buyers, the Carnegie library building’s long and intimate history with the city of Newport quickly led to earnest negotiations between the Newport Library Board’s trustees and city officials on a selling price for the historic structure. Meanwhile, in January 2003, the Morel Construction Company Inc., of Fort Thomas began construction on the $3.8 million, 27,000-square-foot building that would replace the library on Monmouth St. In July of that same year, the Newport City Commission and the Campbell Co. Library’s board of trustees agreed upon a $375,000 selling price for the Carnegie building, ending nearly a year and a half of worried conjecture over its future and returning the building’s ownership to the city. On May 1, 2004, current and former library staff members of the Newport Public Library gathered along with past and present Newport residents, faithful library patrons, city officials, and local dignitaries for the closing ceremony of the former Newport Public Library. A half month later, on May 16th, many of the same faces, along with many new ones, celebrated the continuation of Newport’s public library ser vice at the grand opening of the new Newport branch library on Sixth St. In July 2007, local businessman David Hosea purchased the old Carnegie library building and renovated it into the Carnegie Event Center, which includes a tea room, a reception hall, a museum, and a gift shop. The facility opened in 2008. Mueller, Jan. Soul of the City: A Centennial History of the Newport Public Library. Cincinnati: Specialty Litho, 2004. “Newport Library Relocating,” KE, April 26, 2004, B1. “Newport May Buy Old Library Building,” KP, March 14, 2000, 3K. Reis, Jim. “Newport Library Turns Page on Second Century,” KP, April 5, 1999, 4K.
NEWPORT REFORM GROUPS. The reform group formed in Northern Kentucky during the early 1960s, known as the Committee of 500, often receives all the credit for the cleanup of Newport’s casinos and brothels, but efforts to reform Newport extend back all the way to the 1940s. The success of the Committee of 500 must be seen within the context of the efforts of these other groups, es-
NEWPORT SECOND CLEANUP
pecially the Newport Ministerial Association’s Social Awareness Committee (SAC). The first efforts to clean up Newport were usually blocked by factions within the gambling business. When the police raided an operation, it was most likely because one faction had succeeded in paying off law enforcement officials to shut down a rival. The Newport Civic Association (NCA) was the best known of early ineffective reform organizations. Running under the slogan “Clean Up, Not Close Up,” the NCA was co-opted by the Cleveland Syndicate in the early 1950s as the NCA was attempting to rid Newport’s gambling establishments of some of their seedier side effects, such as prostitution. The NCA was successful only in closing up a few operations temporarily. Real reform did not occur until the end of the decade, with the founding of the of the Newport Ministerial Association’s Social Awareness Committee. The SAC is notable because it was the Northern Kentucky region’s first truly independent reform group and because it paved the way for the Committee of 500. The driving force behind the SAC was Christian Siefried, a postman who was one of the lay members of the committee. Under Siefried’s leadership, the SAC focused its attention on gambling and vice. Despite the group’s tenacity—its members fought continually against gambling for almost four years—its mission and structure ultimately prevented it from accomplishing real reform. Consisting of likeminded souls from numerous Newport Protestant churches, the SAC followed the tenets of Christian social action, which argued that the necessary reforms could be carried out by simply studying a problem and alerting local officials to its existence. Two years of study helped Siefried and the SAC realize that simply alerting local officials would do no good. Most elected and law enforcement officials were either sympathetic to the gambling interests or directly on the “take.” The only way truly to reform Newport was to remove the corrupt officials from office. The SAC attempted to do so, using Kentucky’s impeachment system, whereby the governor appointed a committee to investigate the offending officials and then have them removed. In order to pursue the impeachment process, the SAC needed a lawyer, and this is how the Committee of 500 came into being. Jack Wadsworth, who was in the road-paving and construction equipment business, was spurred on by the recent serious embarrassment that Newport gamblers had caused him. One of his clients, in town for a sales convention, had been “rolled” in one of Newport’s seedier casinos. Wadsworth approached Claude Johnson, who sold electrical equipment, about funding the SAC effort to push for ouster proceedings. Johnson had also been watching the SAC from the sidelines and agreed with Wadsworth that they should approach their fellow businessmen to fund the SAC. Johnson thought they should also form their own group that would be more expressly political in nature. Over the course of the late winter and spring of 1961, the group Wadsworth and Johnson envisioned, the Committee of
500, came into being. Its goals, though similar to those of the SAC in that they wanted to rid Newport of gambling and vice, were more political and secular. Johnson, Wadsworth, and the other area businessmen who formed the core of the Committee of 500 wanted to clean up Newport and Campbell Co. not only for moral reasons, but because they saw how the economy of vice and corruption was hindering Northern Kentucky’s economic future. By the 1950s Northern Kentucky was fully a suburb of Cincinnati. Ninety percent of Northern Kentucky residents commuted across the Ohio River for work; Wadsworth, Johnson, and other prominent citizens wanted to change that situation. But they had seen efforts to recruit new businesses and industry stumble because of the rampant corruption in local politics. Large corporations would not invest in Campbell Co. because they felt that a political apparatus controlled by the gambling interests would be hostile to their needs. Thus, the Committee of 500 focused on cleaning up Newport not for any altruistic reform purpose, but because they wanted to replace the political economy of gambling and corruption with the political economy of the modern corporation and jobs. In order to accomplish their goal, the Committee of 500 needed to gain control of the political apparatus. Since their political base was in the suburbs of Campbell Co., they focused on running a candidate for county, not municipal, office. They decided on the county sheriff ’s seat because that office had broad powers to enforce state and federal antigambling statutes. Their candidate was George W. Ratterman, a former football star who was a real estate lawyer in a prominent Cincinnati investment firm. Besides possessing charisma and connections, Ratterman was Roman Catholic, a fact that helped the Committee of 500 enlist the assistance of the county’s Catholic population. Despite an ill-fated attempt to frame Ratterman by Tito Carinci and his bosses at the Glenn Hotel in Newport, Ratterman won the race for Campbell Co. sheriff in late 1961. Ratterman’s strongest support came from outside of Newport, especially from supporters in Fort Thomas, the core of the committee’s constituency. Over the course of his four-year term, Ratterman succeeded in running most of Newport’s small-time casino operators out of Newport and the rest of Campbell Co. (the larger operations, run by the Cleveland Syndicate, had left town voluntarily once they saw how powerful and serious the reform efforts were). During the 1960s the Committee of 500 elected their candidates to the commonwealth attorney and district judge offices, making sure that the gambling interests could not return to power and that illegal gambling would no longer be the center of the region’s economy. Gioielli, Robert. “Suburbs v. Slot Machines: The Committee of 500 and the Battle over Gambling in Northern Kentucky,” Ohio Valley History 5, no. 2 (Summer 2005): 61–84.
Shearer, Jason G. “Urban Reform in Sin City: The George Ratterman Trial and the Election of 1961 in Northern Kentucky,” RKHS 98, no. 4 (Autumn 2000): 343– 65. Williams, Michael L. “Sin City Kentucky: Newport, Kentucky’s Vice Heritage, and Its Legal Extinction, 1920–1991,” master’s thesis, University of Louisville, 2008.
NEWPORT SECOND CLEANUP. Newport’s so-called second cleanup occurred during the 1980s, when during about a 10-year period, prosecutors and law enforcement came together to combat the town’s “Sin City” label, first imposed during Prohibition. Their contributions ultimately redefined Newport’s central business core. In the late 1960s, after organized gambling departed Campbell Co. (see Cleveland Syndicate), elections fi lled Campbell Co. judgeships and the Commonwealth attorney’s office with men of integrity. But the late 1960s and 1970s also brought to Newport’s central business core a concentration of adult bars featuring nude and seminude dancing, “B-girls,” “XXX” adult theater (see Cinema X), and the Adult Bookstore, mostly along a fiveblock stretch of Monmouth St. The “Sin City” stigma remained. For this Newport problem, the solution was reached mostly in courtrooms and hearing chambers, but only after sound lawenforcement investigative efforts and the coming into office of an intense and aggressive Campbell Co. attorney in 1978. Although a few businesses made feeble attempts at traditional burlesque, most of the 20 or so establishments were poor imitations. In those strip bars, prostitution was the real attraction, and alcohol was the medium of exchange; these activities were quite illegal, of course. Cinema X, owned by an out-of-state concern, and local nightlife figure Sammy Wright’s Adult Bookstore, both in the 700 block of Monmouth, contained several coin-operated “peep show booths” offering sexually explicit movies. Since the booths were large enough for at least two persons, the Cinema X and Bookstore offered yet another activity for nonNewport patrons, the usual crowds that clogged Monmouth at night. Promoting the long-held myth that adult entertainment was economical ly good for Newport, the three-member majority of the 1980–1981 Newport City Commission turned a blind eye to the vice that permeated Monmouth St. and a deaf ear to the citizens groups and the ministerial association (see Newport Reform Groups) that pleaded for antivice actions. Antivice forces saw hope during 1978 and 1979 when Newport detective Al Garnick’s investigative teams began to show results through raids and prosecutions, but the antireform three-member majority did not support those efforts in 1980– 1981. The two reform-minded minority members, Mayor Irene Deaton and commissioner Steven Goetz, tried to “stay the course,” unaware that someone had, in fact, heard the appeals and was quietly preparing to act forcefully and with a persistence that the vice purveyors could not have expected.
662 NEWPORT SHOPPING CENTER County attorney Paul Twehues began in April 1980 to act aggressively against vice along Monmouth. He was assisted by his associates Bill Schoettelkotte, Justin Verst, and Bill Wehr; the Kentucky State Police; the Campbell Co. Police; and later, when the City Commission majority did not impede them, the Newport Police. Over the next 24 months, the Cinema X was raided and convicted seven times with obscenity violations. The Adult Bookstore was targeted and tried for obscenity violations as well. By early 1982 both establishments, the chief marketers of obscenity and two stark symbols of the “sin” in Newport’s “Sin City” nickname, were permanently closed. Undercover detectives with the Kentucky State Police and, later, with the Newport Police, conducted antiprostitution campaigns inside the bars, and state and local liquor law infractions were investigated; offending license holders were prosecuted. Prostitution convictions, if there were enough of them, permitted sanctions against liquor license holders, which were effected by Newport’s liquor administrator, Michael Whitehead (hired in 1982), or by county attorney Twehues through civil lawsuits. Twehues and his assistant Justin Verst brought civil suits against strip bars under a little-known act that allowed a circuit judge to declare a business a “house of prostitution” based upon the number of prostitution convictions, closing the establishment for up to a year. Closures placed the businesses’ license and zoning status in jeopardy. Because of these and similar measures by the city and by Twehues’s office, the number of undesirable establishments began to shrink as strip bar owners foolishly tried to challenge the resolve of city administrators, police, and prosecutors. Mayor Deaton and commissioner Goetz’s persistence was rewarded in 1982, when the City Commission was populated entirely by reformminded individuals. The commission promptly enacted Newport’s first anti–nude dance ordinance in October of the same year. Drafted by new city attorney Wil Schroder and his staff, and patterned after a U.S. Supreme Court decision from New York (New York State Liquor Authority v. Dennis Bellanca, dba The Main Event, et al., 1981), the ordinance forbade any further nude dancing in Newport establishments having liquor licenses. The ordinance was immediately challenged through the state and federal court systems. The U.S. Supreme Court ultimately upheld the Newport ordinance in the case of City of Newport, Kentucky v. Nicholas A. Iacobucci, dba Talk of the Town, et al., 1987. Newport’s ordinance became a model for other cities that wanted similar legislation. Th roughout the 1980s, some adult entertainment businesses survived, but their numbers continued to shrink. Mike Whitehead, the police, and Twehues’s office continued the pressure when criminal infractions occurred, but some bars surrendered their liquor licenses to resume nude dancing, thereby avoiding the Bellanca decision and the Newport antinudity ordinance, both of
which applied only to businesses having liquor licenses. Help came when the U.S. Supreme Court decided the case of Glen Theatre, Inc. v. Michael Barnes, Prosecuting Attorney of St. Joseph County, Indiana, 1991. Ironically, the Glen Theatre could trace corporate ownership to the group that had owned Newport’s former Cinema X. Holding that a state or local government may prohibit public nudity regardless of whether liquor was involved, concurring justice David Souter reminded cities that adverse “secondary effects” on communities near adult-entertainment businesses were valid considerations when contemplating zoning and other legislation. City attorney Mike Schulkens, a skilled trial lawyer accustomed to exploiting legal opportunities afforded by court decisions, who once had represented adult-entertainment owners, quickly prompted city manager James Parsons and other city leaders to fashion zoning and other laws to take advantage of the Barnes case. Newport’s dancers’ costumes became more conservative, and the number of strip bars, if they could be termed such anymore, numbered only three by the late 1990s. The “Sin City” label became assigned to history. Newport’s current model-community status is attributed to the economic vision of former city leaders such as Laura Long (economic director), mayor Irene Deaton, commissioner Steven Goetz, and Philip G. Ciafardini (finance director and city manager), to name a few, and many dedicated Newport citizens who struggled to maintain their neighborhoods. Today, families stroll unhesitatingly in Newport, day or night, to enjoy a town that has always been there but was for years concealed under the “Sin City” veneer. City of Newport, Kentucky v. Nicholas A. Iacobucci, dba Talk of the Town, et al., 479 U.S. 92, 107 S.Ct. 383, 93 L. Ed. 2d 334 (1986). Glen Theatre, Inc. v. Michael Barnes, Prosecuting Attorney of St. Joseph County Indiana, et al., 501 U.S. 560, 111 S.Ct. 2456, 115 L. Ed. 2d 504 (1991). New York State Liquor Authority v. Dennis Bellanca, dba The Main Event, et al., 452 U.S., 714, 101 S.Ct. 2599, 69 L. Ed. 2d 357 (1981). Williams, Michael L. “Sin City Kentucky: Newport, Kentucky’s Vice Heritage, and Its Legal Extinction, 1920–1991,” master’s thesis, University of Louisville, 2008.
NEWPORT SHOPPING CENTER. The first modern outdoor shopping plaza of its type in Northern Kentucky, Newport Shopping Center is located where Carothers Rd. meets Alexandria Pk. (U.S. 27) in Newport. It formally opened amid much fanfare on Thursday February 2, 1956, with more than 30 stores, though some stores had already opened, and others came a little later. Pages of advertisements and publicity in local newspapers preceded this gala event. The center was developed by Cleveland-based Sanford Homes Inc. and constructed by the Harrison Construction Company on the property of the Schuerman family’s
dairy farm. The site had once been considered for the St. Luke Hospital (East). The budget for land and construction was $2.5 million, including 1,500 parking spots on 33 acres, but the final cost came in at nearly $3 million, with almost 3,000 parking spots. It was this seemingly endless supply of available parking that differentiated the modern shopping center from previous forms of retail. Extensive site work was required because of the large storm tunnel beneath, which carries the waters of the West Fork of Duck Creek. The exposed shaved hill behind the center indicates the volume of earth-moving that was necessary. That hill had to be scraped level for the pad on which the center rests. Adjacent residents still recall the blasting that was needed to carve out the site. Immediately, the Newport Shopping Center was where thousands shopped. It had a JCPenney department store, Kroger and Albers supermarkets, a Walgreens drugstore, a Western Auto, a Richman Brothers men’s clothing store, a Woolworth’s fiveand-dime store, a Martin’s women’s clothing store, an American National Bank, a Hart Hardware, and a Carter’s Drive-In Restaurant. Traffic patterns changed as car after car passed through nearby Cote Brilliante from Dayton and Bellevue en route to the center via the newly constructed Carothers Rd. In front of the center was a car wash operated by former Campbell Co. sheriff Al Howe, and many youngsters played their first round of miniature golf at the course there. There were amusement rides at the Kissel Brothers’ Playland next to Walgreens, and carnivals, square dancing, and other entertainment productions—including for a time Newport’s ItalianFest—used the shopping center’s parking lot as a venue. In the 1960s a bowling alley, Walt’s Center Lanes, was added next to the Western Auto, and later a separate addition of five stores was placed south of the bowling lanes. In late 1966 the center expanded eastward down Carothers Rd., anchored originally by an Ontario’s discount store. Today the major tenants of that lower section are Sears Hardware and Remke Market. Shifting demographics have impacted the center. Gone are many of the shopping center’s original tenants, including the JCPenney department store. A Bob Evans Restaurant sits where miniature golf was once played. Walgreens has moved to an outer location at the corner of Carothers and Alexandria Pk., away from the end position in the shopping center that it formerly held. In recent years, the remodeling of storefronts has brought new businesses to the center. In 1991 Morris Wakser, the Cleveland developer who inspired the Newport Shopping Center, died. His family continues to own and manage the center under the name of American Diversified Developments Inc. KP, week of January 30, 1956. Stories and openingday announcements. Reis, Jim. “Newport Center Led the Way,” KP, August 26, 2002, 4K. ———. “Shopping Center a First,” KP, September 20, 2004, 8K.
Michael R. Sweeney
Square dancing at Newport Shopping Center in the late 1950s in front of JCPenney.
NEWPORT SILK MANUFACTURING COMPANY. This firm, which made all types of superior handkerchiefs and other quality silken goods, began in October 1844 in Newport, as one of the first operations of its kind in the United States. It was started by William B. Jackson and his partner, a man named Brothers. Before October 1846, Jackson had already obtained and subsequently lost a second partner, John Orme. The silk that was manufactured came from silkworms raised at first in Kentucky and later in Ohio around the Marietta area. The raw material was spun and woven at the Newport plant, which paid four dollars per bushel for high-quality silkworm cocoons. A challenge faced by the business was that the supply of raw material was inadequate to keep up with the demand for the product. Handkerchiefs sold for $1.25 each, and silk products were sold as quickly as they were made. In 1852 Richard Southgate, who had become involved in the business, accepted a medal at the New York Crystal Palace Exhibition at New York City “for production and general excellence for silk made from cocoons,” on behalf of the company. The business was in operation as late as 1889 and continued into the early 1900s under the name Campbell Co. Silk Culture and Manufacturing Company.
1,100. Newport Steel Corporation is managed and operated by the parent company NS Group Inc., which also owns Koppel Steel in Ambridge, Pa. In 1990 the NS Group was listed on the New York Stock Exchange. Newport Steel manufactures seamless and welded tubular steel products that are used primarily for oil and natural gas drilling by energy companies when they explore for and produce oil or natural gas, both onshore and offshore. The tubing is used to carry oil and natural gas to the surface. Most customers are located in the United States and Canada. The modern company sits partially on the same site as the Swift Iron and Steel Works, founded in 1867 by Alexander Swift in the West End of Newport. The Swift company employed more than 5,000 people, mostly from that side of town, and was the city’s largest employer at the time. Swift Iron and Steel Works, with 32 pud-
Collins, Richard H. History of Kentucky. Vol. 1. Covington, Ky.: Collins, 1882. “History,” KSJ, April 13, 1889, 1. “Silk Factory,” LVR, April 20, 1844, 3.
NEWPORT STEEL. On April 15, 1981, four persons who had been employed in managerial positions at the recently closed Interlake Steel Plant in Newport formed the Newport Steel Corporation. The company’s office is located on W. Ninth St. in Newport, and the plant itself is sprawled over 250 acres in both Newport and Wilder, along the Licking River. Included are two welded-pipe mills, a river-barge facility, machine and fabricating shops, and storage and repair facilities, all served by CSX rail sidings. The production buildings occupy about 675,000 square feet, and the current staff, including hourly and salaried employees, exceeds
Newport Steel, Wilder.
dling furnaces, manufactured steel rails and plates. E. L. Harper, a pig-iron merchant and a founder of the local Fidelity National Bank, purchased the company in 1880. After a $10 million wheat deal failed, the bank closed, the Swift plant closed, and Harper was sent to prison. In 1887 the Swift company sold its supplies and materials to Henry A. Shriver, who, with his partner, Adam Wagner, orga nized the Newport Iron and Steel Company. In 1889 John Trapp, Joseph Weingartner, and Carl Wiedemann purchased the company and changed its name to the Newport Rolling Mill. Wiedemann died the following year, and the company was sold again to Col. Joseph and A. L. Andrews in 1890. The Andrewses, who also operated an iron roofi ng and corrugating operation, the Globe Iron Roofi ng and Corrugating Company locally, purchased the mill to supply steel sheets for their roofi ng products. In 1905 the Andrews Steel Mill was built in Wilder on the grounds of a former horseracing track, to produce ingots that were rolled into sheet bars for the rolling mill. Mule carts loaded by hand were used to haul pig iron and scrap to the furnaces. During World War I, the demand for steel increased, and five more open-hearth furnaces were built. The Andrews Steel Company also owned the Hardy Burlington Coal Mine. The Andrews Steel Company was sold 12 times between the years 1943 and 1981. Herman Schriver bought it for $5 million in 1943; subsequent owners included, among others, the International Detrola Company, a man named Wolfson, and the Acme Steel Company, which purchased it in 1956. In 1964 the Acme Steel Company merged with Interlake Steel and assumed the Interlake name. During contract negotiations in 1980, Interlake closed the Wilder plant. The plant reopened in 1981 under the name of the Newport Steel Corporation. In
664 NEWS ENTERPRISE LUDLOW 2006 the Canadian firm of IPSCO Inc. purchased the Newport Steel Corporation for about $1.46 billion. Paeth, Greg. “Steel Maker to Buy NS Group,” KP, September 12, 2006, 1A.
NEWS ENTERPRISE (LUDLOW). The News Enterprise, originally called the Ludlow News, was a newspaper published in Ludlow for about 54 years, beginning December 11, 1936. The editor of the Ludlow News had also created the local Dixie News. In 1940 the Ludlow News merged with the competing Dixie Enterprise, and the name was changed to the News Enterprise. During World War II, one Ludlow resident, Mary Schrage, became well known for sending weekly issues of the News Enterprise to soldiers from the local region who were stationed worldwide. The longtime editor of the News Enterprise was August “Gus” Sheehan of West Covington, who served many years as a Kentucky state senator representing Bromley, Covington, Ludlow, and Villa Hills. When first published, the paper covered other areas as far south as Florence, Ky., in addition to Ludlow. However, early on the News Enterprise began concentrating on Ludlow and its surrounding area. Sheehan wrote a weekly column called Editor’s Corner. Local news was covered, and regular features included sections for letters to the editor and births, as well as two regular columns: Agree or Not, by S. C. Van Curon, and Looking Ahead, by Dr. George S. Benson, president of the National Education Program. The paper, published in a building on Elm St. in downtown Ludlow, found a dependable supply of advertisers for each issue. Sheehan sold the News Enterprise in 1988 to Steppingstone Publications, which issued its first edition on June 22, 1988. In 1991 Steppingstone Publications was purchased by the Recorder Newspapers, and the News Enterprise ceased operation. “ ‘Legend’ Gus Sheehan Dies—Veteran Legislator, Lawyer, and Publisher,” KE, October 31, 2000, B1B. “News Enterprise,” Ludlow News Enterprise, April 25, 1957, 2. “The Old and the New,” Ludlow News Enterprise, November 4, 1965, 7. “Suburban Recorder Papers Bought,” KP, January 9, 1991, 8K.
NEWSPAPERS IN NORTHERN KENTUCKY. In pioneer days, newspapers were the only mass medium. They were read, reread, and passed from hand to hand so often that they fell into tatters. Many were lost to history, but they were essential for a young country to form its republican culture. John Nerone, in The Culture of the Press in the Early Republic: Cincinnati, 1793–1848, quoted an editor’s boast in the June 23, 1818, Cincinnati Inquisitor and Cincinnati Ad-
vertiser: “The superiority which newspapers seem to possess over other methods of diff using political or practical knowledge among the people, has occasioned an extraordinary multiplication of them in this country over the last 25 years. From their uncommon cheapness, their pages are made accessible to every individual, however humble and indigent: Thousands of worthy freemen are consequently instructed and benefited by this means, who would otherwise be doomed to a life of perpetual ignorance.” The newspaper business in Northern Kentucky typified that of the entire country—newspapers sprouted, struggled, merged, and often folded. A list of “all newspapers ever published,” compiled in 1994 for the Kentucky Press Association by University of Kentucky librarians, listed 166 newspapers in the 11 counties of Northern Kentucky. The list may include duplicates, since some newspapers changed names, and it certainly omits some: for example, absent from the list are at least five German-language newspapers that, according to Kentucky Post reporter Jim Reis, were published in Covington and Newport in the 1800s. Today, with the mass media everywhere, readers have turned away from newspapers to watch television, listen to the radio, or surf the Internet, and newspapers are shrinking or failing. Fewer than two dozen newspapers circulated in Northern Kentucky in 2006. The Sunday Challenger, a weekly based in Covington, ran only 19 months, publishing its last edition in February 2006. The first newspaper in Kentucky was the Kentucke Gazette, published in Lexington in 1787, before Kentucky was a state. The earliest newspaper in Northern Kentucky and the third in the state, the Mirror, began in 1797 in Washington, a city later annexed by Maysville that was important because of its location on the Maysville Rd., a key thoroughfare for pioneers. Images of some ragged 18th-century editions of the Mirror are preserved on microfi lm at the University of Kentucky, the pages reflecting early Kentucky life. There was slavery: in the Mirror of June 28, 1799, a slaveholder offered $6 to anyone who returned “a Negro man named Billy, about five feet eight inches high, twenty-six years of age, of a pleasing countenance.” There were also American Indians: “Several reports have been in circulation respecting hostilities on the part of the Indians, which have occasioned some degree of alarm among the frontier settlers,” the editor wrote on May 31, 1799. Like other newspapers of the time, the Mirror printed much news copied from other papers, some of it from abroad and some of it weeks old. It did not matter to readers; historians believe that isolated, early settlers in small towns already knew the local news and were eager to learn of happenings elsewhere. What local news there was often took the form of advertisements; in Maysville it was common to see ads offering huge parcels of land for sale. One notice in the Mirror, for example, advertised 7,000 acres in Pendleton Co., noting that the owner would take “Negros, horses or produce in payment.” It also declared the property’s
title to be “indisputable,” an important point at a time when competing claims for property regularly led to litigation. The earliest newspapers also filled their pages with verbatim laws, speeches, minutes, and government reports; “official” newspapers were awarded government contracts for this purpose. They often were owned by a lone printer-editor-publisher who reprinted news from steamship captains, other newspapers, and government documents. Reporters did not exist yet. In Cincinnati, newspaper articles by reporters began to appear after about 1815, but by the 1840s, Cincinnati papers routinely employed reporters. South of the Ohio River the same trend likely was seen, and it meant newspapers had begun to take their modern form. Unlike modern papers, however, newspapers of the mid-19th century still printed fiction, poetry, and letters from people using assumed names, and newspapers proudly allied themselves with a political party. Some printed pointed and personal attacks about rivals. In fact, Kentucky editors were not infrequently challenged to duels; many editors in the early days of Kentucky journalism carried arms. By 1824 the United States had 598 newspapers, and Kentucky had 18. Soon the numbers exploded, as the invention of steam-powered presses in 1830s sped news into print. A hand press could make about 250 newspapers an hour, but a steam press could make more than 1,000. In the late 1840s, newspapers became linked by telegraph, with almost instantaneous transmission of highly condensed news—and much more of it than was previously available. Because telegraphed news was expensive, papers would proudly note in their headlines when news came “By Telegraph.” By the middle of the 19th century, even small towns in Kentucky had three or four newspapers competing for news and advertisements. Some of them had begun printing more than once a week, even daily in some cases. In a speech to historians on August 11, 1887, William Henry Perrin noted that the first daily in Kentucky (and in the entire West), the Public Advertiser, edited by Scott Co. native Shadrach Penn, was printed April 4, 1826, in Louisville. Records are scanty, but the fi rst daily in Northern Kentucky may have been the Covington Daily, which lasted only 16 days in 1844. Others soon followed. The abolitionist movement’s Register spawned a controversial daily on March 7, 1850: the Newport and Covington Daily News. That paper’s office was burned to the ground October 10, 1851, almost killing its feisty editor, William S. Bailey, and his family, who lived in the building. Bailey later started another paper, named the Free South, but a mob threw its printing press in the Ohio River in 1858. By the late 1800s, Cincinnati’s current dailies, the Enquirer and the Post, which later grew to dominance, had added Northern Kentucky editions. James E. Scripps bought the Cincinnati Penny Paper, and his brother Edward W. Scripps took over the paper and renamed it the Cincinnati Post in 1881. He set up an office in Covington to put out the Kentucky edition of the paper on Sep-
NEWSPAPERS IN NORTHERN KENTUCKY
Dailies Kentucky Enquirer
Gannett Inc., McLean, Va.
E. W. Scripps Inc., Cincinnati
Maysville Ledger Independent
Lee Enterprises Inc., Davenport, Iowa
Weeklies Bracken County News
Carrollton News-Democrat Grant County News Grant County Express Owenton News-Herald Falmouth Outlook
Landmark Community Newspapers, Shelbyville, Ky.
Gallatin County News
Community Press/Community Recorder Newspapers Alexandria Recorder Boone County Recorder Boone Community Recorder Campbell Community Recorder Campbell County Recorder Community Recorder Erlanger Recorder Florence Recorder Fort Thomas Recorder Kenton Community Recorder
Gannett Inc., McLean, Va.
tember 15, 1890. In 1891, what was then named the Kentucky Post was delivered to Northern Kentucky homes wrapped around the Cincinnati Post. In Northern Kentucky and elsewhere, however, weeklies outnumbered dailies. In 1872 more than 70 of Kentucky’s 90 newspapers were weeklies. The Kentucky legislature once considered paying for this kind of paper, a weekly “country paper,” for every family, to combat illiteracy in the state. While Northern Kentucky has a long tradition of community newspapering, it has had little hardhitting, investigative reporting. In the 1930s and for decades afterward, Newport possessed a “Sin City” reputation for its open gambling and prostitution abetted by organized crime. Stories about the crackdown that forced out the mob were followed doggedly by Hank Messick of the Louisville Courier Journal in the 1960s. In an interview by two Northern Kentucky University professors on July 14, 1979, Messick blamed the local press for allowing the situation to continue, saying, “If those Cincinnati papers had done their job, then they would never have had Newport.” Later, when the Beverly Hills Supper Club in Southgate burned, killing 167, the Pulitzer Prize in 1978 went to the Courier-Journal for coverage of both the fire and the lax enforcement of state fire codes. Gary Webb was perhaps Northern Kentucky’s best-known investigative reporter in the 1970s and early 1980s, but the stories that earned him fame were written after he left the Kentucky Post for the San Jose Mercury News in San Jose, Calif. In the latter part of the 20th century, newspapers began to suffer, as readers abandoned them for
Delphos Herald Inc., Delphos, Ohio
other media. “The number of daily newspapers declined an average of one per month in about the last 70 years of the [20th] century,” noted the History of the Mass Media in the United States: An Encyclopedia. The Internet, the newest mass medium, peeled more readers away from newspapers. New technology caused layoffs: when the computer entered newsrooms in the 1970s, reporters and editors began to take on work formerly done by printers. Corporate owners, emphasizing profit, cut staffing. The Cincinnati/Kentucky Post’s 188,000 circulation in 1997 fell to about 42,000 by 2004; it reduced staff four times between 2000 and 2006 and stopped publishing altogether on December 31, 2007. Nevertheless, the Kentucky Enquirer’s editor wrote in August 2006 that his newspaper had added 2,000 subscribers in two years. The paper launched www.nky.com in November 2005, where it also published news from the Post and from WCPO television. Prominent reporters and editors made their homes in Northern Kentucky. These included Latonia-born Robert S. Allen, who, with Drew Pearson, wrote the Washington, D.C., column Washington Merry-Go Round; Clay Wade Bailey, the “dean of Kentucky journalists” who covered state government for the Kentucky Post and for whom an Ohio River bridge is named; William R. Burleigh, a former editor of the Cincinnati Post and the Kentucky Post and chairman of the board of the E. W. Scripps Company, who retired to a Boone Co. farm; Judy Clabes, a former editor of the Kentucky Post and president and CEO of the Scripps Howard Foundation, and her
husband, Gene Clabes, now a journalism professor and formerly a publisher of the Community Recorder Newspapers; Nick Clooney of Maysville, a print and television journalist for more than 50 years; Martha Purdon Comer, a reporter, columnist, and editor of the Maysville Daily Independent and the Ledger Independent; Ollie M. James, a popu lar columnist and the chief editorial writer for the Cincinnati Enquirer; and Vance H. Trimble, a Pulitzer-Prize-winning reporter and a demanding former editor of the Kentucky Post. Best, Edna Hunter. Historic Washington Kentucky. 1st ed., 1944. Reprint, Maysville, Ky.: Limestone Chapter of the DAR, 1971. Blanchard, Margaret A., ed. History of the Mass Media in the United States: An Encyclopedia. London: Fitzroy Dearborn, 1998. CJ, August 7, 1875, 3. Clark, Thomas D. A History of Kentucky. Lexington, Ky.: John Bradford Press, 1960. ———. The Rural Press and the New South. Baton Rouge: Louisiana State Univ. Press, 1948. Evans, Herndon J. The Newspaper Press in Kentucky. Lexington: Univ. of Kentucky Press, 1976. “Gary Webb, 49, Former Reporter for the Post,” KP, December 13, A10. Hetzel, Dennis. “A Letter to Our Readers,” KE, August 27, 2006, 1B. “Lands for Sale in the State of Kentucky,” Mirror, May 31, 1799, 3. Messick, Hank. Interview by Lew Wallace and Frank Steely, July 14, 1979, Archives, Northern Kentucky Univ., Highland Heights, Ky. Nerone, John. The Culture of the Press in the Early Republic: Cincinnati, 1793–1848. New York: Garland, 1989. Reis, Jim. “Campbell’s Largest City Named for British Explorer.” In Pieces of the Past, by Jim Reis, vol. 1. Covington, Ky.: Kentucky Post, 1988. ———. “A Host of Papers Deliver News to Northern Kentucky.” In Pieces of the Past, by Jim Reis, vol. 1. Covington, Ky.: Kentucky Post, 1988. Share, Allen J. Cities in the Commonwealth: Two Centuries of Urban Life in Kentucky. Lexington: Univ. of Kentucky Press, 1944. “Six Dollars Reward,” Mirror, June 28, 1799, 3. “Southgate Accused of Fraud,” Yankee Doodle Extra, June 17, 1840, 4. Towles, Donald B. The Press of Kentucky, 1787–1994. Frankfort: Kentucky Press Association, 1994. Trimble, Vance H. The Astonishing Mr. Scripps: The Turbulent Life of America’s Penny Press Lord. Ames: Iowa State Univ. Press, 1992. Venable, W. H. Beginnings of Literary Culture in the Ohio Valley: Historical and Biographical Sketches. 1891. Available at Kentuckiana Digital Library. http://kdl.kyvl.org/. “Washington, May 31,” Mirror, May 31, 1799, 3.
Mary Carmen Cupito
NICHOLSON. Regardless of what the “Nicholson City Limit” welcome signs imply, Nicholson, Ky., is not an actual city. It is an unincorporated community located in south-central Kenton Co. at the crossroads of Taylor Mill Rd. (Ky. St. Rt. 16) and Madison Pk. (Ky. St. Rt. 17). According to tradition, Nicholson owes its name to Maysville, Ky., native Dr. Henry C. Nicholson, a distinguished
666 NICHOLSON, HENRY C. inventor and electrician who lived in the vicinity. In 1879 Henry Nicholson lost a patent dispute with Thomas A. Edison over the quadruplex telegraph, an innovation that enabled the sending of multiple simultaneous messages over a single telegraph line. Until the late 1800s, the Nicholson area was called California. The name change to Nicholson likely occurred to avoid confusion with California, Ky., in eastern Campbell Co. Nicholson was a rural farm community well into the 20th century. Since World War II, however, suburbanization has crept into the area. The number of farms in Nicholson has decreased, replaced by a few subdivisions and several modern single-family homes set on large lots. Its relative isolation from Kenton Co.’s expanding cities has protected Nicholson from the annexation boom that has beset central Kenton Co. since the 1960s. Nicholson retains a rural ambiance; however, the pace of change is increasing. The planned reconstruction of Ky. St, Routes 16, 17, and 536 should spur more development in the area. “Aged Inventor Dead,” KP, May 1, 1896, 8. An Atlas of Boone, Kenton and Campbell Counties, Kentucky. Philadelphia: D. J. Lake, 1883. “Library Sites Considered,” CE, March 30, 2004, 3C. “Nicholson vs. Edison—Quadruplex Telegraphing,” Chicago Daily Tribune, May 5, 1879, 3. Reis, Jim. “What’s In a Name?” KP, June 5, 1995, 4K.
NICHOLSON, HENRY C. (b. June 18, 1824, Maysville, Ky.; d. May 1, 1896, Nicholson, Ky.). A Civil War surgeon, a local physician, and an inventor, Henry Clay Nicholson, MD, was the son of Thomas and Annah Boon Nicholson and the grandson of Jacob Boone. He married Mary Askren, with whom he had eight children, including the prominent Boone Co. builder George Pendleton Nicholson. Although Henry Nicholson was born and died in Kentucky, he spent most of his adult life in Mount Washington, Ohio, on the east side of Cincinnati, where he practiced medicine and spent his spare time working on changes and improvements in electric telegraphy. Frequently described as an eccentric, Nicholson coinvented several types of hermetically sealed fruit and biological specimen jars. His most important invention, however, was the quadruplex telegraph, a major step forward in the field of electric telegraphy. Using the principles of positive and negative electric polarity, Nicholson devised a type of telegraph that could send two messages over a single wire at the same time. Previously only one message could be sent at a time. Almost simultaneously, renowned inventor Thomas Edison was working on a similar device that he had patented, and a long, bitter dispute ensued in the U.S. Patent Office about who had come up with the idea first. Because Nicholson had invented a new telegraphic alphabet (which never came into use) before inventing the quadruplex, with which it was to be used, Nicholson was fi nally, about 1885, given
credit for the invention. Physically, mentally, and fi nancially eroded by the years-long patent dispute with the far more influential Edison, Nicholson was forced to sell his home in Ohio and relocate to Kentucky before the dispute was settled. He died at his home in Nicholson, southern Kenton Co., in 1896 and was buried in the Independence Cemetery in Independence. The town of Nicholson, where he died, reportedly was named for him. “Aged Inventor Dead,” KP, May 1, 1896, 8. The Edison Papers. http://edison.rutgers.edu/ (accessed December 31, 2005). Nicholson, James B. Nicholson, Bruner and Getz Family History. Philadelphia, 1930. “What’s in a Name?” KP, June 5, 1995, 4K.
Amber L. Benson
NIGHT RIDERS. The Night Rider movement began in Northern Kentucky around 1904 as a result of a tobacco trust, or monopoly, which paid tobacco farmers less and less for their crops. Because there were virtually no other buyers, “the Trust,” led by James B. Duke (later of Duke University and Duke Power fame), reached a point where it was paying farmers less for their crop than their costs to grow it. As the number of farmers rebelling against the trust increased, they united in forming the American Society of Equity, or ASE. The ASE urged farmers either not to raise tobacco or, if they raised it, not to sell it. There was a small crop in 1907, but in 1908 there was virtually no burley tobacco raised. “Do not raise tobacco, but raise H__l with the tobacco trust,” urged the Carrollton News, as quoted in the Falmouth Outlook. Neighbors were strongly encouraged to join the movement. Rallies in various communities drew large crowds to support the ASE. Augusta had a parade of 5,000 men supporting the cause in 1908. Social pressures to join were enormous, and masked men riding in the night, while not endorsed by the official orga ni zation, enforced compliance by vandalism, arson, murder, and other violence. The Night Riders, the lawbreaking element of the orga ni zation, were officially disavowed. Plant beds were scraped, salted, or sown with clover by the Night Riders. Empty graves were dug as threats. Barns and tobacco warehouses were burned in at least Augusta, Brooksville, Carrollton, Covington, Germantown, Maysville, Owenton, Sanders, and Walton. The election of Augustus Willson as governor of Kentucky (1907–1911) and his use of National Guard troops, along with a U.S. Supreme Court decision against Night Rider activities, fi nally put an end to the Night Riders. “A.S. of E. Rally at Fair Grounds,” Falmouth Outlook, July 7, 1907, 1. Cunningham, Bill. On Bended Knees: The Night Rider Story. Nashville, Tenn.: McClanahan, 1983. “Masked Riders Destroy Trust Tobacco Barn,” KP, September 27, 1907, 1.
Nall, James O. The Tobacco Night Riders of Kentucky and Tennessee. Kuttawa, Ky.: McClanahan, 1991. “Night Riders Burn Covington Warehouse,” KP, March 26, 1908, 1. “Nocturnal Visitors,” Maysville Bulletin, March 26, 1908, 1. “No 1908 Crop,” Falmouth Outlook, April 10, 1908, 4. Warsaw Independent, May 11, 1907, 3.
NINTH ST. METHODIST EPISCOPAL CHURCH. The Ninth St. Methodist Episcopal (M.E.) Church of Covington, established in the early 1800s, originally met in a small building at Second and Scott Sts. Several church members began to sponsor weekly prayer meetings and worship sessions in hopes of inspiring the local African American community to continue to resist racial segregation and daily discrimination. These objectives were pursued more intensively during the 1870s and early 1880s, when the congregation, under the successive direction of Rev. G. S. Griffin, Rev. James Courtney, and Rev. G. W. Giegler, formed a coherent mission statement and developed an outstanding outreach program that sought to make the facility a shining “light in the community.” During the late 1880s, as the African American population of Covington increased, the church membership also increased greatly. As a result, in 1889, the church moved to 18 E. Ninth St. Th is property was provided by the Board of Church Extension of the Methodist Church, and funds to construct a new building were obtained through an enormous membership drive campaign and a generous donation by Amos Shinkle, a prominent local businessman. The church was designed by noted regional architect James W. McLaughlin. From the late 1880s to the 1920s, the membership of the Ninth St. M.E. Church continued to grow dramatically because of the vision and activities of several dynamic church leaders during this period, such as Rev. C. E. Ball, Rev. R. F. Broaddus, Rev. W. H. Evans, Rev. John W. Robinson, and Rev. J. H. Ross. These pastors encouraged the church to organize events such as annual revival meetings, weekly family-oriented entertainment programs, and weekend social activities for the youth. Various community leaders and civil rights organizations, galvanizing the local black community over the issues of political oppression and racial violence, also used the facility. For instance, in 1922, a vocal rally and endorsement meeting for the passage of a national “anti-lynching” bill was held at the church. From the 1930s to the 1980s, the church membership continued its community-based agenda by sponsoring numerous local and church events like the regional Women’s Society of Christian Ser vice conference in 1931, a daylong dedication ser vice celebrating acquisition of the church’s new pipe organ in 1954, a powerful prayer ser vice led by Bishop Frank Robinson in 1978, and several community activities throughout the 1980s. In
2006 the church closed, the victim of a dwindling congregation. “Anti-Lynching Bill Indorsed,” KTS, September 30, 1922, 14. “The Church Record of the 9th Street Methodist Episcopal Church, 1887–1901,” Northern Kentucky African American Heritage Task Force Collection, box 1, folder 13, W. Frank Steely Library, Northern Kentucky Univ. “The City,” DC, October 3, 1881, 1; February 14, 1882, 2; July 11, 1883, 4. “Local News,” DC, July 9, 1884, 4. “Ninth Street Methodist Episcopal,” vertical fi les, Kenton Co. Public Library, Covington, Ky. Reis, Jim. “Four Churches That Made a Difference,” KP, January 20, 1997, 4K. ———. “Knights of Pythias Born in 1864,” KP, October 24, 1994, 4K. ———.”When History Is Overlooked,” KP, February 8, 1999, 4K. “Religious,” DC, October 29, 1881, 1; February 6, 1882, 2.
Eric R. Jackson
NINTH ST. UNITED METHODIST CHURCH. In the summer of 1894, a nondenominational group of Christians decided to form a church in Newport and began to worship there on W. 10th St., between Isabella and Patterson Sts. On August 20 of the same year, about 60 people chartered a church and began to hold ser vices as the Bethel Church of the United Brethren in Christ. In early 1895 the congregation relocated to a frame building at Ninth and Ann Sts. in Newport, where the worship ser vices were held on the first floor and the pastor lived on the second floor. The congregation was known as Bethel Mission. In November 1901, the church dedicated a new building at the same site and changed its name to the Ninth St. United Brethren Church. In July 1927 the trustees purchased the property to the rear of the church to provide space for a better program of Christian education. In November 1946, when the Church of the United Brethren in Christ and the Evangelical Church merged to become the Evangelical United Brethren Church, the church in Newport became known as the Ninth St. Evangelical United Brethren Church. In 1968, as a result of the national merger of the Methodist Church with the Evangelical United Brethren Church, the church became part of the United Methodist Church and its name changed to the Ninth St. United Methodist Church. The Ninth St. United Methodist Church had the distinction of being the only former Evangelical United Brethren Church in the Kentucky Conference of the United Methodist Church. By 1970 the church on Ninth St. had closed. “Church Dedication,” KP, November 23, 1901, 5.
selecting literary works to review that reflect the diverse tastes of its members—travel, drama, classics, biography, best sellers, and pop literature. The first meeting of Nomads was held in the spring of 1895 at the instigation of Miss Emma Campbell, who had several times been a guest at a literary club in Walnut Hills, a suburb of Cincinnati. With the help of four friends, she established the Maysville organization. They chose the name Nomads not only to honor the Cincinnati group so named but also to remind themselves that they too were wanderers on land and on sea through the pages of literature. What makes the founding of this organization so significant for Maysville is that it was the first women’s club in the region whose focus was not on a church or a school. Nomads thus serves as a reminder of the efforts of 19th-century women to achieve their own identity, to acquire knowledge, and to elevate personal ideals through women’s clubs. Although early records are sketchy, the club’s constitution and annual program books provide insight into Nomads history. In the organization’s first constitution, membership was limited to 25 women, who would join by invitation only; dues were one dollar per year. Meetings were usually scheduled for evenings or at various times on Sundays. The format of meetings in the early years reveals that topics were studied in depth. A chairman provided a list of questions to be discussed and answered by various members. At present-day luncheon meetings, members review books of their choice. Membership through the years has included some outstanding women, but of special note are three members from the 1930s: Mrs. Francis Goggin Maltby, a short-story writer whose biography of O. Henry’s wife, The Dimity Sweetheart, won her special recognition at an O. Henry memorial dinner in New York City; Mrs. Eleanor Duncan Wood, whose poem “In Memorium” won the prize in a memorial poem contest in which only Kentucky poets were entered; and Elizabeth Pickett Chevalier, a writer whose motion picture screenplay Red Skin was much acclaimed, as was her novel about Mason Co., Drivin’ Woman. Since 1895 a host of Maysville and Mason Co. Nomads have been reading, sharing ideas about what they read, and enjoying the resulting mental stimulation. Unfortunately, the lifestyle of today’s woman has changed—many have both families and careers and fi nd that little time remains for a good book. The goal of the orga ni zation, however, is still “to promote intellectual growth,” which hopefully will propel it through a second century. Nomads archives, Museum Center, Maysville, Ky.
Sue Ellen Grannis
Donald E. Grosenbach
NORFOLK SOUTHERN RAILWAY. In 1982 NOMADS. Nomads, the oldest women’s club in Maysville, celebrated its 100th birthday in 1995. The organization continues to pursue the study of literature today, as it has done since its founding,
the Norfolk Southern Corporation, a newly formed holding corporation, acquired both the Southern Railway (SR) and the Norfolk and Western Railroad (N&W), and the two railroads became
the Norfolk Southern Railway (NS). The SR controlled the Cincinnati, New Orleans and Texas Pacific Railroad, operator of the Cincinnati Southern Railroad. The N&W served the Cincinnati area by a line from Huntington, W.Va., through Portsmouth, Ohio, and westward across southern Ohio. That N&W rail bed was abandoned in 2003. In 1997, after a bitter fight with CSX over control of Conrail, the NS acquired 60 percent of Conrail and CSX purchased the remaining 40 percent. Conrail operated the former New York Central Railroad and the Pennsylvania Railroad lines through Cincinnati. Both of these lines became part of the NS. The NS major rail yard in Cincinnati is the Gest Street Yard. Both NS yards in Northern Kentucky, at Erlanger and at Ludlow, are subordinate to the Gest Street Yard. The NS is based in Norfolk, Va. Day, Michele. “Riding the Rails,” KP, March 23, 1985, 6K–7K. Drury, George H. The Train Watcher’s Guide to North American Railroads. Waukesha, Wis.: Kalmbach Books, 1992. The Historical Guide to North American Railroads. 2nd ed. Waukesha, Wis.: Kalmbach Books, 2000. NS Corporation. Norfolk Southern Corporation Annual Reports, 1990 to 2004, NS Corp., Norfolk, Va.
Charles H. Bogart
NORMANSVILLE. The small village of Normansville was just a few miles west of Beaverlick and north of Hamilton in western Boone Co. In the 1850s, John C. Miller’s general store there stocked a wide range of items: farm implements, groceries and produce, hardware, and notions. The store shipped hogs and tobacco to Cincinnati via the Ohio River from the nearby Hamilton Landing. The Conner Carroll family later bought the store and used it for their trucking and hauling business. The building has since been converted into a private residence. In 1867 James W. Kennedy moved from Gallatin Co. to operate a general store and flourmill at Normansville. The flourmill was powered by a natural gas well (rare in Boone Co.) at the triangle of Ryle Rd. and Ky. Rt. 338. In 1921 the mill was dismantled. After moving to Union, Kennedy served as a Democratic state representative. Another store in Normansville sold patent medicines and tinware. From the early 1940s to the mid1960s, Everett Jones operated this store, which included a barbershop. A blacksmith shop that once operated in the village is now a small barn at the corner of Big Bone Church Rd. and Ky. Rt. 338. The long-standing tollgate house on the Ryle Rd. side of the bridge burned down in the 1980s. Today, the village known as Normansville is gone; its most vivid lingering memories are from pictures in old photo albums. An Atlas of Boone, Kenton, and Campbell Counties, Kentucky. Philadelphia: D. J. Lake, 1883. Warner, Jennifer S. Boone County: From Mastodons to the Millennium. Burlington, Ky.: Boone Co. Bicentennial Book Committee, 1998.
Nancy J. Tretter
668 NORTHERN BANK OF KENTUCKY NORTHERN BANK OF KENTUCKY. In 1837 a building committee began receiving bids for construction of a bank building at Th ird and Scott Sts. in Covington to house the new Northern Bank of Kentucky. The bank originally had two floors, but during the 1890s a third floor was added. The impressive Greek Revival style building, which today is located in the same block as a new Kenton Co. court house and a parking garage, might have been torn down had not preservationists lobbied in 1999 for its adaptive reuse. The Bank of Kentucky (modern) (no relation to 19thcentury banks of the same or similar name) paid the Kenton Co. Fiscal Court $550,000 for the old building—said to be the oldest commercial building in the city—and spent more than $3 million remodeling it. By April 2000 the Bank of Kentucky and another firm occupied the historic building. After the War of 1812, economic panics and depressions stirred controversies concerning the nation’s banking policies. People in the states west of the Allegheny Mountains, including a majority in Kentucky and Tennessee, generally supported politicians who wanted to decentralize the national banking system and institute more liberal monetary policies. After vetoing a bill renewing the charter of the Bank of the United States, President Andrew Jackson, a Tennessean who disliked the fiscal conservatism of the Bank of the United States and supported replacing it with state banks, was reelected president in 1832. Soon thereafter, in 1834, the Kentucky legislature chartered the Louisville Bank of Kentucky with six branches. In February 1835 the legislature chartered the Northern Bank of Kentucky with $3 million capital and located branches in Richmond, Paris, Louisville, and Covington. The Covington branch started with Richard Southgate as president, Philip S. Bush as cashier, and directors John B. Casey, James M. Clarkson, Carey Clemons, John T. Levis, George B. Marshall, John W. Tibbatts, Erastus Tousey, and William. W. Wade. The Northern Bank of Kentucky played an integral role in the growth and development of Covington in the years leading up to the Civil War. A number of the city’s most prominent businesses and their families were either customers or served on the bank’s board of directors. In particular, two members of the prominent Ernst family of Covington, William Ernst and his son John P. Ernst, held a series of positions at the bank, including bank president. John Ernst’s son Richard Pretlow Ernst later became a Republican U.S. senator (1921–1927). The Northern Bank of Kentucky began to fade with the relocation of Covington’s commercial center toward Pike St. Several new banks, financed by some of Covington’s wealthiest families, contributed to the Northern Bank of Kentucky’s decline. The branch in Covington vacated its building in 1896 and the entire bank closed in 1897. Later, the bank’s classic old building was used by a distillery; it also served over the years as a factory and as a warehouse. As time passed, the building assumed the name of a later occupant and became known as the Mosler Lock and Safe Company building.
Boh, John. “Northern Kentucky’s Bush Family,” Bulletin of the Kenton County Historical Society, November 2002, 1–3. Kleber, John E., ed. The Kentucky Encyclopedia. Lexington: Univ. Press of Kentucky, 1992. Kreimer, Peggy. “Saving the Mosler Building, Young Bank Resurrecting Oldest Bank,” KP, June 26, 1999, 1K.
NORTHERN KENTUCKY AFRICANAMERICAN HERITAGE TASK FORCE. On June 23, 1992, the Kentucky Heritage Commission started a campaign that included more than 60 individuals from across the state, to organize the Kentucky African-American Heritage Task Force (KAAHTF). Two years later, in 1994, Governor Brereton Jones (1991–1995) disbanded the task force but replaced it with the Kentucky African-American Heritage Commission (KAAHC), under the direction of the Education, Arts, and Humanities Cabinet. Based upon the pathbreaking work of KAAHTF, the commission subsequently established several regional groups to uncover, document, and preserve the history of African American Kentuckians. Established in 1995 by numerous individuals, such as Bennie Butler, Susan Cabot, Rhonda Culver, Theodore “Ted” Harris, Leslie Henderson, Robert Ingguls, Hensley Jemmott, Basil Lewis, Mary Northington, Jim Reis, Larry Wright, and Martha Wright, the Northern Kentucky African-American Heritage Task Force (NKAAHTF) is an outgrowth of this effort. The goals of NKAAHTF mirror those of the KAAHTF in its quest to educate, preserve, promote, and document the important role African American Kentuckians played in the inception and development of the 13 most northern counties of the state: Boone, Bracken, Campbell, Carroll, Fleming, Gallatin, Kenton, Lewis, Mason, Owen, Pendleton, and Robertson. At its inception, NKAAHTF had about 50 members. Over the years, the membership has fluctuated between 100 and 300. The NKAAHTF has been involved with annual African American church celebrations, has participated in numerous local History Day events, has established connections to Northern Kentucky African American cemetery documentation projects, and has contributed to yearly historical conferences throughout Kentucky. At times, personnel changes, financial problems, irregular meeting schedules, and the lack of a comprehensive recruitment plan have plagued the organization, but despite these obstacles, the NKAAHTF continues to have a major impact on black American life in Northern Kentucky. For example, in 2003 the organization became involved in a successful campaign to preserve the Rosella Porterfield Park in Elsmere. In 2005 the NKAAHTF participated in the documentation and preservation of the Julius Rosenwald “Colored” School of Dry Ridge. Today, the NKAAHTF remains in the forefront in providing assistance to individuals, organizations, and communities in the region whose goal is to identify and promote the significant role black Kentuckians have played in the history and culture of Northern Kentucky.
Northern Kentucky African American Heritage Task Force Newsletters, Kenton Co. Public Library, Covington, Ky. Whitehead, Shelly. “Black Graveyards at Risk,” KP, February 13, 2001, 1K.
Eric R. Jackson
NORTHERN KENTUCKY AREA DEVELOPMENT DISTRICT. The Northern Kentucky Area Development District (NKADD) is one of 15 districts created by the Kentucky General Assembly and signed into law by Governor Wendell Ford (1971–1974). This network of regional development districts strives to bring community leaders together to solve common problems. The development district serves as a community and economic development tool and as a means for local officials to speak to the state and federal government in a unified manner. NKADD was organized and held its first board meeting in September 1971; its first executive director was Gordon Mullins. The annual budget was $60,000. As a result of its creation, local leaders from across Northern Kentucky came together for the fi rst time in a spirit of cooperation that set the stage for many of the regional and cooperative approaches to problem-solving that have defined the region. The NKADD serves an area that takes in the counties of Boone, Campbell, Carroll, Gallatin, Grant, Kenton, Owen, and Pendleton. NKADD ser vices are varied. Its community development ser vices include assistance in any effort to upgrade or expand community facilities and to create or retain jobs in the region’s economic structure. NKADD may either support an economic development project entirely or assist a local government in implementing a project. Areas of activity include economic, industrial, and commercial development as well as programs in the areas of recreation, water and sewer, transportation, land use planning, and historic preservation. Assistance with grants administration and acquisition for local communities has brought millions of dollars into the region through various funding sources. The district’s public administration ser vices involve management consulting to the district’s clients in areas such as public administration, human resource management, risk management, finance, special studies, governance, and other areas necessary to improve the efficiency and effectiveness of the local governments and nonprofit organizations in the region. Specific examples of work include —assistance in writing personnel policies; —consulting on laws affecting the employeremployee relationship, personnel evaluation, pay issues, executive search, and hiring and firing; —budget preparation assistance; —tax rate assistance; —revenue generation assistance; —federal and state regulatory compliance; and —special studies and feasibility analysis such as merger studies or ser vice delivery. The district also administers a revolving loan program for the establishment or expansion of
NORTHERN KENTUCKY AREA PLANNING COMMISSION
small businesses and develops regional approaches to problems or issues such as the Northern Kentucky Regional Ethics Authority and the Northern Kentucky Drug and Alcohol Testing Consortium. NKADD administers human ser vice programs including those affecting senior citizens, caregivers, children, the disabled, and the homeless and furnishes oversight planning and implementation of such programs. Through its case management efforts, NKADD also provides ser vices to individuals age 60 and over who require long-term care. NKADD serves as the Area Agency on Aging for Northern Kentucky. Federal food commodity programs, too, are handled by NKADD. NKADD has the primary responsibility for planning and administration of job training and workforce development programs in Northern Kentucky. Many of these programs are funded through federal workforce development programs. The district has worked with a number of agencies in developing a stronger workforce in the region. NKADD has led efforts to help bring the One Stop Career Center System to Northern Kentucky. NKADD is the federally designated state workforce investment area for the region. Its offices are located in Boone Co., and the Board of Directors is composed of the county judges or executives, other elected officials, and citizen members. Robert Schrage
NORTHERN KENTUCKY AREA PLANNING COMMISSION. In the 1960s the Kentucky legislature passed enabling legislation allowing for the creation of Area Planning Commissions. The legislation provided for creation of an Area Planning Commission and an Area Planning Council, where statutory conditions were met; it set up the council with oversight authority, including approval of the commission’s annual budget; it provided the commission with a mandate to craft and adopt an Area-Wide Comprehensive Plan for its jurisdiction; it left the commission with final decision-making authority over all land-use changes (modified in the 1970s, to limit such decisionmaking authority to all items of “area-wide significance”); and it provided the commission with taxing authority. The Kenton and Campbell Co. fiscal courts and the city commission of Covington signed legal agreements creating the Northern Kentucky Area Planning Commission (NKAPC) and its Planning Council, which came into official existence in May 1961. The Area Planning Commission comprised nine members, five from Kenton Co. and four from Campbell Co. The Planning Council comprised one representative from each fiscal court and each city. The commission contracted with legal counsel, hired an executive director and additional staff to provide professional planning-related ser vices to all local governments, and began development of an areawide comprehensive plan as required by state law. During the subsequent decade, 1960 through 1969, the Ohio-Kentucky-Indiana Regional Planning Authority (OKI) was created; it included the counties of Boone, Campbell, and Kenton in
Northern Kentucky as members of this metropolitan countywide organization. The NKAPC performed all planning and transportation related ser vices on behalf of Campbell and Kenton counties. Two NKAPC chairmen served lengthy terms as president of OKI, and the NKAPC staff has continuously served in many supportive and active leadership roles with OKI. During the 1960s KRS Chapter 100 (Kentucky’s basic local government planning law) was revised, allowing local governments to join together to create “joint planning units.” The Kenton Co. and Municipal Planning and Zoning Commission (KC&MP&ZC) was created (automatically disallowing existence of any individual local planning units); but no similar organization was created in Campbell Co., thus allowing each local government in that county to retain its individual planning unit. The KC&MP&ZC contracted with the NKAPC to provide all professional planning and engineering ser vices. After many public meetings and hearings, the first areawide comprehensive plan for Kenton and Boone counties was adopted in September 1972. This plan has been updated and readopted every five years. A major finding has been that many of the long-range recommendations of this plan would be difficult, if not impossible, to realize owing to local government fragmentation (so many independent local governments and singlepurpose special district decision-making entities). The Area Planning Commission authorized the NKAPC staff to undertake a study entitled “Northern Kentucky’s Future—Plan for Government Restructure,” which recommended many consolidating changes in the governmental structures within Northern Kentucky, with the intent to make wiser use of taxpayer’s dollars and to provide more efficient ser vice for citizens. Also during the 1970s, the Campbell Co. Fiscal Court litigated against the NKAPC, arguing that such a nonelected body should not have final authority for land-use decisions. A subsequent court ruling found in favor of the fiscal court, thus automatically modifying some of the statutory authority originally provided to area planning commissions. During the 1984 local government elections, Lloyd Rogers, a candidate for Campbell Co. judgeexecutive, included an “Axe-the-Tax” proposition in his platform. The NKAPC’s minimal tax was his campaign target, and Rogers was elected. He initiated a petition drive and a referendum to eliminate the NKAPC’s taxing authority in Campbell Co. The petition drive was successful and led to a follow-up referendum that passed by a small margin. Campbell Co. thus seceded as a member of the NKAPC. Campbell Co.’s local governments were no longer served by the NKAPC, so many of them (including even the fiscal court) contracted with the NKAPC for professional staff ser vices. During the 1980s, legislation was passed creating the Kentucky Office of Housing, Buildings, and Construction and requiring that all local governments would henceforth be bound by the newly created Kentucky State Building Code and would
be responsible for ensuring that enforcement of this code was carried out by state-certified building inspectors. Most of the small cities in Northern Kentucky were without staff expertise to perform such inspections and administration. The NKAPC had been assisting some local governments with enforcement of their local codes and therefore maintained a qualified staff for this purpose. Nearly all the cities in Kenton and Campbell counties and both fiscal courts then contracted with the NKAPC for such ser vices. During 1984 NKAPC initiated installation of a cutting-edge Geographic Information System (GIS). This system, named PlaNet GIS (and later renamed Link * GIS) came fully on-line for use in 1988. It allowed for extremely accurate base mapping, using Global Positioning System (GPS) triangulation of data from multiple orbiting satellites. This accurate mapping of every structure, landform, roadway, waterway, and so forth allowed all such features to be tagged, by special computer technology, to related narrative information about the features. This major step put the NKAPC far ahead of the curve in this region and nationwide. Initially, the Sanitation District No. 1, the Kenton Co. Fiscal Court, the Kenton Co. property valuation administrator, and the Kenton Co. Water District joined with the NKAPC in this major GIS program. Soon, many school districts; fire, police, and emergency response agencies; and other entities joined the project and now benefit from this valuable program. The decade of the 1990s witnessed the creation, with NKACP staff involvement, of the Commonwealth of Kentucky’s first GIS program, which recently has gained national recognition. NKAPC staff leadership positions, both locally and nationally, in the American Planning Association have put the NKAPC in the forefront of planning and GIS-related efforts in both the Cincinnati– Northern Kentucky metropolitan region and nationally. NKAPC’s efforts to provide professional planning-related ser vices and its updating of the area plan for all local governments, the state, and OKI is ongoing and is assisted through cooperative programs with Northern Kentucky University and the University of Cincinnati. Since 2000 the NKAPC has operated a OneStop-Shop program that helps local governments consolidate and simplify the administration of local codes and ordinances. The Pendleton Co. property valuation administrator contracted with the NKAPC for GIS-related ser vices and preparation and administration of county subdivision regulations. The Commonwealth of Kentucky gave the NKAPC authority to provide all state-level building-permit and plan-review ser vices for Kenton Co. And the Kentucky Office of Housing, Buildings, and Construction leased space in the NKAPC offices, providing another benefit of the One-Stop-Shop objective (eliminating travel time to Frankfort for such ser vices). NKAPC has also added a Long-Range Planning Department to help provide communities in Northern Kentucky with planning opportunities that involve longrange thinking. In October 2002 William W. Bowdy,
670 NORTHERN KENTUCKY BAR ASSOCIATION executive director of NKAPC since 1970, retired. His successor was Dennis A. Gordon. William W. Bowdy
NORTHERN KENTUCKY BAR ASSOCIATION. The Northern Kentucky Bar Association (NKBA) was incorporated on Law Day, May 1, 1984. Up to that time, there had been three separate county bar associations in Northern Kentucky: Boone, Campbell, and Kenton. The presidents of the three associations initiated the idea to form a unified Northern Kentucky association covering the 43 cities and many districts within the three counties. In the beginning, the association’s annual dues were $50 and its roster included 375 attorneys. By May 1985 a lawyer referral ser vice was operational. NKBA hosted its first golf outing at the Kenton Co. Golf Course in September 1985, and the first Holiday Dance occurred in December of that year. Law school dean Henry Stephens originally agreed to house the NKBA offices on the campus of the Salmon P. Chase College of Law. Today, they are located in Crestview Hills. Since 1984 the NKBA has grown in members, projects, and ser vices and has become an integral part of the Northern Kentucky community. It is the only local provider of Continuing Legal Education courses. More than 90 percent of the attorneys in Northern Kentucky who have Kentucky licenses belong to the NKBA. Fischer, John C. K. “Lawyers Unanimous in Establishing Northern Kentucky Bar Association,” KP, May 2, 1984, 3K. Northern Kentucky Bar Association. www.nkybar. com (accessed August 31, 2006).
Donna M. Bloemer
NORTHERN KENTUCKY BROTHERHOOD SINGERS. The late Robert “Butch” Gillespie was instrumental in the formation of this a cappella singing group in the early 1980s. It began as a male chorus called the Ninth St. Baptist Church Singers that sang African American gospel music. As members dropped out, a core group of singers was left, and the core group became the Brotherhood Singers. Some of the original members were Charles Fann, Richard Fowler, Robert Gillespie, Eric “Rick” Jennings, Robert Mullins, and Greg Page. As singers from other churches or elsewhere from Northern Kentucky came to be included, the group became known as the Northern Kentucky Brotherhood Singers. The Brotherhood Singers’ a cappella style can be traced to the oral tradition of various groups in Covington and Newport during the 1950s and 1960s “doo-wop” era. The spiritual reference takes the form developed by older singing gospel groups, such as the Dixie Humming Birds, the Fairfield Four, and the Five Blind Boys. The Brotherhood Singers were already well known in local church circles when they came to the attention of Bob Gates, director of the Kentucky Historical Society’s folklife program. Gates invited the group to sing at various state programs,
giving them more exposure and an opportunity to showcase their talents. At the time, the Brotherhood Singers were one of only three gospel groups in Kentucky who sang a cappella. For a number of years they were the mainstay of the Kentucky Folk Music tour sponsored by the Kentucky Arts Council and the National Endowment for the Arts. In November 1995 the Brotherhood Singers sang in Frankfort at Governor Brereton C. Jones’s Thanksgiving luncheon. By 1997 they had performed three times at the governor’s mansion in Frankfort. Throughout the 1990s they performed at various folk festivals, at homeless shelters, and at the Northern Kentucky African American Heritage Festival. Beginning in 2000, the singing group began to expand the reach of their sound by traveling to other cities in the United States, Canada, and Europe. While in Canada, they had the opportunity to open for Ray Charles in front of 10,000 people at the Ottawa Blues Festival. They have performed in Italy, Switzerland, Spain, and Portugal. At home, the Brotherhood Singers work with neighborhood children at the Duveneck House in Covington. Today’s Northern Kentucky Brotherhood Singers are Rick Jennings, Robert Mullins, Greg Page, Eric Riley, Luther Scruggs, and Shaka Tyehimba. Robert Mullins is the father of Pamela Mullins, a former member of both the Covington City Commission and the Covington Board of Education. “A Brotherhood in Music,” KP, November 15, 1995, 4KK. Divita, Jonathan. “Singing in Perfect Harmony,” SC, August 22, 2004, 1C. Gutierrez, Karen. “Class Lets Kids Climb out of Chairs, Join in Song,” KE, November 10, 2003, B1. ———. “Singers Take Act to Europe,” KE, October 28, 2003, E10. Herald, Donna. “Heritage Takes Center Stage,” KP, August 7, 1996, 3KK. Kriss, Amy Louise. “A Celebration of the Middle Ages,” KP, September 10, 1997, 1KK–2KK. “Minister ‘Butch’ Gillespie Had ‘Big Heart,’ ” KP, January 19, 2001, 17A. Samples, Karen. “Voices Raised on High— Brotherhood’s Gospel Sounds Transport Masses,” KE, September 21, 1997, B1–B2.
Theodore H. H. Harris
NORTHERN KENTUCKY CHAMBER OF COMMERCE. The Northern Kentucky Chamber of Commerce is a private, voluntary, not-forprofit business organization whose purpose is to develop strong businesses and a vibrant economy for Northern Kentucky through issue advocacy, leadership, and business development programs. On April 1, 1969, prominent leaders from the Covington-Kenton-Boone Chamber of Commerce and the Campbell Co. Chamber of Commerce voted to consolidate the two local chambers into a single regional organization. Walter Dunlevy was hired as the organization’s first executive vice president, and Walter Pieschel was elected its first president. The Chamber’s headquarters were first located in Newport. The organization was created to repre-
sent businesses in Boone, Campbell, and Kenton counties. Since then, the Chamber’s membership has expanded into Gallatin, Grant, Owen, and Pendleton counties in Kentucky and into many Greater Cincinnati communities in Ohio. The Chamber provides opportunities for large and small businesses to be involved in programs promoting international trade, workforce development, business networking, and special events that educate members about current issues and provide them with exposure to elected officials. The Chamber also sponsors Leadership Northern Kentucky, a program designed to use the community as a classroom in which to develop effective leaders to serve the region. The Chamber also sponsors similar programs for area educators and high school students. The Northern Kentucky Chamber of Commerce has focused on projects and programs of regional significance. In its early days, the Chamber spent much of its energy on pushing the construction of two highways: I-275 as an interstate beltway across Kentucky’s three northernmost counties and I-471 to connect this beltway directly to urban areas in Northern Kentucky and downtown Cincinnati. During this time, the Chamber was the primary driver in the region in lobbying state lawmakers to establish Northern Kentucky State College (now Northern Kentucky University), located in Highland Heights. In subsequent years, the Chamber increased its lobbying efforts at Frankfort and in Washington, D.C. At the request of regional legislators, the Chamber created the Northern Kentucky Consensus Committee, which regularly brings together business, government, and community leaders to identify and prioritize the region’s capital construction needs. This process allows the community to focus its attention on a list of priority projects in order to work more effectively to secure funding from state and federal officials. The work of the Consensus Committee has resulted in obtaining funds for a regional convention center, a regional juvenile detention center, the Natural Science Center at Northern Kentucky University (NKU), and the Special Events Center at NKU, as well as hundreds of millions of dollars in road projects built throughout the region. The Chamber has achieved many significant accomplishments since its creation, including convincing Kentucky governor Julian Carroll (1974– 1979) of the need for a grant to continue operation of the Transit Authority of Northern Kentucky (TANK); the Chamber then conducted an area-wide campaign to pass a local referendum to create a permanent funding source for TANK. The Chamber was also instrumental in the formation of the Northern Kentucky Convention & Visitor’s Bureau and Northern Kentucky’s business and industry recruiter, the Tri-County Economic Development Corporation (now Northern Kentucky Tri-ED). Fuerst, Joseph A. “An Historical Overview of the Northern KY Chamber of Commerce: The Building of a Community,” 1980, Northern Kentucky Chamber of Commerce, Covington, Ky. Reis, Jim. “A Century of Boosting Business,” KP, April 26, 2004. 4K.
NORTHERN KENTUCKY EMERGENCY MEDICAL SER VICES ———.“Pair Promoted Industrial Club,” KP, April 26, 2004, 4K.
NORTHERN KENTUCKY COMMUNITY ACTION COMMISSION. Founded in 1965 as part of the federal Economic Opportunity Act of 1964, the Northern Kentucky Community Action Commission (NKCAC) is an antipoverty agency serving Boone, Campbell, Carroll, Gallatin, Grant, Kenton, Owen, and Pendleton counties. Its main office is in Covington at 20 W. Pike St., but the agency operates from 17 centers around Northern Kentucky today. NKCAC’s board of directors includes low-income individuals, other persons from the private sector, and public officials. Its Head Start program provides a child care and education ser vice to low-income families at no cost in an attempt to break the cycle of poverty. Other ser vices include home energy assistance, homelessness prevention, energy education, budget counseling, , transportation for children and for homeless persons, homeless case management, and medical prescription assistance. A unique ser vice offered by NKCAC is its weatherization program, through which qualifying homes are insulated to conserve energy. NKCAC’s Senior Community Ser vice Employment Project (SCSEP) helps people 55 years and older to reenter the work force. NKCAC also operates 10 low-income apartment units in Crittenden, Grant Co., for qualifying residents. One program that is reserved for Covington residents is Youthbuild, which targets very-low-income residents between the ages of 16 and 24 who have dropped out of high school. This program provides supportive ser vices while teaching educational and job skills. NKCAC publishes works such as the White Paper on Poverty in Northern Ky. and a monthly newsletter. “Grant Awarded,” KE, March 1, 1970, 6A. “Lasting Impact,” KP, December 1, 2005, 1K. Northern Kentucky Community Action Commission. www.nkcac.org (accessed July 27, 2006).
Kareem A. Simpson
NORTHERN KENTUCKY CONVENTION AND VISITORS BUREAU. The mission of the Northern Kentucky Convention and Visitors Bureau (NKYCVB), which began in the 1970s and serves Boone, Campbell, and Kenton counties, is to bring money into the community through expenditures by visitors to the region, especially those who attend conventions and meetings. In 2007, for example, the direct economic impact of NKYCVB efforts in the three counties was $325 million. The Bureau is funded by a tax on rooms at the more than 60 hotels and motels located in Boone, Campbell, and Kenton counties. Tom Kelly, owner of the Wildwood Inn Hotels in Florence and one of the founders of the NKYCVB, is persuaded that the creation of the tax transformed the landscape of the hospitality business in Northern Kentucky, helping to bring dollars into the region. Over the years, the success of the NKYCVB in attracting functions created the need for a conven-
tion center. The Northern Kentucky Convention Center opened in 1998 as a vehicle for expanding the local convention market. Full-service major brand hotels then opened around the center, including the Cincinnati Marriott RiverCenter and the Embassy Suites RiverCenter. The NKYCVB establishes contact with various groups, such as Kentucky state organizations and associations, corporate entities, military units holding reunions, religious organizations, planners of sports and hobby events, and many others, encouraging them to schedule their conventions in Northern Kentucky, either at the Convention Center or at one of the area’s leading hotels. In addition to informing organizations about accommodations for their meetings, the NKYCVB makes them aware of public attractions in the region, including the Newport Aquarium, Newport-on-theLevee, BB Riverboats, Main Strasse Village, the Dinsmore Homestead, and Big Bone Lick State Park, that may lead to a decision to come to Northern Kentucky. NKYCVB also assists state, regional, national, and international groups who visit the area by sending out direct-mail flyers announcing “things to do” in the region. In addition, representatives of the NKYCVB Ser vices Department frequently provide ancillary ser vice such as name-badge registration assistance, transportation, and media relations support. They may also distribute discount coupons for local attractions and restaurants. Kentucky Department of Tourism. Industry News, October 28, 2005. Travel Industry Association. www.tia.org (accessed March 10, 2006).
NORTHERN KENTUCKY CONVENTION CENTER. Two separate organizations, the Northern Kentucky Chamber of Commerce and the Northern Kentucky Convention and Visitors Bureau, began independently to think about building a convention center somewhere in Northern Kentucky. Soon they joined forces, and many others became involved in the project; everyone hoped that a convention center would become a developmental catalyst for the region. The subsequent effort to obtain the needed state funds involved the entire Northern Kentucky community. In a 1995 special legislative session, the Kentucky legislature approved the group’s funding request. Approval was also given later for additional moneys that covered the total $30.5 million cost of constructing the center. Market studies that were done in conjunction with designing the convention center determined the size of groups likely to use the center and how they would want to use it. At the outset, the optimum size for a group using the center ranged between 900 and 1,000 people, and it was decided that the exhibit hall should accommodate about 200 booths. Designers also envisioned significant booking opportunities for corporate events. The construction of the building, Madison Ave. and RiverCenter Blvd. in Covington, began in February 1997 and was completed in the fall of
1998. The finished product resulted from the cooperation of officials in three Northern Kentucky counties (Boone, Campbell, and Kenton), 39 area cities, the Kentucky legislature, and innumerable organizations, institutions, business leaders, and citizens. The convention center hosted its first event November 6, 1998. In its first seven years of operation, 1,392 events were held at the Northern Kentucky Convention Center. The center’s economic impact, nearly $633 million, has been about 41 percent higher than original projections. The Northern Kentucky Convention Center Corporation is chartered by the Commonwealth of Kentucky, and the charter provides that all revenues generated by the center are to be used for the operation, upkeep, and improvement of the center. The Northern Kentucky Convention and Visitors Bureau works with the convention center to market the center and book events. Events scheduled a year or more in advance are booked by the Convention and Visitors Bureau; arrangements for events scheduled less than a year ahead are handled by the convention center itself. “Convention Center Names Chief,” KP, July 8, 2006, 2A. Pina, Phillip. “Northern Kentucky Shows Off Convention Center,” CE, 8C.
NORTHERN KENTUCKY EMERGENCY MEDICAL SERVICES. The first organized ambulance corps in the nation was formed during the Civil War, and its vehicles were upgraded from two-wheel carts to four-wheel wagons by Gen. Charles Stuart Tripler, who served at the Newport Barracks in Newport. Over the following century, emergency medical ser vices in Northern Kentucky, as in most nonmetropolitan areas throughout the United States, came to be provided by local funeral homes—if such ser vices were available at all. The funeral home usually had a vehicle capable of transporting at least one person on a stretcher and in many cases was willing to put the vehicle into ser vice as an ambulance. About 1960, however, the funeral industry quit providing ambulance ser vices. Local civic-minded groups, often called first aid squads, rescue squads, or life squads, or the fire departments, which were mostly volunteer, then took on the task of emergency ambulance ser vice. Fire department personnel were already trained in basic first aid skills to care for firemen who were injured during firefighting operations. As life squads became available in more communities, the training and equipment of such groups improved. Over time, women joined men as members of the squads, importantly adding volunteer hours in a period when there were no paid personnel and yet the number of calls kept increasing. In the late 1960s and early 1970s, the federal government standardized the training and ser vice provided by ambulance ser vices. The Department of Transportation (DOT) established a national standard set of skills for advanced phases of emergency medical care. The emergency medical technician was thus born, as were new emergency
672 NORTHERN KENTUCKY FUND centers; emergency rooms in local hospitals were expanded with new and better equipment; and larger hospitals were upgraded to trauma centers where the best and highest level of care, including surgery, was made available at all times. Emergency medicine became a specialty for doctors as emergency skills were introduced into the curricula of medical schools. As advances in emergency care generally have progressed throughout the nation, Northern Kentucky has also experienced significant advances in its local care and training. It is now possible for a civilian injured in a traffic accident to be stabilized and transported to a trauma/surgical center within minutes while also receiving advanced medical care en route. The mobile and air ambulances used are referred to as emergency rooms on wheels (or wings). The goal is to have the injured person at a trauma center within a half hour, ready for surgery or other care. The Northern Kentucky Emergency Medical Ser vices Company (NKEMS) was formed in 1977, through a grant from the DOT, to assist the basic life support units in the counties of Boone, Bracken, Campbell, Gallatin, Grant, Kenton, and Pendleton. Many members of the local units have received the initial training of 120 hours for emergency medical technician (EMT) certification, which is issued and monitored by the State Medical Board. EMTs must continually update their training in order to maintain certification. The federal funds enabled NKEMS to expand the training programs throughout the region. In 1979 paramedic ser vices became available in Northern Kentucky. A certified paramedic, who must receive 1,200 hours of initial training, is able to provide more advanced medical treatment than an EMT can; for example, a paramedic can administer medications and conduct advanced heart monitoring. Like EMTs, paramedics undergo continual monitoring and receive updated training to maintain certification. Most of the Northern Kentucky region is served by volunteer life-squad departments. Although members of these volunteer departments are quite capable, they generally cannot spend the time required to become paramedics. Thus, a system has been developed whereby, in an emergency, NKEMS paramedics respond in a separate car to meet the local life squad, who generally arrive at the scene first. The EMTs determine whether paramedics are needed, and if so, they are advised to continue their response trip while the local unit completes the on-the-scene care. Once paramedics arrive or, to save precious response time, join the EMT squad en route to a hospital, they immediately begin more advanced care inside the ambulance. NKEMS also provides ambulances to handle the increasing volume of nonemergency transport ser vices to and from medical facilities, freeing local units for emergencies. The response system, called a two-tiered system, has proven quite effective and has enabled local counties to provide advanced levels of care. NKEMS provided the two-tiered paramedic services until 1999. Then TransCare, a joint nonprofit venture of St. Elizabeth and St. Luke hospitals, was
incorporated and purchased these ser vice operations from NKEMS. The two-tiered system continued until 2004, when operating expenses exceeded revenues. Several fire departments had begun providing their own paramedics, and insurance and government agencies had reduced their reimbursements for such ser vices. TransCare requested additional funding, without which its ser vices would have to be cut. The counties, cities, and fire departments began studies to determine how they could assist with funding TransCare or provide tax-assisted transportation ser vices of their own. Several of the larger cities started offering their own ser vices. Other cities contracted to use transportation ser vices provided by neighboring cities. These developments undercut TransCare’s efforts to obtain taxsupported funding, and the initiative to secure it began to falter. The remaining contracts with TransCare were extended to give more time to find a satisfactory solution, which was found and in place by July 2005. The history of ambulance ser vices in the various cities within the region has varied greatly. The city of Maysville had no ambulance until 1957, and the one obtained then was an army surplus vehicle. In Covington, in 1903 a horse-drawn vehicle with gaping holes in its panels served as the ambulance; often patients were hauled in it to a hospital five miles away on the Covington and Lexington Turnpike Later, if the patient had died, the same vehicle was used to transport the body to the cemetery. By 1907 Covington officials believed they had solved their ambulance problems with a new vehicle they had acquired. They bragged, “No city anywhere has an ambulance for contagious diseases as fine as ours. . . . Not even Cincinnati or Louisville can boast its equal.” By 1921, Jesse Sheets, superintendent of the Covington police department’s patrol system, was demonstrating his new combination police patrol wagon–ambulance. It could be converted from one function to the other in 30 seconds. Newport had the problem that ambulance operators on their way to Speers Hospital (see Speers Memorial Hospital) in Dayton were driving wildly through the city’s West End, a lawless part of town where citizens were regularly injured in scrapes and drinking brawls. Newport wanted to take these victims of fights to the much closer hospitals in Covington, but officials in Covington refused. While cities such as Newport sometimes bragged about the success rates of their life-saving crews, the statistics told a different tale. On the ambulance runs made during the first half of the 1930s, Newport reported saving 14 lives while 10 people died either en route or after arriving at the hospital. In 1940 Newport obtained a modern ambulance for its Newport Life Saving Squad, and the police squad car they had been using as an ambulance, operated by policemen with little or no medical training, was at last retired . “Can Transform Police Auto into Ambulance in 30 Seconds,” KTS, December 23, 1921, 35. “Dangerous Ambulances,” KP, May 20, 1931, 4. “Maysville May Get Ambulance,” KTS, January 17, 1957, 8A.
“New Ambulance Accepted by City,” KP, February 27, 1907, 2. “Newport Life Squad Will Get Ambulance,” KP, March 19, 1940, 1. “Sketch of Ambulance Used to Take Patients to Covington Branch Hospital on Lexington Pike,” KP, January 3, 1903, 1. “Squad Save 14 Lives,” KP, July 4, 1930, 8.
Robert Joseph Williams
NORTHERN KENTUCKY FUND. The Northern Kentucky Fund of the Greater Cincinnati Foundation (GCF) derived from Forward Quest, an organization formed to implement a community planning effort for Northern Kentucky. One of its goals was to establish a charitable fund for the community. The Northern Kentucky Fund was established in June 1998 with more than $1 million in challenge grants from 10 major donors, including a $100,000 grant from GCF. The fund provides resources to nonprofit organizations located in or primarily serving Northern Kentucky. An advisory board made up of 15 volunteers oversees its development and promotion, with support from GCF staff. The Northern Kentucky Fund and dozens of other named funds established to support the needs of the Northern Kentucky community make up the Northern Kentucky Family of Funds. “The Fund is important for the long-term viability of the region. We need access to funds to support the community’s needs,” said Mike Hammons, president of Forward Quest. “We came up with the goal of putting a permanent fund in place so resources would be available over the long-term.” Community pride for the region has driven the success of the fund’s short history. Judy Clabes, its first chair, tapped this philanthropic spirit in 1999 with the Millennium Gift Campaign. Sponsored by the Kentucky Post, the campaign invited Northern Kentuckians to contribute their final hour of pay of the millennium. Gifts ranged from $5 to $10,000, bringing the total value of the Northern Kentucky Fund to $3,861,507 by December 2000. “It was a great way to tell ordinary people they count,” Clabes remembered. “You don’t need to be a millionaire to be a philanthropist.” In 2003 the fund reached its fift h anniversary; in the same year GCF marked its 40th year. In celebration, it was announced that GCF would match all unrestricted contributions (up to $40,000) to the Northern Kentucky Fund for one year. The fund’s leadership raised the bar, and more than $200,000 was raised. The Advisory Board has been creative with the fund’s development. In 2004 an annual award for Northern Kentucky philanthropists was launched. The Devou Cup, named after William Devou, was first awarded to Ralph and Irmaleen Drees (see Ralph Drees). R. C. Durr was honored in 2005, and Ralph Haile and his late wife Carol Ann Haile were the 2006 recipients. The board announced the Haile Challenge in 2005. It challenges contributors to match Ralph Haile’s annual $150,000 gift. The board has also reached out to future community leaders. Each year, the outgoing president of Legacy, an organization for young
NORTHERN KENTUCKY IN DE PEN DENT DISTRICT HEALTH DEPARTMENT
professionals, joins the board. Legacy has established its own fund in the Northern Kentucky Family of Funds. Between 1998 and 2006, GCF awarded more than $3 million in grants to nonprofit organizations in Northern Kentucky, supported in part by contributions to the Northern Kentucky Family of Funds. “Challenging Philanthropy,” Connect, the Newsletter of the Greater Cincinnati Foundation, Spring–Summer 2005, 9. Flischel, Sue, Judith Clabes, and Mike Hammons. Telephone interview by Julia Mace, June 23, 2006. Gallagher, Janice. “Five Years of Philanthropy,” KP, December 27, 2003, 4K. “Judith Clabes: Northern Kentucky Fund Chair,” Connect, the Newsletter of the Greater Cincinnati Foundation, Fall–Winter 1999, 4. “Northern Kentucky Fund Celebrates Philanthropy,” Connect, the Newsletter of the Greater Cincinnati Foundation, Spring–Summer 2004, 10.
NORTHERN KENTUCKY HERITAGE LEAGUE. The Northern Kentucky Heritage League (NKHL), a fine arts organization for promoting the arts, heritage, and culture of Northern Kentucky, was formed in 1967. An initial task of the organization was to support a grassroots effort to establish a gallery for the works of worldrenowned Covington artist Frank Duveneck. That goal was reached when the Frank Duveneck Memorial Gallery, Northern Kentucky’s first public art gallery, opened in July 1967 within the Covington Library at Scott Blvd. and Robbins St. The son of Duveneck, Frank Boott Duveneck, and the son’s daughter, Elizabeth Duveneck Davis, attended the dedication. In late 1967 the NKHL found itself in a controversy over the Mike Fink Floating Restaurant, which wished to dock along Riverside Dr. in Covington and build a 200-car parking lot and a marina for private boats. The NKHL, concerned about the historic properties in the community, brought legal action (with Riverside Dr. residents John Kunkel and Richard Smith) to have the lease granted by the City of Covington declared void. Eventually the NKHL lost its battle to keep the restaurant out. Also in the late 1960s, an urban renewal project was proposed in Covington to raze all of the historic homes along Riverside Dr. and the north side of Second St. from the John A. Roebling Bridge to the Licking River (See also LickingRiverside and Ohio Riverside National Historic Districts). A hotel, apartments, and other commercial projects would replace the homes. Riverside Dr. residents, the NKHL, and other preservation groups opposed the project. After almost two years of struggle, the City of Covington lost but gained some concessions along Greenup St. This was a tremendous victory for the fledgling NKHL. Around the same time, the NKHL was given approval to make improvements to the George Rogers Clark Park in Covington, which had fallen into disrepair. The park was once the site of
the Thomas Kennedy house. The organization was able to reconstruct and beautify the area with a fountain, authentic gas lamps, and benches, completing the work by spring 1969. Plans were also made for a summer arts and crafts show that turned out to be the first Annual Duveneck Memorial Art Show. The event, which still continues each year, became the largest yearly project of the NKHL. This art show was created with the goals of stimulating interest in the arts, giving regional artists a place to display and sell their wares, and promoting local history through the Duveneck Purchase Award. Eligible paintings must depict a regional historic landmark more than 50 years old; award-winning works are displayed in Covington in the Kenton Co. Public Library. Each year any moneys left over in the NKHL treasury are given out in the form of small grants, usually less than $1,000, to local organizations for the benefit of civic projects. Since 1980, grants have been given to more than 50 different state and local organizations. The NKHL sponsors programs that feature historic trips and speakers, preservation projects, and other activities to carry out its mission. “Heritage League Marks 25 Years,” KP, December 19, 1992, 2KK. “They’re Stubborn!—Riverside Residents Firmly Resist Bulldozers,” KE, November 24, 1968, 6A. “3 Projects Get Grants from League,” KP, November 17, 1992, 3K.
Jane D. Purdon
NORTHERN KENTUCKY HOMEBUILDERS ASSOCIATION. See Building, Residential.
NORTHERN KENTUCKY INDEPENDENT DISTRICT HEALTH DEPARTMENT. Since 1981 the Northern Kentucky Independent District Health Department (usually called just the Northern Kentucky Health Department) has served Boone, Campbell, Grant, and Kenton counties. Before the consolidated district health department was established, each of these counties operated individual health departments. Newport and Covington and some of the other local cities had health departments that later merged with health departments in their respective counties to establish countywide health departments. In compliance with Kentucky Revised Statue (KRS) 212.120, the first of the four county health departments that were later grouped together began in Kenton Co. in January 1929. The Grant Co. Health Department followed in April 1931, the Campbell Co. Health Department in June 1946, and the Boone Co. Health Department in June 1950. A push at the state level for county health departments to form district health departments began in the 1970s. In 1972 the Covington–Kenton Co. Health Department and the Campbell Co. Health Department merged, and William V. Banks, MD, became the consolidated health department’s first health officer. Almost a decade later, in 1981, the four-county health department came into being when the Boone Co. Health Department and the Grant Co. Health Department
joined. The move to a multicounty health department decreased administrative costs, lessened duplication of staff for mandated programs, increased specialized ser vices, and created more collaboration among the communities. The present district administrative office is located in Edgewood, at 610 Medical Village Dr. In 1991 Kentucky legislation enabled the Northern Kentucky Health Department to become an “independent district” health department, the only one in the state. Because it is independent, the Northern Kentucky Health Department does not need to follow the state merit system in hirings, job classifications, and salary levels, but it is required to follow state and federal funded program standards. Kentucky legislation passed in 1882 allowed the establishment of local boards of health to deal with disease outbreaks such as typhoid fever, yellow fever, and other such communicable diseases. A district board and four local boards of health oversee the Northern Kentucky Health Department’s mission. The District Board of Health is empowered by KRS 212 to pass regulations and adopt codes concerning issues of public health. It meets a minimum of four times a year and sets policy for the whole district; program plans, pay raises, and the total departmental budget are subject to its approval. By Kentucky law, there are four local county boards of health that meet at least once each year. These boards set the rate for the county health tax, not to exceed four cents per $100 of assessment valuation. They oversee any construction or maintenance of the county’s health center as well. In addition to the local tax moneys, the Northern Kentucky Health Department receives revenue from state and federal funding, grants, Medicaid/Medicare reimbursement, and ser vice fees. Its total revenue for fiscal year 2005 was a little more than $13 million. The Northern Kentucky Health Department is the principal government agency that exists in the region for the protection of the public’s health. It manages the health status of the population through community assessment, public health policy development, and assurance of ser vices and a healthy environment. The Northern Kentucky Health Department provides essential public health ser vices and districtwide health ser vices based on community assessment processes that result in action plans such as the most recent Master Health Plan for Northern Kentucky (January 2005). Approximately 155 staff members work at the four county health centers and two administrative/education sites to provide more than 80 programs. Ser vices include state and federal mandated inspections of restaurants, hotels, schools, public swimming pools, and private on-site sewage systems; communicable disease tracking; childhood immunizations; the WIC supplemental food program; HIV/AIDS case management; family planning; home visiting programs for young families; nutrition education; smoking cessation campaigns; school health education; and strategic
674 NORTHERN KENTUCKY INDUSTRIAL FOUNDATION collaboration toward community health system changes. Life expectancy in Northern Kentucky has increased since the early 1900s primarily owing to the department’s public health efforts in environmental sanitation, communicable disease control, and immunizations. In the 21st century, new challenges arise daily in the form of natural and manmade disasters, emerging infections such as West Nile encephalitis and SARS, drug-resistant strains of tuberculosis, bioterrorism threats, obesity, and sedentary lifestyles. Sometimes, challenges take the form of diverse opinions and decision-making to meet the needs of a community. Amid great achievements, new threats, and controversial decisions, the health boards, the district director, the staff, and the state are continually challenged in fi nding solutions satisfactory to all stakeholders. Institute of Medicine. The Future of Public Health. Washington, D.C.: Academy Press, 1988. ———. Who Will Keep the Public Healthy? Washington, D.C.: Academy Press, 2003. Kentucky Department for Public Health. Administrative Reference for Local Health Departments. Vol. 1, January 2005. Frankfort, Ky.: Kentucky Department for Public Health, 2005. Leach, Rice. “A General History of Public Health,” presentation for the Governor’s Conference “The Future of Public Health in Kentucky: Partners for Progress,” Louisville, Ky., March 11–13, 1997. Northern Kentucky Independent District Health Department. www.nkyhealth.org (accessed March 24, 2006).
Peggy L. Kiser
NORTHERN KENTUCKY INDUSTRIAL FOUNDATION. The foundation, more popularly known as the Florence Industrial Park, can be traced to the mid-1950s, when the idea of a properly zoned concentrated geographic area of manufacturing and warehousing operations arose among the leaders of the Covington-Kenton-Boone Chamber of Commerce (see Northern Kentucky Chamber of Commerce). One leader was Andrew W. Clark, a former member of the Committee for Covington–Kenton Co., who served as the group’s attorney; others included Joseph Cuni of Peoples Liberty Bank and Trust Company and J. Wayne “Doc” Rusk of Montgomery Heating & Air Conditioning. It was Cuni’s able assistant Ralph Haile who did much of the early legwork on this project; he subsequently went on to involve himself in many other civic and community endeavors that have benefited Northern Kentucky. In 1958 the foundation hired Frankfort consultant E. Bruce Kennedy. Farmland extending over roughly 930 acres (expanded later to 990) just south of Florence in Boone Co. was identified, and about 14 local building and loans raised $1 million in seed money (see Savings and Loan Associations). The site, served by the Southern Railway (today the Norfolk Southern Railway), was near the Greater Cincinnati Airport (now the Cincinnati/Northern Kentucky International Airport), along the eastern edge of I-75, and relatively flat, with utilities. It offered most of the amenities any manufacturing or warehouse plant would re-
quire. Lots were sold for a relatively low cost per acre ($6,000), and the City of Florence annexed the park and issued tax-free industrial revenue bonds to finance construction. The first two occupants were the Great Lakes Carbon Corporation and the Crescent Paper Tube Company. Great Lakes (later known as Grefco) purchased 30 acres and began in April 1962 building a $3.5 million factory, where it made perlite insulation, employing 125 at first. The Crescent manufacturing firm followed in the fall of 1962 and occupied 11 acres; it made paper tubes for all kinds of applications, including incendiary uses during the Vietnam War. By summer 1979 some 45 manufacturers in and around the park employed approximately 7,600 workers. The Florence Industrial Park has been a resounding success. It was the first of its size in Northern Kentucky and one of the first in the nation. The population growth of Boone Co., the Florence Mall, and subdivisions in southern Kenton and Boone counties can all be attributed in part to the Industrial Park’s development. Haile, Ralph. Interview by Paul Tenkotte, April 13, 2006, Cincinnati. “Industrial Park Is in Business,” KP, July 12, 1961, 6K. Remlinger, Connie. “From Barnyard to Industrial Hub,” KP, May 22, 1979, 1.
NORTHERN KENTUCKY INTERFAITH COMMISSION. An association of Christian denominations, the Interfaith Commission (IFC) was founded in 1969, after a merger of the Northern Kentucky Association of Protestant Churches and the Catholic Information Center. Today its delegates include representatives from the African Methodist Episcopal, Anglican Catholic, Baptist, Christian Church (Disciples), Episcopal, Lutheran, Presbyterian, Roman Catholic, United Church of Christ, and United Methodist churches. As well as encouraging Christian unity, the IFC works to encourage dialogue with members of other faith traditions. The organization’s purpose was summed up by Rev. William Neuroth, its executive director from 1987 to 2002: through Interfaith, the churches “do together what we cannot do alone.” Under the leadership of its founding members— Harley Fisk, the IFC’s first president, and Rev. Don Hellman, its first vice president, as well as Alvin Aldermeyer, Ron Brock, Joseph Kuchle, Clarence Lassetter, O. Worth May, Mary Middleton, Otwell Rankin, Karl Vercouteren, and William White— the IFC emphasized unity activities such as interracial and interreligious dialogue and recreational and Bible school events. Members of suburban churches joined members of inner-city churches in Newport and Covington to work on youth activities, interchurch worship ser vices, concerts, and retreats. Mary Pons was the commission’s first secretary and later its first executive director. Under her successor, Sister Martha Walther, a Benedictine sister (see Sisters of St. Benedict) from St. Walburg Convent, Villa Hills, the IFC’s range of activities broadened to include an emergency assistance program, Good Friday and Thanksgiving community ser vices, interfaith prayer groups, and welcome breakfasts for new clergy.
In 1983 the IFC established the Exodus Jail Ministry program. Trained volunteers provide a “listening ministry” for the spiritual needs of inmates at Northern Kentucky county jails and juvenile facilities. The program eventually became a joint venture of Interfaith and the Northern Kentucky Mental Health Association. As well as continuing to promote understanding between Christian denominations, the commission sponsors the area’s annual Yom HaShoah Holocaust memorial ser vice. During the tenure of Rev. Carolyn Tyler as director, the IFC initiated a disaster-response program after the calamitous tornado of March 1985 devastated parts of the region. The program inspired an overwhelming response from individuals, churches, and organizations and led to the hiring of a part-time staff person to provide on-site assistance to individuals and families, primarily in Newport and Covington. Under Neuroth’s leadership, the commission was reorga nized. Th ree sections replaced previous committees to encourage greater participation from denominational delegates: the Faith and Order Section to promote ecumenical and interfaith experiences, with an emphasis on educational opportunities, worship, and dialogue; the Work and Life Section to focus on community and social needs, including interracial issues; and the Operations Section to address financial matters and new denominational recruitment. The IFC continued to be a lead agency in the 1990s. It either established or supported the following programs and organizations in response to social ser vices and community needs. The Cincinnati/Northern Kentucky International Airport Chaplaincy Program This idea was envisioned by two ministers, Dr. Michael Watts and Rev. Larry Leslie. The IFC provided initial organizing support and called an organizational meeting in November 1989 to create a ministry of “presence” and prayer for both travelers and employees, and a chapel in the airport’s Terminal 3 was dedicated in February 1997. Cliff Wartman is the program’s current director. The Interfaith Organization (ECHO) In February 1991 Sister Mary Dorgan, a Sister of Divine Providence, called together clergy and laity to discuss the need for a “soup kitchen” for the homeless and hungry in Campbell Co. The IFC initially served as the contact agency for promotion, information, and contributions. On April 18, 1991, the program’s first weekly meal was served at the First Church of the Nazarene, Newport. Later that year a permanent facility at Ninth and York Sts. in Newport was purchased, renovated, and given to ECHO by David Hosea, a Northern Kentucky businessman. Under its present director, Karen Yates, ECHO serves more than 200 meals each evening. The Interfaith Hospitality Network (IHN) In June 1993 the IFC became the prime mover in establishing the Interfaith Hospitality Network of Northern Kentucky. IHN is a national program
NORTHERN KENTUCKY TRI ED
providing shelter, meals, and support for homeless families, primarily through local churches, volunteers, and social ser vice agencies. “Host congregations” provide meals and temporary shelter for homeless families on a weekly rotating basis. “Support congregations” provide volunteers to assist in meal preparation, dinner, overnight hosting, and other activities. Currently the program is located at Ninth and Patterson Sts. in Newport, and the director is Jawanna Spencer. The Interfaith Commission Flood Relief Program The massive flooding of the Ohio and Licking Rivers in March 1997 led to the IFC’s Flood Relief Program. In collaboration with the Salvation Army and the American Red Cross, the commission coordinated the work of volunteers from churches throughout the Midwest who assisted survivors as they moved from crisis to recovery. The Interfaith Commission’s offices moved to the Henry Hosea House at Ninth and York Sts., Newport, in October 1996. At the same time, the commission adopted a new mission statement that continues to guide its members: The Northern Kentucky Interfaith Commission is an association of Christian denominations and congregations interested in encouraging ecumenical and interfaith dialogue. It is committed to fostering unity among all Christian churches in Northern Kentucky through dialogue, cooperative ministry, and occasions for joint worship. It also encourages and participates in dialogue with members of other faith traditions. “Churches Unite for Worship,” KE, January 12, 1993, B3. “Interfaith Commission Seeks Homeless Shelters for Families,” KP, June 12, 1993, 1K. “Interfaith Links Churches to Meet Society’s Need,” KP, February 8, 1989, 1KK.
William C. Neuroth
“Port Authority to Aid Newport with Landfi ll,” KP, December 27, 1978, 5K. “Port Authority Tours Licking by Tug,” KP, October 29, 1977, 2K. “Port Baits Hook for Industry,” KP, May 13, 1976, 1K.
NORTHERN KENTUCKY RIGHT TO LIFE. Northern Kentucky Right to Life (NKRTL) is an IRS 501(C3) not-for-profit, nondenominational organization founded in 1971. The oldest and largest prolife organization in Kentucky, NKRTL is dedicated to the sanctity and defense of all human life and to propagating the views that human life begins at fertilization, that the significance of individuals is that they were created by God, and that human worth is not dependent upon the person’s functional capacity or determined by any other person. NKRTL believes that all direct assaults upon innocent human life (abortion, assisted suicide, cloning, euthanasia, and human experimentation) are always morally wrong and unacceptable and destructive of the foundations of a free society. NKRTL’s activities include publishing a newsletter, distributing prolife literature, sponsoring speakers and fi lms, providing voter and legislative information, holding regular prayer ser vices, and advertising in the media. NKRTL’s history (and the history nationally of the prolife movement) is chronicled in a recent book, That Reminds Me of a Story . . . Reflections of a Pro-Life Warrior. There are two affi liated organizations, Northern Kentucky Right to Life Educational Fund Inc., also nonprofit, and Northern Kentucky Right to Life Political Action Committee, which endorses political candidates. Cetrulo, Robert C. That Reminds Me of a Story . . . Reflections of a Pro-Life Warrior. Covington, Ky.: Northern Kentucky Right to Life Educational Foundation, 2003.
NORTHERN KENTUCKY PORT AUTHORITY. The Northern Kentucky Port Au-
Robert C. Cetrulo
thority (NKPA) was formed in 1968 by a joint effort of the fiscal courts of Boone, Campbell, and Kenton counties, with the goal of promoting river navigation, river transportation, and river port facilities. The intent is to attract industrial or commercial operations in connection with these activities to Northern Kentucky. The NKPA plays an important role in the economic development of the region. The NKPA board of directors is made up of nine members appointed by those same three county fiscal courts. Members serve as business representatives for the NKPA and are residents of the three counties. The NKPA has the ability to issue multicounty industrial revenue bonds (tax-free) for state and local purposes. The current activity of the NKPA is to market the former Newport landfill, a current Environmental Protection Agency Superfund site. This former Newport dump, consisting of approximately 44 acres, is located in Wilder in Campbell Co., along Ky. Rt. 9, and has access to and frontage on the Licking River.
NORTHERN KENTUCKY SERVICES FOR THE DEAF. The Northern Kentucky Services for the Deaf (NKSD), on Cavalier Rd. in Florence, was founded in 1999 by Hunter H. Bryant and Teresa R. Moon Flaherty, both certified and qualified interpreters. The NKSD provides signlanguage interpreting ser vices to its deaf and hearing-impaired clientele in courtrooms, law offices, classrooms, government ser vices offices, and medical facilities; at conferences and meetings; and for social ser vices. Interpreting ser vices are also provided at special community events throughout Northern Kentucky. Deaf or hearing-impaired individuals who communicate solely in sign language are the main focus of the NKSD. The NKSD will, however, provide other means of communication in order to meet the deaf client’s specific needs. The organization also acts as an advocate for issues concerning deaf culture and deafness and maintains an information resource center. On-site workshops on deafness and classes on sign language can be ar-
ranged by NKSD for any group desiring better interaction or communication with the deaf or hearing-impaired. The NKSD is committed to the mission of connecting the two worlds, those of the deaf and the hearing. For persons with normal hearing, it can offer a better understanding of the diverse deaf–hearing-impaired community. For example, commonly unknown facts among the hearing are that not all deaf persons can lip-read and that deaf persons who are not fluent in the English language may not be able to understand written messages. Kentucky Commission for the Deaf and Hearing Impaired. Interpreter Directory. Frankfort, Ky.: KCDH, 2004. Also available at www.kcdhh.org. Kentucky Commission on the Deaf and Hard of Hearing. www.kcdhh.org.
Margaret Prentice Hecker
NORTHERN KENTUCKY TRANSIT INC. Northern Kentucky Transit (NKT), which is based in Burlington, was chartered in 1978 as a private nonprofit transportation brokerage. Its mission is “to help meet the special transportation needs primarily of elderly persons and persons with handicaps in the counties of Boone, Campbell, Carroll, Gallatin, Grant, Kenton, Owen and Pendleton by coordinating the provision of transportation services to meet the needs of various agencies and organizations.” Founded by psychotherapist Dr. Clarence R. Lassetter, an employee of the Comprehensive Care Center of Northern Kentucky (NorthKey Community Care), the corporation began operations in 1979. Lassetter led the organization for some 22 years, retiring in 2001; his broad-based ser vice included driving, coordinating, and even maintaining the fleet of vans and buses. In May 1992 NKT occupied its new building at 1452 Production Dr. in Burlington. NKT operates within two modes: providing rural public transportation and providing a charter ser vice, funded mostly by federal and state moneys. The rural transportation serves Boone, Carroll, Gallatin, Grant, Owen, and Pendleton counties via a contract with either an individual transportation provider or an agency. The NKT charter ser vice has been available to business or industry, churches, clubs, the elderly, the general public, the handicapped, hospitals, nursing homes, schools, social ser vice agencies, and the United Appeal. NKT now has a fleet of vehicles numbering more than 30. “Helping Others Brings a Dividend,” KP, February 28, 1992, 1K. “Van Charter Company Receives Federal Funds,” KP, May 28, 2001, 2K.
NORTHERN KENTUCKY TRI-ED. Northern Kentucky’s emergence as a desirable business incubator is largely a result of the efforts of Northern Kentucky Tri-ED. Today, an impressive array of world-class companies call Northern Kentucky home. Many have located or expanded in the area in recent years as a direct result of the aggressive
676 NORTHERN KENTUCKY UNIVERSITY efforts that began with the creation of the TriCounty Economic Development Corporation, or Northern Kentucky Tri-ED, in 1987. Notable achievements for Northern Kentucky Tri-ED include attracting firms such as Fidelity Investments, Toyota, Lafarge, Xanodyne, and Sachs Automotive. The story of Tri-ED actually begins in 1981, when then Kentucky governor John Y. Brown Jr. (1979–1983) brought together a group of Northern Kentucky business leaders to determine how the region could pool its efforts to attract new businesses. Under the chairmanship of Corporex president William P. Butler, the group envisioned an economic development agency that would serve the three counties of Boone, Campbell and Kenton. The agency would be the focal point of cooperative efforts to recruit businesses and promote economic growth that would ultimately benefit all Northern Kentuckians. The group’s vision came to life a few years later, when attorney William T. “Bill” Robinson III, then chairman of the Northern Kentucky Chamber of Commerce, saw an opportunity to create a unique public-private partnership that would become the economic development agency for Northern Kentucky. In 1986 Robinson presented the Tri-County Economic Development Corporation to area officials, and Northern Kentucky TriED was born. Initially funded by local governments and the private sector, Northern Kentucky Tri-ED, the Northern Kentucky Chamber, and the Northern Kentucky Legislative Caucus obtained passage of state legislation in 1995 that provided the agency with a permanent funding source from rental car license fees. These revenues are shared by the three counties through Northern Kentucky Tri-ED’s regional efforts. Private-sector contributions to the Northern Kentucky Tri-County Economic Development Foundation (Tri-EF) continue to support Northern Kentucky Tri-ED’s mission. Northern Kentucky Tri-ED’s efforts are governed by a 17-member board of directors led by the three judges-executive of the member counties, plus private-sector appointments from each county, Forward Quest, and the Northern Kentucky Chamber of Commerce. Northern Kentucky TriED’s staff of nine professionals now focus not only on the attraction but also on the expansion and retention of primary industries. Primary industries are those that export products or ser vices from an area and import money into an area from the sale of such products or ser vices. Further, primary industries are not dependent upon the local economy for growth and survival and thus can be located anywhere, making the competition for such industries quite fierce across the United States. Since the creation of Northern Kentucky TriED more than 20 years ago, its success has been astounding. The organization has directly facilitated the attraction or expansion of 428 primaryindustry companies, the creation of 41,000 primary jobs, and new capital investment of $4.1 billion in Northern Kentucky. This success has garnered national attention for the agency, as wit-
nessed by Site Selection magazine’s naming TriED as one of the top 10 economic development organizations in the United States in 1995, 1997, 1998, 1999, and 2005. While the statistics related to Northern Kentucky Tri-ED’s accomplishments are impressive, the agency’s impact on Northern Kentucky goes far beyond the numbers. Perhaps Northern Kentucky Tri-ED’s most enduring legacy will be how its creation ushered in an age of unprecedented community-wide cooperation. Northern Kentucky Tri-ED. “Tri-County Economic Development Corporation of Northern Kentucky Tenth Anniversary Report,” 1997, Northern Ky. Tri-ED, Fort Mitchell, Ky. “Tri-Ed Office Trying to Bag the Big Ones,” KP, February 27, 1990, 8K.
NORTHERN KENTUCKY UNIVERSITY. Northern Kentucky University (NKU) has its roots in a small community college, Northern Community College of the University of Kentucky (NCC), but has evolved into a dynamic university. In 1966 consultant M. M. Chambers, as a result of a study he conducted for the Kentucky Council on Public Higher Education (KCPHE), recommended that one more senior college be established for the state and that it be set in Northern Kentucky. He reasoned that because Northern Kentucky was the second-largest metropolitan region in the state, with a population then at a quarter of a million, it needed a public institution. At that time, the proportion of Northern Kentucky high school graduates going on to college was lower than the percentage doing so statewide. In 1946 the University of Kentucky began a series of extension courses at the Trailways Bus Station in Covington. In 1948 they rented space at First District School in Covington and began a limited two-year college program, thereby establishing the first community college of the University of Kentucky. In 1961 NCC moved
into a newly constructed building in Park Hills, on land once part of Devou Park. It became the largest community college of the University of Kentucky, and the tuition from its enrollment was used to bond other community colleges statewide. A sign erected on the hilltop above the roadway that became interstate I-75 was lit up at night with the letters “UK” for all to see. NCC had a center director, a finance officer, a registrar, and a full- and parttime teaching staff composed mainly of instructors with MA and MS degrees. Often, local high school teachers supplemented their incomes as part-time instructors at NCC, and sometimes local lawyers, accountants, and other businessmen taught a class or two. The two-year nursing program was the most popu lar one offered at NCC, experiencing intense competition for admission. Generally, students at NCC had one of three goals: they were seeking to better themselves in their jobs, or they just wanted to take some courses, or they were completing a two-year program before transferring to a campus where four-year college degrees were offered. Both the students and the staff at NCC thrived in its highly personal atmosphere; enrollment surged to well over 1,000 by the mid-1960s. It was this climate of growth and educational success that converged with need to produce a new four-year state college in Northern Kentucky. The merger of the new Northern Kentucky State College (NKSC) with NCC was approved by UK and the KCPHE but also needed approval by Kentucky’s legislators. The legislators approved, and on July 31, 1969, the land and buildings at NCC (today the site of NKU’s Covington campus) were deeded to NKSC. The site selection committee was still rushed for time because building space was tight in Covington. Several sites were under consideration, one each in Boone, Campbell, and Kenton counties. Each of the counties argued why its site should be selected, but on March 29, 1969,
Northern Kentucky University, Highland Heights; the heart of the main campus around Lake Norse.
NORTHERN KENTUCKY UNIVERSITY
the site in Campbell Co., 328 acres of farms and houses located in Highland Heights, was chosen. The reason given was that the site was centrally located, with easy access from all areas of Northern Kentucky, and that there was plenty of space for a new college and future growth. Three other unspoken and unpublicized factors in the choice were, first, the Boone Co. site was remote and not closely connected to an existing or proposed interstate highway; second, the site in Kenton Co. was close to Thomas More College and might create financial problems by pitting higher private tuition against the lower tuition of a public institution; and, third, several influential people, including Art Schmidt, a powerful Republican state representative from Campbell Co. and a close friend of Governor Nunn, had lobbied successfully to have the college built in Campbell Co. The most important unfinished task was choosing the college’s first president. The Board of Regents agreed to offer a long-time UK administrator, Dr. A. D. Albright, the position, but he declined and instead accepted a Fulbright Fellowship in Belgium. The Board of Regents then offered the position to Ronald Carrier of Memphis State University, but he also turned down the offer. Finally, the offer was extended to Dr. W. Frank Steely, a native of Murray, Ky., who as dean at Clinch Valley Community College in Virginia had helped convert that school into a four-year institution. Steely accepted the offer, and on December 11, 1969, he was named the first president of NKSC. After meeting with the board of regents in December 1969 at Butler State Park, outside Carrollton, to begin formulating a plan of action, Steely returned to Murray during the Christmas holidays and began hiring the college’s first employees. On December 27, he persuaded Dr. James C. Claypool, whom Steely had hired earlier while heading the history department of Murray State College (now a university), to become dean of admissions and professor of history and left him with the following instruction: “We need somebody up there to represent us right away, so get up there, and get to work.” Claypool, who was from Northern Kentucky, arrived and began work at the new college on February 1, 1970. Steely, meanwhile, was busy assembling more staff. Dr. Ralph Tesseneer, the graduate dean at Murray State College, was hired as the vice president for academic affairs and agreed to move to Northern Kentucky in time to help NKSC conduct its first academic offering, the summer session in July 1970. A few weeks later John Kilkenny, who was knowledgeable about the state’s budget procedures, was hired, and by July he too was at work. Steely had arrived in Northern Kentucky in April, having already been hard at work for months. One of his first official acts as president was to go to Frankfort to lobby for money for the college’s new budget. While he was there, on February 6, 1970, NCC was officially transferred to NKSC. Republican governor Nunn, who had been elected partly because of the significant numbers of votes he had received in Northern Kentucky, felt close to the new college and tried to do everything he could to help it. One of his administrative aides,
John DeMarcus, who was the son of an influential Republican legislator, was told by Nunn to oversee the college’s birth. DeMarcus and Steely worked closely together at this time; and later, after Nunn was replaced as governor by Democrat Julian Carroll (1971–1975), DeMarcus was hired by Steely and in 1971 became the college’s first administrative vice president. The leaders and employees of the new college were immediately confronted with many issues and challenges. Critics frequently raised questions about accreditation, about the quality of instruction, and about crowded facilities. The absorption and transference of NCC’s faculty and staff into the new college at times also proved difficult. Each issue was addressed and resolved. The response about accreditation was that NKSC was a state school and would have the budget, faculty, facilities, and programs necessary for accreditation. The quality of instruction was established when, because there was a glut of qualified people (some experienced and some not) seeking to become college teachers, NKSC got “the pick of the litter.” Many of those hired during the college’s initial years, sensing the excitement of this new enterprise, decided to stay on for many years. In a short time, the quality of the programs and the growth of the college’s facilities spoke for themselves as well. The concerns voiced by members of NCC’s former staff (who as part of the overall agreement were to be retained) worked out in two ways. A few left on their own accord and went to other positions. The larger number, who stayed, were treated just as all other employees were, except that instructors from the former NCC were given the added security of immediate tenure. The original 328 acres in Highland Heights was purchased in April 1970, about one month after Steely and his family had moved to Northern Kentucky. Plans for the first building at the Highland Heights campus were taking shape. Meanwhile, classes in Covington opened for the fall semester of 1970 with 1,644 students and 37 faculty members. From its beginnings, NKSC offered bachelor’s degrees. Classes continued at the overcrowded Covington campus for two years while construction progressed in Highland Heights. The ever-rising enrollments at the campus in Covington fi lled all the existing classroom facilities to capacity and necessitated buying metal trailerlike outbuildings that were made into additional classrooms. The teachers who taught in these makeshift facilities, however, took the adventure in good spirits, as did the students. In fact, many from those times remember all of these trials and challenges nostalgically. Groundbreaking for the first building on the Highland Heights campus was held March 31, 1971, on a sunny day, before a large crowd; music was provided by the Campbell Co. High School band. This building was named for Governor Louie B. Nunn (1967–1971), who had been so instrumental in getting the college started. Construction on a second multipurpose arena and auditorium, named Regents Hall, started just six months later, thanks to Nunn, who had “somehow
found” just the right amount of money needed to build it. As the college’s fi rst two buildings and roadways were being built, upon lands that for generations had been family farms, the new college was offered a unique proposal. The Salmon P. Chase College of Law, long one of Ohio’s and the nation’s most productive nighttime law schools, was being forced out of its building in Cincinnati and needed to affi liate with a college to retain its accreditation. NKSC’s progressive-minded regents and the college president, Steely, jumped at the chance to have a law school affi liated with NKSC, and Nunn and the KCPHE did not disapprove. However, there were many who did disapprove and a real political donnybrook ensued. The local press vacillated, sometimes seeming to like the idea of this merger while at other times seeming to disapprove. UK and the University of Louisville, the only two schools in the state with law schools, did not relish gaining more competition, and many of their alumni agreed, especially those holding law degrees. Making matters more difficult was the fact that most of the legislators in Kentucky had law degrees from one of these two law schools, and the idea of supporting what had always been an Ohio-based school, albeit one that often served students from the Northern Kentucky region, did not sit well with these lawmakers. Two crucial decisions won the day for the proposed merger. After Nunn had been persuaded by John DeMarcus to support the plan, the college asked the Kentucky attorney general to rule on whether “a college that was not a university” could operate a law school. His opinion, as the attorney general and a lawyer, was that a lawyer’s JD (Juris Doctorate) degree was a student’s fi rst postgraduation degree and could be offered at schools that were colleges. Next, during a heated debate at a KCPHE meeting held on NKSC’s Covington campus, a vote was called on the merger issue and it passed 5 to 4. In June 1972, the Chase College of Law moved to and occupied most of the Covington campus, just as NKSC moved onto the new Highland Heights campus. The year 1972 was a good facilities growth year for NKSC, because Nunn Hall and Regents Hall were both completed. With only one classroom building and one office building, however, space at the new campus was limited. So a new science building was authorized by the state, and ground was broken for its construction that summer. Meanwhile, several houses located on John’s Hill Rd., next to campus, were purchased and used for offices; but with 4,100 students attending NKSC, classroom and parking space was still at a premium. The first commencement ceremonies at NKSC were held in spring 1973 with 611 graduates. That summer, the administration formulated plans to start a graduate program in education. Groundbreaking for the library, named the W. Frank Steely Library, was held in October 1973. In December 1973, NKSC received conditional accreditation from the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools (SACS). Not until December 1978 did the school earn full accreditation.
678 NORTHERN KENTUCKY UNIVERSITY As fast as the buildings could be opened, they were fi lled to capacity, as the enrollment climbed to 5,000 in fall 1974. That semester the science building opened. In spring 1975, construction started on the Fine Arts Center. Construction on the Charles O. Landrum Academic Center was begun three months later. Even with all of the progress and successes at NKSC, there were problems. Not only was space a major issue, but there were also disagreements within the administration. Citing no specific cause other than problems with the faculty, Steely resigned on September 15, 1975. He stayed on to teach history, and the board of regents appointed Academic Vice President Ralph Tesseneer as interim president. Finding a president and creating unity within the faculty were among Tesseneer’s goals. The most notable accomplishment of his term as interim president included a status change for the college. The governor of Kentucky, Julian Carroll (1975– 1979), in his campaign for governor, promised to make NKSC a university. This was necessary because NKSC had a master’s program in education and a law school, pushing it away from the undergraduate category. On June 19, 1976, Northern Kentucky State College became Northern Kentucky University (NKU). The search for a new permanent president was progressing, with more than 200 applicants for the position. Tesseneer made it to the fi nal five, but the faculty and the board of regents could not agree on a candidate. Finally, they returned to their original choice, A. D. Albright, who had become the executive director of the Kentucky Commission on Higher Education. In July 1976, Albright agreed to serve as president for a four-year term, which was later extended to seven years. At the time, NKU had more than 6,000 students and employed about 150 faculty members. Albright was inaugurated at the spring commencement ceremonies in 1977. NKU was continuing to grow. Ground had been broken for the University Center (UC) in January 1976. Albright was so busy that the administration began looking for a provost to help “reorganize the academic structure.” Dr. Leon Boothe was one of the applicants, but the person chosen for the position, in December 1976, was Dr. Janet Travis. With this appointment, she became the highest-ranking female academic administrator in the state at the time. In November of that year, the Landrum Academic Center opened; in spring 1977, the Fine Arts building opened; and the UC opened in the fall. NKU’s growth was causing problems once again, this time with traffic. The interstates to NKU were not yet completed, and the smaller streets leading to the institution were congested. This, and crowded parking lots, added to everyone’s frustration. In 1977 the Chase Law School, still housed on the Covington campus, was also experiencing space problems. To get full accreditation from the American Bar Association, Chase needed more room, so a plan was developed to move the law school into Nunn Hall on the Highland Heights
campus. One of the stipulations of the law creating NKU, however, was that the college should retain a presence in Kenton Co. So even after Chase College of Law had departed from the Covington campus, NKU would, because of this mandate, continue offering a schedule of lower-level and noncredit courses at its Covington facilities. Construction began in 1978 on the Business, Education, and Psychology building (BEP), into which all undergraduate classes from Nunn Hall would eventually move, thus helping to fulfill the law school’s space needs for accreditation. Most of the university’s administrative offices were still housed in Nunn Hall at this time, so one more building would be needed before Chase could move to Highland Heights. The Lucas Administrative Center was delayed because of funding problems, but construction finally began in October 1979; the building was completed in June 1981. Just as Chase was about to solve the space problem, another controversy arose. A citizens’ advisory committee for the state had decided that there were too many law schools in Kentucky and that one of the law schools had to close. Being the newest law school in the state, Chase College of Law was the one they chose. After much deliberation, it was decided that all three law schools would remain open, but their enrollments would be limited. This issue surfaced a few more times, but Chase College of Law responded by expanding its numbers of in-state students and limiting out-of-state enrollment, thereby removing one of the major criticisms that had been raised concerning the former Ohio law school. The Chase Law School moved into Nunn Hall on the Highland Heights campus in early 1982. As NKU’s enrollment grew to 5,900 in fall 1978, the administration realized that on-campus housing would soon be needed to serve students from outside of the region. In October 1978, a federal loan was obtained that would help to build dorms; construction was postponed for two years, however. In September 1980 construction began for dorms that would hold 400 students. The university’s new housing facilities were opened in spring 1982. Throughout NKU’s initial growth years, during the 1970s and 1980s, the university continued to add to its curriculum and to expand ser vices. Several academic departments were aided by the fact that there was a glut of doctoral degrees in several teaching fields during these years; thus NKU was able hire an amazing number of highly qualified instructors with degrees from some of the most prestigious institutions both in the United States and in other countries. Many of the persons hired in this period have remained at the university, contributing to its growth and helping to define its quality array of academic offerings. Moreover, several have held leadership positions within the university and have, through publications and other ser vices, achieved prominence in their fields. As NKU continued to expand, President Albright realized that Regent’s Hall was too small a facility for a university. A new health center, later named the A. D. Albright Health Center, was the
answer to this problem, and construction on the building began in July 1982. This new $9.3 million health-recreational center, located adjacent to Regents Hall, opened in 1984. It offered a swimming pool, racquetball courts, fitness rooms, classrooms, and offices. The health-recreational center was a huge boost for the athletic department, which was already successful. The sports program had been started in 1970 by President Steely and James C. Claypool. Martin “Mote” Hils, a highly successful local high school basketball coach, and Bill Aker, a student attending NKU who had been a top prospect of the Cincinnati Reds, were hired as the basketball and baseball coaches, respectively. Both men compiled remarkable records at NKU in careers that, combined, totaled more than 30 years of ser vice. NKU also was a pacesetter in Kentucky in establishing women’s athletic programs on an equal footing with men’s programs. Among Kentucky’s eight public universities, it was the first to offer women full athletic scholarships. The women’s program, like the men’s, has had multiple NCAA Division II Tournament appearances and has made several significant accomplishments. Both Hils’s and Aker’s teams achieved high national rankings, had victories over ranked NCAA Division I and II schools, and won regional and national championship games. Nancy Winstel, who played basketball at NKU for two years, became the women’s basketball coach in 1983 and took the team to the NCAA Division II Final Four in 1987 and 1999. In 2000 the women’s basketball team won NKU’s first-ever national title. They reached the Elite Eight in 2002 and the final game in 2003, but did not win that year. The 2005 women’s softball team holds the longest intercollegiate win record in NCAA history, with 55 victories; it was ranked number one in the nation in NCAA Division II and finished in the final four in the national tournament. In 2008 NKU’s women’s basketball team again won the NCAA Division II National Championship, becoming the first women’s team in Kentucky to win two national championships. In women’s volleyball and soccer, men’s golf, soccer, and tennis, NKU teams have also excelled, been ranked nationally, and advanced in several rounds of regional and national tournaments. Dr. Albright announced his retirement in October 1982, and once again the board of regents had to find a new president. After a six-month search and more than 200 applicants, the board chose Dr. Leon E. Boothe as NKU’s third president. He came to the university from Illinois State University, where he had served as the vice president and provost. Boothe was inaugurated in December 1983. One of his priorities as president was to diversify the university by adding more international programs. Just one month before Dr. Boothe’s inauguration, Chase Law School was given full accreditation from the Association of American Law Schools. In 1987 a baseball field was built on campus, and there was talk about the team’s going to the NCAA Division I sports level. The school’s officials
NORTHERN KENTUCKY WATER DISTRICT
also began asking for a sports convocation center, but the issue was forced to the background by other pressing budget issues. In 1990 it resurfaced; however, because of political fighting in the legislature, the arena was dropped from the budget. In 2004 the administration of Governor Ernie Fletcher (2003–2007) included in its budget $42 million to build a regional special-events center at NKU. Subsequently, the Bank of Kentucky made a large donation in return for naming rights. In 2008 the Bank of Kentucky Arena opened on campus, seating 10,000 for concerts and other shows and 9,400 for basketball, having cost $64.2 million The architects were GBBN of Cincinnati and Three Sixty Architecture of Kansas City, Mo. As usual, space was a problem for NKU. In spring 1990, enrollment had surpassed 11,000 and more classrooms were needed. The Applied Science and Technology Center was opened that semester and provided a large computer lab along with more classrooms and office space. The Fine Arts building gained some much-needed additional space when an addition was constructed in 1991 to house the Greaves Concert Hall, and more student housing was built in 1992. Dr. Boothe saw NKU through many expansions along with the addition of many new degrees. When he announced his resignation early in 1997, NKU again had to search for a president. Boothe stayed and began teaching history, retiring in 2007. James C. Votruba, who had been teaching at Michigan State University, became the next president and was inaugurated on August 1, 1997. He has helped NKU become an economic factor in Northern Kentucky. NKU currently offers more than 70 baccalaureate degrees and 17 master’s programs. Votruba’s term as president so far has seen the addition of a new $38 million Science Center, designed by Omni of Lexington, which opened in the fall of 2002. A new housing unit called University Suites opened in fall 2003, bringing the total housing capacity to 1,400. In March 2007 the university purchased the closed Lakeside Manor Nursing Home and converted it into housing for 460 students, at a total cost of $19 million; it opened in fall 2008 and was named for longtime Campbell Co. Democratic legislator James Callahan. Desiring to expand the university into the community, Votruba opened the NKU Grant Co. Center in 1998 and the NKU Metropolitan Education and Training Ser vices (METS) Center, which cost $12 million, in September 2003. The METS Center is a training and learning center for local businesses that also provides a connection to NKU. A new $40 million student center opened in August 2008, designed by Omni of Lexington. In the same year, the City of Highland Heights annexed the main campus of the university. The Carol Ann and Ralph V. Haile Jr./US Bank Foundation donated $15 million to NKU’s College of Business in August 2008; it was the largest single private donation in the university’s history. Carter, D. J. “METS Attract Business to Region,” Northerner, August 27, 2003.
Mackenzie, Stuart. “New $1.2 Million Planetarium in Works,” Northerner, October 6, 2004. Neltner, Susan. “Student’s First Assignment: The Dorm,” Northerner, August 27, 2003. Stallings, Frank L., Jr. Groundbreakings: Northern Kentucky University’s First Twenty-Five Years. Highland Heights, Ky.: NKU Publications, 1992. Steely, Will Frank. Northern: Birth of a University. Cincinnati: Gateway, 1993. Van Benschoten, Amanda. “Northern Kentucky’s Most Influential People: #1 Jim Votruba,” SC, May 31, 2005, 2K. Wartman, Scott. “Bank of Ky. Arena Era Set to Commence,” KE, May 9, 2008, A1. ———. “New Facility to Aid Student and Faculty Research Education,” Northerner, April 24, 2002.
James C. Claypool and Elizabeth Comer Williams
NORTHERN KENTUCKY UNIVERSITY, GRANT CO. The Northern Kentucky University (NKU) Grant Co. Center opened in 1998 on Paris St. in Williamstown. The goal was to provide better access to college classes for students in the Grant Co. area, reducing travel to NKU’s main campus in Highland Heights, 40 miles north. The idea was first discussed in the 1970s, when an area vocational school was planning to relocate. Grant Co. competed to be selected as the site for the vocational school but did not win the bid. In March 1997 the idea resurfaced at a meeting between NKU interim president Jack Moreland and the community, where options for improving NKU’s community outreach ser vices were discussed. Another conference was held in September 1997 with Dr. James Votruba, incoming president of NKU. About 30 Grant Co. residents attended, showing their support. They wanted improved local access to higher education and wanted a school in which to train the county’s growing workforce. This meeting went well, and some 30 more gatherings were held that year. After these initial talks, things began to move quickly. NKU performed impact studies to see whether there was a need and whether there was enough interest to develop the concept. The residents of Grant Co. created the Grant Co. Higher Education Foundation and raised more than $40,000 for operational costs for the project, and they leased a building with three classrooms. NKU agreed to cover the additional $100,000 needed for instructional and administrative costs. The Grant Co. community worked together to bring NKU to the county. Scholarships were donated by area businesses and registration for courses offered at the new center was held at the Chamber of Commerce in Williamstown. The first semester’s enrollment was anticipated to be 20 fulltime and up to 60 part-time students. Classes began on August 26, 1998, with 11 different classes. Those first classes were not held in the designated building, because it was still being renovated. Again, the community stepped in and classes were held next door at the Williamstown United Methodist Church until the center’s building was ready. The NKU Grant Co. Center was officially dedicated on October 7, 1998, just over a year
after that initial meeting held with President Votruba. The curriculum consisted of the standard firstyear college classes as well as continuing education classes. All earned credits could be transferred to other institutions or other NKU sites. Many students, expecting to transfer their credits, felt that the NKU Grant Co. Center would give them an easy transition into college. Students who might not have attempted college otherwise gained a chance to at least try out college work, and the center serves as a recruiting satellite for the NKU main campus. The new center has been a success, but with the larger class sizes, the building quickly became too small. The former Williamstown City Building, which was about to be partially demolished and used for storage, was selected to provide more space. The renovation of this building was estimated to cost $200,000. Construction began and the dedication was held in September 2004. By then there were almost 400 students enrolled in 26 classes. The new building doubled the amount of space available. It has four classrooms, wireless Internet access, and a technology resource room with 13 computers. Currently, the NKU Grant Co. Center offers classes that lead to certificates, associate degrees, and bachelor degrees. Baker-Nantz, Jamie. “NKU Finds New Home: City Hall Saved from Demolition,” Grant County News, August 7, 2003. “Northern Is on the Grow: Grant County Unit Expands,” KP, September 9, 2004, 1K. Pressley, Darrell S. “NKU Leaders Studying Branch in Grant County,” KE, September 14, 1997, B1. Tortora, Andrea. “New NKU Campus to Be Dedicated,” KE, October 1, 1998, B2. ———. “NKU Courses Come to Grant,” KE, June 22, 1998, A1. Wilson, Brenda. “Long-time Dream of Local College Center Finally Comes True in Grant County,” Grant County News, February 18, 1999, 11. Yeager, Wayne. “Higher Education: NKU–Grant Co. Center Gets New Home,” Grant County News, September 16, 2004, 1K.
Elizabeth Comer Williams
NORTHERN KENTUCKY WATER DISTRICT. The first public water systems in Northern Kentucky were formed by the City of Covington in 1871 and the City of Newport in 1873. In 1926 the Kenton Co. Water District No. 1 (KCWD) was formed with the purchase of the Dixie Water Company, which was serving areas along Dixie Highway (U.S. 25); the KCWD included one water-treatment plant at the time. In 1977 the KCWD purchased Covington’s water system and thereby acquired one more water-treatment plant, located in Fort Thomas. The Campbell Co. Kentucky Water District (CCKYWD), formed in 1955, purchased water from both the KCWD and the Newport Water Works, also located in Fort Thomas. Legal suits ensued between the two districts over the amount and purchase price of the water. Both CCKYWD and KCWD acquired many smaller systems after being established.
680 NORTHKEY COMMUNITY CARE On the initiative of the judge-executives of Campbell and Kenton counties and the boards of commissioners of CCKYWD and KCWD, and with the approval of the Kentucky Public Ser vice Commission (KPSC), the two water districts were merged effective January 1, 1997, to form the Northern Kentucky Water Ser vice District. In approving this step, the KPSC noted that combining the districts would improve customer ser vice, consolidate debt, eliminate duplication of costs, and permit efforts that would ultimately result in economies of scale, lower costs, and a higher level of ser vice to the public. The new district operated with a 10-member board, consisting of all commissioners from the two former boards, for its first year, and later with four Kenton Co. commissioners and two Campbell Co. commissioners, based on the populations of the two counties. The name of the district was changed in 2000 to the Northern Kentucky Water District (NKWD), and its commissioners began to serve staggered four-year terms. The NKWD is the primary source of treated water in Northern Kentucky today; the merger made the NKWD the largest water district in Kentucky and the third-largest water provider in the state. The district is regulated by the KPSC, which approves and regulates the district’s capital projects, rates, fees, and ser vice standards. The NKWD provides water to more than 81,000 ser vice points, supplying approximately 350,000 people in Kenton and Campbell counties and portions of Boone, Grant, and Pendleton counties, including the Cincinnati/Northern Kentucky International Airport. In recent years, it also has acquired the water utilities of the cities of Newport and Taylor Mill. The NKWD is a special district of the Commonwealth of Kentucky in that it is independent of county government but was established to furnish a water supply to the citizens of Campbell and Kenton counties residing within the boundaries of the district. The NKWD maintains approximately 1,170 miles of main, 3 raw-water pump stations, 3 watertreatment plants, 12 distribution pump stations, and 17 water-storage tanks and covers a ser vice area of more than 208 square miles. The district draws raw water from the Ohio River and the Licking River. The total fi lter capacity is 64 million gallons per day, with an average daily consumption of 32 million gallons. The district employs 155 people to handle all customer ser vice, engineering, waterquality, production, and distribution aspects of the system. Throughout the years, the NKWD has acquired smaller water systems in the area. The acquisition of the Newport water system in 2002 added a 10-million-gallon-per-day (m.g.d.) treatment plant that had an expansion capacity of 20 m.g.d. and saved ratepayers more than $34 million in comparison to building a new plant. The purchase also maintained critical redundancy between systems, was already sited and in operation, and will help provide adequate supply for the region until 2030. The NKWD has recently acquired a 24-acre complex at the northeast corner of the junction of
I-275 and I-75 in Erlanger that formerly was home to the Cincinnati Steel Treating Co. The property gives the water district two things it had been looking for since the merger: a central location inside the I-275 beltway and additional space in which to grow. In response to increasing water-system demands, water-quality regulatory requirements, aging and wear of equipment and facilities, the needs for attention to customer ser vice and proper redundancy in system components, and various other factors, the NKWD developed its Asset Management Plan for implementation and scheduling of contemplated projects. The plan weighs the necessity of each improvement, its appropriate or required timing, and the associated costs. The projects are identified with a timeline based on their appropriate years for implementation. The key components of the improvement program include supply and delivery improvements, infrastructure renewal, regulatory compliance, treatment enhancements, and utility operations and management. Since the district is under the regulatory authority of the KPSC, all improvements and projects must have the approval of that body. Reis, Jim. Pieces of the Past. Vol. 1. Covington, Ky.: Kentucky Post, 1988. “Water District Oks Purchase—Taylor Mill Already Had Approved Deal,” KP, November 12, 2003, 2K.
NORTHKEY COMMUNITY CARE. NorthKey Community Care, formerly known as Northern Kentucky Comprehensive Care Center, provides mental health, substance abuse, and developmental disability ser vices to clients in the eight Northern Kentucky counties of Boone, Campbell, Carroll, Gallatin, Grant, Kenton, Owen, and Pendleton. From its inception in 1966, the agency has been governed by a regional board made up of individuals from each of the counties served. NorthKey Community Care’s mission is to work “in partnership with the community to improve the quality of life of all its members through ser vice, education and prevention.” The organization is very similar in its mission to its neighbor to the east, Comprehend Inc. The opportunity to develop and provide these ser vices in Northern Kentucky sprang from federal legislation, the Mental Retardation Facilities and Community Mental Health Centers Act, enacted in 1963, which provided matching funds for states that created community treatment centers for persons with mental health and related needs. Kentucky’s plan called for the creation of regional boards throughout the state, made up of volunteers who would be responsible for developing and overseeing the needed ser vices within their region. The plan was called Pattern for Change and was submitted to the governor in 1965. Its goal, in keeping with the federal act, was to develop community mental health care systems throughout the state. One year later, in 1966, Northern Kentucky became the second region in the state to incorporate; its organization became known as the Northern
Kentucky Mental Health–Mental Retardation (MH-MR) Regional Board. Wilbert Ziegler was elected to serve as the first chairman, and shortly thereafter, Dr. Joseph Emmanuel Willett was hired as executive director. He and one additional employee began outpatient ser vices in a converted three-room apartment at 412 E. Fourth St. in Covington. During Willett’s 26-year tenure as director, the agency greatly expanded its ser vices as well as its physical presence throughout the region in order to better serve the community. As early as 1967, the agency was providing educational, referral, and screening ser vices in addition to outpatient treatment. Day treatment ser vices began that same year in a building at Second and Greenup Sts. in Covington, owned by the Kentucky Highway Department, and continued there until the state sold the property in the 1980s to private enterprise. To meet the needs of more individuals, in 1968 a building was purchased at 718 Columbia St. in Newport, and traveling clinics began servicing Carroll and Grant counties. These clinics, made up of a psychiatrist and a nurse, were available twice monthly to residents of each county. Inpatient ser vices were also beginning to be offered through various affi liates, including Speers Memorial Hospital in Dayton, Ky. The name Comprehensive Care Center came into use at about this time in order to parallel similar agencies serving other areas. Numerous additions to the array of ser vices occurred during the 1970s. At 1408 Greenup St. in Covington, the Droege House opened in 1970 to house and treat male alcoholics. Short Term–Long Term Residential was established in 1971 to provide housing and other ser vices for developmentally disabled adults, and by 1976 several Adult Work Habilitation centers had become operational in Boone, Carroll, Grant, and Pendleton counties. As of 1972, individuals in the criminal justice system gained access to a forensic psychiatric evaluation and treatment team. Senior citizens and children both saw additional ser vices open up for them in 1977, by way of the Life Center, a senior ser vices center in Covington that also has a children’s outpatient counseling center. MH-MR ser vices were extended to Gallatin Co. during the following year. In 1978 a separate governing board was created to manage a psychiatric hospital, and an inpatient mental health unit was opened on a single floor of the Covington–Kenton Co. Hospital at 502 Farrell Dr. in Covington. Previously, this hospital had served only tuberculosis patients. Amid some initial controversy over the mixing of patients with mental health problems and those with TB, the facility was gradually converted to one occupied solely by those in need of mental health ser vices. This transition was completed in 1980. Dr. Edward G. Muntel was employed in 1981 as the director of inpatient ser vices, and in 1983 the facility was expanded and renovated in order to meet the special mental health needs of children and adolescents. The name was then officially changed to Children’s Psychiatric Hospital. Muntel succeeded Willet as president and CEO of Comprehensive Care in
NURSING HOMES AND RETIREMENT HOUSING
1992, and the hospital’s board was merged with that of the MH-MR Regional Board in 1998. Both inpatient and outpatient ser vices for children were a major focus of the agency’s growth in the 1980s and 1990s, and inpatient ser vices for adults were discontinued in 1981. Among the highlights of this focus on youth was the opening of a Children’s Treatment Center in Fort Thomas, and several partnerships developed with area school districts to provide day treatment ser vices. The goal of having the board’s programs licensed by an accrediting body in the field was achieved in 1984, when outpatient ser vices received accreditation from the Joint Commission on Accreditation of Healthcare Organizations (JCAHO). One year later the hospital was accredited by the same group. To maintain its accreditation, staff and board members began a continuing cycle of long-range planning, implementation, and self-evaluation for all of its programs. In 1995 the agency achieved a high rating in every category, thus gaining JCAHO’s Accreditation with Commendation status. Further expansion of the outpatient ser vices provided by Comprehensive Care and the Children’s Psychiatric Hospital took place in the latter part of the 1980s and the 1990s. New offices in Covington and in Owen and Pendleton Counties were opened in 1985, 1989, and 1999, respectively. In 1991 the J. E. Willett Treatment Center began providing residential ser vices for adults with developmental disabilities; various other ser vices were provided to clients of all ages. Along with the ever-expanding ser vices provided by Northern Kentucky Comprehensive Care Center since its inception came the continual need for more space. During the early years, office space was rented, but gradually the organization purchased or built its own facilities throughout the area to house various programs. NorthKey Community Care currently has staff in 24 office sites throughout the region and owns 14 of the buildings that house programs. The Regional Board office itself moved from Second and Greenup Sts. to 430 Garrard St. in Covington in 1972. In 1980 this office was moved to 503 Farrell Dr., Covington. Another issue that has faced the orga ni zation throughout its history is obtaining adequate funding. While the start-up funds came from the state, with federal matching dollars, additional sources have been sought to maintain current programs and to implement new ser vices. In 1976 an MHMR Ser vices tax was first proposed to the fiscal courts in the eight counties NorthKey Community Care serves. The tax was placed on the ballots for voter approval and passed in several counties in 1980. Many of the programs provided by NorthKey Community Care continue to receive support through local, state, and federal dollars, but the board has at times encountered budget challenges related to funding changes. In order to maintain a highly qualified clinical staff for the delivery of ser vices, the board has blended funding streams and melded support for ser vices from a wide variety of sources. In addition, Medicaid, Medicare, private insurance, and fees for ser vices
(charged on a sliding scale, based on clients’ ability to pay) round out the funding that sustains service delivery. Following the merger of Comprehensive Care and the Children’s Psychiatric Hospital, the agency’s name was changed in 1999 from Northern Kentucky Comprehensive Care Center to NorthKey Community Care. This name is now used for all ser vices offered by the Northern Kentucky MHMR Regional Board. Muntel continues to serve as the president and CEO. A senior management staff of 15 supervises approximately 430 employees in the various ser vice branches, including diagnosis, treatment, support, and education. NorthKey Community Care’s outlook for the future includes the continuation and further expansion of these programs to meet the needs of the Northern Kentucky community. Hicks, Jack. “TB Sanatorium Open to Mental Patients?” KP, January 18, 1975, 15. “Muntel New CEO at Hospital,” KP, August 21, 1992, 2K. NorthKey Community Care. www.northkey.org/ live/index.asp (accessed December 2, 2005). Vance, Debra Ann. “Social Ser vices Struggle to Keep Aid Going,” KP, February 8, 1977, 2K. Weathers, Rosemary. “Mental Health Pioneer Willett Retires,” KP, August 21, 1992, 1K–2K.
Janet M. Lester
NOTRE DAME ACADEMY. Notre Dame Academy (NDA), in Park Hills, is owned and operated by the Sisters of Notre Dame, a Roman Catholic religious order. The academy began in 1875 as a school for children in kindergarten through eighth grade, with an added two-year commercial school. The enrollment in fall 1875 was seven. The sisters erected a four-story building on Fift h St. in Covington to serve as a convent, and the school there was dedicated on July 26, 1876. By the time a high school program had been added to the curriculum in 1906, Sister Mary Agnetis had put in 30 years of ser vice as the school’s principal. In 1937 it was necessary to close the elementary school in order to accommodate the rapidly growing secondary-level program. By the 1950s, the building on Fift h St. became inadequate as the school’s enrollment grew to record numbers. It was impractical to renovate such an old facility, so a new Notre Dame Academy, costing nearly $1.5 million, was built on the grounds of the sisters’ provincial house in Park Hills. Alumnae, friends, parents, and corporate sponsors such as Conrad Hilton (of the hotel chain family, who donated $500,000) contributed generously to the project. The new school, on Hilton Dr., opened in October 1963 with an enrollment of 562. In 1994 NDA launched a $2.9 million campaign to renovate the old building and to construct a new addition housing seven classrooms and a gymnasium. In 1996 the new addition was completed, and the U.S. Department of Education named the academy a Blue Ribbon School of Excellence. In 2007 the school launched a $12 million fundraising campaign to renovate its facility and to add athletic fields and a performing arts center.
As a Catholic school, NDA continues to offer its students an opportunity to grow in the knowledge and practice of faith. Notre Dame’s educational program is founded on four cornerstones that are part of the educational heritage of the Sisters of Notre Dame: teacher dignity, individual worth, the centrality of religion, and thoroughness of instruction in all subjects. Today the school has an enrollment of about 600 students and more than 60 faculty and staff. It is governed by a fourmember administrative team and supported by dedicated staff, parents, more than 9,000 alumnae, and community and business leaders. Notre Dame Academy. Alumnae Directory. Bloomington, Ind.: University Publishing, 2004. “Notre Dame Academy: Celebrating 100 Years of Women Making a Difference,” Messenger (special supplement), September 22, 2006. Ryan, Paul E. History of the Diocese of Covington, Kentucky. Covington, Ky.: Diocese of Covington, 1954.
Donna M. Bloemer
NOURSE, MARY M. (b. July 5, 1870, Mount Healthy, Ohio; d. June 23, 1959, Fort Thomas, Ky.). Artist Mary Madeline Nourse was the sixth of seven children born to Charles E. and Viola J. Seward Nourse. She attended the Cincinnati Art Academy, and in 1891 she became a decorator for the Rookwood Pottery on Mount Adams in Cincinnati. She remained there for 14 years. Nourse learned wood carving from Benn Pitman, an uncle by marriage. She taught basket-weaving and jewelry-making and taught art as a volunteer at a Catholic school in Cincinnati. Mary was the niece of Elizabeth Nourse, an internationally known artist. Mary’s work is displayed at museums in France and Norway. For many years she resided along E. Fourth St. in Covington; she was a member of the Covington Art Club for at least 55 years, and in 1920 she designed the organization’s insignia. Mary Nourse kept a scrapbook, which contains many photographs of the early artists at Rookwood Pottery. She died in 1959 at her home in Fort Thomas and was buried at Spring Grove Cemetery in Cincinnati. Cummins, Virginia Raymond. Rookwood Pottery Potpourri. Silver Spring, Md.: Cliff R. Leonard and Duke Coleman, 1980. “Death Takes Retired Artist,” KP, June 23, 1959, 6K. Spring Grove Cemetery Records, Cincinnati.
NURSING HOMES AND RETIREMENT HOUSING. The long-term-care industry (nursing homes licensed to provide skilled and intermediate care) and the retirement housing business are active in Northern Kentucky, as they are throughout the country. Facilities for care of the elderly proliferated nationwide after Medicaid and Medicare were created during the early 1960s. Before 1960 about 2,000 nursing homes operated in the United States; today, there are nearly 20,000, containing approximately 2 million beds, and some 70 percent of nursing home residents participate in Medicaid or Medicare, mainly Medicaid.
682 NURSING HOMES AND RETIREMENT HOUSING In recent years, some demographers have suggested that given current usage patterns, the United States needs to open one new 100-bed nursing home each day just to keep up with demand. The over-age-85 segment of the nation’s population is the fastest-growing age group, and the average age of residents in nursing facilities today is around 82. Furthermore, a greater percentage of the elderly age cohort now needs nursing home care because of increases in the mobility of adult children, in two-wage-earner households, and in divorce rates. The once common three-generation household has become rare. Thus, the odds of a person’s living alone in later life have risen dramatically, and this factor is the main predictor of one’s need to enter a nursing or retirement home. In former years, elderly care facilities in the Northern Kentucky region were government run. Each county, as required by early state legislation, was responsible for its indigent poor and elderly people, who were placed in the local county home, specifically the county farm, where the county fiscal court provided for elderly citizens as well as orphans and people who were physically or mentally ill. Often called the local “pest house,” these facilities were actually farmlike settings where the residents grew their own produce and raised their own livestock. In the 1870s Mason Co. began referring to its “pest house” as the “county infirmary.” Such facilities have been recorded in Maysville; in Bracken Co.; in Campbell Co., first in Alexandria and later in Highland Heights; in Kenton Co., at Latonia and along the Covington and Lexington Turnpike, just south of Covington’s city limits; and in Owen Co., just southwest of downtown Owenton. At least two of these government-run care operations evolved into modern skillednursing facilities: in Latonia, the Kenton Co. Infirmary became Rosedale Manor, and in Highland Heights, the Campbell Co. Home (infirmary), renamed Lakeside Terrace, operated until it was closed in 2006.
Boone Co. Inﬁrmary, 1918.
For elderly military veterans, the U.S. Veterans Administration operates a 64-bed nursing facility in Fort Thomas, the Veterans Administration Medical Center. In the late 1940s it replaced the short-term convalescent hospital (nursing home) for U.S. Army Air Force personnel that operated for a short time at the Fort Thomas Military Reservation, just after World War II. A similar facility existed briefly in the former resort hotels of Fort Thomas just after World War I (see Altamont Springs Hotel; Shelly Arms Hotel). Other federal or state-run nursing homes that care for Northern Kentuckians are located in Dayton or Chillicothe, Ohio; Anderson, Ind.; and in Wilmore in Jessamine Co., Ky. Modern skilled-care and intermediate-care nursing homes operate in all the counties of Northern Kentucky today. These homes, participants in the Medicaid and Medicare programs, had to obtain a certificate of need from the Kentucky State Health Department in order to build and operate. Health planning, an idea born of the 1960s, limits the beds available under the federal programs in a given county based upon the county’s population of individuals over age 65. This measure represents an attempt by the federal government to contain costs. Gone are the many small 15-to-25-bed nursing homes operating out of former residential houses, structures not built to accord with modern construction or fire-prevention standards. Along Highland Ave. in Covington is a large former skilled-nursing facility that offers only retirement housing today. Developed by former Campbell Co. judge Andrew J. Jolly in the 1970s as Geriatrics Inc., this multistory concrete structure, at 300 beds, was once the largest nursing facility in Kentucky. Its startup was marred with politics, lawsuits, and trouble, but it eventually became the St. John Nursing Home. In recent years, following another period of flux and name and ownership changes, this nursing home became a part of Baptist Life Communities, a group noted for its quality
management; however, the facility no longer provides licensed skilled nursing home care. Retirement housing denotes a lower level of care, provided to residents who on average are somewhat younger than nursing home residents. They live in apartments, rather than two to a room as is common in a nursing home. Retirement housing facilities may be operated by proprietary or nonprofit groups or by government entities. The federal government, in conjunction with local nonprofit sponsors, has constructed several HUD (Housing and Urban Development) independentliving housing projects for seniors in Northern Kentucky. Examples include the Golden Tower and the Panorama Apartments in Covington (both designed by architect Carl Bankemper), the Grand Tower and the Saratoga Apartments in Newport, Colonial Heights in Florence, and Parkview Manor in Williamstown. Residents’ rent is subsidized so that they pay no more than 25 percent of their income in rent, which includes utilities. Only housing and a small number of activities are provided; residents do their own cooking. Baptist Life Communities operates independent-living units next to its Village Care Center in Erlanger. Congregate and assisted-living housing are types of retirement housing that provide other levels of care. In congregate housing, at least one meal per day is included in the monthly charge; assistedliving arrangements usually offer three meals each day and general care, in contrast to the skilled or intermediate care of nursing homes. The federal government does not subsidize congregate or assisted-living housing. Examples in Northern Kentucky include Colonial Heights in Florence (a facility of the Retirement Housing Foundation of Long Beach, Calif.), which offers assisted living in addition to independent living; Griesser Farm in Burlington, a Baptist Life Communities facility offering independent living plus; Brighton Gardens, developed and first owned by Marriot Senior Living but now owned by Sunrise Senior Living, along Turkeyfoot Rd. in Edgewood; and the two facilities of Atria Senior Living of Louisville in Kenton Co.: Summit Heights in Crestview Hills and the Matt Toebben–built Highland Crossings in Fort Wright. The latter is near the St. Charles Care Center, which also offers a similar level of care. Many local nursing homes are beginning to offer a small number of independent-living units on their grounds. A recent trend in Northern Kentucky has been the establishment of hospices, which provide care for the terminally ill either at home or in a separate facility. Within the past 10 years, the Hospice of Northern Kentucky, an affi liate of the Hospice of the Bluegrass, has opened in Fort Thomas at 1463 Alexandria Pk. Its patients are cared for at home, in other long-term-care facilities, and in hospitals such as the nine-bed unit it operates within St. Luke Hospital East. A similar facility has recently opened on the campus of the St. Elizabeth Medical Center in Edgewood as a result of a $2 million gift from the Ralph Haile/US Bank Foundation. It is Northern Kentucky’s fi rst freestanding hospice, with room for 16 patients.
NURSING HOMES AND RETIREMENT HOUSING
The Methodist retirement group of Cincinnati (now called Life Enriching Communities), the longtime operator of the Methodist Home at College Hill, Twin Towers, and other similar operations in Ohio, purchased a few years ago the land where the Beverly Hills Supper Club once stood in Southgate, Ky. The groupâ€™s announced plan was to build on the site a multifaceted continuing-care retirement community consisting of independent living, congregate housing, and nursing home care. However, construction has not yet begun. Perhaps Life Enriching Communities judges that the potential occupants of a retirement community will be reluctant to live at the location of the Beverly Hills Supper Club fire in 1977, in which 165 adults and teens and two unborn children died. The event may be too fresh in their memories. If developed, the facility will be the first such fullservice retirement housing operation in Northern Kentucky. Several retirement-housing development companies have considered that site since the fire but have passed it by, despite its excellent location from an operations point of view. Northern Kentucky Nursing Homes Boone Co. Florence Park Care Center, Florence
Harborside Healthcare (formerly Woodspoint), Florence St. Luke Hospital West, Florence (a few longterm-care beds) Bracken Co. Bracken Co. Nursing and Rehabilitation Center, Augusta Campbell Co. Baptist Convalescent Center, Newport Carmel Manor, Fort Thomas Highlands, Fort Thomas St. Luke Hospital East, Fort Thomas (has a few long-term-care beds) Carroll Co. Green Valley Health and Rehabilitation Center, Carrollton. Gallatin Co. Gallatin Health Care Center, Warsaw Grant Co. Grant Manor HealthCare Center, Williamstown Kenton Co. Covington Ladies Home (an Amos Shinkle charity of a century ago)
Garrard Convalescent Home, Covington Madonna Manor, Villa Hills Rosedale Manor, Latonia St. Charles Care Center, Fort Wright St. Elizabeth Medical Center North, Covington Village Care Center, Erlanger Villaspring of Erlanger Woodcrest Manor Care Center, Elsmere Mason Co. Maysville Nursing and Rehabilitation Facility Owen Co. Harborside Health Care Facility, Owenton Pendleton Co. River Valley Nursing Home, Butler Robertson Co. Robertson Co. Health Care Facility, Mount Olivet Mendelson, Mary Adelaide. Tender Loving Greed. New York: Knopf, 1974. Vladeck, Bruce. Unloving Care. New York: Basic Books, 1980.
Michael R. Sweeney
The Encylopedia of Northern Kentucky in partnership with NKY.com. Edited by Paul A. Tenkotte and James C. Claypool, The University Press of...