Famous Locals 1


Bill Monroe, Father of Bluegrass Music.

Bill Monroe, Father of Bluegrass Music.

Bill Monroe
Bill Monroe (1911-1996), known as the Father of Bluegrass music, was born on his family’s farm near Rosine, Kentucky. His family was very musical, and he grew up playing mandolin, while his older brothers played the fiddle and guitar. His strongest influence was his “Uncle Pen,” a fiddle player. Bill Monroe had a long, influential career. The only performer to attain all three honors, he has been inducted into the Country Music Hall of Fame, the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame, and International Bluegrass Music Association. In 1989, he won the first Grammy for bluegrass music. He died in 1996 and is buried in the Rosine Cemetery.

Charles Courtney Curran, American Impressionist.

Charles Courtney Curran, American Impressionist.

Charles Courtney Curran
Charles Courtney Curran (1861-1942) was born in Hartford, KY. His father taught school in the area, but when the Civil War broke out, they moved to Sandusky, Ohio on Lake Erie. He studied in Cincinnati, New York, and Paris before settling in New York. As an American Impressionist, Charles was a prolific painter, and probably most well-known for his depictions of ladies in pastel colors, often in outdoor settings. His paintings can be found in museums and private collections all over the country, including the Smithsonian and the Pennsylvania Academy of Fine Arts. The Ohio County Library also has a couple of his paintings.

Ray Chapman, shortstop for the Cleveland Indians.

Ray Chapman, shortstop for the Cleveland Indians.

Ray Chapman
Ray Chapman was born in Beaver Dam in 1891. He was a shortstop for the Cleveland Indians from 1912-1920. He was struck by a pitch in a game against the New York Yankees and died twelve hours later in a New York hospital. He is the only Major League Baseball player to be killed in a game.

Wyatt Earp, involved in the shoot out at the OK Corral.

Wyatt Earp, involved in the shoot out at the OK Corral.

Wyatt Earp
While Wyatt Earp (1848-1929) technically isn’t from Ohio County, his parents, Nicholas Earp and Virginia Ann Cooksey lived here in the early 1840s. His two older brothers, James and Virgil were born in the Hartford area. His parents and two older brothers lived here until 1843, when they moved to Monmouth, Illinois, where Wyatt was born in 1848. He was a larger than life person; at various times he was a city policeman, county sheriff, teamster, buffalo hunter, bouncer, saloon-keeper, gambler, brothel owner, pimp, miner, and boxing referee. Wyatt is most famous for participating in the gunfight at O.K. Corral with Doc Holliday.


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  • L. Peyton Adams

    Very well done. I used to live in Hartford Ky at the parsonage for the Methodist Church across from the church in the 1960’s and at the elementary school Mrs. Bell with her white hair came to our class to tell us the “President has been shot” and that is how I learned about John F. Kennedy’s death. I was watching in Hartford as Lee Harvey Oswald was shot in Dallas on a black and white Phillips TV in that parsonage. Dad bought his Oldsmobile 98 from Rollie Tichenor who ran the car place and I went to school in the old wooden floor school near the present Board of Education at one time. I think the Christian Church family’s daughter was Tammy Able who was in my class. We were at Hartford three years. Dad brought me to his good friend Bill House who was the funeral director in Centertown Dad had pastored as a young man in 1940’s and I picked his puppy out as my dog Inky who was with me 14 years. My parakeet was buried behind the bush under the dining room window facing the church. Smitty would say,” Smitty is a pretty bird and a smart bird too.” Mom would then put the plate out for Dad who she knew was walking over for lunch from the church where Smitty could see him. Larry TIchenor would end up working with me and his aunt had bought the parsonage and he played in the same rooms as a boy I had. I watched a lot of westerns on that old TV growing up and as a member of Hopkins County Historical Society I still collect things from those days. I have a Roy Rogers lunch pail from the third grade still. As an adult I inspected Hartford’s water and sewer plants for the state and have sampled below the bridge many times. As a child I remember buying books at the Ben Franklin and the library was one of my favorite things in Hartford.