Tag Archives: Appalachian politics

Petticoat Politics

The Petticoat Government consisted of Mrs. Minnie “Sis” Miller, mayor, and Mrs. Ferne W. Skeen, Mrs. Buena H. Smith, Mrs. Ida M. Cunningham, Mrs. Kate Friend, and Mrs. Marion Shortt, town council.

Letters poured in from around the world wishing them luck and expressing amazement that an all woman government could be elected anywhere. The State Department featured the story in its Voice of America broadcast.


The only Kentucky county to be abolished

In early 1904, with the growth of the western end of Carter County, KY, residents there sought to form a new county. They broke away, along with some citizens of Rowan and Elliott counties, to form Beckham County, named for then-Governor John CW Beckham, who signed the legislative act on February 9. GC Brooks, appointed […]


Knoxville’s Red Summer of 1919

It wasn’t the only American city simmering with race riots in that ‘Red Summer’ of 1919. But Knoxville, TN up till that time had always prided itself as a model southern city when it came to race relations. That civic image changed dramatically starting on August 30, when an intruder shot and killed Mrs. Bertie […]


Lots of people thought I was an idiot

“I never spoke a word until I was nine years old. I only clucked and motioned for what I wanted. Lots of people thought I was an idiot because I could not talk. I may have looked like one, for I was a little old country boy that never cut my hair in those days […]


The women of this country are going to come and sit here

Rebecca Latimer Felton, in her customary way, saw right through the political machinations that led to her officially becoming the first woman to serve in the United States Senate. When Georgia Senator Thomas E. Watson died on September 26, 1922, Governor Thomas Hardwick appointed a replacement to serve until a special election could be held. […]

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