The History of Pine Knot
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Submitted by Peggy Wilson
An Act of creating the county of McCreary
Attorney Bird was sitting with his good friend, Mr. W. B. Creekmore when the vote to form McCreary County was taken by the General Assembly.
The debate was fierce and it is doubtful if there ever would have been a McCreary County without this drama on the floor of the state legislature and the suburb performance of Attorney J. C. Bird that night!
And so, it came to pass in the “wee hours” of the morning on March 12, 1912, the General Assembly of The commonwealth of Kentucky passed an “Act Creating the County of McCreary on its final day in session.
The legislative act as set forth in Chapter 46 of the acts of the General Assembly of the Commonwealth of Kentucky is a ponderable document filled with boundary descriptions and impressive language, but, in effect, it took a territory embracing and area of 402 square miles from three southern counties of Wayne, Whitley and Pulaski and established from them a new county.
From that, James Bennett McCreary became a part of its history, but so did John Crittenden “Crit” Bird.
It was Tuesday, March 12th, 1912, when State Representative William B. Creekmore sent the Message to the telegrapher at The Pine Knot Depot. The coded message from Representative Creekmore announced the Kentucky State Senate had voted on house bill # 65 to create a new county (Portions of Pulaski, Wayne and Whitley County). The vote had passed with 25 to 9.
Governor McCreary had signed the bill into law immediately. The new county would be called McCreary in honor of the governor.
By mid-morning, all of Pine Knot was aware of what had happened in Frankfort. Church bells rang and could be heard on Cal Hill. Towns people were out in front of their homes and businesses. Mark Campbell had spent a sleepless night awaiting word from Frankfort. It was he who had the idea, anyway. A rider had been sent to notify Mark Wilson on his farm at Holly Hill. Wilson decided spring planting could wait, and hitched up his buggy and headed to town.
By mid-afternoon, Pine Knot was filled with people awaiting the arrival of the south bound train, carrying Bill Creekmore. Flags and signs had been put up at The Creekmore Hotel, well-wishers were gathered at the Pine Knot Depot, including school children. When train # 15 pulled into the station, all eyes were on the string of pullman cars. On one of those cars was Rep. Creekmore, a shy man he was overwhelmed by all the well-wishers. He was tired and wanted to go to his home to the Creekmore Hotel.
He wearily told the crowd the difficulty he had convincing his fellow legislators, then, from out of nowhere, there had come a humble country lawyer from Williamsburg. John Crittenden Bird had saved the day, and on this day, March 12, 1912, William Bachelor Creekmore would receive the honors.
In the crowd of well-wishers at the hotel were: Mark Campbell, Sol Creekmore, John & Sam Morgan, Ed Harmon, Mark and Harvey Hayes. “This day belonged to Bill Creekmore.””
(Continued in next week’s Voice)