May 5, 1922




The town was settled from 1830 to 1834.  Harvey Bigham came here and bought the land and began to start a town.  One night the citizens gathered to give the town a name.  Mr. Bigham had a daughter born two days before and he suggested that they name the town for his daughter, Fredonia.

Among the first dealers were Judge Kirkpatrick, D. Brooks, H. M. Armstrong and Mr. Witherspoon.  These men were in business from 1835 to 1850.  Then the town began to grow a little, from 1850 to 1860 the dealers were as follows:  C. N. Byrd, T. J. Greer, J. T. Wyatt and Crider and Wilson.  The blacksmith shop was just on this side of J. E. Crider's house.  It was conducted by D. Bagwell, Jim Robinson and Jim Clark.

The first school house was about one hundred yards from Jim Ray's house and the first school was taught by G. Rice.  Afterwards this house burned and a church opposite the old Mill place was used.  The first pastors were Rev. Hadden, Rev. Hawthorn, W. C. Love and Geo. Perkins.

The Masonic Lodge building was built in 1852.  Miss Liza Norris and Lydia Pierce conducted a female academy in the Masonic building for two years.  Then J. C. Mayes came here and erected a Female Academy and taught for two years.

The first mill that was in Fredonia was where Mr. Patterson's stable now stands.  It was run by Sam Belford for about three years.  Then J. W. Bluff built a five-story flour mill on the Dycusburg road and ran it about five years.  It was then moved to Providence and is in operation there now.

About this time more people began to go into business and among these were J. R. Hays, J. T. and Jasper Wyatt, S. H. Allman, Dave Byrd, C. N. Byrd and A. G. Darby.  The doctors in the town were J. M. Johnson, Felix Johnson, W. S. Johnson, T. B. Johnson and W. D. Kir[k]patrick, these doctors practiced from about 1850 to 1870.

Jonathan Bice, Wes Bice and Tom Bice had a cabinet shop and they made everything from a cradle to a coffin.

The first post-office was run by H. M. Witherspoon it was kept in nearly house in town.  They kept the mail in a wooden shoe box.  There were no stamps and when anyone got a letter they would have to pay a quarter to get it.

The oldest house in Fredonia is the old Byrd property where --im [sic] Patterson now lives.  It was built by Watson Rice.


Source:  Crittenden Press. (Marion, Ky.) 1919-Current, May 5, 1922, Edition 1, Image 2 - Chronicling America - The Library of Congress.


[My comments are in brackets.]