" 'Hazard'ous Cousins "

My Granny used to be a wonderful storyteller. she knew Family history and lineage almost biblical at times, though in her older age she often struggled with memory, she still could spout some real beauties. One of my favorites I'll try to repeat... though I confess its me these days who is feeling the strains of poor memory, I'll do the best I can...

It had to do with some distant relatives she told me were from the Peacocks, who she explained were very closely kin with us as many had intermarried into the Johnson Logsdon Family over the years. As for the time Frame she couldn't be specific. What she could say for sure was that while it wasn't far back enough to be called wild west days by any means... (the 1800's)... it was still common practice in rural counties to walk around with six shooters on your hips! By this time though this was almost nostalgic and unheard of in the bigger cities. The characters mainly involved where a couple of distant cousin's of mine from way back she said. maybe like 8th or 9th cousins... but still... cousins! They Lived in the Hills of Hazard ky, and being from hazard, well... needless to say they had some rather strong feelings about family... and no hesitance to turn to violence to defend it......

She would also point out early on that it was also still very common in those days for low income travelers to "ride" the rails Long distances some times to get from point a to point b.

Now as I understand it these two brothers had a sister who had come to Louisville and met up with a man. She fell madly in Love with this man, and before he could give her a wedding... she became pregnant with his baby. The story got interesting after that when he ran out on her and left her, pregnant, with a house and a stack of bills, and no income... as women didn't often work outside the home back then... Well sure enough she tried to make it... but in due time had to wire a message on the old teletype system home o her Family in hazard asking for support...

Well now needless to say... this made the two brothers real mad... and wouldn't you know it... in no time flat they were riding rails from hazard to the big city of Louisville... with their mountain men boots and six shooters strapped in plain view on their sides!

On arriving in Louisville... they Jumped Train right in the middle of downtown... and these two back woods six shooter packing boys started to walk the streets of Louisville. She said they covered miles and miles... looked near and Far... and finally they found the man in question who by now had heard they were looking for him and was hiding out in a bar drowning his worries just outside the main city.

Now here memory gets fuzzy... but the version i remember goes like this: The cousins try to reason with the man to return to their sister, but he only offends them worse in his drunkenness and refusal to own up to his honor by their sister. Things escalate from there... and the cousins end up gunning the man down.

The police search high and low for the boys, but no arrest is ever made. The man hunt was city wide and went on for weeks... and was the biggest local news story of its day. By the time the apb goes out... the boys have hopped the rails... safely hidden away once again in the hills of Hazard Ky. As for the sister? story goes she never got married... but raised her child alone in the house the man left her in. Seems from the moment the boys arrived back home to hazard... once a month an envelope would come in her mail... enough cash for her to live and raise her child through the hard times... post marked... Hazard Kentucky...

As if that isnt something all ready... granny pointed out also that how the family sent that money was as big a mystery as many other parts of this story. The family in Hazard was poor... Living hand to mouth... and this was in the days when depression was still going strong there... but she venture to guess that there were regular family collections... and so that SHE could eat... often very Likely... others went without... having given what they had to her...

And the Moral... be careful who you run out on guys... they just MIGHT have a couple cousins themselves in Hazard... and those boys can show up when you least expect it... and disappear just as quick!

Jason A. Dennison (J.D.)

Jason A. Dennison (J.D.)
Blog Author: Jason A. Dennison (J.D.) ... ... Relaxing @ "Hawks Bluff".

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