November 5, 2019


The Spencer County Historical Society met on Tuesday, November 5, 2019, in the Rockport Library Genealogy Room.


The meeting was called to order by the president at 6:30 PM with eight members present.


The minutes from the last meeting were read and approved.


The treasurer’s report was given. 


The secretary reported on communications she had received.


The secretary showed the cards she had sent to the Yearby family and to people who had sent in donations in memory of Ferman Yearby, Jr.  There needs to be further discussion on how the money will be used.


A member mentioned there is still a lot of work to be done on categorizing the extra pictures that were obtained during the development of the 2018 Bicentennial Book.  The pictures, hopefully, will be able to be viewed in the local libraries at some time in the future.


The president announced the Grigsby descendants will be meeting in August 2020 in Spencer County.  Two local descendants are involved in working on this project.  The president had contacted the Lincoln Boyhood National Memorial about the possibility of them presenting a program for the Grigsby’s descendants.


A member brought up the thought of reprinting the tour book of Lincoln sites done by a member in 2016.  It has many sites in the area associated with Abraham Lincoln.  The Nancy Hanks Lincoln grave and the Lincoln Boyhood National Memorial would also need to be included.  A motion was made and seconded, with the member’s permission and the additional information, to reprint the book for the Society to sell.  The motion carried.


A member reported on the tree the Society will be decorating for the George Honig room at the Lincoln Pioneer Village for their Christmas “Treemendous” celebration on December 7, 2019.  Since it is on December 7, the tree will honor the Spencer County people who died during World War II.  There are 68 soldiers from Spencer County who will be honored.  Two members will decorate the tree with patriotic trimmings.  They will also have Society books available for sale.


The president asked about putting an ad in the local papers saying “Lincoln Books Make Great Christmas Gifts!”  The group agreed that was an excellent idea.


A member asked the president if he would contact Judge Jon Dartt to see if he would be a speaker at the Nancy Hanks Lincoln gravesite for the Lincoln Day program on February 9, 2020.  Judge Dartt is related to the Crawford family through his wife.


A member is working on the Last Soldier project trying to find descendants of Pvt. David Jackson Smith, who was the last Civil War Soldier buried in Spencer County.  With the help of several members at the October meeting, he was able to get in contact with a descendant, Janet Geer, who lives in Owensboro, KY.


A member disclosed that another member had an idea of having a short presentation (5-10 minutes) at the end of a meeting where a member might read an article or discuss something in which they had been involved.  He said he would be willing to talk about the two flatboat trips he and others took from Rockport to New Orleans, re-creating Abraham Lincoln’s trip with Allen Gentry in 1928.


As a start, the member passed out papers concerning the discussion the Society had at the last meeting, “Who was the first doctor in Spencer County?”  He had done research on this along with receiving information from two other members.  In conclusion, his research showed it could have been one of three doctors, but more likely it was Dr. Stephen P. Cissna.


A motion was made and seconded to adjourn the meeting.  The motion carried.  The meeting adjourned at 8:23 PM. 


There will be no meeting in December 2019 or January 2020. 


The next get together will be on Wednesday, December 4, 2019, for a Christmas dinner and the Historian of the Year program at The Rustic in Rockport, Indiana.  Individuals will begin ordering from the menu at 6:00 PM with each person paying for their own meal.


The next meeting will be February 4, at 6:30 PM in the Genealogy Room.


Patricia L. Dawson, Secretary