Letters to the Editor

October 5, 2010

Speaking out against historic house destruction

LAUREL COUNTY, Ky. — To the editor:

I read in the Sentinel that the local “powers that be” have decided to tear down what is probably the oldest and most historic house still standing in London.

The house at the corner of Second and Broad streets (now housing Tom Weatherly’s law office) is more than 100 years old and was built by Bettie Baugh Faris who, along with her husband, John ran one of London’s first and foremost mercantile establishments as far back as the 1870s or before. John Faris died from typhoid in 1884, but his wife continued the business for many years.

 I’m not sure when, after John’s death, the house was built but I know it was well before the turn of the 20th century. Mrs. Faris herself died in 1905. She had no children of her own, but raised four nieces, one of whom (Sallie Baugh who married H. V. Pennington) came to own the property at some point. This house is still in use, not an eyesore, not falling down in disrepair, but it is to be torn down and replaced with a parking lot. Once again the lack of concern for historic preservation is evident among London’s leaders.  

There is a long history to this house that cannot be gone into in this small space but it can be researched and documented from public records, I’m sure. I wish it were in my power to save this house, but it is not. I can only speak out against its destruction. I hope others will join me.

Jan Sparkman

Fort Myers, Fla.

Text Only
Letters to the Editor
AP Video
Raw: Fight Breaks Out in Ukraine Parliament Bodies of Malaysia Jet Victims Leave Ukraine Disabled Veterans Memorial Nearing Completion Last Mass Lynching in U.S. Remains Unsolved Home-sharing Programs Help Seniors Ex-NYC Mayor: US Should Allow Flights to Israel Clinton: "AIDS-Free Generation Within Our Reach" Judge Ponders Overturning Colo. Gay Marriage Ban Airlines Halt Travel to Israel Amid Violence NYPD Chief Calls for 'use of Force' Retraining VA Nominee McDonald Goes Before Congress Bush: Don't Worry, Sugarland Isn't Breaking Up US Official: Most Migrant Children to Be Removed Police Probing Brooklyn Bridge Flag Switch CDC Head Concerned About a Post-antibiotic Era Raw: First Lady Says `Drink Up' More Water Courts Conflicted Over Healthcare Law Holder Urges Bipartisanship on Immigration Raw: Truck, Train Crash Leads to Fireball US Airlines Cancel Israel Flights
Hyperlocal Search
Premier Guide
Find a business

Walking Fingers
Maps, Menus, Store hours, Coupons, and more...
Premier Guide

Now that school is out, what are your family’s summer vacation plans?

A. No major plans. We will probably hang out around Laurel County.
B. Going to the beach!
C. Kentucky has a lot of wonderful state parks, and we plan to visit a few and enjoy quality family time.
     View Results