Here’s the deal on the weather. There will probably be an outbreak of severe weather well to our northwest as an upper low pressure passes to our northwest and north. It will be weakening as well and any energy tailing down from the main center of vorticity would be coming around here late Friday night or early Saturday morning. Strong storms would not be initiated in our area but would have to hold together if we were to get anything. While conditions are somewhat better for such activity holding together than a couple of days ago, it is still not a given that any severe storms would have the ability to hold together when they move through. When the front slips through on Saturday afternoon, there are also limiting factors that would tend to downplay the risk. Nevertheless, the SPC has us in the slight risk area as of early Friday morning. The above map reflects that and I suspect their reasoning is more precautionary than ominous. I’ll update this later on Friday. Bottom line is that Friday will be hot and humid with highs near 90 and if anything of consequence were to move in here, it would be late Friday night. Here is the link to the SPC report.
On This Date In History: Our future president killed a man in a duel and he did so right here in Kentucky. Now, Abraham Lincoln was known to be quite abrasive as a young man. His wit was used as a rapier and often really hacked his prey. On at least two occasions, he was challenged to a duel. That is not the image that we have of Father Abraham. Well, this isn’t about President Lincoln. No, this is about “Old Hickory” whose reputation better suits the story.
Andrew Jackson had developed a rough and tough reputation when he ran for President in 1824. He handily won the popular vote but lost the electoral vote to John Quincy Adams. The pair battled for the Presidency again in 1828 and Jackson won in spite of charges from the Adams camp that Jackson was an adulterer. His wife, Rachel, had been married to some guy named Robards. In 1790, the Kentucky legislature declared that Robards could sue for divorce. Now, Jackson had been a practicing lawyer since 1787 but I think he could have used the help of a Heavy Hitter. Jackson assumed that the legislature’s declaration was one of divorce. So, he married Rachel in 1791. Robards finally got around to suing for divorce in 1793, citing Rachel’s adultery with Jackson. The pair got remarried in 1794 but the damage had been done.
In spite of the fact that the charge of adultery was technically correct, Old Hickory often too hum-bridge to anyone who questioned his wife’s honor. It is said that the future President was involved in 103 duels with his actual participation in 14. Of the 14, only one resulted with the death of one of Jackson’s opponents. And he did it in Kentucky!! On this date in 1806 near Harrison’s Mills, Kentucky in Logan county near the Red River, Andrew Jackson shot and killed Charles Dickinson. The standoff came about because…you guessed it…Dickinson questioned Jackson’s wife’s honor. You’d think that by that time people would have figured out that, when it came to Rachel, truth was not a defense and Andy was gonna get even.
Dickinson was younger and a much better shot than Jackson. He was called a snap shooter for his speed and accuracy. Jackson knew this and had a risky strategy. He would allow Dickinson to fire first! When the pair stood apart at the traditional 24 feet, Dickinson wore a form fitting waist coat and trousers while Jackson had a loose fitting frock coat. Dickinson fired and Jackson didn’t flinch. Dickinson couldn’t believe that he missed. Jackson took careful aim and his pistol got stuck in half cock. So, he tried again and this time he struck a fatal blow to his victim.
Here’s the interesting part…Dickinson was not wrong. He didn’t miss Andy. The loose frock coat made the marksman unclear of his target but it was more luck or Divine intervention. While Dickinson lay dying, Jackson’s second noticed blood on Old Hickory’s foot and asked if he had been hit. Jackson replied, “Oh, I believe he has pinked me a little.” Truth is, the bullet had broken some of Jackson’s ribs before it lodged so close to his heart that it was left there for the rest of his life. But, Jackson was not about to let his victim know that he had hit his mark. Instead, he went to a nearby tavern and had a bottle of wine sent to his dying antagonist. And it didn’t change the fact that for two years, Rachel Donelson had indeed been married to two men at the same time. Imagine what would have happened had someone actually lied about Jackson’s wife!!