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Saturday, January 10, 2015

HALL'S FALLS and stone walls.

                                                          Lower Howard's Creek

 Right next To HALL'S ON THE RIVER restaurant on Boonsboro Rd Winchester , KY is the John holder trail. The trail loops around  Lower Howard's Creek  that flows into the KY River.In 1812 it was a busy shipping area and now it is completely in decay with a few old rock walls and Foundations .

The trail follows the old Athens-Boonesboro Road where John Holder ran a shipping Area .In 1812 There were  mills, a distillery, and a coopery . It was a thriving area until it experienced a  decline once the railroad surpassed the river industry.Under Holder’s leadership, the settlement he established at the mouth of Lower Howard’s Creek grew , His landing on the Kentucky River became a major departure point of flatboats bound for New Orleans with Kentucky produce. Because other developers were inspired by him, Lower Howard’s Creek became one of the first industrial areas of Kentucky. Some of the area is now enclosed in the Lower Howard’s Creek Nature & Heritage Preserve.

 Holder, was hailed as a hero for being one of the defenders of  Fort Boonesborough. he Settled this land and was both a
   Kentucky pioneer and entrepreneur .


My first time on the trail I saw these kayaks,As good a way to travel as any I suppose .
 Spending a lot of Time on the trail and going back several times , I Kept running into passing hikers that told me about a secret waterfall not on the map and hard to get to. Intrigued I set out to find it, Some called it Halls falls and some others referred to it as Crescent falls.Another tributary flows into the creek ,Although not part of the scenic trail ,This area is more challenging and to get to the waterfall you have to have some skills and determination to get the prize.

In a valley the hiker must edge along this slippery water chute or face a wipe out .
After very slippery limestone and treacherous ledges with thick brambles I made my way up a flat creek area and found the falls.
Back on the John Holder Trail You find an old Foundation of the Robert Martin House which is from about 1856.
Crossing the creek and up the trail you will see many Rock fences and other ruins.
1800s dated homestead. 

The very top of the trail in summer

Benjamin Hieronymous house

The trail leads to a flat hill top and A paved path leads you from the trail to a lone  chimney from a burned homestead .This was once called the Benjamin Hieronymous house ,It was built in the early 1800's . Now lets roll forward  a few years to 1939 and it becomes a rental house .Here one Buck Sowers and some Drinking buddies one night,perhaps unaware that whiskey and Firearms don't mix  got into an argument. It all started with some '' Buck shot'' [pun intended ]  wounding one of the  guests who ran off in pain.Another in the house came to investigate what was happening was shot dead By Buck and his shotgun as soon as he walked in the door . The mans wife ran screaming away also, this brought a neighbor over to see what all the shooting and screaming was about .Well ,He also was then shot and killed by Buck Sowers .

All that is left of a Triple Murder site
 It did not end there ,Finally and armed man Stanley Martin, came to the crazy scene. Buck pointed his gun at him and Martin shot him 10 times with a 22 rifle then proceeded to beat Sower's head in with the butt of two shotguns, Breaking the stocks off .Martin was afterwards arrested. Ah but wait this Fine Ruin isn't the last stop on this Fascinating trail. Behind the house is a creepy ,abandoned and dilapidated barn with cemetery at its gate. Why anyone would build a barn so close to a graveyard is a mystery.


The  trail loops back to Hall's on the River restaurant. If  You go,do what I do and grab some beer cheese on the way out .

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