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Thoughts on the Highway 704 Daniel Boone tree
Wants Daniel Boone carvings moved from Trabue Russell House to more secure location. Compares carvings on Adair tree and on stone in Frankfort with similar styles, as evidence that the Adair County carving attributed to Daniel Boone is authentic.
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By Chris Bennett
It is my personal belief that the Daniel Boone tree carving is one of the most cherished historical artifacts that we have here in Adair County. It really made me feel sad to see it depicted in such a way to bring doubt to its authenticity. I think it should be protected and displayed in a more fitting manner. Instead of making outlandish conjecture on why it is not real we should actually tell details about the tree, such as where the trees stood etc. the year and reason it it was cut down and possibly who cut the tree. The first written account of the tree, and other written accounts would also be valuable information.
Our society has really changed, when I was young going on a "long hunt" shooting rifles and exploring unseen wilderness is something that little boys dreamed of. Now society makes heroes of pop culture personalities and reality TV stars that should not even be famous. It often degrades traditionalist, hunters and outdoorsmen. What we think is true about men like Daniel Boone and Davy Crockett is mainly hyped up fiction. In reality Daniel Boone was someone who probably enjoyed solitude in the wilderness. He was probably bored staying home raising children and growing agricultural crops.
This photograph (see photo below: Similar inscriptions attributed to Boone) shows a rock inscription that is on display at the Thomas D Clark Center for Kentucky History in Frankfort. Notice the similarity of the two inscriptions, The backward "N" is a major clue. The highway 704 tree carving has been known about for way more than 100 years. According to my grandfather who himself knew about it as a child. These carving were created over 100 miles apart at a time when the roads were very poor. Why would someone make false carvings that were so similar with the same year inscription?
We know that "Boon wuz here" in Kentucky in 1770-1771. We also know that tradition tells us that he was seen by the Longhunters near the Adair County, Green County line, on that same hunt. We also know that graffiti artist often change the spelling of their name and other words when leaving their mark for future generations to see.
Next we see the Daniel Boone tree carving and how it is displayed. (Photo below: The text on the carving displayed at the Trabue House) I'm not sure who placed this card on the artifact but it basically says that it is a fake because it has no "e" on the end. I had hoped that the person responsible for placing this on the artifact might speak up and explain why they would cast doubt on such a valuable Adair County artifact. I'm gonna go on to say unless their last name was Curry or Watson I may not be able to accept the reasoning behind putting this doubtful statement on the Boone display. I really hope this wasn't put on there by some Yankee carpetbagger that wasn't born in Adair County. That would be very disappointing.
Signing your name on an official document and carving on a tree is two different things.
Honestly the Daniel Boone tree carving should be moved to one of the more modern public buildings that has a sprinkler system where it can be seen by more people and where and can be protected from fire. Sadly older buildings like the Daniel Trabue house have ancient electrical systems that are subject to failure.
In response to Mrs Yvonne Kolbenschlag' s comments on Trabue which is kind of off-topic: yes, I have read his narrative and enjoyed it very much. It is commercially available from Amazon.com and probably many other retailers I would expect there is a copy at the Adair County Libary also. Anyone interested in Adair County history should read it as he played a part in the founding of Adair County as we know it. The book covers his earlier life including his time at Fort Logan and the written account of Daniel Boone's trial after he escaped from the Shawnees.
When we study history, primary sources come from people who experienced the historical event first hand. That is why Daniel Trabue's narrative is so important. Another recommended read is "My father Daniel Boone, the Draper interviews," The primary source information comes directly from Daniel Boone son Nathan and his wife. It is one of the most authentic versions of Daniel Boone's real life. It is also available from Amazon.
Links to Amazon for books mentioned in the article:
This story was posted on 2016-11-12 12:12:18
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