Tuesday, April 11, 2017

The Hard Winter of 1779 #genealogy #kentuckypioneers

The Hard Winter of 1779

From November to March (1779-1780) the settlers of Kentucky suffered untold anguish from the severity of the weather and the scarcity of food. More pioneers had come into the wilderness the preceding summer and so increased the population which meant that the products of garden, field, and forest were soon exhausted. Deep, unmelting snow covered the land; many families coming by river were caught in the masses of ice, compelled to abandon their primitive boats, and encamp on the frozen shore; while the traveler by land found trails blocked with snow, creeks frozen solid, and the forest desolate. Horses, cattle, and many wild animals froze or died from want of nourishment, while so great was the extremity that the settlers were forced to eat the flesh of the animals that had thus fallen, and for months had to go without bread. In this severe cold, through the deep snow and over the solid ice, there could be little traveling. To secure supplies from elsewhere was impossible; and even when spring began to bring some relief, one bushel of corn brought, in the continental currency, from fifty to one hundred and seventy-five dollars. Complete relief could not come until the seedtime and the harvest home were over. 
Fleming Co. KY Genealogy Records

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