Monday, May 22, 2006

Never Legislate on an Empty Stomach

Carlisle County, Kentucky, exists only because a bunch of state reps skipped breakfast.

On April 3, 1886, Charles Offutt of Bourbon County, who was Speaker of the Kentucky House of Representatives at the time, purportedly promised not to adjourn the House for lunch until lawmakers voted on a measure to make Carlisle the state's 119th county.

There was opposition. One legislator in particular questioned the creation of yet another small county.

Meanwhile, mealtime came and went. Offutt started frying bacon on a portable stove.

"The aroma permeated the room. It made every man present hungry," wrote Ran Graves in his "History and Memories of Carlisle County."

The naysayer to the new county, "being used to eating his biggest meal at noon submitted gracefully," the author added.

The House voted Carlisle into the commonwealth. Offutt dismissed legislators for a late lunch. [Link]

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