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Tuesday, March 19, 2013

Landrum Book 1: A Kentucky Family (Charles Landrum)

A Kentucky Family

by Charles Landrum Jr.

Published in 1990 by Feeback Printing Co. in Lexington, Ky., with an introduction by Dr. Thomas D. Clark, Kentucky Historian Laureate (see below).  This book contains the story of the early history of the Landrum name in Scotland (descendants of the Comyn clan, rivals to the throne, defeated by Robert the Bruce), the Lendrums of colonial Virginia, the beginnings of the Landrum family in Kentucky at Fort Boonesborough, and a brief autobiographical sketch of the author (a cousin of my father).  The appendix of this book, a detailed seven-generation genealogy of the Landrum family, was prepared with and for Charlie by my brother, James A. Landrum, my mother, Blanche Haddix Landrum, and me (Mona Landrum Proctor - see Preface below).  

This book was privately printed by Charlie in a very limited edition, shortly before his death. No extra copies remain for purchase, and no reprint is planned. Watch for it in used bookstores or private family collections! Much of the story regarding the Comyn clan came from Joel P. Shedd's book, The Landrum Family of Fayette County, Georgia, published in 1972 by Moore & Moore, also out of print. For more information about Landrums in Kentucky, and expanded family genealogy listings based on the appendix first prepared for Charlie, see my post "Landrum Genealogy: Amanda & Her Cousins," for the book by my brother, James Landrum. 

About the Author

Charles Landrum Jr., 1917-1990, known to all as Charlie, was a successful and highly respected attorney, co-founder of the well-known Landrum & Shouse law firm (formerly Landrum, Patterson & Dickey) in Lexington, Ky. He was a distinguished trial lawyer with a state-wide reputation. His many professional positions included service as President of the Fayette County Bar Association and of the Kentucky Bar Association, Special Justice on the Supreme Court of Kentucky, Kentucky State Bar Examiner, Chairman of the Judicial Retirement and Removal Commission, and two terms on Kentucky's Supreme Court Judicial Council. He was the first attorney in Kentucky - and perhaps still the only one - to be honored as a Fellow in three selective organizations: the International Academy of Trial Lawyers, the International Society of Barristers, and the American College of Trial Lawyers. Charlie's father, Charles Sterling Landrum, was also a Kentucky attorney. Charlie said, "My father was extremely well-known in the legal profession, so much so that, at his funeral in January 1966, the entire Court of Appeals from Frankfort attended his funeral." 

Read about The Victory Bell still in use at Landrum & Shouse to signal when the firm has "won one for Charlie." 

Introduction to A Kentucky Family,
by Dr. Thomas D. Clark

"As American society grows older and more mature, there has ever been a search for family heritage and roots. Americans generally share old world backgrounds. Even the American Indian had an origin on another continent. The rich land and natural resources of North America have, since the 15th century, had a strong attraction to people struggling to extract livings from exhausted soils. They shared in only limited ways, if at all, in riches of natural resources. Beyond this, the North American continent was a safety haven of escape for the religiously and politically oppressed, and as land in which to make new and promising beginnings. Thus it is that tracing one's roots back to old world beginnings sets a gauge for measuring how fully the dreams of forbears came true.

In all the various immigrating populations to come to these shores, none brought with them greater promise for success than the Scotch, or so-called Scotch-Irish, immigrants. They brought along in their cultural and economic heritages the capability of making quick and forthright responses to the new country. Theirs was a history of dealing directly with nature, and exercising a frugal economy and intelligence in all things. They imported a rugged religious belief, a good sense of economy, and, many of them possessed ingenious political and economic insights assuring them positions of leadership in the new national society. This was the old world heritage of the Landrum family. In Scotland it had a distinct history of political and economic survival in the face of great odds. Their fortunes were little, if any, different in the Ulster area of Northern Ireland.

Charles Landrum, a descendant several generations removed, has traced the fortunes of his family in terms of its origins, the evolution of the name, and the forces and circumstances which brought some of its members as immigrants to North America. Once in Virginia, the Landrums underwent the evolutionary process of becoming American pioneers. Though not a part of the old Boonesborough experience, they did reach Kentucky in time to bring about the settlement and civilizing of this part of the western country.

The details of the multiplicity of the Landrum family, its responses to the American environment, and its religious, social and professional contributions, may well be considered a microcosm of hundreds of thousands of Americans. A family, like hardy plants, sends out tentacles in all directions - tentacles which add materially to the broad human experience.

This book is also a fascinating autobiography of a Landrum descendant. One of the frustrations of being a classroom teacher is the fact that you can never know precisely the backgrounds of students. Charlie Landrum was the kind of student who stood out from most of his fellows. He had that good tough Scotch mind, which had undergone the seasoning of generations in North America. His career as a lawyer was crowned with success, but success tempered with a deep human concern for members of the society in which he functioned. This is a valuable insight into the process by which old world immigrants were turned into thrifty and productive Americans. Few states in the Union have profited more from the Scotch-Irish immigration than Kentucky."

Thomas D. Clark
Historian Laureate of Kentucky
March 30, 1990 

by Charles Landrum Jr. 

"About thirty years ago, my Aunt Pearl Landrum gave me a genealogy of the family. In 1976, my wife and I visited County Tyrone, Northern Ireland, and discovered our roots with Andrew Lendrum, who settled there in 1714, coming from Scotland. It was enjoyable and intriguing to walk over the Lendrum farm near Clogher, County Tyrone, and view the St. Macartan's Cathedral where so many of the early Lendrums, including Andrew, were buried. It was from the marvelous experience that I was inspired to attempt this little booklet about the Lendrum family.

I owe many who have helped in this endeavor. A list of just a few would include General James B. Landrum (USA, Ret), Honolulu, Hawaii; William and Dorothy Landrum, Mt. Vernon, Kentucky; Blanche Haddix Landrum, Paris, Kentucky; James A. Landrum, Dayton, Ohio; Mrs. Floyd E. Pope, Wichita, Kansas; two family Bibles, and the librarians at the University of Kentucky, Asbury College, and the Lexington Theological Seminary. I had technical assistance from persons in Dublin, Ireland; Aberdeenshire, Scotland; and London, England.

Great credit goes to my wife, Ruth Bradford Landrum, who assisted in editing the manuscript; my secretary, Kay Marshall, for typing, and my daughter, Marian Bibb Landrum MacDonald, for layout. The Coat-of-Arms used herein was painted by my daughter, Susan Landrum Due.

The genealogy contained in the appendix is the work of James A. Landrum, his sister, Mona Landrum Proctor, and their mother, Blanche Haddix Landrum."

Charles Landrum Jr. 
March 30, 1990 

1 comment:

  1. Robert Marshall LandrumSeptember 14, 2014 at 11:02 AM

    Very interesting especially for me, Robert Marshall Landrum of the Landrums from Turriff, Aberdenshire Scotland.