A thousand words Beyond the Hill

James Branaman

Adairville is not a very large town. In fact, there are more cows than people. (Lee Roby’s farm has about 1,300 cattle, while Adairville’s population is 919 people).

In the morning, you can stop in Trustworthy Hardware to listen to conversations about farming or of the days when outlaw brothers Frank and Jesse James rode through the area looking to hide out after Jesse was shot. You can spend the afternoon getting your hair done in one of the three beauty salons on the town square.

But if the sun is setting, and you’re looking for a tall cold one after a long day, you have to continue about a mile farther south along US 431. That’s because Adairville is a dry town. Adairville is in Logan County, a split wet-dry county.

The Tenn-Tucky tavern welcomes the thirsty traveler. As you walk in the door, you’ll notice the blue and orange stripe at your feet on the floor, up one side and down the other of a support beam, leading straight to the bar. Step to the blue side, and you’re in Kentucky. But if you step to the orange side you’re in Tennessee, and you’re able to buy a tall can of your favorite brew.

Sitting at the bar, you’re likely to find Boo Boo trying to get the attention of the bartender or of his owner, bar manager Roger Hankins.

Good-spirited insults between Kentuckians and Tennesseans fly from state to state across the color-coded divide, but most of those in attendance are locals and have traded verbal punches their whole lives. It’s an entertaining show while enjoying a drink, but pick your side wisely, because you may be included in the conversation.

And don’t forget to save a seat for Boo Boo.

James Branaman is a senior photojournalism major from Berea. He can be reached at [email protected]