McConnell Center to present Kentucky Chautauqua program on Caleb Powers

The Aug. 4 program is part of the McConnell Center's annual leadership retreat with McConnell Scholars to a Kentucky state park.
McConnell Center to present Kentucky Chautauqua program on Caleb Powers

Duane Murner as Kentuckian Caleb Powers

The McConnell Center, in partnership with the Kentucky Humanities Council, Inc., will present a free, public Kentucky Chatauqua program featuring Oldham County’s Duane Murner as legendary Kentuckian and former US Congressman Caleb Powers.

The presentation, scheduled for 7 p.m., Aug. 4, at the Lewis Caveland Lodge at Carter Caves State Resort Park in Olive Hill, Ky., is part of the McConnell Center’s annual leadership retreat with McConnell Scholars.

About Caleb Powers

Powers, recently elected Kentucky’s Secretary of State, found himself at the center of an assassination scandal in Frankfort. The victim, William Goebel, then President of the Kentucky Senate, was contesting the results of the governor’s race in which he had been defeated. The day after the shooting on the Capitol grounds, Goebel was sworn in as governor. Three days later, Governor Goebel died.

Powers, Power’s political rival, was one of three men arrested and indicted as an accessory to Goebel’s murder. Through a series of trials, Powers was convicted three times. Each time, however, Kentucky’s Appellate Court reversed the decision. His fourth trial resulted in a deadlocked jury.

After eight years in prison, Powers was pardoned by Kentucky Governor Augustus Willson. He spent eight years in Congress, representing Kentucky from 1911 to 1919. He declined the nomination for a fifth term and became the assistant counsel for the US Shipping Board.

Goebel’s murder remains unsolved.

About Duane Murner

Duane Murner, of Prospect, Ky., will portray Powers. Murner spent most of his professional life in the financial services business, including serving as president of Commonwealth Life Insurance Company. He spent 12 years on Oldham County’s Fiscal Court, including the last four years as judge-executive.