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John Morgan "Fiddlin John" Salyer

John Morgan "Fiddlin John" Salyer[1]

Male 1882 - 1952  (70 years)

Personal Information    |    Notes    |    Sources    |    All    |    PDF

  • Name John Morgan "Fiddlin John" Salyer 
    Born 20 Jan 1882  Burning Fork, Magoffin County, Kentucky Find all individuals with events at this location 
    Gender Male 
    Died 28 Nov 1952  Salyersville, Magoffin County, Kentucky Find all individuals with events at this location 
    Person ID I5337  Lucius
    Last Modified 18 Jan 2003 

    Father Morgan Mason Salyer,   b. 12 Jul 1842,   d. 21 Oct 1913  (Age 71 years) 
    Mother Catherine "Kate" Patrick,   b. 31 Jan 1864,   d. 13 Oct 1885  (Age 21 years) 
    Married 4 Oct 1880 
    Family ID F1957  Group Sheet  |  Family Chart

    Family Minnie Gullett,   b. Magoffin County, Kentucky Find all individuals with events at this location 
    Married 11 Aug 1905  Swampton, Magoffin County, Kentucky Find all individuals with events at this location 
    Notes 
    • Minister was John Joseph
    Children 
     1. Delma Salyer
     2. Olga Salyer
     3. Mary Salyer
     4. Katherine Salyer
     5. Ethel Salyer
     6. Madeline Salyer
     7. Juanita Salyer
     8. Grover Salyer
     9. Glen Salyer
    Family ID F1961  Group Sheet  |  Family Chart

  • Notes 
    • John Morgan SALYER enlisted in the United States Army in 1901 and served three years in the Phillipine Islands. He attended the public schools of Magoffin County and taught one school at the head of Licking River. After his 3 year tour of duty in the Spanish American War, he was engaged in farming in his native county. Later in life, he was elected Police Judge of Salyersville, KY. He always liked reminiscing with citizens of the county, recalling dates of marriage, births and deaths and great periods of history. He was remembered by lots of people as "Fiddlin" John SALYER (contributed by Mr. & Mrs. Grover SALYER) Old-time fiddler, John M. SALYER and his two sons, Grover and Glen, were invited by the Sandy Valley Grocery Company to be entertainers on an excursion to the 1933 World's Fair at Chicago, Illinois. The train started picking up passengers in Pikeville, KY and continued to Cincinnati, Ohio. The father and son trio boarded the train early in the morning at Paintsville. Immediately they began making music from car to car. John played the fiddle, Grover the guitar, and Glen the mandolin. The playing continued until they arrived in Cincinnati. There they were joined by the Gibson Girl singers. From there to Chicago, they alternated singing and playing. The trip was uninterrupted until they stopped in Kankakee, Illinois to switch engines. The next stop was Chicago about 10:30 at night. There they were greeted by a bag-pipe band. Most of the passengers had never heard bag-pipes before. In Chicago, they stayed at the Stevenson Hotel. The second night the SALYERS were invited to play for a dance in the million dollar ballroom of the Knickerbocker Hotel. The dance floor was make of glass blocks with many colored lights in it. There were 6500 people there; some wanted waltz music, some wanted square dance, and fox trot, others wanted Virginia reel or jig music. John said to them, "We'll play our kind of music and you dance any kind of dance you can!" They saw many new inventions from all over the world. One of special interest, and most mysterious, was to break a beam of light to turn on a drinking fountain, or open and close a door in the Hall of Science and Industry. After three days of seeing the wonders of the world, the excursion returned to eastern Kentucky. The SALYER trio was back in Magoffin County with blistered fingers and tired hands from playing so many hours. It was a great experience that they relived and retold the story on many occasions. Grover was privileged to attend another World's Fair, in Montreal, Canada and was able to see the sights of the Fair in Seattle, Washington. Both had many wonders but neither could surpass the memories of the 1933 World's Fair in Chicago.

  • Sources 
    1. [S15] kwatt@breeze.org, Kim James Watt, (August 23, 2001), http://breeze.org/pg/index.html.