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Newton or Newtown? Road name returns

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By The Staff

It didn't take a proverbial act of Congress, but it did take an act of Grant County Judge-Executive Darrell Link to restore the name of Sherman-Newtown Road to just that - Sherman-Newtown Road.

Through the years, citizens have lobbied the sitting judge-executives, county attorneys, magistrates, anyone who would listen, about restoring the name after it was accidentally changed to Sherman-Newton Road as part of E911 addressing, according to Link.

"More than 50 percent of the citizens on that road petitioned us to change the name back to what it had always been known by - Sherman-Newtown Road," Link said. "I believe the change happened in 1991-92, during the (Carol) Woodyard administration."

A former resident of the road objected to the change and contacted Link for an explanation.

"I grew up on that road and my mother, Ardith Chance, still lives there. My dad, the late Charles Chance, has been gone for 10 years but I still remember him being disgruntled when a letter came with the address of Sherman-Newton Road," Mary Lee Chance Smith said. "We originally thought it was simple misspelling on the letter but when the roads signs went up, we knew better."

Smith, who now lives in Fort Mitchell, was concerned that the historical significance would be lost and it was time to restore the original name.

"I felt the urge to become an advocate because with the older folks passing on, the younger residents would never know what the correct name was for the road," Smith added.

The change could only be made by the county judge-executive, according to Kentucky Revised Statute 179.330.

County attorney Jack Gatlin said the variety of names caused difficulties when handling real estate transactions.

"There are at least 10 affidavits on file at the courthouse, explaining that the road was known by one name, but was actually another," said Gatlin. "It was especially difficult when working in Cincinnati."

The determining factor was a computer deed scan that showed no residents on Sherman-Newton Road, but a long list of people living on Sherman-Newtown Road.

"Once we saw that, Jack and I felt we knew the truth and made the decision to officially change the name of the road to what it had always been called - Sherman-Newtown Road," Link said.

Many agencies, including police, fire, emergency responders, post offices and the road department, will now be notified about the correct name for County Road 1021, which runs between U.S. 25 (in Dry Ridge) to Ky. 491 East (Gardnersville Road in Crittenden).

"It wasn't my parents' nature to make a fuss but I'm glad it's been taken care of," Smith said.