by Jerry Hurst
Crittenden is a small but well-known town with a population of about four hundred and twenty people. Many famous people have passed through this town, but one of these people, not as famous as he was peculiar, was Curtis G. Lloyd, who was also wealthy. No one around here knows much about Mr. Lloyd's early life or where he got all his money. Most of those who knew him first when he was a chemist at the University of Cincinnati. Both Curtis and his brother John were chemists. The two brothers set up a drugstore and sold drugs; this seems to be where they made their money. John Uri also wrote the book entitled Stringtown on the Pike which sold many copies. Curtis Lloyd was born in 1859 and died some sixty years later. He left many marks that never allowed his name to be forgotten. He owned several hundred acres of land around Crittenden, and on this land there are two parks. One if the Crittenden ballpark, still kept in good condition and very much used by the people of Crittenden. When Curtis Lloyd built the ball park, he set up certain restrictions: the ball park was to be a non-profit organization with the proceeds used only for its care. In the beginning, the other park was a beautiful place, and Mr. Lloyd wanted it to stay that way. He left instructions that the park be cared for by three men who would receive two dollars a day for their labor. The two dollar wage was to paid from a fund set aside by Mr. Lloyd. At first his instructions were carried out, but after awhile, labor costs rose so high that no one would work for two dollars a day, and the park grew into the forest that is now called "Lloyd's Woods." One of the very first moving pictures shown in the county was shown right here in Crittenden in the building built by Mr. Lloyd, and shown on his behalf. The old movie projector is still in the building which stands at the entrance to the Crittenden Ball Park. Curtis G. Lloyd lived a strange life, died a strange death and left an unusual memorial. He erected his own tombstone and engraved his own inscription. The tombstone is still standing in Lloyd's Woods. The words engraved on the side facing the road are as follows:
Curtis G. Lloyd
Monument Erected in 1922 by Himself, For Himself
During His Life to Gratify His Own Vanity
What Fools These Mortals Be
On the other side of the monument are these words:
The Exact Number of Years, Months, and Days That I lived
Nobody Knows, and Nobody Cares.
When Curtis Lloyd was died, his body was cremated and the ashes were spread over his land from an airplane.
From a collection of essays written in American Literature Eleven. The class was taught by Ms. Hazel Ogden of Grant County High School in the 1963-1964 school year, and was typed by the typing classes of Mrs. Mattie Cox. It is copyrighted by the Grant County Schools, and is used here with their kind permission. We found a copy in UK's King Library.