Whitesburg KY

The way we were

Clips from Mountain Eagle front pages over the past 50 years



June 18, 1959

Violence continued this week in the coal mine strike, with most of the trouble centered in and around Marlowe, where a gasoline-filling station and a power sub-station owned by the Elkhorn-Jellico Coal Company were destroyed. Residents of the Marlowe-Belcraft area reported that hundreds of shots were being fired in the area almost daily. There were no casualties.

Two Letcher County School Board disputes landed in court this week. The first involves an attempt by part of the board to determine whether one of the board’s members, Alvin Holbrook, is eligible to continue in office. The second involves a paycheck issued for Ruben Watts, principal of Kingdom Come High School last year, but not delivered to him.

Nineteen-year-old Carol Fairchild Brown, Whitesburg, was named “Miss Kentucky of 1959.”

“The Mark of Zorro” starring Tyrone Powell and Linda Darnell is playing at the Alene Theater in Whitesburg.

June 19, 1969

The fears which had plagued several federal programs affecting eastern Kentucky eased considerably this week. The Nixon administration called for a two-year extension of the War on Poverty Office of Economic Opportunity at about its present funding level, and also called for continued operation of the Appalachian Regional Development program basically at its present level of activity.

Joseph Maggard, 14, of Dorton, was drowned Sunday evening in an accident at Fishpond Lake near Jenkins.

The A&P parking lot was a swinging place Friday night as the Whitesburg Jaycees sponsored and chaperoned the first of a weekly series of dances designed to provide recreation for area youth.

Bacon is 58 cents a pound at the Whitesburg A&P food store. Lard is $6.29 for a 50-pound can.

June 21, 1979

A heated discussion of magistrates’ authority to give orders to county road workers, an explanation by County Treasurer Ray Collins of how much money magistrates will have each month for road and bridge repairs, and accusations by Magistrate Add Polly that Collins had — without authorization — spent $250 of the expense fund on gravels for the civil defense building dominated Friday’s fiscal court meeting.

The Whitesburg City Council felt the effects Monday night of an ordinance published last week proposing annexation of a large area of land encircling the city. Over 20 residents, some acting as a spokesman for their community, came with pleas and protests.

After a year of four bidlettings on the Whitesburg bypass, a $17.7 million contract has been awarded to Melco Construction and Warren Greer, both of London.

June 21, 1989

The trial of seven men charged in connection with a stolen vehicle and parts operation at McRoberts was to enter its fifth day Wednesday. Assistant U.S. Attorney Tom Self charged in his opening statement to the jury that a “chop shop” — an auto theft and dismantling ring — run by the defendants evolved into an illegal supermarket for auto parts in rural eastern Kentucky.

The Kentucky Attorney General’s office has confirmed that it is investigating reports of vote buying in Letcher County’s primary election.

Rain has slowed work on the Little Shepherd Trail, but people familiar with the road say it’s beginning to shape up.

The Letcher County Board of Education has passed a policy which will allow it to fill job openings without advertising for applicants outside the school system.

June 23, 1999

Consultants hired to plan development for Jenkins have recommended that the city focus on ecotourism, building a welcome center near Pound Gap, and creating a compact downtown reserved for commercial enterprises, space for entrepreneurs and a college of natural sciences.

Time was, eastern Kentuckians might hear the lonesome yelp of a coyote only on a TV western. Not anymore. “Probably since the early ’70s they’ve been spreading through the state,” said Mark Cramer, a wildlife biologist with the Kentucky Department of Fish and Wildlife Resources. “In recent years, the east is starting to see more and more.”

Fleming-Neon is among 29 Kentucky water districts that have issued conserve-water advisories to their customers. The state Division of Water reported this week that water systems in 18 counties are having trouble keeping up with demand because of the dry weather.

If grants are approved, construction on water lines to Jeremiah and Isom could begin next summer.

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