Whitesburg KY
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The way we were

Clips from Mountain Eagle front pages over the past 50 years


 

 

April 28, 1960

Several high areas of Whitesburg were without water for two or three days this week as an unusual spring drought left Whitesburg’s two community wells nearly dry.

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William Burdine Webb, who reported news for The
Mountain Eagle
since it was founded in 1907 by his brother Nehemiah, died Wednesday at Sergent. He was 85. The Burdine post office was named for him.

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New automatic check-out stands were installed this week at the A&P store in Whitesburg. All you have to do now is set your groceries on the counter; a motor-drive belt carries them past the checker, who records the purchases as they go by.

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James Ralph Baker, Neon, has been accepted as a member of the first class of the University of Kentucky’s College of Medicine.

April 30, 1970

Tandy Industries Inc. of Tulsa, Okla., announced this week that it has decided not to build a pre-fabricated housing factory in Letcher County near Neon. Tandy’s decision came as a surprise to Letcher County residents who had come to look upon Tandy’s coming as “a sure thing”.

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Federal inspection of coal mines was halted temporarily, then resumed to a limit degree during the past week. All federal mine inspections were halted Friday after a U.S. District Judge at Abingdon, Va., issued a temporary restraining order requested by 75 small coal-mine operators and miners in southwest Virginia.

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The Whitesburg High School Band won a rating of “superior” at each of two band contests recently.

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Ice cream is on sale for 68 cents a gallon at the A&P food store in Whitesburg. Rib steak is $1.09 a pound.

May 1, 1980

Arson is the suspected cause of a fire which destroyed a new home belonging to Letcher County Sheriff Vernon Hall near Payne Gap. Hall said he and his family were “three weeks away” from moving into the home, and his wife was in North Carolina buying new furniture for the home when the blaze occurred.

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Letcher County Democrat Party members have elected Eddie Howard as party chairman. He succeeds Jenkins Mayor Jesse Bates, who has held the office for about 20 years.

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Ray “I Am A Democrat” Adkins has filed suit against the Kentucky State Board of Elections in an effort to get his entire name on the ballot in the May primary election. He is running for the Democrat nomination for U.S. Representative against incumbent Carl D. Perkins.

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Carlos Watkins of Knott County has been named executive director of the LKLP Community Action Council, succeeded the late Robert G. Rader of Hazard.

May 2, 1990

A Kentucky State Police bomb disposal unit Monday removed several sticks of dynamite and detonated a blasting cap that someone apparent had intended to use to blow up part of an underground mine operation at Thornton. The caps and sticks of dynamite were discovered by Aberry Coal Inc. owner Alcieberry Mullins when he went to check on a portable generator used to power a water pump.

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At least three Letcher County school administrators and a former superintendent are among the applicants to be interviewed for the post of Letcher County school superintendent. The Board of Education has been advertising for two months for someone to fill the vacancy that will be left June 30 when Superintendent Bernard Watts retires.

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Letcher High School senior John Lynch has won two prestigious scholarships — a $2,000 National Merit Scholarship and a $1,500 Robert C. Byrd Scholarship Lynch, son of Mr. and Mrs. Greg Lynch of Jeremiah, has been admitted to Yale University. He plans a career in research in chemistry.

May 3, 2000

A former Fleming-Neon Police chief pleaded guilty Monday to robbing the Community Trust Bank branch in Neon in February 1998. Danny Neil Yonts, 32, was on duty when the bank was robbed and was the first police officer on the scene. Yonts has admitted that he was behind the robbery and that he stole a gun from his own department’s evidence locker to be used in the robbery.

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The Air Force chose the 40th anniversary of U-2 pilot Francis Gary Powers’s downing over the Soviet Union to honor the Cold War pilot, a Burdine native, with medals he had long been denied. Powers’s family accepted a Distinguished Flying Cross, Department of Defense Prisoner of War Medal and National Service Medal on his behalf. Powers died in a helicopter crash in Los Angeles in 1977.

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Letcher County’s second recyclables buyback — planned for three days — ended just four hours after it started. During that four hours, county workers, volunteers and employees of the Letcher County Conservation District were deluged with junk glass, collected along the roadsides and creek banks and turned in for 20 cents a pound.

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