Whitesburg KY
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The way we were

Clips from Mountain Eagle front pages over the past 50 years

June 30, 1960

At the present rate of tree planting, it will take 58 years to complete the needed reforestation in Letcher County, the Letcher County Soil Conservation District Board of Supervisors reported this week. There are 29,000 acres of land (excluding the Boone Fork Watershed) which need reforestation work, the board said. In the past year, 168 landowners reforested 535 acres.

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J.L. Hays was sworn in as Letcher County Circuit Judge Saturday. Judge Hays’s wife, who also serves as his secretary, administered the oath of office.

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A shipment of 600 baby quail arrived here Wednesday to replenish the game supply of the birds in Letcher County fields.

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Watermelons are 79 cents each at the A&P food store in Whitesburg. Bananas are 10 cents a pound.

July 2, 1970

State highway officials met with residents and city officials of Whitesburg Tuesday in an effort to calm opposition to the proposed Whitesburg bypass. The bypass, which would take KY 15, Hazard to Jenkins, off Whitesburg’s Main Street, has drawn heavy opposition from city officials and residents generally who argue that the route is on the wrong side of town, and would bring more damage than benefit to the city.

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Warren Wright, Burdine, this week was named as director of the Council of the Southern Mountains.

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Funeral services for Mrs. Lillian Russell Fugate Webb, 52, mayor of Neon, were held at the Fleming Baptist Church Tuesday. Mrs. Webb had been a teacher in the Letcher County school system for 34 years, the past 26 of them at Fleming-Neon High School. She had served as librarian and English teacher. She was the first woman elected mayor of Neon and had taken office in January.

July 3, 1980

State officials are searching for a new Property Valuation Administrator to replace former Letcher PVA Paul Mason, who has resigned. Mason resigned after state officials ordered his office to reassess the 1980 tax base on county property, a move Mason said could case Letcher County taxpayers to pay as much as 30 percent more in property taxes.

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For the first time since last October, the Letcher Fiscal Court is now sole overseer of county financial matters. The announcement came from the State Department for Local Government just after fiscal court approved a $1.1 million budget for the year ending June 30, 1981. State officials said the budget should clear the county of its $384,936 debt if it is followed property.

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Photos of new construction on the Whitesburg KY 15 bypass show piers for the new road crossing the Kentucky River behind the Whitesburg Appalachian Regional Hospital; a vacant spot which used to be the west end of Harris Loop on School Hill, and what used to be College Drive.

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Kentucky Power Company has filed a request with the Kentucky Public Service Commission for permission to increase its rates by $26 million a year. The amount would add $5.59 monthly to the average consumer’s bill, the company says.

July 4, 1990

Letcher County Fiscal Court has passed a mandatory garbage collection ordinance but at the same time voted to continue using franchised garbage haulers.

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Two Letcher County men ordered by a judge to reclaim an illegal wildcat coal mine with picks and shovels aren’t doing the job, officials said as they asked a Franklin Circuit Court judge to jail both men for 90 days because they are not performing the hard labor.

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Kentucky’s wild turkey flock has increased to more than 23,000 birds as the result of a restocking effort by the state Department of Fish and Wildlife Resources.

July 5, 2000

The Letcher Fiscal Court has voted not to allow Columbia Natural Resources to cross county roads with a proposed natural gas line. Members of the court said they would reconsider if the company would ‘deal fairly’ with property owners affected by the line.

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U.S. Filter, the company that operates Whitesburg’s water and sewer systems, is raising a stink over a private septic tank company that dumped its tank into the city sewers. U.S. Filter is off ering a $150 reward for information leading to the person responsible.

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The state Transportation Cabinet expects construction to be at least two years away on the first section of a new U.S. Hwy. 119 across Pine Mountain, despite assurances to State Rep. Howard Cornett that bids are about to be taken.

 ’Titans A.E.’ is playing at the Jeremiah Drive-In Theatre.


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