Clips from Mountain Eagle front pages over the past 50 years
October 13, 1960
Whitesburg Fire Chief Remious Day said the Whitesburg High School and grade school are “in a lot better shape than they have ever been before” in regard to fire protection.
The Whitesburg City Council has adopted a new occupational license which will charge coal mines within the city limits $300 a day. At the present time there are no coal mines within the city, but officials fear that some strip mining is about to occur.
The Letcher County Grand Jury recommends scrapping the county jail and erecting a new one. The jury also recommends repairs at the courthouse and emergency repairs at the jail.
The Jenkins Cavaliers squeaked by the Whitesburg Yellowjackets 13-12 at the Jenkins homecoming football game. Janice Stewart won out over 11 other candidates to become homecoming queen.
October 15, 1970
Newer and better buses are on hand this week to take students from the Cumberland River valley across Pine Mountain to school in Whitesburg. Nearly 100 parents from the area had told school officials last week they would not let their children ride on the buses that had been used.
Local officials say they fear the results of a 50-percent cutback by Congress on money fro the federal anti-poverty program.
The City of Whitesburg has joined the new eight-county garbage collection system.
Jaybirds, grasshoppers, crickets and katydids all show signs of an early fall, writes Eagle
correspondent Siller Brown from Ice.
October 16, 1980
Whitesburg Fire Chief Philmore Bowen told members of the Whitesburg City Council that he had found several fire hydrants out of working order. Bowen said the problem came to a head last week when — during a fire school exercise — the only hydrant located near the English Building at Whitesburg High School was found disconnected.
A five-month-long promise to teachers was partly fulfi lled this week by the Letcher County Board of Education. Members of the board delivered a long awaited reply to a list of teachers’ concerns, which they had been considering since last May. The list included salary increases, pay for extracurricular activities, lack of planning periods for many teachers, lack of dental coverage in the school system’s health plan for its employees, policy on student discipline and conduct, the number of students per classroom, lack of input from teachers when curriculum is changed, oversized classes, cleanliness of school buildings and grounds, and parental liability.
Kentucky officials say they expect to get “primacy” over coal mines in the state soon. Strip mine control has been shared by the state and federal governments since 1979.
October 17, 1990
Scores of miners lined up outside the state unemployment office in Whitesburg to sign up for benefits after South East Coal Co. announced that 400 workers would be laid off . Company president Harry LaViers Jr. said the company’s continuing financing problems were the result of a six-year lawsuit with its principle customer, Kentucky Utilities Co. of Lexington.
The Nature Conservancy, a private non-profit conservation foundation, has bought more than 1,000 acres of land adjoining Bad Branch Falls, tripling the size of the publicly and privately held nature preserve on Pine Mountain in Letcher County.
Head Start officials say they hope to build a building in Blackey and have applied for federal money to finance it.
October 18, 2000
Wilford Niece apologized before a federal judge last week for his role in a cocaine dealing operation in Letcher County, but his apology did little to reduce his sentence. The former coal operator pleaded guilty earlier this year to a charge of conspiracy to possess with intent to distribute cocaine, and to a charge of receiving stolen property related to a vehicle chop shop operation.
Ladybug, ladybug, fly away home — anybody’s home but mine. That’s what a lot of home owners are wishing this week. Because as the leaves have turned to red and gold, so have their window sills and ceiling tiles and walls. Asian lady beetles have returned with a vengeance, coating the interior of many houses with their bulbous little iridescent bodies and general making a nuisance of themselves.
The Jenkins Fire Department is considering starting its own ambulance service because of complaints about the private ambulance service that operates in the city.
The Letcher Lady Eagles survived the pressure of being unbeaten and the tourney favorite in winning the 16th District volleyball tournament championship in Whitesburg.