Whitesburg KY
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The way we were



Clips from Mountain Eagle front pages over the past 50 years

May 4, 1961

Letcher County agricultural agent Robert Fike says he hopes to make a profit from his new plastic greenhouse. Fike said research shows that profit from a greenhouse is more than from one acre of tobacco and pointed out that one acre of land could hold eight greenhouses.

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Whitesburg Memorial Hospital is planning for tours of the hospital during National Hospital Week later this month.

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The A&P Supermarket is selling porterhouse and T-bone steak for 99 cents a pound.

May 5, 1971

The Pine Mountain caves in Letcher County, which have attracted Letcher County residents for several generations, has drawn outside interest this week after reports that rooms in the caves might rival anything in Mammoth Cave, the world’s largest. Dr. Raymond Love of Blackey, who has been exploring the caves for several months, says one chamber of the caves is bigger than the Letcher County Courthouse and it is only one of many.

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Five former coal miners in Letcher County are parties to lawsuit against the United Mine Workers union, which has failed to keep pension funds available for retired miners. A federal judge ruled John L. Lewis, longtime head of the UMW, and some of his associates had conspired to deprive ill and retired coal miners of money due them from the union pension fund.

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The Whitesburg High School Band won a ‘superior’ rating in a contest at Pikeville College.

May 7, 1981

Eagle correspondent Thelma Nolan Cornett reports from Linefork that the signs for bean planting are in the arms and legs, but she has best luck when she plants beans when the signs are in the arms.

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The murder trial of two men accused in the 1975 slaying of Letcher County coal operator William Harvey Johnson has been continued until August 17. Johnson was shot 14 times in the head and chest with a .22 caliber weapon as he carried garbage out of his home at Payne Gap on his way to work.

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After more than five years of planning and development, construction is set to begin on the first of several homes in the Ben’s Branch section of Jenkins. The Kentucky Housing Corporation, a state agency, has contracted with two Louisville firms to build the first 20 single-family houses and several multi-family apartment houses.

May 8, 1991

Unemployment was up again in March, bring the official jobless rate in Letcher County to 13.9 percent, nearly double that of one year ago.

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Coal industry sources say a division of Westmoreland Coal Co. has negotiated the purchase of Golden Oak Mining of Whitesburg.

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The president of the new United Mine Workers local at South East Coal Co. says Gov. Wallace Wilkinson refused to get involved in negotiations between the company and the union when laid-off miners confronted him in Whitesburg.

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The state highway department is advertising bids on improvements to US 119 across Pine Mountain.

May 9, 2001

Clara Williams, 94, who served meals to Whitesburgarea residents for more than 20 years, died April 30. Mrs. Williams was the widow of Windus Williams, who assisted her in operating Clara’s Restaurant on Railroad Street for 13 years until the couple retired in 1981. Earlier she had operated a restaurant at the Whitesburg bowling alley for four years. Before that, she operated the City CafĂ© in the Daniel Boone Hotel for about five years.

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The Special Olympics torch will pass through Letcher County Thursday in the annual Law Enforcement Torch Run. Police officers will run through Jenkins, Fleming- Neon, Whitesburg and Isom carrying the symbolic Special Olympics torch.

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The annual Letcher County Public Schools Academic Showcase will be held Saturday, May 19, in West Whitesburg Elementary School and Whitesburg Middle School. The event will showcase the best work by Letcher County students in art, music, science, writing, technology, social studies and after-school programs.



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