Clips from Mountain Eagle front pages over the past 50 years
May 25, 1961
Letcher County Democrats have nominated James M. Caudill for county judge and Republicans have nominated Bill Adams as their candidate for the office.
Early in the morning after the primary election, the City of Whitesburg’s garbage truck was adorned with a sign which read: “Bull Hole Express — One Way”.
Plans have been announced for reconstruction of the bridge across the Kentucky River into Long Avenue in Whitesburg.
May 27, 1971
Widows of miners who died in the Hurricane Creek disaster in Leslie County last Dec. 30 say they were not informed by either public or private agencies of several things which might have helped them. They were not told that an examination before burial could have helped determine whether their coal-miner husbands were victims of black lung. They did not know they might have been entitled to a 15-percent increase in workmen’s compensation settlements if negligence could have been proved on the part of Finley Coal Co., which operated the Hurricane Creek mine. They say the insurance company that handled the Finley mine workers’ compensation policy had agents talking to them right away about settling their claims but did not reveal the possibility of the negligence claim.
”Everything is so lovely it is hard to realize there is evil and heartbreak in the world, and a war in Vietnam,” commented Millstone correspondent Mabel Kiser.
Macie Warf was nominated as the Democratic candidate for the two-year term as sheriff which became open when her husband, Sheriff C. ‘Tip’ Warf, died. Lewis Hall was chosen as the Republican candidate.
May 28, 1981
All incumbent members of the Letcher Fiscal Court were defeated in their bids for renomination in the May 26 primary election. They include Judge/Executive Robert B. Collins who lost to former Sheriff Ruben Watts and Magistrates Add Polly and Billy Keel, Democrats, and George Arthur Adams, the only Republican on the fiscal court. Keel lost to Winston Meade, Polly lost to Johnny Sturgill and Adams lost to Steve Banks. Incumbents Charles Dixon and Lee Hogg did not run for re-election. Ben B. ‘Buster’ Taylor is the Democratic nominee for sheriff and Lewis Hall is the Republican nominee. Incumbent County Court Clerk Charlie Wright was again the Democrats’ biggest voter-getter. Incumbent Macie Warf won the Democratic nomination for circuit court clerk.
The third annual National Conference of Women Coal Miners was held in southern Illinois. Twelve Letcher County women were at the conference, including Pam Baker of Jenkins, who is assistant safety director for Chapparall Coal Co. in Pike County, and Sandy Bailey of Mayking, who after five years at Beth-Elkhorn Coal in Jenkins, is now with the U.S. Mine Safety and Health Administration in Whitesburg.
May 29, 1991
Nearly half of Letcher County’s workforce is unemployed, a new study reports. At least 6,508 persons in the county are without jobs, according to a study made by the University of Kentucky Appalachian Center.
The number of families in Letcher County who made at least a partial living from farming dropped from 150 in 1972 to only six in 1991, according to University of Kentucky professor Dr. Susan Abbott, who is including some of the families in an oral history of the family farm in Kentucky.
An effort by disabled miners and widows of miners to revive the Kentucky Black Lung Association appears to be a failure.
May 30, 2001
Letcher County could see its first wet-dry election in decades this summer. The owners of a winery at Seco have turned in a petition to the Letcher County Clerk’s office seeking a local option election to allow them to sell only the wine they make in Seco. Jackie Looney, owner of The Seco Company Store, turned in a petition seeking the vote last week.
Cassel Caudill of Little Cowan, celebrated his 100th birthday at a party at the Little Cowan Primitive Baptist Church. He was accompanied at the party by his wife, Beulah, 94.
This year Appalshop will celebrate the 15th anniversary of its Seedtime on the Cumberland Festival with a parade down Main Street in Whitesburg.
<b>A bridge on US 119 near the Mayking Mall has been named in honor of World War II veteran Arius Holbrook Sr. The bridge is the first on that section of highway, call the Veterans Memorial Highway, to be named for an individual.