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The way we were

Clips from Mountain Eagle front pages over the past 50 years

Oct. 25, 1962 Letcher County voters are to choose a new state senator in the Nov. 6 regular election to succeed Archie Craft, who resigned to become a U.S. marshal.

. Kentucky Gov. Bert T. Combs moved his office from the capitol at Frankfort to a former boarding house in Haymond so he could talk with Letcher County residents about their problems. He discussed old-age pension checks, the proposed community college at Blackey, the UMW hospital, roads, food stamps and unemployment.

. Responding to an editorial comment in the Louisville Courier-Journal that college teachers sent to the proposed University of Kentucky at Blackey would find “no cultural stimulation outside the college faculty,” The Mountain Eagle commented: “We recognize that it is a wrench to move from a highly urbanized area such as Lexington into a rural mountain area like Blackey, but having gone through the pangs ourselves we can assure any university faculty members who are forced to come that the advantages outweigh the disadvantages and that after they have lived in the mountains a few years it will take dynamite to get them out.”

Oct. 26, 1972 A federal district court effort by and for Letcher County coal miners has resulted in the drafting of new regulations governing the United Mine Workers Welfare and Retirement Fund. It appears that “maybe most” of the older miners in the area who worked for years in the mines and retired without pensions may now be eligible. The revisions announced to the fund are the direct result of testimony given by several Letcher County miners a couple of years ago as part of a lawsuit in federal court in Washington, D.C. seeking reform of the UMW pension system, said Whitesburg Atty. Harry M. Caudill.

. After nearly two years of false starts and delays, the Appalachian Regional Commission at last has come out with preliminary guidelines for the proposed $1.35 million black lung program, wrote Eagle reporter Phil Primack from Washington, D.C. Reporters were not allowed into the meeting, but they received a copy of the proposed regulations.

. The Whitesburg Yellowjackets are going into their Homecoming game with Belfry with a record of seven wins and five losses.

Oct. 28, 1982 At a workshop in Hazard, member of the Kentucky Fair Tax Coalition said passage of an unmined minerals tax is the primary property tax issue before the people of eastern Kentucky. The group also said the eradication of the broadform deed must be achieved in order to bring protection to surface owners who are powerless to control the minerals under their land.

. A $1,263,879 lawsuit arising from the collapse of a city water tank in Jenkins three years ago has been settled out of court. Letcher County Judge Byrd Hogg dismissed “with prejudice” the suit, which was a combination of four lawsuits filed shortly after the accident occurred. Courthouse sources indicate the settlement totaled more than a half million dollars. Dr. T.M. Perry, 82, of Jenkins, died when a water tank burst and sent 300,000 gallons of water down a hill, destroying his home. Dr. Perry’s body was found in the rubble in the basement of his home. The water also destroyed the home of Jim and Alice Stallard and their Thrifty Market located below the Perry home. Mrs. Stallard received serious leg injuries.

. A statewide coal slump could force cutbacks in the state budget before the year is out. There was a 7.8 percent decline in coal severance tax collects in the first three months of the year. State projections are for a potential $75 million to $80 million shortfall.

Oct. 28, 1992 Gov. Brereton Jones has assigned Crit Luallen, state secretary of tourism, to coordinate efforts to make the proposed Red Fox Resort at Carr Fork Lake a reality.

. James P. McAuley of Kona was honored at a recent Washington, D.C. ceremony for his long and outstanding conservation work. McAuley, chairman of the Letcher County Conservation District Board of Supervisors, received the Teddy Roosevelt Conservation Award in the Indian Treaty Room of the Old Executive Building adjacent to the White House.

. Voter registration is up three percent in Letcher County since the May primary election.

Oct. 30, 2002 U.S. Sen. Paul Wellstone, D-Minnesota, died Friday in a plane crash with his wife Sheila and daughter Marcia Markuson. Sheila Wellstone was the daughter of Letcher County native Delmer and Ellen Ison.

. Judge Sam Wright denied a request for bail reduction for April Boggs, charged with complicity with her husband Jerome Boggs in the shooting deaths of Timothy L. ‘Blister’ Cook and his four-year-old son T.J.

. The Letcher County School District will have more than 22 million to build a new high school if the state Department of Education will approve a 25-year, rather than a 20-year, financing plan.

. The Kentucky Department of Parks will use a $500,000 federal transportation grant to begin buying property for the Pine Mountain Trail.



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