Whitesburg KY
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The Way We Were

Clips from available Mountain Eagle pages since our founding in 1908


 

 

Thursday, March 16, 1944

A 35-year-old man accused of murdering a rural mail carrier will appear at an “examining hearing” March 17 before Letcher County Judge B.F. Wright. John Banks is accused of clubbing to death 50-year-old Pearl Bowling of Cornettsville while Bowling was delivering mail in Letcher County. According to Letcher County Sheriff Gilbert Polly, Bowling had stopped to eat dinner at the home of the widow Aunt Nancy Fields last Friday when he met Banks, who volunteered to accompany Bowling to deliver a message to the parents of a soldier. On the way to the home, Banks took the mailbags from Bowling, ripped them open with a knife and began beating Bowling with a club. He then dragged Bowling and the mailbags over a hill and buried them under leaves. Two eyewitnesses saw the attack from a distance and pulled Bowling out of the leaves, but the mail carrier died a short time later. Banks, who claims he was acting in self-defense, was arrested a day later while hiding beneath a cliff with a gallon jug of whiskey in his possession. Sheriff Polly said Banks had returned to Letcher County about a month ago, claiming he had been discharged from the Army in order to go back to his job in a coal mine.

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First-term State Rep. Harry L. Moore, a Whitesburg Republican, has been appointed to the following committees by Democratic House Speaker Harry Lee Waterfi eld: Education No. 2; Codes of Practice; Criminal Law, and Mines and Mining. Among the new bills Moore is sponsoring is House Bill 154 to exempt all persons 60 and older from paying poll taxes.

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Fred Stamper, 43, was killed in a hit-and-run accident about 11 p.m. Sunday near Mayking. Stamper, of Dry Fork, was a miner with Elkhorn Jellico Coal Company at Marlowe. His wife and several children survive him.

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Thirteen doctors and one dentist attended the March meeting of the Letcher County Medical Society. The physicians were E.K. Munn, F.L. Wommack, H.H. Houze, Richard F. Brady, T.M. Perry, and J.W. Turner, all of Jenkins; John L. Clay of McRoberts; and B.C. Bach, J.E. Crawford, R.D. Collins, T.R. Collier, Owen Pigman and Carl Pigman, all of Whitesburg. Lee Moore of Whitesburg was the dentist.

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A photograph on the front page of The Mountain Eagle shows the remains of the Monte Cassino monastery in Italy, the oldest in the world, which was shelled by the American 5th Army to rout the Nazis, who had been using it as a fortress.

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Neon Lions Club member Ferdinand Moore was invited to attend what would be the first tour of an underground coal mine by a small group of Jenkins Kiwanis Club members. The tour was directed by fellow Kiwanian Max H. Forester, who took the group into Consolidation Mine 214 in a “man trip.” Moore got to tag along because he had been in Jenkins to organize a basketball game between the Neon Lions Club and the Jenkins Kiwanis Club.

Thursday, March 11, 1954

The Elinda Ann Drive-Inn will reopen tonight in Whitesburg. The drive-in has been closed since last fall, when its screen was destroyed by high winds. It now has the newest and most modern screen in southeastern Kentucky. Manager Billy Wayne Wright says the first-run movie, director Cecil B. DeMille’s “The Greatest Show on Earth,” will show tonight. The film, which stars Charlton Heston, Dorothy Lamour and James Stewart, tells the story of the Ringling Brothers Circus. Admission is 20 cents and 60 cents.

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In a move designed to save police officers steps, the Whitesburg City Council has voted to move all taxi cabs based in the town back on Court Street, where they had formerly been for years. The move was made this week.

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The City of Whitesburg is considering expanding the city’s limits to the mouth of Sandlick Creek on one end and to Pine Mountain Junction on the other end.

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The Hindman Yellowjackets defeated the Kingdom Come Wildcats by the score of 73-48 in the opening round of the 14th Region Tournament in Hazard on Tuesday night. In the second game of opening-night play, the Combs Memorial Panthers downed the Carr Creek Indians by the score of 46-42. 53rd District Champion Whitesburg, coached by Ray Pigman, will play Hazard tonight at 6:30.

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Miss Myrna Mullins of Fleming Grade School is the new spelling champion of Letcher County. An eighthgrader, she won over Miss Wilma Faye Dixon of Elk Creek, who lost on the word “promptly.” Finishing third was Miss Glenna Dale Stamper of the Dixon School. She missed the word “occurred.”

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Players Rex Polly, Robert Meade, Jimmy Jones, Gene Sparks, Basil Sexton and Billy K. Banks led the Whitesburg Yellowjackets to the school’s first “B” Team tournament championship in the 53rd District. Stuart Robinson School was the tourney runner-up. Remarking on the great talent of Polly and how he should help the varsity next season, an anonymous writer urges the budding star “to stop his face-making every time the referee calls him for fouling.”

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Mrs. Mary Moncrief of Whitesburg addressed the Whitesburg Woman’s Club on being an English “war bride” in the United States. “I was in the first shipment of war brides from England to the United States,” she said. “Perhaps you can imagine our thoughts and feelings as we neared American soil. Most of us, quite frankly, were dreading our possible reception. We had heard stories of snubs, of harsh treatment, and of mockery of our ‘foreign’ ways and speech.” Mrs. Moncrief said one of the erroneous comments she hears most is that the British drink tea continually. “We like tea, but no more than Americans like their coffee. Besides, tea is cheaper.” She also remembered being concerned when she first saw that American police carry firearms. “And many civilians too!” she said. “Let me tell you of a joke that was played on me shortly after my arrival here. My husband and two friends drove me to Cumberland. When we go through Harlan they warned me, ‘Duck as far down as you can. People in the hills there take ‘pot shots’ at cars on the highway.’ I ducked! So did the others until they could no longer contain their laughter!”

Thursday, March 12, 1964

Boone Boy Industries, Inc., organized by a group of residents of the Blackey area, is making upholstered chairs and couches. The business is located in the basement of the gym at the old Stuart Robinson School. Boone Boy grew from a conversation between Bill Joseph, operator of an upholstery shop at Premium, and Begie Breeding, a teacher who runs a furniture and appliance store. Investors in the firm are David, Fred, Orville and Richard Adams, Hobert Ison and Owen Amburgey, all of Jeremiah; William Banks, Letcher; and Faye, Kenneth and Everett Joseph and Dempsey Caudill, all of Premium.

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The Whitesburg City Council has taken several steps to ease city parking and traffic problems including leasing a parking lot where 14 meters will be installed, and moving taxi from near the courthouse to Hays Street.

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The Fleming-Neon Pirates defeated Jenkins and Letcher to win the 53rd District basketball tournament.

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Television cameras from NBC are filming on Main Street in Whitesburg from a segment of “Smalltown, USA,” an hour-long documentary.

Thursday, March 14, 1974

After months of negotiation, the Letcher County Teachers Organization and the Letcher County Board of Education formally ratified and signed an agreement covering teacher pay and other working conditions for the 1973-1974 school year.

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The Whitesburg High School cheerleaders are the top cheerleading team in the region. They will participate in the state cheerleading contest in Louisville.

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Blackey correspondent Charles Anne Mullis offers a remedy to worms that get on cabbage, broccoli and caulifl ower. She says to mix one quart wood ashes and one cup salt and sprinkle when needed.

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Letcher County native Grant Ison was killed in Florida. He was the victim of a holdup at a service station there.

Wednesday, March 14, 1984

The Whitesburg City Council is asking why it took Kentucky Power Co. nearly an hour to cut off electrical service to a building in downtown that was on fire. The building, which housed the QRS and an attorney’s office, was gutted by fire. Officials believe the fire was caused by faulty wiring. Efforts to fight the fire were hampered by the delay in cutting electrical service.

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Former Whitesburg city councilman Cecil Maggard has been awarded $300,000 in damages for injuries he received when the vehicle he was driving was struck by a coal train in 1979. A Letcher Circuit jury found Louisville & Nashville Railroad Co. was at fault when Maggard’s vehicle was struck at a railroad crossing on KY at Isom.

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Two Whitesburg High School juniors, Elizabeth Luther, daughter of Mr. and Mrs. David Luther, and Lacy Polly, daughter of Mr. and Mrs. Ray Polly, have been invited to compete in Kentucky’s “Golden 100” scholarship competition at Murray. Five Letcher County high school juniors are to spend several weeks in the Governor’s Scholars Program. The students are Amy Caudill, daughter of Billie and Billy Caudill of Blackey; Kathy Miller, daughter of Patsy Miller of Isom; Angie Miles, daughter of Patricia and Roger Miles of Jeremiah; Cheryl Mullins, daughter of Novella and Johnny Mullins of Whitesburg; and Noah Bentley, son of Mickey Bentley of Seco.

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The Whitesburg Lady Jackets, the defending state runners-up, advanced to the regional finals with a 75-56 win over Dilce Combs.

Wednesday, March 16, 1994

Test scores show the Jenkins schools have improved more than any other school system in southeastern Kentucky. However, both school systems in Letcher County remain in the bottom third of all the districts in Kentucky.

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The daughter of a former Whitesburg resident was featured in an episode of the TV show “In The Heat of the Night.” Amy Hess, daughter of Lee and Cathy Stallard Hess of Lexington, and granddaughter of Gladys Stallard Berchtold of Lexington, formerly of Whitesburg, also has appeared on “Beverly Hills 90210.”

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The Whitesburg Fire Department has purchased a “Jaws of Life,” thanks to donations by local residents and civic groups and a $4,000 expenditure by the city. The tool, used to extract accident victims from wrecked vehicles, cost $10,000.

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The Whitesburg Lady Jackets were defeated in the finals of the 14th Region basketball tournament. They lost 86-79 to the No. 1-ranked M.C. Napier Lady Navajos. M.C. Napier also defeated the Jenkins Lady Cavs earlier in the tournament by a score of 89-72.

Wednesday, March 17, 2004

The Fleming-Neon City Council has taken the first step in a process that could end in impeachment action begin taken against Mayor Harlan “Tootie” Seals. A certified letter was mailed to Seals last week informing the mayor he is “under investigation” by the city council.

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Vehicles over 30 feet long are still banned from U.S. 119 between Whitesburg and Oven Fork. The ban went into effect March 12, 2001, at the recommendation of the Pine Mountain Task Force

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The Whitesburg and Jenkins girls’ basketball teams both advanced to the semifinals of the 14th Region tournament this week.

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Elmo and Deolia Day celebrated their 58th wedding anniversary on March 4. It was also Mr. Day’s birthday.


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