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The Way We Were

Clips from available Mountain Eagle pages since our founding in 1907


More polio vaccine becomes available in 1956 A SCARY, BUT LIFESAVING, TIME FOR KIDS — These California school students were among the first in the U.S. to receive the Salk polio vaccine in 1955. By June 1956, an estimated 770,000 Kentucky children — including many in Letcher County — still had not gotten the vaccine. That would change quickly, however, as manufacturers produced enough the vaccine to give at least one shot to all the state’s children under 20 and pregnant women. (AP Photo)

More polio vaccine becomes available in 1956 A SCARY, BUT LIFESAVING, TIME FOR KIDS — These California school students were among the first in the U.S. to receive the Salk polio vaccine in 1955. By June 1956, an estimated 770,000 Kentucky children — including many in Letcher County — still had not gotten the vaccine. That would change quickly, however, as manufacturers produced enough the vaccine to give at least one shot to all the state’s children under 20 and pregnant women. (AP Photo)

Thursday, June 24, 1926 The Bell Telephone Company will soon take over operation of the East Kentucky Telephone Company at Pikeville and is negotiating to take over the Whitesburg Telephone Company.

. The L&N Railroad says it will spend $2.5 million over the next few months for locomotives, passenger cars and other equipment to serve the region.

. The Whitesburg community was abuzz Monday after young Elsiecoal man by the name of Mr. Bottomlee walked into Letcher Motors and paid $450 cash for a new Ford automobile. “The usual method is to pay all the money one has down on a high-priced car and strain the rest of one’s life to meet the other payments,” notes Mountain Eagle editor Nehemiah M. Webb.

. J.B. McAuley of Kona is vacationing and will visit Yellowstone National Park among other places.

. Mr. and Mrs. Patton Wise Slemp of Millstone are enjoying a motor trip through Canada and will spend some days in Toronto.

. The examining trial of Jesse Stambaugh, charged with shooting Deputy Sheriff Delzy Collins, ended with the case being bound over to the grand jury and Stambaugh being held in jail without bond.

. The community of Kona suffered a crime tear Saturday night, as moonshine seemed to flow freely and a dozen or more shots were reportedly fired in New Kona.

. Bow Frazier of Kingdom Come and W.S. Spangler of Bottom Fork were the big buyers during the auction of 100-lot sale of the Mag Swalley farm in the suburbs of Whitesburg. Frazier bought 42 lots facing the North Fork of the Kentucky River.

. The new Hopkins Brothers store at Neon is opening for business this week and will offer a special low price on all types of groceries.

. A.B. Ewen is visiting the Northern part of the country looking for markets for coal from his new operation at Mayking, the Cameo Coal Mining Company, which is rapidly getting into shape for work.

. Neighboring Knott County has only two people in jail. There seems to be no criminals or else they are taking a vacation,” Eagle editor Webb notes.

Thursday, June 27, 1946 Neon and Fleming will host Bill Monroe and his Bluegrass Boys, joined by the southland’s fastest banjo artist Earl Scruggs, singer and guitarist Lester Flatt, the Andrews Brothers and others during the WSM Grand Ole Opry Radio Stars’ Big Tent Show on Friday, June 28 at the athletic field. The show starts at 8:15 p.m.

. The new Pine Mountain Resort will officially open this weekend, June 29-30. In addition to a hotel, the resort boasts a new swimming pool filled with water running from a beautiful mountain spring, tennis, horseshoe pitching, croquet and other games. Mr. G.D. Polly is the owner, and will be assisted by Mr. and Mrs. Ellis Morgan.

. Pittsburgh Consolidation Coal Company announces the formation of “Consolidation Coal Company- Kentucky,” a wholly owned subsidiary to take over the operation of its mining properties in Kentucky. These properties consist of Mine 155 at Van Lear, Mine 204 at Jenkins, Mines 206, 206-B and 207 at Dunham, Mine 214 at McRoberts, and Clover Splint Mine at Closplint. In Letcher County, Marshall Prunty is the superintendent at Mine 204, Seth Kegan will handle Mine 214, and William A. Stapleton will be in charge of Mines 206, 206-B, and 207.

. The Town of Pound is now incorporated in Virginia after a 3,000 word order was entered at Wise by Circuit Judge George Morton. The Pound area is booming, with work starting on a 14-mile extension of the C&O Railroad from Jenkins into the Bold Camp section.

. The City of Whitesburg will build a modern city hall and fire department building. The project will be sponsored by the city with assistance from the American Legion and other civic clubs in the community. The new building will house the police judge’s office and fire department on the first floor, while the second floor will serve as a recreation hall and meeting place for civic clubs.

. A head-on collision on Sandlick road sent eight people to the hospital, some of them injured seriously. The wreck occurred when Gordon Franklin, driving a car owned by Chet Combs, passed a truck and hit a car driven by Jesse Proffitt. After whiskey was found in the car driven by Franklin, officers went to the Combs home and found five gallons of moonshine whiskey hidden in the yard. Combs was away from his home at the time, but his wife and children were injured in the wreck. Franklin is charged with drunken driving.

. The new Abdoo-McKinney Jewelry Company will soon open for business in Neon in the new modern building recently erected by Mr. and Mrs. Bill Tucker.

. Ballard Rudd, 22, son of Mr. and Mrs. G.B. Rudd of Thornton, was fatally injured as a result of a motorcycle accident at Thornton Saturday night. Rudd was crossing the Thornton Bridge about 10 p.m. en route back to his home after purchasing the motorcycle earlier that morning when a wheel of the bike went into a hole in the bridge and threw Rudd off the motorcycle and into the North Fork of the Kentucky River. Rudd, ex-serviceman who was honorably discharged about six month ago, never regained consciousness before dying Tuesday night. His parents, four sisters, and one brother survive him.

. The Neon American Legion and the Neon Lions Club are co-sponsoring an all-day Fourth of July celebration, with contest prizes including a new Ford car and a modern G.E. refrigerator and washing machine. After the fireworks show a dance will be held in the Fleming Gym. In Whitesburg, a new Jeep valued at $1,500 will be given away along with many other nice contest prizes. Most contests will be held at the Whitesburg ballpark. Fireworks and a street dance will conclude the evening.

. The Dawahare family has moved into their home next to the Whitesburg Methodist Church. The home is known as the Gault house.

Phil Ardery, a Paris native and Frankfort attorney before enlisting in the Army Air Force in April 1941, is now seeking the Democratic nomination for the U.S. Senate in the August primary. Ardery was commended by General Marshall, General Arnold, General Doolittle,

and General Spatz for gallant leadership and heroic action in leading a squadron of bombers over the Ploesti oil refineries of Romania, and in bombing missions over Sicily, Naples, Foggia, Normandy and Berlin. He is currently on a speaking tour that will bring him to Letcher County and all 119 other counties in Kentucky.

Thursday, June 21, 1956 Former Kentucky Governor Lawrence Weatherby has been appointed by the Democratic State Central Executive Committee to the party’s candidate for the U.S. Senate seat left vacant by the death of Sen. Alben W. Barkley, formerly our nation’s vice president. Weatherby has joined forces with political ally Earl C. Clements, also a former governor, but the two remain at odds politically with current Governor A.B. “Happy” Chandler.

. County Clerk Charlie Wright urges all citizens required to purchase occupational licenses to do so within the next nine days before a 20 percent penalty is levied. Among those businesses required to buy occupational licenses are theaters, stores, restaurants, and soft drink stands.

. Robert Ison, 38, of Jeremiah, was killed when struck by an L&N Railroad train near Sawdust Junction at Isom on Monday night at 8:40 p.m. His wife and three children survive him.

. Honor graduates from Pikeville College include two Letcher County students, Connie Mack Baker of Burdine and Betty Jo Collins of Whitesburg.

. State health officials say that manufacturers are now producing enough Salk polio vaccine to give at least one dose to every one of Kentucky’s most susceptible persons who have not yet been vaccinated — children under 20 and pregnant women. Despite the vaccine’s proven effectiveness and safety, there are still an estimated 770,000 children in Kentucky who have not even received their first shot, leading health officials to fear a polio epidemic this summer.

. Mr. Sherman H. Campbell of Yerkes, Ky., who rode the first passenger train out of Hazard 44 years ago — on July 4, 1912 — says he will ride the last one out on Friday. Campbell said his first train trip to Jackson took about three hours because the engineer had to make three attempts to get over Reno Hill near Dunraven. He says a relative will meet him in Jackson and drive him back by automobile to Hazard.

. Mr. and Mrs. Audra Pigman are receiving congratulations on the birth of a son, Timothy Lee, born June 5 at Whitesburg Memorial Hospital.

. Rock Hudson and Miss Cornell Borchers star in “Never Say Goodbye,” showing at the Alene Theatre in Whitesburg tonight and tomorrow.

. Jack R. Hall, son of Mrs. Gertrude Hall of Neon, has received an award from the University of Wyoming in Laramie for his top play on the university’s baseball team. Hall also plays football at Wyoming.

Thursday, June 23, 1966 The old office building of the Elk Horn Coal Corporation at Fleming, where millions of dollars in paychecks were handed out to miners in days gone by, is once again a center of activity as the result of a recreation program operated by the Letcher County Economic Opportunity Committee.

. Appalachian Regional Hospitals has announced the sale of the Pikeville ARH hospital to the Kentucky Conference of the Methodist Church, which already owns and operates the Methodist Hospital in Pikeville. Effective July 1, the two non-profit hospitals will be owned and operated as the Methodist Hospital of Kentucky. The Methodist Hospital in Pikeville has 150 beds and was founded in 1924. The Pikeville ARH hospital was opened in 1955 as Miners Memorial Hospital and has 50 beds. [The hospital is known today as Pikeville Medical Center.]

. The state Division of Forestry says 480,250 trees were planted in Letcher County during the past fall and spring planting seasons. The increase in plantings is attributed to the increased manpower made available by the Work, Experience and Training (WET) Program.

. Funeral services were held today for Forest E. Brown, 48, a prominent Whitesburg coal operator known for his generosity to children. Brown, an official of Colly Elkhorn Coal Co., died at St. Joseph Hospital, Lexington, after a heart attack. Brown had converted a large vacant lot adjacent to his Cowan Street [School Hill] home into a well-equipped, well-lighted neighborhood playground used night and day by children in the area.

. The 1964 Census of Agriculture in Letcher County,

just completed, shows a sharp drop in the number of operating farms in the county since 1959. The 1964 census lists a total of 344 farms, compared to a total of 610 farms in 1959.

. Thirty-five Letcher County high school students are among 100 students from six counties enrolled in Upward Bound classes at Calvary College, the former Stuart Robinson campus at Letcher, but operated by Alice Lloyd College, Pippa Passes. The program encourages students to further their education in college.

. Effective July 1, the maximum benefit rate for unemployed Kentuckians will be $45 per week. The new rate represents 46-3/4 percent of the average statewide weekly wage for the calendar year of 1965, or $96.29.

. Marine First Lieutenant David R. Kinneer, son of Mrs. Irene Kinneer of Blackey, was advanced to his present rank while serving with the Third Marine Division in the Republic of Vietnam.

. American Motors/Rambler is looking for a car dealer to handle its products through a franchise in the Whitesburg and Neon area.

Thursday, July 1, 1976 Gerald Hall found himself with more watermelons than he could possibly eat when he finally got a stack of 1,500 unloaded at Maloney’s fruit stand, located in Neon Junction.

. Letcher County is two months behind in paying salaries and up to five months behind in paying bills, courthouse records reveal. The county will have to take $40,000 to $70,000 from next year’s budget to pay for the deficit.

. About 70 percent of Letcher County’s garbage is being dumped illegally, according to an official of the Kentucky Department of Natural Resources.

Wednesday, July 2, 1986 The United Steel Workers’ strike against Appalachian Regional Hospitals has ended, and union members have begun reporting back to work at the Whitesburg hospital.

. Jack M. Burkich left office as Letcher Schools superintendent Monday night, but it could be some time before his latest dispute with former school board members comes to an end. After a court-ordered meeting between Burkich and the school board failed to solve the district’s latest controversy — whether to abolish the office of Title I coordinator — Burkich indicated this week that Letcher Circuit Judge F. Byrd Hogg may be asked to step into the matter again.

. Police lined Jenkins’ Main Street Saturday when members of the Ku Klux Klan came to town.

Wednesday, July 3, 1996 The Kentucky Attorney General’s Office has taken charge of the investigation into the shooting of a Letcher County man by two Kentucky State Police officers.

. Charles E. Wilson, who became superintendent of Letcher County Schools last October, will leave July 26 to become superintendent of Todd County Schools, the system he left to come to Letcher County.

. The Jenkins Independent School District might cease to exist if a citizen lawsuit is successful in stopping collection of the 28-year-old building bond tax, Superintendent Bill Caudill said.

Wednesday, June 28, 2006 Several people were startled to see a large black bear wandering through West Whitesburg. The bear was seen at the school bus garage, Westwood subdivision, Sandlick Cemetery then the Whitesburg Swimming Pool, where parents waiting in their cars for children taking swimming lessons honked their horns at it. The bear walked down the road near the old Whitesburg High School football field, and was later seen near the Letcher County Extension Office and at Dry Fork.

. Letcher County received several inches of rain over the weekend. “Some areas (in Letcher County) are pushing close to six inches (of rain). There’s a lot of rain — there’s no denying that,” said Bonnie Terrizzi with the National Weather Service in Jackson. She said the period of observation included June 23 through June 26.

. Independence Day fireworks will be seen at the fairgrounds at Isom, in Whitesburg, and at the Hemphill Community Center.

. Four members of the Jenkins Lady Cavaliers softball team have been named to the All 53rd District team. They are Hillary Brashear, Emily Walker, Rachel Thacker and Ashley Williams.


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