Whitesburg KY
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The Way We Were



Clips from available Mountain Eagle pages since our founding in 1907

Thursday, July 22, 1926 The town of Neon is rapidly putting on airs. The new post office, installed in a new building erected by the city for that purpose, stands out well as the most often visited place as business pride and activity continue to grow. There is now a sentiment steadily growing for a bank in the town as well.

. Letcher County Attorney Harry L. Moore leaves July 29 for Richmond, Virginia, where he will represent the Commonwealth of Kentucky at an extradition hearing for Bill Quinlan, a fugitive from justice charged with assaulting Tom Prater with a deadly weapon at Haymond.

. Despite an awful stretch of road between Millstone and Mayking, the White Star buses continue to load up with passengers. State officials have promised that traffic will be able to start using the new Mayking-Haymond highway within 30 days.

. Kentucky’s daily newspapers are reporting that tourists are being robbed in Breathitt County.

. Lewis Wholesale of Whitesburg is now the local agent for the popular Town Talk Flour.

. Six miles have been graded up Kingscreek, leading out from the L&N Railroad at Roxana, and are now ready for the laying of standard-gauge rail steel set to begin in a few days. A narrow-gauge rail line will run parallel to this line. The Kingscreek and Linefork sections are coming to the front like a mad roaring lion.

Thursday, July 25, 1946 A photo on the front page of The Mountain Eagle shows Technical Sergeant Virgil B. Banks of Whitesburg being congratulated by an Army colonel with the Fifth Infantry Division at Camp Campbell, Ky., after Banks was presented the Silver Star Medal recently for gallantry in action.

. The Memorial Library started by the Jenkins Younger Woman’s Club is now open with more than 500 books available.

. Kentucky Attorney General Eldon S. Dummit has filed lawsuit in Franklin Circuit Court seeking dissolution of the Ku Klux Klan charter first recognized by the state in 1924. Dummit says the Ku Klux Klan is a lawless, seditious organization with Nazi-like tendencies designed to create division.

. The Cumberland Lumber Company of Eolia has been purchased by Dan Baker of Neon and Arlie Hall of Rockhouse from previous owners A.C. Brown and his son, Pontie. Purchase price for the 2,100 acres of timberland, mill, etc., was $58,000.

. An evening drive turned into tragedy for a Whitaker family when Dennis Woods, 35, was killed when the vehicle in which he and his family were riding for pleasure was forced off the road at Whitaker, over an embankment, and into the river below. Woods’s wife and five children escaped injury.

. John M. Sims, a well-known Neon businessman, was killed July 22 when a drunk driver ran into Sims’s car at Norton, Virginia. Sims and his wife and daughter were returning to Neon from Knoxville, Tennessee when the drunk driver crashed into their vehicle, killing Mr. Sims, owner of American Dry Cleaning, and seriously injuring Mrs. Sims.

. Parking meters are being installed along the streets of Whitesburg, including both sides of Main Street down to the Craft Funeral Home, around the Letcher County Courthouse square, and down by the Presbyterian Church on Eagle Street. City officials say the meters are being installed to cut down on congested parking so that spaces are freed up for potential customers who need to do business with the downtown stores.

. Judge James M. Caudill has purchased the Sam Hush Store building in Neon from Dr. Bentley.

. The A.B. Francis wholesaler and jobber store in Whitesburg is going out of business and selling its entire stock and all fixtures.

Thursday, July 19, 1956 Neon City Police arrested Bobby Feril, 18, and accused him of stealing $400 in cash from the Bank of Neon during a series of break-ins he allegedly committed on Sunday night. Ferril, a Nashville, Tennessee jail escapee who formerly lived at Seco and Neon, was found hiding in the woods around Neon on Tuesday by Neon Police Chief Sam Franklin and Officer Jim Short. He made a full confession to the FBI and is being held in Pikeville awaiting trial. He is also accused of breaking into the Neon Drug Store, the 5 & 10 Cents Store, and the IGA Store.

. The Letcher Electric Company, formerly Collins Electric, on Main Street in Whitesburg is now under the new management of Mr. and Mrs. Shelby Sturgill and Mr. and Mrs. Randall Polly. The store will continue to carry a complete line of Hotpoint appliances.

. Letcher County Attorney Gordon R. Lewis is improving in a Lexington hospital after falling seriously ill on Saturday night.

. The Kentucky chapter of the National Association of Postmasters will hold its annual picnic and meeting in Letcher County later this week, atop Pine Mountain in the Picklesimer cabin near Whitesburg.

. 14th District Veterans of Foreign Wars Commander Ulis Hunsucker of Whitesburg was named the state’s Outstanding VFW Commander of the Year during a threeday meeting and ceremony held recently at the Seelbach Hotel in Louisville.

. “Meet Me In Vegas,” a film billed as the love story of America’s famed playground, will show at the Alene Theatre in Whitesburg Sunday and Monday, July 22 and 23.

. The Letcher County Fiscal Court has approved an operating budget of $152,514 for the fiscal year that began July 1.

. Jenkins Independent Schools had a bank balance of 575.66 at the end of the 1955-56 fiscal year that ended June 30. The district received $216,210.08 in operating funds for the fiscal year, while spending $215,634.42.

. Construction has started on Holmes Hall, a new $1.13 million women’s dormitory at the University of Kentucky. The building is named for UK’s Dean of Women, Sarah B. Holmes. [Note: The building, which was torn down recently, later became a dorm for freshmen men and the UK basketball team, which used the first floor for several years before moving into the original Wildcat Lodge after

Joe B. Hall became head coach.]

Thursday, July 21, 1966 A 16-year-old Neighborhood Youth Corps aid in the Head Start program was killed and three other young people were injured this afternoon when a coal truck collided with a carry-all returning children to their homes after Head Start classes. The accident occurred on a narrow portion of KY 160 near Roxana after the 1958 carry-all collided with a coal truck, which hit the carryall’s right front door where the victim was seated.

. Jack Little, whose family has owned the Gulf Oil Products distributing agency in Letcher County for the past 35 years, announced this week that he has sold the distributorship to W. Don Childers and will move to Lexington. The Littles had held the Gulf franchise since it was first established here. Childers has been associated with Gulf Oil for the past eight years, serving as sales representative here before moving to Knoxville, Tennessee in 1961.

. “Well, the rains have come at last. Dog days have set in wet, so we probably will have rain for at least 40 days,” writes Millstone correspondent Mabel Kiser.

. The Whitesburg Block Company, owned by C. B. Bradshaw and located near Mayking, is for sale.

. Jane Fonda and Lee Marvin star in “Cat Ballou,” showing at the Alene Theatre in Whitesburg through July 27.

. Local Public Assistance officials are declining to help an injured Letcher County man who is unable to continue working in the small truck mine where he was employed. The 26-year-old Mayking man has been out of work since breaking his ankle four months ago after falling from the top of a shed that he was helping to tear down. Unable to feed his family, he disobeyed a doctor’s orders and returned to work in the mine on July 13. After only an hour on the job he snapped the screws that were holding a metal plate placed in his ankle and had to be taken back to the hospital.

Thursday, July 29, 1976 The final $55,000 for a $1.3 million house-site development project in Jenkins was granted Tuesday by the Letcher County Fiscal Court. The project will provide 326 house sites on two tracts of land.

. District softball play got under way last weekend in Jenkins in a double elimination tournament, which will send the winner and runner-up to the regional tourney in Prestonsburg.

Wednesday, July 30, 1986 It is two feet long, green, eats ducks, and lives in the Boone Fork of the Kentucky River. “It” is either a baby alligator or a baby Caiman (a related species native to South America).

. At least six Jenkins-area men were to appear in Pike District Court today on charges of operating a surface mine without a license.

. The fall terms begins in the Letcher County school system for all students on Wednesday, August 13.

Wednesday, July 31, 1996 Members of a group studying the need for water and sewer service in Letcher County hope to file a formal application with the Kentucky Public Service Commission for establishment of a countywide water/sewer district before the end of August.

. The closing of Hemphill School and changes in some school district boundaries in the Letcher County school system have resulted in some changes in bus routes, school officials said this week.

. The Whitesburg Yellowjackets, coming off stellar backto back seasons, will present a rebuilding challenge for coach Doug Chandler in 1996. After going 12-2 and losing in the Class AA state semi-finals to Danville in 1994, the ‘Jackets finished 10-2 last year after losing at unbeaten Erlanger Lloyd in the second round of the play-offs.

Wednesday, July 26, 2006 The Letcher County Board of Education approved a proposed vocational education school to be built adjacent to Letcher County Central High School. The two-story model was presented by Charlie Barnhardt of Sherman-Carter-Barnhardt Architects of Lexington.

. Had he lived, author James Still would have been 100 on July 16. As part of its annual Appalachian Writers Workshop, Hindman Settlement School will remember Still with a special 100th birthday celebration.

. Hunters have just a few more days to apply for a chance to hunt elk in Kentucky this year. The deadline to buy an elk quota hunt application is July 31.

. Courtney Jackson was crowned queen recently at a Red, White and Blue Pageant held in Hazard. She and her mother were chosen for mommy-daughter look alike. Her parents are Donald and Daisy Jackson of Kingscreek. She is the granddaughter of Cleo Roark, also of Kingscreek, and the late Burnett Hogg.



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