Whitesburg KY
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The Way We Were



Clips from available Mountain Eagle pages since our founding in 1907

Thursday, December 5, 1926 The Blackey Bluebirds, 10 to 7 winners over Whitesburg, are looking for games with other elementary school teams. If interested, contact manager Custer Back at Blackey.

. The boys are back in school at Middle Colley Elementary School. The corn crops they were out harvesting were good, the boys say.

. A.C. Craft was injured seriously Friday while gathering corn in Craftsville. He injured a hip while trying to keep a sled from overturning.

. The Whitesburg Baptist Church will hold Sunday school and church services in the courtroom in the Letcher County Courthouse until the furnace at the church can be overhauled.

. Local baker Willard Collins has moved his operations to Neon, which he says is a more central location for his business.

. The Whitesburg Telephone Company gives notice again that it is “closing up its business and winding up its affairs,” said company president Stella Starkey.

Thursday, December 12, 1946 The ownership of one of the oldest and largest structures to rise with the advent of coal mining in the Jenkins district has changed hands. D.D. Querry, of Marion, Virginia, announced the purchase from the Consolidation Coal Company of its recreation building and hotel in Jenkins at price of more than $50,000. The sale of the building, erected in 1913, is in line with moves by major coal firms in the eastern Kentucky fields to divest themselves of realty holdings. Quarry says he will rebuild the theater, damaged by fire a year ago, and enlarge the hotel.

. Bulldozers and other road-building equipment are in place and being used to build the new road from Blackey to Roxana.

. Coal production is nearly back to normal in the eastern Kentucky fields after a 17-day coal strike.

. Kingdom Come High School defeated Whitesburg High School on Friday night, 44 to 26, to open the 1946-47 season for both teams. On Monday night, Whitesburg defeated Stuart Robinson School, 21-19. The Yellowjackets are now practicing each day in the Fleming gym.

. The Jenkins Cavaliers remain unbeaten in high school basketball after wins over Dorton and Van Lear.

. 1947 Chauffeur’s Badges required under state law are available to all truck, taxi and bus drivers from the office of Letcher Circuit Court Clerk W.L. Stallard Jr.

. Miss Kentucky Madonna Smith of Jenkins has returned to Letcher County from Birmingham, Alabama, where she was made a princess at the King’s Court for the Christmas Carnival and the 75th birthday of that city.

. “O.S.S.,” the first motion picture based on the heroic exploits of the daring men and women of the government’s intelligence service, will play at the Kentucky Theatre in Whitesburg on Sunday and Monday. The film stars Alan Ladd and Geraldine Fitzgerald.

. New cars from the Kaiser and Frazier production lines in Willow Run, Michigan are now available at Robinson- Copley Motor Company at Potter’s Fork, Neon.

Thursday, December 6, 1956 Voters, 634 votes to 344, defeated a ballot question that would have increased general-purpose property tax for schools in Jenkins.

. New wooden floors will be installed in bridges at Kingdom Come Road, Linefork, Whitco, Sergent, and Craft’s Colly. Similar projects have already been completed at Thornton and Millstone.

. Letcher County Jailer Johnnie Fulton announces he will be a Democrat Party candidate for the office of Sheriff of Letcher County.

. The Neon community is mourning the death of wellknown painter William V. “Sonny” Holbrook, who died unexpectedly after suffering a heart attack at his home December 3.

. The Whitesburg Post Office is advertising a job opening for the position of fireman-laborer. The beginning salary is $3,300 per year.

. James W. Witt, son of Mr. and Mrs. James B. Witt of Whitesburg, was promoted to the rank of U.S. Army Major during a recent ceremony at the Pentagon. An 18-year veteran, he saw duty in New Guinea and the Philippine Islands during World War II. Later commissioned a 2nd Lieutenant, he was assigned to the Eighth Army in Korea in 1951, where he remained until the end of hostilities. In 1954, he was assigned to his most recent position in the Army’s Office of the Chief Signal Corps Officer in Washington.

. Co-Captains Tyrone Bentley and Donnie Browning, halfbacks Don Skaggs and Carl Swanger, ends Can Bentley and Billy Joe Hall, guard Roger Dishman, quarterback Leon Sergent, tackle Harry Johnson, end Donald Meade and tackle Jesse Carter are seniors who helped lead the Fleming-Neon Pirates to one of their most successful football seasons in many years.

. The Rainbow Grille in Whitesburg, the place where “folks meet to eat,” is now open 24 hours a day.

. Bert Francis, a Whitesburg High School graduate and son of Mrs. Sabina Francis of Whitesburg, has been elected to serve as treasurer of the Union College Chapter of the American Chemical Society. Francis is a sophomore majoring in chemistry at the Barbourville school. Also at Union College, Shirley Jo Wojciechowski of Jenkins has been elected treasurer of the sophomore class. She plans to be a teacher when she graduates.

. Esther Mohn and Frank Corrello were married November 22 at the Graham Memorial Presbyterian Church in Whitesburg. She is a daughter of Mr. and Mrs. Alvin Hall of Ermine. He is a son of Mr. and Mrs. Nick Corrello of Fleming. The couple spent a short honeymoon in Tennessee, where they attended the UK-UT football game.

. Actors Leo Gorcey, Huntz Hall and the Bowery Brothers star in the film “Crashing Las Vegas,” showing Sunday and Monday at the Alene Theatre of Whitesburg.

Thursday, December 8, 1966 The death of a Knott County man this week brought the total number of traffic fatalities in Letcher County this year to 17. The total gives Letcher County the highest accident rate for its population of any county in Kentucky,

state police said.

. A Mountain Eagle editorial said, “The jobless fathers program (formerly called the Work Experience and Training Program) now is providing the food and he clothing for 9,000 mountain men and their families — some 40,000 persons in all. Take away the program and most of these men and their wives and children face immediate danger.”

. Funeral services were held Wednesday for Ben A. Adams, long a prominent figure in Letcher County political and business affairs. At the time of his death Adams was serving his second term as Letcher County Jailer, a post to which he was first elected in 1962.

. Joint funeral services were held December 1 for two young Colson area residents who were killed in an automobile accident near Chicago on Sunday, November 27. They were Stephen Daniel Adams, 19, and Larry Dean Vance, 16.

Thursday, December 9, 1976 Two methane gas explosions, which killed 26 men in the Scotia mine at Ovenfork, were inevitable because of mine conditions and lax enforcement of safety regulations, a report by the House subcommittee on labor standards says. The report said the two explosions could have been prevented had either the company of the federal Mine Enforcement and Safety Administration taken ordinary precautions.

. Gas levels have reached potentially explosive mixtures in one large area of the Scotia mine at Ovenfork and, if present trends continue, another sealed section of the mine will contain ignitable methane gas within a week, federal officials said Tuesday. Mine Enforcement and Safety Administration official Lawrence Phillips said tests showed that methane gas had reached explosive proportions in a “massive” worked out area of the mine and that another sealed section is quickly reaching the point where the gas is combustible.

. The marriage of Sarah Lucille Gish and Freddy Dean Oakes took place August 7 at Thornton. The bride is a daughter of Mr. and Mrs. Thomas Edward Gish of Thornton. Mr. Oakes is the son of Mr. and Mrs. Johnny Oakes of Weeksbury.

. Ground chuck is 89 cents a pound at the A&P food store. Smoked ham is 79 cents a pound.

Wednesday, December 10, 1986 Former Jenkins resident David Zegeer will leave his job as assistant secretary of labor for mine health and safety on December 31. Zegeer said he will return to Lexington, where his wife is a professor in the University of Kentucky College of Nursing. “The only thing I know I want to do, and this might sound a little crazy, is to go down to Jenkins and just spend a week talking to people on the streets, in the mines” he said. Zegeer left Letcher County in 1977, when he retired as manager of the Bethlehem Steel coal operations in eastern Kentucky. He came to Jenkins as a surveyor in 1946.

Members of the Jenkins High School Scholastic Challenge team will appear Sunday on the Kentucky Education Television Scholastic Challenge program. They will compete against students from Providence, Hickman County, Belfry, Carroll County and Trinity high schools. Members of the Jenkins team are Paul Johnson, Robin Pennell and Patrick Little. The team’s faculty advisor is Ann Titsworth.

. The Whitesburg Yellowjackets opened their 1986-87 basketball season with a come-from-behind 60-51 victory of visiting June Buchanan on December 2. The Fleming-Neon Lady Pirates ran their record to 2-0 with impressive victories over Elkhorn City and Jenkins last week.

. Pine Mountain Settlement School and community will present the annual Nativity Play on December 14 at the chapel.

Wednesday, December 11, 1996 A state official says between 40 and 50 miners have signed up for unemployment insurance benefits in the wake of a mine closing by Golden Oak Mining Company of Whitesburg. An official with the Department of Unemployment Services in Whitesburg said the miners were laid off the day before Thanksgiving, and that all of them have signed up to receive jobless benefits.

. Letcher County’s application to form a countywide water and sewer district is now safely in the hands of Don Mills, executive director of the Kentucky Public Service Commission, who says it will be three to six months before the commission can approve the county’s request. Letcher Judge/Executive Carroll A. Smith hand-carried the application back to Frankfort December 5 after the Letcher Fiscal Court made necessary changes to the application to meet the commission’s regulations.

Wednesday, December 13 2006 The Mine Safety and Health Administration has published a final rule requiring mine operators to have more emergency breathing devices, better evacuation training, and a quicker response during accidents. The federal rules publicized Dec. 8 were finalized after MSHA held a series of public hearings on a set of temporary, yet stringent, mine safety regulations.

. The Jenkins City Council voted to disband the city’s parks and recreation board, including the Jenkins Days Festival Committee. A vote to go into executive session to discuss the festival committee came after a council member raised a question about the existence of two city bank accounts in the auditor’s report and the city clerk replied the festival committee had opened an unauthorized account after obtaining the city’s Federal Tax Identification Number.

. Christmas in the Park will take place December 15 at the River Park in Whitesburg.

. The Jenkins Lady Cavaliers have started the year with wins over June Buchanan, and Pound and Ervinton, Va. Their only loss came at Owsley County.



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