Whitesburg KY

The way we were

Clips from Mountain Eagle front pages over the past 50 years



May 8, 1958

County Road Foreman Hassel Stamper promised today that every road in Letcher County will be put back in good condition this year. He urged the people of the county to be patient until the work could be done.

The Letcher County Board of Education apparently does not plan to ask taxpayers this year to vote a tax to improve schools in the county.

Members of the Blackey Elementary School Parent-Teacher Association announced plans this week to keep their group active throughout the summer.

Bacon squares are 39 cents a pound at the A&P Food Store. Salmon steaks are 69 cents a pound.

May 9, 1968

Jenkins High School is emerging as a leader among Kentucky mountain schools in a sport that is relatively new to the area – running, jumping, and the other events that go to make up a track meet. So far this season the Jenkins track team has won two track meet and has finished second in another.

David Frith, the young Canadian who spent the past week in the Letcher County Jail, has turned out to be not so Canadian after all. In fact, he is not David Frith. It turns out that he is Bernard Charles Jillson, age 20, a deserter from the U.S. Marine Corps.

The Kingdom Come Elementary School at Linefork has been selected to receive a gift of a “Presidential Reference Library” donated by Encyclopedia Britannica on the occasion of its 200th anniversary. Included among the books are the 15-volume Britannica Junior Encyclopedia, and the 24-volume Compton’s Encyclopedia, and other works on science and literature.

Chuck roast is 43 cents a pound this week at the A&P Food Store. Beef liver is 48 cents a pound.

May 11, 1978

The federal government has fined the Scotia Coal Co. $267,897 for 59 violations of mine safety laws found in the investigation following the March 1976 explosions at the Scotia Mine.

The Sixth Circuit Court of Appeals has upheld judgment against the United Mine Workers in a $2.3 million damage suit filed by Scotia Coal Co. 12 years ago. Scotia, owned by Blue Diamond Coal Co., filed the suit in July 1966. The union had gone on strike the previous spring after the company refused to accept the UMW’s national contract, and Scotia accused the union of violating antitrust laws by conspiring with major coal companies to force the union’s national contract on all coal producers.

Coal production in Kentucky experience a record year in 1977 despite the drop-off in mining caused by the coal strike which began in December. Kentucky’s surface and underground mining operations produced 147,827,929 tons of coal last year.

Letcher County teachers learned this week that increases in state power equalization money, for which they fought during the 1978 General Assembly, will probably not be used to pay higher salaries.

May 11, 1988

A Letcher Circuit Jury is expected to being hearing testimony later this week in the trial of an Isom couple who are accused in the murders of three people here last August. The couple, Anthony Smith, 21, and Carolyn Smith, 22, are charged in the burning deaths of Mrs. Smith’s parents and her mentally retarded brother.

An early morning bomb threat sent state police to Beckham Bates Elementary School, but a search of the building turned up nothing.

Charles G. Madden of Letcher found a vintage Coca-Cola bottle completely intact in a ditchline near Elk Creek, soon after a bull dozer finished work in the area. The bottle is molded with the name Coca-Cola on both sides, and the legend ‘trade mark reg. bottle pat’d Dec. 25, 1923.’ The bottom of the bottle is stamped Whitesburg, Ky.

May 13, 1998

The cities of Jenkins and Hindman will share a $240,000 grant from the Appalachian Regional Commission to help them with “comprehensive strategic planning and technical assistance efforts.” The ultimate goal of each community will be to create 35 new jobs within the next three years.

A 1998 Legislative Performance Survey ranks Rep. Paul Mason of Letcher County eighth best among the 100 members of the Kentucky House of Representatives.

Fourteenth Region basketball official Tommy Hutton, of McRoberts, received an award for Most Outstanding Official for the 1997-98 basketball season from the Kentucky High School Athletic Association.

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