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The Way We Were

Clips from available Mountain Eagle pages since our founding in 1907
Fans gather outside Apple, headquarters of the Beatles in Savile Row following the announcement of the split between Paul McCartney and the other three members of the world famous pop group in London on April 10, 1970. (AP Photo)

Fans gather outside Apple, headquarters of the Beatles in Savile Row following the announcement of the split between Paul McCartney and the other three members of the world-famous pop group in London on April 10, 1970. (AP Photo)

Beatles split

The legendary rock band the Beatles spent the better part of three years breaking up in the late 1960s, and even longer than that hashing out who did what and why. And by the spring of 1970, there was little more than a tangled set of business relationships keeping the group together.

Each of the Beatles was pursuing his musical interests outside of the band, and there were no plans in place to record together as a group. But as far as the public knew, this was just a temporary state of affairs.

That all changed on April 10, 1970, when an ambiguous Paul McCartney “self-interview” was seized upon by the international media as an official announcement of a Beatles breakup.

The occasion for the statements Paul released to the press that day was the upcoming release of his debut solo album, McCartney

Q: “Is this album a rest away from the Beatles or the start of a solo career?”

PAUL: “Time will tell. Being a solo album means it’s the start of a solo career… and not being done with the Beatles means it’s just a rest. So it’s both.”

Q: “Is your break with the Beatles temporary or permanent, due to personal differences or musical ones?”

PAUL: “Personal differences, business differences, musical differences, but most of all because I have a better time with my family. Temporary or permanent? I don’t really know.”

Q: “Do you foresee a time when Lennon-McCartney becomes an active songwriting partnership again?”

PAUL: “No.”

Nothing in Paul’s answers constituted a definitive statement about the Beatles’ future, but his remarks were nevertheless reported in the press under headlines like “McCartney Breaks Off With Beatles” and “The Beatles sing their swan song.” And whatever his intent at the time, Paul’s statements drove a further wedge between himself and his bandmates. In the May 14, 1970, issue of Rolling Stone, John Lennon lashed out at Paul in a way he’d never done publicly: “He can’t have his own way, so he’s causing chaos,” John said. “I put out four albums last year, and I didn’t say a … word about quitting.”

HISTORY.COM


THURSDAY, APRIL 11, 1940

Roadhouses located outside the incorporated towns of Blackey, Fleming, Jenkins, Neon and Whitesburg continue to be the county’s hotspots for crime, the Letcher County Grand Jury reports.

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The city of Jenkins lost some of its best people last week when Mr. and Mrs. J.T. Lyton, longtime residents of the Mudtown section, moved to a new farm home near Bristol.

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A professional baseball club is being organized in Jenkins.

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The Letcher County Health Department reports 333 births and 78 deaths here for the first three months of 1940. The number of births was reported by the 17 physicians and nine midwives who delivered the new babies.

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The Neon News, sister publication to The Mountain Eagle, has moved its office from the upper end of Neon to near the center of Main Street.

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“Finally, after Melanie died, Scarlett realized that she didn’t love Ashley, but Rhett. Scarlett was as changeable as a baby’s underwear. However, Rhett had had enough of Scarlett’s foolishness and when she told him, he says, ‘Frankly, my dear, I don’t give a damn.’ Neither, by this time, did the audience. They were glad to see the end, their own having become number than somewhat.” — A review of the 221-minute long hit movie “Gone with the Wind,” written by Jack Tarver of the Toombs County Democrat in Lyon, Georgia and reprinted in The Courier-Journal of Louisville and The Mountain Eagle of Whitesburg. The movie, which has been showing at several theaters in the region, will open at the Jenkins Theatre on Friday, May 10.

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The termination for lack of funds of the WPA road project from Dry Fork to Kingscreek to Linefork has left about 100 Letcher County men out of work.

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The body of Virgil Watts, who was killed in a motorcycle accident March 17 while serving in the Hawaiian Islands, is expected to be returned to Roxana for burial by April 25. Virgil was a son of Dan Watts.

THURSDAY, APRIL 13, 1950

Dave L. Craft, currently the principal at McRoberts Junior High School, has been hired as the new superintendent of the Letcher County School System. He will take over the post on July 1, succeeding Martha Jane Potter.

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Burley Hale, a resident of the Dow Collins estate in the west end of Whitesburg, has been granted a court injunction stopping garbage of the City of Whitesburg from being dumped on the estate. Presently, the city is dumping its garbage on Pine Mountain.

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Dewey Polly, owner of the Coca-Cola Bottling Works in Whitesburg, says he is beginning to believe that all people are basically honest after he received $10 in the mail from a former employee who said he stole it 21 years ago while working at Mr. Polly’s laundry in Jenkins. The man now lives in Virginia.

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Immune serum globulin, the anti-measles serum derived from human blood, was supplied by the American Red Cross to 15 children and babies affected by measles in Letcher County. Dr. R. Dow Collins, the county’s health officer, said that if given to children within four to five days after exposure to the measles, the serum usually spares the child serious complications such as pneumonia and encephalitis.

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A Letcher County man has in his possession a copy of the April 15, 1865 edition of the New York Herald newspaper that gives full details of President Abraham Lincoln’s death that morning after being shot by an assassin the night before. The 85-year-old newspaper, which has crumbled and yellowed with age, is owned by William Hogg of Mayking.

THURSDAY, APRIL 14, 1960

Kind words for the people of Letcher County marked the departing address of Courtney C. Wells, Hazard, as opened his last term as judge of the Letcher Circuit Court on Monday. Letcher becomes a separate circuit court district, effective June 16. The April term of Letcher Circuit Court was also the last for Commonwealth’s Attorney Tolbert Combs, also of Hazard. A new judge and commonwealth’s attorney for the Letcher circuit will be appointed by Governor Bert Combs.

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Dr. Robert Martin, manager of the successful Bert Combs campaign for governor, was hired Tuesday to the $15,000 a year post as president of Eastern Kentucky State College at Richmond.

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Funeral services were held Tuesday for three Letcher County men killed in a coal mine accident last Saturday near Webbville, eight miles southwest of Louisa. They were Marvin Hall, 50, and Arlie B. Hall, 52, brothers, both of Deane; and Daniel E. Short, 46, of Thornton. They died from injuries they suffered during a fall of “soap rock” in the mine they had been operating for only about two weeks.

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Another jailbreak was chalked up Wednesday night against the long record of Letcher County’s ancient and decrepit jail. Escapees this time are Jack Sexton, 32, of Whitesburg and Sammie Lee Mullins, 22, of Jenkins. The two men escaped after sawing and bending bars at the top of a window on the down-river side of the jail about 9:30 p.m. Sexton was being held on an armed robbery charge. Mullins had been convicted of drunk driving and check forgery.

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Letcher County will soon have $350,000 to spend on a new school building. Letcher Schools Superintendent William B. Hall said he considers the Seco-Kona-Millstone area and the Colson area as the most in need of a new school.

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Positions for substitute carrier and substitute clerk are now available at the Whitesburg Post Office. The salaries begin at $2 per hour. Applicants must pass a written test.

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Sixteen members of the Letcher High School basketball team were awarded varsity letters for their 22-win and 11-loss season that saw them win the 53rd District championship. The players are Clifton Caudill, Clayton Caudill, Ira Lee Watts, Coleman Ray Blair, Eddie Amburgey, Danny Bates, Coleman Blair, Bill Campbell, Bert Caudill, Elbert Caudill, Howard Stanfill, Boyd Hatton, Hirsche Riley, Billy Ray Newman, Bill Hatton, and Sampson Ison.

THURSDAY APRIL 9, 1970

Letcher County’s numerous truck mine operators have decided to try to conform to the new federal mine safety laws and to stay in business until or unless they are closed down by a mine inspector. This was the consensus of operators who held a get-together which succeeded in calming a lot of nerves. Most operators were busy this week trying to begin to meet federal requirements.

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Land which drains through Lilley’s Wood is being considered for auger mining. The state Division of Reclamation office in Hazard forwarded the application to auger to Frankfort without approval, saying the proposed mining operation would adversely affect the state forest. The state bought Lilley’s Wood last year to preserve the virgin timber on it and to create a biological laboratory.

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Willis Hawley, 44, of Fleming, was killed in the crash of a small private plane at the Whitesburg municipal airport. The accident was the first at the airport.

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U.S. Air Force Technical Sergeant Douglas R. Anderson, son of Mrs. Dora S. Anderson of Jenkins, is on duty at Phu Cat AB, Vietnam. Sgt. Anderson, a medical supervisor, is with the 37th U.S. Air Force Dispensary. He is a veteran of the Korean War.

THURSDAY APRIL 10, 1980

Four Jenkins City Councilmen denied ever taking part in a secret meeting, allegedly held March 16. At that meeting the councilmen apparently screened applications and hired a new city clerk to replace former clerk Ollie Carter, whom the same four councilmen voted to fire over a month ago. The meeting was brought to question by Councilman Roger Hall, who said he was never notified of the “special meeting.” Councilmen Vernon Addington, Doc Adkins, Robert Harris and Ray Banks, along with Jenkins Mayor Jesse Bates, all deny that the meeting was ever held.

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Letcher County is one of five eastern Kentucky counties that will receive special attention from the federal Office of Surface Mining over the next few months. Federal strip-mine inspection in the counties will be reviewed as part of the settlement of a lawsuit filed against the federal government by five environmental groups seeking to force OSM and the Department of the Interior to be more diligent in providing inspections of surface mines required under federal strip-mine control laws.

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The Women’s Employment Information Service will sponsor a meeting for women interested in coal mining training. The Coal Employment Project, which is coordinating a coal-mining program aimed at women, will be there to answer questions.

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Spec. 4 Grover C. Lowe, son of Mrs. Lucille Lowe of Pike County, recently was awarded a Certificate of Achievement in Baumholder, Germany. Lowe earned the award for meritorious service as a truck driver with the 8th Infantry Division.

WEDNESDAY APRIL 11, 1990

Tests on five kinds of meats from Whitesburg supermarkets have shown no sign of cyanide poisoning, despite several threatening telephone calls made last week. Meats at markets in the city were quarantined after an unidentified caller told the Poison Control Center in Louisville that he had gone to a grocery store in Whitesburg and injected the meat with cyanide.

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Letcher County’s unemployment rate rose by 1.5 percent in February, but remained the lowest in the Kentucky River Area Development District. The figure was 2.5 percent lower than in February, 1989.

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The state Revenue Cabinet is remapping Letcher County for the first time in nearly 40 years. Letcher County Property Valuation Administrator Randy Hall said property found in the survey that is not already on the tax rolls will be considered new property. Letcher County was one of the first counties in the state to be mapped after the state legislature ordered mapping in 1949.

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The City of Whitesburg has received a $17,000 Land and Water Conservation Fund grant which will enable it to complete work on the new city park on the banks of the Kentucky River just above the Upper Bottom. The city will match the grant with money obtained from the sale of lots in the Whitesburg housing project.

WEDNESDAY APRIL 5, 2000

Police have recovered two more stolen vehicles believed to be connected to a multi-state chop shop investigation in Letcher County. Two Ford pickup trucks with their vehicle identification numbers obscured were recovered from the parking lot of Whitesburg Appalachian Regional Hospital. Police have found about 10 stolen vehicles abandoned throughout the eastern end of the county since March 3, shortly after police and FBI agents searched alleged chop shop operations at Millstone and at Colson.

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The federal Office of Surface Mine Reclamation and Enforcement has given state mining regulators 10 days to “take appropriate actions” to correct alleged violations at a Cumberland River strip mine or explain why they haven’t. But a spokeswoman for the Kentucky Natural Resources and Environmental Protection Cabinet said state inspectors had already cited Harlan Reclamation Services Inc. for excessive dust when the federal agency issued its notice. Residents of Colliers Creek had filed complaints about the dust from coal trucks traveling on the blacktop road in front of their houses.

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“The Letcher County Historical Society is compiling information on anyone in Letcher County who served in any of the U.S. armed forces at any time,” writes Jeremiah correspondent Delana Banks. “Please submit a picture (preferably in uniform) with information about the individual.”

Pictured in The Mountain Eagle this week are Mickey Stines and Mike Tackett, both of Neon, who were two of several contestants in a recent bench press contest. Freddie Sergent of Whitesburg won the under-18 category by pressing 285 pounds, while Donald McCall, also of Whitesburg, took the over-18 title by pressing 400 pounds.

WEDNESDAY APRIL 7, 2010

Two meetings, one in Pikeville and one in Hazard, may be the only opportunities most Letcher County residents will have to address the Public Service Commission about proposed rate increases from American Electric Power and Kentucky Power Company. AEP is seeking a 35 percent hike in its rates. Letcher County Commonwealth’s Attorney Edison G. Banks II said at the meetings people can speak about the hardships many suffered as the result of a power outage Dec. 18 which affected more than 7,000 homes, some for more than a week. Earlier this year Banks asked a Letcher County grand jury to conduct an investigation to determine whether Kentucky Power’s lack of preventive maintenance may have contributed to the severity of the power outage in December.

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The Upper Big Branch mine in West Virginia, where at least 25 workers were killed an explosion on Monday, had been cited for 600 violations in less than a year and a half, some of them for not properly ventilating methane — the highly combustible gas suspected in the blast. The mine is owned by Massey Energy, a powerful and politically connected company in Appalachia, known for producing big profits as well as safety and environmental violations and big damage awards for grieving widows.

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A semi-professional football team, the Letcher County Wolves, is one of 59 teams in the Alliance Football League. The Barbourville Bandits and the Pike County Knights are also new to the league this year.

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A celebration of the 2010 Census in Whitesburg will take place April 16 at Whitesburg City Hall. Mayor James W. Craft has proclaimed April 16 “Census Day” in Whitesburg.

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