Whitesburg KY

The Way We Were

Clips from available Mountain Eagle pages since our founding in 1907


Hitler has announced that he will destroy Democracy. He has also announced he will destroy Christianity. Government of the people by the people is on trial and its archenemy is waging against it the most terrible war of all time. Can England hold out against him? We believe she can and will. She has the glory of an empire, a land of liberty to fight for.

Taut feelings over the conscription issue and a charge of “traitor” muttered by Representative Vincent (D-Ky.) at Representative Sweeney (D-Oh.) had the two locked in a free-swinging, hard-hitting fist-fight on the House floor last night. Sweeney has just finished opposing the conscription bill and accusing President Roosevelt of trying to involve the United States in the war.

Reserved seat tickets for the University of Kentucky home football games went on sell on September 1. The Wildcats are scheduled to play four home games. The games and the cost of tickets are Baldwin Wallace $1, Washington and Lee $2, George Washington $3, and Georgia Tech $3.

Mark Hall was a visitor in Knoxville and Middlesboro over the Labor Day holiday. While there he visited Newfound Gap and heard the President dedicate the Great Smoky Mountain National Park.


The coal mining industry of Kentucky is unanimously against any legislation that would usurp the traditional role of the states as sponsors of safety legislation, according to recent poll conducted by the Kentucky Chamber of Commerce. Questionnaires were sent out by the Chamber to all Kentucky coal producers to ascertain the thinking and reaction to pending federal legislation which would regulate safety conditions in coal mines.

Approximately $250 worth of goods were stolen in a break-in of the Jesse Holbrook Supply Co. on the Kentucky River Tuesday night. Sheriff Stamper said that his men are making an investigation.

A Letcher County soldier was killed Wednesday night when the car he was driving collided with a truck on U.S. 119 near Haymond. The soldier, Billy Horn of Jenkins, died instantly, authorities of the Fleming Hospital said.

Dana Andrews and Gene Tierney star in “Where the Sidewalk Ends” playing at Isaac’s Alene Theatre this week.


A petition bearing more than 1,000 names was sent to Gov. Bert T. Combs this week to asks special action to halt strip mining of coal in the eastern Kentucky Coalfields. Most Letcher County officials were among the signees. The petition was circulated by Raymond Rash and others on the upper end of Letcher County. Their homes are threatened by spreading strip mining operations in the area.

Former County Judge James M. Caudill of Neon told The Mountain Eagle this week he will be a candidate for county judge in next year’s Democratic primary.

“Torpedo Zone” starring John Saxon and Linda Cristal will play this week at Isaac’s Alene Theatre in Whitesburg. Also coming is “Walt Disney’s Toby Tyler or Ten Weeks With a Circus” starring Kevin Corcoran.

Army Specialist Four Johnnie R. Brown, son of Otis Brown of Sandlick Road, Whitesburg, is a driver in the Infantry Company B in Ulm, Germany. He entered the Army in October 1958.


The shortage of railroad cars continues to plague the coal industry in Eastern Kentucky. Several Letcher County coal operators said they were receiving only enough railroad cars from the Louisville and Nashville Railroad for two days’ mining. As a result, several mines with coal orders sufficient to work five or six days a week expect to have to curtail production sharply in the near future.

The possibility has developed that the Little Shepherd Trail may be extended from Whitesburg to Jenkins and beyond in the near future. County Tax Commissioner Sam C. Webb, a longtime leader of the Little Shepherd Trail Association, said the state may have $500,000 or $600,000 on hand which could be used for extension toward Jenkins.

“No loitering” signs will go up soon on the Main Street bridge across the Kentucky River, a favorite resting spot for young and old men in Whitesburg. City council told police to erect the signs after Yellowjacket Café owners T.J. and Aileen Wilcox told of bad language and other problems involving persons who stay around the bridge.

Ike Adams, of Letcher, is a Pikeville College senior and president of the Student Government Association. He recently addressed freshmen at an orientation program at the college.


State officials were in Jenkins this week trying to come up with a solution for the city’s nearly week-long water shortage which officials have termed “critical.” The Jenkins City Council declared a state of emergency Monday because many residents had been without water since Saturday. A combination of leaking water lines, a lack of rainfall, and an increased demand for water took its toll on the city’s reservoir and left the water level in the lake too low for adequate use.

Several hundred coal miners employed by U.S. Steel Co. coal mines in Lynch marched upon the coal company offices Friday in what was one of the most unusual “job actions” ever in the Eastern Kentucky Coalfields. The miners, members of United Mine Workers Local 7425, gathered to demonstrate against layoff policies of the giant coal company. U.S. Steel, they charged, was laying off miners with a half-dozen years experience and seniority, while keeping new employees on the job.

The Whitesburg High School football team will meet the Jenkins High School Cavaliers on the road Saturday — just 24 hours after playing Johns Creek. The two-games in-two nights situation developed after Johns Creek mistakenly scheduled both Jenkins and Whitesburg for a game Sept. 13.

Whitesburg officials are pointing proudly to a letter from the Kentucky Department for Local Government saying, “Our review of the accounting records for your city indicates that there are no recommendations we could make that would improve their effectiveness. Mary Craft and the two City Hall employees (Robin Bowen and Kathy Howard) are certainly aware of the importance of documentation and accuracy in their work.”


Letcher County and Whitesburg and Jenkins city officials will challenge the 1990 Census counts. Early Census Bureau figures show the population of Letcher County and much of eastern Kentucky dropped drastically, but local officials think the figures are wrong. The preliminary count shows Letcher County lost more than 12 percent of its population — nearly 4,000 persons — between 1980 and 1990.

The National Labor Relations Board has scheduled an October hearing on allegations that United Mine Workers acted improperly during a bitter campaign to unionize South East Coal Co. The NLRB said South East officials raised “substantial and material issues” by alleging union misconduct in a July 24 union vote.

A week after a new mandatory garbage ordinance took effect in Letcher County, many residents still haven’t been contacted by garbage haulers and Judge/ Executive Ruben Watts said he doesn’t expect everyone to be reached by the service. The fiscal court told the franchised garbage haulers two weeks ago that they were expected to contact residents and to compile a customer list for the county. Watts said last week that only one haul had brought in a list.

Seven people will be inducted into the Mountain Heritage Hall of Fame. They are the late William R. Adams of Jeremiah, Dave L. Craft of Mayking, the late Remious Day of Whitesburg, Hassie Breeding Helton of Jeremiah, the late Dr. T.M. Perry of Jenkins, the late Remus N. Swisher of Whitesburg, and Letcher County Judge/ Executive Ruben Watts of Blackey.


Ten members of the Letcher Volunteer Fire and Rescue Ambulance Inc. have sued former Fire Chief Al Adams and two other members, and then expelled them from the department. Letcher Circuit Judge Sam Wright issued a temporary injunction preventing Adams, former assistant chief Elvis Sexton or former treasurer Darrell Sexton from transferring any assets of the corporation or entering into any leases involving the corporation until further orders from the court.

An engineer working for the Letcher County Board of Education is expected to recommend three possible sites for a consolidated high school. The three sites expected to be recommended are between Premium and Mayking.

The City of Blackey’s Neville Caudill Park is open and ready for use. The land was donated to the city by the Caudill family.

Legendary country music singer Martha Carson will perform on September 9 at the Neon Days festivities. Known as the first lady of gospel and a former member of the Grand Ole Opry, she is a native of Neon.


Letcher Volunteer Fire and Rescue bought three new ambulances recently, including a pink one which is dedicated to transporting cancer patients to receive chemotherapy and radiation treatments. The ambulance has pink ribbon decals on the sides of the vehicle as well as a decal of a fire hose made to look like a pink rose.

The City of Whitesburg honored coal miners on Labor Day by giving away gifts donated by local businesses. Whitesburg Mayor James W. Craft estimated that the city gave away around $3,000 in merchandise to retired and working coal miners at River Park in Whitesburg. Prize packages included dental exams, gift certificates to local restaurants, and savings bonds.

Royal Crown Cola of Whitesburg will celebrate its 64th year in business and the 95th birthday of Bradley Bentley with an open house at the RC Plant on September 11.

Johnny Johnson and Whitney Smith of Letcher County Central High School have been named Sen. Jeff Green Scholars. The students earned a 4.0 grade point average all four years of high school.

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