Whitesburg KY
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The Way We Were

Clips from available Mountain Eagle pages since 1907.


OCTOBER 29, 1931

Dewey Brashears, the well-known and highly respected young man from Smoot Creek who shot and killed 22-year-old schoolteacher Verna Frazier two Fridays ago, has been released from the Seco Hospital after being treated there for a self-inflicted gun wound. Frazier, his estranged girlfriend, taught at the Elsiecoal school.

Tax collector H.C. Brumett has ordered the sale two living room suites and a mule to settle tax bills two men owe the Jenkins Common School District. Brumett has ordered the sale of the mule and one living room suite to settle the $36.14 bill owed by Sam Vanover. A second living room suite and a Singer sewing machine are being sold to settle a $42.15 tax bill owed by Frank Hazen.

The Independent Order of Oddfellows at Fleming sponsored a successful fundraising box supper last Friday.

The Whitesburg High School Yellowjackets football team, unbeaten and unscored upon so far this season, will visit the Hazard Bulldogs on Friday at 2:30 p.m. The Yellowjackets are coming off a 56-0 defeat of the Lynch Bulldogs in a game that saw Sam Potter score six touchdowns. Sam’s brother, Lexie, also scored a touchdown.

A number of carpenters are working on remodeling the Presbyterian Church building on Back Street in Whitesburg. We understand the building is to be used later as a manse for the pastor.

Commenting on the conviction of Chicago gangster Al Capone, Mountain Eagle editor Nehemiah Webb writes, “Now watch big money and fear of other gangsters hold up his sentence indefinitely.”

This year’s Major League Baseball “hero” is Philadelphia Athletics pitcher Lefty Grove, who finished the season with a won-loss record of 31-4. The tall Marylander has won more games in a season than any lefthander in baseball.

Barbara Stanwyck stars in the Frank Capra-directed movie “Miracle Woman,” showing next Tuesday and Wednesday at the Kentucky Theatre in Whitesburg. Also on tap is a newsreel of famous football plays by Knute Rockne, the famous Notre Dame player and coach who was killed in a plane crash in Kansas earlier this year. Rockne is credited with helping to popularize the forward pass in football.


OCTOBER 30, 1941

Sgt. Dave Cornett of Linefork has received a promotion to the rank of Staff Sergent in Company A of the 711th Engineer Battalion at Camp Claiborne, La. The 711th is the only active railway-operating battalion in the U.S. Army and is now constructing a 50-mile railroad between Camp Claiborne and Camp Polk, La.

Mr. Orland Eldridge has returned home from the Army after serving three years.

The students from Letcher County enrolled in Berea College held their first social on Saturday at the home of Mr. and Mrs. E.W. Lockin. Out of the 21 students from the county, 17 attended the social.

Marion L. Picklesimer, Seco, has been notified of his appointment to the November class of Army Aviation Cadet scholarship winners, to begin November 12. He will report to the Pilot Replacement Training Center at San Antonio, Texas, where his instruction will begin.

From The Eagle’s sister publication The Neon News:


OCTOBER 31 1941

Pvt. Burtis Franklin, son of Mr. and Mrs. A.K. Franklin of Whitesburg, was graduated from the Weather Observers course of the Chanute Field branch of the U.S. Army Air Corps Technical Schools.

The biography of Mr. Ray Pigman, son of Mr. and Mrs. Jasper Pigman of Whitesburg, will appear in the next issue of Who’s Who in American Colleges and Universities. Mr. Pigman is a senior at Georgetown College, and is president of the senior class, a member of the varsity football team and basketball team, and was chosen unanimously as fullback on the all-state football team in 1940.

The Daniel Church had a pie supper Saturday and raised $60. The proceeds will go to finish the church building.

Three members of the Class of 1941 visited Stuart Robinson School. They are Denver Adams who now has a position at McRoberts; Edward Kelley, who is working at Harriman, Tenn.; and Eddie Sparkman, who is a member of the freshman class of Pikeville College.


NOVEMBER 1, 1951

The body of Pfc. A.C. Anderson, 18, who was killed in action in Korea on May 27, 1951, will arrive at Whitesburg by train tomorrow night, November 2. Pfc. Anderson, the son of Mr. and Mrs. Alex Anderson, Jenkins, was a member of the 17th Infantry Division and had been in Korea two and half months at the time of his death.

Printers of The Hazard Herald, an afternoon daily newspaper, walked off the job October 30 in an effort to force recognition of the United Construction Workers Union as their bargaining agent. Fred B. Bullard, publisher of the newspaper, said all seven men in the composing room walked out. A picket line was established around the Herald office, but Bullard said he did not regard the walkout as a strike, but the printers just left their jobs.

Sixty-five youths, representing four Letcher County Scout Troops, gathered at Pine Mountain Friday and Saturday for the Letcher District Camporee sponsored by the Lonesome Pine Council.

Students of the Whitesburg School System cleared the building in one minute in a fire drill during Fire Prevention Week. The fire department arrived at the school three minutes after the alarm was sounded.


NOVEMBER 2, 1961

Letcher County leaders, in the move to obtain a state junior college at Blackey, were pleased at the report of a commission appointed by Governor Bert Combs which recommended a junior college in the Blackey-Hazard area. The group has been trying for several years to get the state to take over the old Stuart Robinson School buildings as a campus for a junior college.

A heavy vote of more than 8,000 is predicted in Tuesday’s general election in Letcher County. Voters will elect a new set of county officials and will decide whether to levy a special tax for public health purposes.

Bus service will be resumed between Hazard and Jenkins about November 20, Transit Coach Lines of Bowling Green announced. The firm is owned by Delmar Kincer, who plans to live at Mayking and operate one of the firm’s two 12-passenger buses himself.

William C. Cook, son of Martin Cook of Democrat, has completed the U.S. Armed Force Institute examination for General Education Development while serving aboard the radar picker destroyer USS Turner, operating with the Sixth Fleet in the Mediterranean.


NOVEMBER 11, 1971

The Letcher County Board of Education will decide Friday what further steps to take in its attempts to assure construction of an addition to Kingdom Come Settlement School. The board has been seeking some solution to the dilemma created two weeks ago when, for the second time, contractors’ bids on the building exceeded the money available.

The Kentucky Human Rights Commission has charged the U.S. Steel Corp. with racial discrimination at its Harlan County coal-mining operations. The commission began an investigation after three Blacks filed complaints they were denied promotions or employment. U.S. Steel agreed to correct the situation.

The Letcher County Public Assistance office has opened an extension office in Jenkins City Hall. The new location will serve residents of Burdine, Cromona, McRoberts, Payne Gap, and Jenkins.

“Ol’ Jack Frost has been coming practically every night for the last week or so,” write Jeremiah correspondent Nancy Elam. “It sure is rough on people who have to scrape that frost before coming to work. It has been so very cold. I guess winter has come.”


NOVEMBER 5, 1981

Democrats swept to easy victory in all but one countywide race in this week’s general election. The lone exception was Republican Peyton Reynolds, who edged out County Attorney Guy Palumbo in the race for Commonwealth’s Attorney. Former County Sheriff Ruben Watts was an easy winner in the race for Judge/Executive, and Seco native Ben “Buster” Taylor was elected Sheriff.

A proposal by the Reagan Administration allowing schools to serve ketchup and relish in the place of vegetables at lunch is dead. But despite the death of the Department of Agriculture proposal — which would have permitted smaller school lunch servings — Kentucky school meal programs are already hurting from the Reagan budget cutbacks. Because of the budget cuts for the next fiscal year, Kentucky will receive $5 million less than last year.

Daughert Surface Mining Inc., Oneida, Tenn., was fined $10,000 by U.S. District Judge Eugene E. Siller, Jr., on October 30 for removing coal illegally from National Forest lands. The incident involved the removal of an estimated 11,000 tons of coal from lands in the Daniel Boone National Forest on Anderson Mountain in Mc- Creary County between January 1, 1975 and December 31, 1977.

U.S. Army Pvt. Daniel W. Hicks, son of Mr. and Mrs. John L. Hicks of Chester, Ohio, has returned for a month of active duty as a recruiting aide. He is the grandson of Rence and Virgie Griffith, formerly of Ulvah, and Fred Stamper of Blackey.


OCTOBER 30, 1991

Kentucky State Police are investigating allegations by two Fayette County businessmen, Edward H. Coles II and Joe Hickey, that four pieces of heavy equipment belonging to them were taken by fraud and force near Whitesburg. Coles told police he was in Letcher County to sell the equipment — three of which were given to him by Hickey on consignment. Cole charges a man identifying himself as Bill Cornett told him he wanted to buy a bulldozer, a track loader, an excavator, and a lowboy trailer. Coles said he brought the equipment to Letcher County but was forced to unload it before returning to Lexington without being paid.

With election day nearly here, the race for Letcher circuit judge is overshadowing the campaign for governor and other state offices in Letcher County. Incumbent Judge F. Byrd Hogg is seeking a second full term as Circuit Judge, and Larry D. Collins is trying to unseat him. Hogg is campaigning on a platform of integrity, experience, and moral values, and Collins is campaigning on his record of leadership in a variety of civic endeavors and of “equal justice for all.”

Parents from Campbell’s Branch Elementary School are planning to fight a state plan that calls for the school to be closed. The parents say they will attend a facilities hearing in Whitesburg to protest the plan.


OCTOBER 31, 2001

Last year, Fleming- Neon, Letcher, and Whitesburg high schools all visited New York City for their senior trips. Fleming-Neon and Whitesburg also visited Washington, D.C. This year, none of the schools are planning to go to those cities. Worries of more terrorist attacks have led the schools to curtail their senior trip plans — possibly to the point of not going at all.

The Letcher County School District closed West Whitesburg Elementary and Whitesburg Middle School on Friday after an anthrax threat that school officials and police call a prank. Police were called to Whitesburg Middle School when a teacher moved a stack of mail on her desk and a white powder spilled out. Police collected the substance, sealed it in plastic, then drove it to the state Health Services Laboratory in Frankfort. Police believe that a student placed the envelope on the desk as a prank.

The Fleming-Neon Pirates closed out one of their most successful gridiron seasons ever Thursday night by beating neighboring Jenkins 48-13 to finish the regular season with a 9-1 mark. The Pirates finished the regular season tied with Paintsville for the District 8 championship.

Margaret M. Style has joined the U.S. Army under the Delayed Entry Program. Under the program, she may delay entering active duty for up to a year. She will report to Fort Leonard Wood, Waynesville, Mo., for basic training. She is the daughter of Judy C. and Robert A. Style of Jenkins.


NOVEMBER 2, 2011

Former Golden Years Rest Home administrator James F. “Chum” Tackett has pleaded guilty to felony theft charges for the second time in less than a month — this time to stealing more than $300,000 in state funds intended for the care of the rest home residents. In exchange for the plea, Tackett would be placed on probation for a period of 10 years and ordered to repay the stolen funds. The Letcher County Extension Service says on November 9 at 2 p.m., the federal government will conduct the first nationwide test of the Emergency Alert System. The test will last up to three and a half minutes. During this period, regularly scheduled television, radio, cable, and satellite shows will be interrupted as the system is being tested. The Letcher County Extension Service would like to ensure that the public is aware that this event will just be a test, and not a real emergency alert.

The Kentucky Department of Agriculture’s Mobile Science Activity Center will visit West Whitesburg Elementary School November 2 and Cowan Elementary School November 3. The center is a 42-foot-long trailer with 10 workstations to allow students to conduct investigations about agriculture and the environment. Using materials supplied in the unit, students can make corn plastic, lip balm, ice cream, and other products.

The Letcher County Central High School boys’ and girls’ cross-country teams were winners of the Area 9 District Cross Country Meet held at Pikeville.

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