Whitesburg KY

The way we were

Clips from Mountain Eagle front pages over the past 50 years



February 26, 1959

A tip from a Letcher County resident led Kentucky State Police to arrest seven persons here Tuesday afternoon on charges of transporting stolen automobiles across state lines. A local resident observed the men changing auto license tags at the junction of U.S. 119 and KY 15 and notified state police.

The annual meeting of the Letcher County Chapter of the National Foundation was held Feb. 18 at Craft Funeral Home in Whitesburg. Last year the Letcher County Chapter assisted 16 old polio patients and six patients stricken in 1958. The cost for medical care for these patients amounted to $25,357.46.

The 53rd District Basketball Tournament will be held at Whitesburg High School this year. For the first time a “B” team tournament will be held as a separate tournament.

“The Female Animal” starring Hedy Lamarr and Jane Powell is playing at the Alene Theater in Whitesburg.

February 27, 1969

Jenkins Mayor Percy Elkins reports that the state highway department will take another look at the question of a route for U.S. 23 through Jenkins. Elkins said he recently met with State Highway Commissioner William B. Hazelrigg and that the commissioner said another route would be surveyed back of Lakeside.

No word has been received as to whether Whitesburg still is in the running as the site of a proposed factory. Definite word from the firm has been expected sometime this week.

Slab bacon is 49 cents a pound at the A&P Food Store. A&P Coffee is 39 cents a pound.

March 1, 1979

Three years after 26 men died in twin explosions at the Scotia mine in Oven Fork, federal Mine Health and Safety Administration (MSHA) officials are calling the mine “one of the safest mines in Letcher County.” Hargis Ison, supervisor of coal mine inspectors in MSHA’s Whitesburg office, attributed the “safe” mine condition to two factors — increased inspection by his office and rehabilitation efforts undertaken by the company since the March 1976 disaster.

The Blackey town council has reversed its earlier decision to deny Universal Studios access to the town as a location for filming “Coal Miner’s Daughter”, and signed a contract with the movie company Tuesday.

The Department of Transportation plans to file condemnation proceedings this week in an effort to obtain a waste disposal site for the proposed Whitesburg bypass.

Torn between constructing the new Fleming-Neon municipal building in Fleming or Neon, the city council voted in a special meeting Monday night to build two new structures. The council decided to build an addition to the current fire department building in Neon as well as constructing a new multi-purpose building at the site of the old Fleming depot.

March 1, 1989

Whitesburg officials have sent proposed bylaws and articles of incorporation for a possible branch of Southeast Community College to be reviewed by college officials.

A Lexington bookstore has given one Letcher County elementary school books for its remedial readers, on the condition that the children be allowed to keep them. Neil Van Uum, owner of Joseph-Beth Booksellers in Lexington, has donated $200 worth of books of fiction for beginning readers to West Whitesburg Elementary School.

It has taken more than 20 years for Ed Ison to receive the Purple Heart he won in Vietnam. The medal came two weeks ago without fanfare and without ceremony in a small, brown cardboard box, 21 years after he was wounded.

March 3, 1999

Work could begin as early as this week on three aspects of the proposed Red Fox Tri-County Development near Carr Fork Lake in Knott County. A three-county authority appointed to oversee the recreational and industrial development gave the go ahead last week to begin engineering the access road to a proposed golf course and to hire an engineer to work with companies mining the site The authority also planned to organize subcommittees to approach property owners about committing their land to the project.

A grant from the U.S. Department of Commerce will allow a nonprofit group to install public computers connected to the Internet in Letcher and three other eastern Kentucky counties. A separate grant from Southern Rural Development would allow the Letcher County Action Team to develop a site on the World Wide Web to highlight issues of importance to the county. The Action Team will seek the grant to build a website in the fall.

“October Sky”, “Payback” and “My Favorite Martian” are playing this week at Whitesburg Cinema.

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