This week in local history

Published 10:10 am Monday, April 22, 2019

By the Bell County Historical Society

The following events occurred during the week of April 21-27 in Bell County:

1890: The graduating class of Middlesboro High School was composed of Mary Ausmus, Nellie Cogan, Lula Vowels and Alva Cambell. The class motto was, “Finished Labors are Pleasant.”

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1893: A movement was afoot to help “Blind Billy” Green who had played he banjo at saloons to sustain himself. Since the revival at the M. E. Church, he had refused to go into saloons and was trying to get a fruit stand.

1905: Library Hall (now the Masonic Building on 20th) was being utilized as a high school.

1919: The “Trophy Train” visited Middlesboro with its exhibition of German arms and munitions, including a baby submarine. Everyone was urged to “see what our boys had to contend against when fighting the Huns.”

1922: The city of Middlesboro levied a tax of $.05 per $100 evaluation for an airport. The Bell County Fiscal Court had already voted a tax to buy land for the airport.

1927: Sam Turner, Police Court Judge, announced plans to enforce the ordinance “requiring all property owners to keep their property in order, with weeds cut, and all rubbish and garbage removed.” One policeman was assigned to inspect for violations.

1929: The First Baptist Church was beginning a week of celebration on the occasion of the opening of their new Educational Building.

1937: Herbert Silvers and Lee Farris, the debate team from Middlesboro High School, won the state championship and would compete for the national title.

1941: Floyd Ball, the state representative from Bell County, was appointed chairman of the Navy Relief Society to raise funds for widows and children of U. S. sailors killed in the war.

1950: The new Salvation Army building on East Cumberland was dedicated (now the office of Dr. David Sanford).

To learn more about local history, visit the Bell County Museum, located just north of the Middlesboro Post Office, Tuesday through Friday from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m., and on Saturday from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m.