This week in local history

Published 10:10 am Monday, April 29, 2019

By the Bell County Historical Society

The following events occurred during the week of April 25 through May 4 in Bell County:

1898: The ladies of Middlesboro were buying local company F a large flag to carry as they marched off to fight in the Spanish-American War.

Email newsletter signup

1900: David Colson, past mayor of Middlesboro and past U.S. Representative, was completely vindicated at his trial for the shooting death in Frankfort of a man with whom he had been feuding. The verdict was self-defense.

1904: There were eight patients at the Epworth Hospital in Middlesboro, the largest number since the establishment of the hospital.

1914: It was estimated that there were 60 automobiles in Middlesboro.

1930: Announcement that the pool at Booneway Inn was being cleaned and repaired and was expected to be open to the public during the summer.

1931: N.R. Elliott, professor of Landscape Architecture at University of Kentucky, was visiting at the request of the Beautification Committee of the Chamber of Commerce. He stated that there was “no more beautiful street in the state of Kentucky than Cumberland Ave.”

1939: Middlesboro received a $63,000 check to start construction of a new sewer project by the WPA.

1946: Middlesboro city official voted down a request by the school board for an increase in the city levy for schools. The board attorney, Robert Watson, had pointed out that teachers’ salaries were inadequate and that some teachers were being paid less than the street sweepers.

1949: Coca-Cola sold its old building on Cumberland Avenue to Middlesboro Federal as the company was about to move into its new building on East Cumberland. The old building was bought by R. M. Barry in 1911, soon after he moved to Bell County from Knoxville to start his Coca-Cola bottling business.

1965: 36 units marched in Middlesboro’s Clean-up, Fix-up, Paint-up parade.

1954: King brothers 3 ring circus was in Bell County. The circus advertised 250 wild animals including 15 elephants plus Lolital, “dancing queen of the tightwire.”

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.