Some of the early buildings housing the Appalachian Teachers College Campus (no date given). Image courtesy of the archives of the Historic Boone society.
November 21, 1907
An article on the front page of this week’s edition of the Watauga Democrat quoted a feature from the Statesville Landmark, praising a Republican lawmaker:
“Senator Cullom, of Illinois, like a good many other people, is tired of the government having to constantly deposit money in New York, to relieve the financial situation. ‘The truth is,’ says the Senator, the government should keep out of this mess that has overcome Wall street. Whenever these men get in trouble they send for the Secretary of the Treasury and demand that he should take millions from the vaults of the government and lend them to the speculators to help them out of their trouble. That sort of thing ought to be stopped. Wall street should be left to take care of itself without involving the affairs of the government. If these men should know that the government would not step in with its money in times of stress they would be more careful in their management of affairs and there would be fewer of these Wall street panics. The time has come when the newspapers of the country should take a firm stand against the tendency on the part of almost everybody to run to the government and Congress whenever they get in troable [sic] through their various projects.” Interestingly, the avowedly Democratic Party-aligned Watauga newspaper of 102 years ago reproduced these thoughts from the Republican Illinoisan, as conveyed by the Statesville paper, without any further commentary or contradiction.
November 19, 1931
“Severely Hurt in Auto Wreck” reported on this day that “Watt H. Gragg, secretary of the Watauga Building and Loan Association and prominent contender for the appointment as United States marshal, had his right arm broken above the elbow and received serious facial cuts, following a motor accident on the Boone Trail Highway, at Pond Bottom Farm near the city, last Saturday night.” According to the news article, “Mr. Gragg was returning to Boone from a business trip to Greensboro, was traveling at a rather rapid pace, and was blinded by the lights of an approaching car driven by Paul Angel, local college man.” Although the “cars barely touched,” it was reported that “Mr. Gragg’s machine was thrown into a ‘wobble,’ causing it to smash into the side of the highway cut.” After immediate care on the scene, further resetting of the broken bone was required in Charlotte at the hands of “Dr. Miller, bone specialist.” Watt Gragg was, as indicated in this report, “just about to finish his campaign for the marshalship when the accident occurred, and, despite the bandages, he still believes he has a grand chance of victory.” Gragg did, indeed, serve as a U.S. Marshall, as well as serving three terms as mayor of Boone and 37 years as the Secretary of the Watauga Savings [formerly, Building] and Loan Association.
November 19, 1953
“Thanksgiving Vital to Orphanages,” a front-page feature in this week’s Watauga Democrat, reported that “[t]he Thanksgiving season is the most important time of the year for many of the state’s 32 orphanages which have cared for nearly 4,500 dependent children this year at a cost of approximately $3,000,000.” Noting the importance of support from “lodges, fraternal orders, religious groups and other non-profit organizations,” which were said to “usually respond generously” to Thanksgiving-time campaigns on behalf or orphan homes, the article noted that “[f]und-raising methods by orphanages have changed considerably in the last two or three decades,” with “[t]he ‘singing classes’ of yesteryear” having become “almost a thing of the past,” being replaced due to concerns for child welfare with children “now go[ing] out in small groups to enjoy the hospitality of churches and other groups, when they are invited.”
“Seven Names are Added to Watauga County Corn Club” reported that “the Watauga County 100 Bushel Corn Club” had seen the addition of seven more names in 1953. “The honor of growing the most corn per acre” for the year went to “Voit Shores, Rt. 3, Boone, who produced a carefully estimated 128 bushels per acre.” Others ranking in the 100-plus bushels of corn per acre club were “Ira Cox, Shulls Mills, and Joe Hayes, Blowing Rock,” who tied for second place with “an estimated yield of 112.5 bushels per acre each,” as well as Frank Bolick, Roy Hartley, and Bob Henderson.
This editorial cartoon appeared in the Watauga Democrat on October 22, 1931. Albert T. Reid, a Kansan, flourished from the time until his first political cartoon was published in 1896 until his death in 1958.