The Week of April 24th, 2011

“Village of Blowing Rock, N.C., Altitude 4090 feet” reads the heading on this early photographic view of the town.

April 21, 1904

Under the heading “Tracing the Leaks,” from the “Washington Capital,” an article in this week’s edition of the Watauga Democrat begins with this quote:

“’I have stopped talking to you fellows about the plans of this department,’ bluntly declared Secretary Shaw to a newspaper friend the other day. ‘I know, of course that I can trust you but I have learned not to talk to anybody when I am maturing an important movement. Now take this last refunding operation. Why man I said nothing to anybody about that and still news of it leaked out before I was ready for it.” The narrative continues with the press member: “’How did it get out?’ asked the newsman. The keen, gray eyes of the Secretary of the Treasury twinkled. He screwed up his face until it looked like a funny mask. ‘That’s what I’d like to know,’ he said. ‘Do you know,’ he went on to say, ‘since I come to think it over I do remember that I wrote one letter about it.’ ‘To whom?’ insisted the inquisitorial journalist. ‘To the President, sir, to the President sir,’ exclaimed Mr. Shaw, ‘but I clean forgot to tell him not to say nothing about it.’”

“President Roosevelt is trying to be real conservative (!) because he does not regard this as his own administration,” reported another item, “because he does not regard this as his own administration but as the filling out of that of his predecessor. All he asks is free reign in his own administration. Then something is going to drop.”

An item entitled “Facts about Russia,” taken from “The World’s Work,” relayed in staccato style these facts about the Russian Empire at that time:

“Two and one-half times as large as the United States and Alaska. 30,000 miles of coast line, half of it ice-bound. 36,000 miles of railroad, of it owned by the government (meaning unclear in the original). The United States has 53 times as many miles of telegraph, and send(s) 15 times as much mail. The United States has 23 times as many factories. One twentieth as much coal is produced, and one-sixth as much iron as the United States. Total exports, $320,000,000. Next to the United States as a grain producing country. Populations 66 per cent (ethnic Russians?), Pole 7 per cent, Finns 5 per cent, Turco Tatars 9 per cent, and Jews 3 per cent. Average laborer get(s) one fourth as much wages as in the United States. Only 90 daily papers.”

April 20, 1939

“Boone Folks to Attend Centennial at Duke” told in this week’s issue of the paper that “(a) number of Boone people will go to Durham Friday where they will attend the centennial program at Duke University, which is to continue through the remainder of the week. In all more than 1,000 people are to participate in the varied programs and processions.” Relating to local personages, it was reported that “Dr. Amos Abrams and Prof. J.M. Downure are the delegates from Appalachian College,” and “(o)thers from the city who will attend are Dr. and Mrs. W.M. Matheson.”

“Treasure Hunt Began Saturday,” with the sub-caption “City’s Retailers Start Unique Sales Event; More than 50 Prizes to be Given” announced that “Boone’s second annual Treasure Hunt got under way last Saturday, at which time visitors to the shops of the city were given trade tickets with their purchases, on the basis of which more than 50 valuable prizes will be given away at the end of the event on May 17. “ According to the article, “(l)ast year the Treasure Hunt brought hundreds of shoppers to the city and now, with an expanded prize list and with a more concerted  effort on the part of the merchants, it is expected this event will be far more successful than the previous effort.”  The Treasure Hunt was sponsored by the Boone Merchants Association.

April 23, 1970

“Wey to be Welcomed as New President of ASU”  reported that “Friday in Boone is Inauguration Day, and, from all advance reports, the community and the campus together will cancel its normal afternoon activity to welcome Herbert Wey back to Boone as the new president of Appalachian State University.” Tells the write-up, “nearly all businesses in town will close their doors from 2 p.m. to 3 p.m., so that employees can attend the inaugural ceremony in Varsity gymnasium on the campus.” In addition, “(a)ll classes on the campus” were to be cancelled “beginning at noon,” and, “to permit the university’s staff members to attend the ceremonies, all departments, except for a skeleton crew in the campus steam plant, infirmary and the telephone switchboard, will be closed from noon until after the post-inaugural reception in the Plemmons Student Center.”

In other events, “Pollution Protest March Set” announced that a “protest-rally-march against the pollution of their campus and community is being conducted this week by the Student Government Association of ASU.” According to the story, “(t)he march was to start from the ASU soccer field at 3 p.m., Wednesday, April 22, as the climax of a massive day of clean-up efforts here and plastic bags were to be distributed Wednesday at the Student Center.” Those participating in the clean-up “were to leave the soccer field and go along the Blowing Rock Road toward town, picking up trash along the way. The march would then continue through town, terminating at the county Courthouse where the YDC’s car engine will be ‘lying in state.’ Then the marchers and the funeral procession would join for a grand march through town. On the soccer field, the trash that had been picked up would be dumped into a huge pile. In a celebration there-following, the last rites would be said over the car engine before its burial.” The news item, which seems to have been written prior to the events described, apparently omits clear definition of the “YDC’s car,” perhaps an already known feature of the community or of this event, but the elaborate ritual is described as having approval from the (University) Senate Steering Committee and the Community-Campus Relations Committee.

1938 advertisement from the Watauga Democrat newspaper

Published in: on April 24, 2011 at 4:00 am  Leave a Comment  

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