Photo of a home in Watauga County, with family members gathered around for a portrait. Note the stone chimney, wood siding, fence, and shingles, and the extra lumber at the side of the home. A reader submits, “this is the Ward home-place that was located on Phillips Branch Road, Sugar Grove, NC. This house was torn down and one was built across the road in the same style as this house. Formerly Leonard Ward lived at the second house. He is deceased now.” Courtesy of the archives of the Historic Boone society.
May 17, 1923
“Standard Oil of N.Y. Earns 19 Millions,” the headline of an article in this week’s edition of the Watauga Democrat newspaper, introduced a news item which told that, ”The Standard Oil Company, of New York, earned net profits in 1922 of $19,434,734 as compared with $9,698,972 in 1921 and $39,406,631 in 1920, it was announced tonight.” The company was reported to have “paid cash dividends of $12,000,000” to its stockholding investors in the prior year.
A brief notice entitled “Town Sanitation” asserted that, “(t)he general sanitary conditions of the town seem to be good, but there are exceptions. Some things still exist that should not be tolerated, and those responsible should look after existing conditions before the arrival of the State Health officer, which will be in the near future.” Further details were not provided in this article.
May 22, 1941
“Bookmobile Tour Dates Are Given,” announced a feature news item in this week’s newspaper. “The people of Watauga county had made available to them yesterday a library of 2,500 books, when the WPA (Works Progress Administration) Bookmobile began its rounds, with Nancy Miller as librarian, and George Norris, driver.” Reported the Watauga Democrat, “(t)his collection of books contains the new titles in both fiction and non-fiction, as well as the old favorites. It is hoped that the people will take advantage of this unusual opportunity.” A two-week revolving route of scheduled stops had been drawn up. Designated stops on the Bookmobile’s route included “Don Hagaman’s store,” Bethel school, Peoria, Reece, Forest Grove, Amantha, Mast, Zionville, Tamarack, Chestnut Grove, Grandfather, Foscoe, Poplar Grove, and Hodges Gap, among others. The article urged, “(i)f any section of the county is not being served by the ‘traveling library,’ please contact Mrs. A.R. Smith, chairman of the Watauga county library board.”
May 18, 1961
“Annual Meeting Sees Good Season For ‘Horn,’” the top front-page item in this newspaper from 52 years ago, began by reporting that, “Horn in the West was given credit Monday night for attracting a large number of visitors to the area, and helping travel and tourist business maintain its place as the third largest industry in North Carolina.” The article, authored by “Joe C. Minor (Staff Writer),” related that, “Robert T. Ellett, chairman of the Travel and Recreation Committee of the Northwest North Carolina Development Association, was speaking to the Southern Appalachian Historical Association during their annual spring meeting and banquet at the Daniel Boone Inn when he praised the Horn and its sponsors.” Mr. Ellett “gave some figures to show what the travel and tourist business means to North Carolina,” including “(s)eventy-two thousand persons… employed in North Carolina in various capacities to serve the traveling public, with a payroll of $118,000,000.” Ellet “encouraged his listeners to improve and increase the traveling facilities so that more people will want to come here and may be better served.” The news item also cited “Dr. I.G. Greer, Chapel Hill, president of the Southern Appalachian Historical Association,” who “presided over the meeting, which was attended by 105 members and guests.” Dr. Greer “said the large number attending indicated growing loyalty to the association,” the organization responsible for putting on the “Horn in the West” outdoor drama.