A view of downtown Boone from above, date unknown. Structures on the Appalachian State Teachers College campus indicate that the photograph was taken sometime between the late 1930s and the 1960s. Courtesy of the archives of the Historic Boone society.
July 8, 1897
“The new school law is puzzling our county authorities,” reported an article in this week’s edition of the Watauga Democrat. “It is hard to do what is required by the new law and at the same time accommodate all the school children in the county,” according to this account of difficulties in meshing state and local expectations of schools over a century ago. “Requiring the township lines to be observed in forming the school district will cause such trouble and confusion among the people. As our school districts are now organized(,) we have had very little trouble and our free schools were improving, good and comfortable school houses were built in almost every district. Now in many instances these houses will be abandoned to comply with the new, and to us, unnecessary and foolish change.” The editorial piece concluded by speculating the election results might be influenced by the required change, as “the special school tax in the townships” might come to be viewed as money that would be “squandered on new (school-)houses and will really not prolong the school for the next two years at least,” as was the intention of the school tax.
“Most of the Congress members have gone home,” reported a national news item on this day, “but Speaker Reed is still in session about twice a week. He opens and adjourns at will(,) he himself being a quorum from Quorumville. Speaker Tom is all that is necessary to have on hand to open and adjourn,” opined the newspaper, lampooning Maine Republican Speaker of the House Thomas Brackett Reed, who was nicknamed “Czar Reed”. “When the history of this special session of Congress is (written), if it ever is,” according to the Watauga Democrat, “it be on a par with our late North Carolina legislature, a daisy.”
July 4, 1940
“New Church is to Open on Sunday,” a front-page headline this week, introduced an article which began, “(d)edicatory services will be held at the new St. Luke’s Episcopal church in Boone Sunday afternoon at 5 o’clock, it has been announced by Rev. E. Dargan Butt, priest in charge. Rt. Rev. Robert E. Gribbin, of Asheville, bishop of the Diocese of Western North Carolina, will conduct the services.” The article traced the history of this church community, noting that, “St. Luke’s congregation is one of the oldest in Boone. The first frame building was on King Street opposite the present location of the Daniel Boone hotel and was erected in 1882. In 1903, Rev. W.R. Savage, the pastor for many years, enlarged the structure. After a number of years, however, it was razed and the lot traded for the property on which the church now stands.” The 1940 church was located on College Street, and was described as, “of brick construction and contains a vestibule and vesting room, besides the nave chancel and sanctuary.” Its dimensions were “53 feet long and 22 feet long,” the sanctuary could seat 100, and the cost of construction was “near $4,000.” In the 1990s, this building was relocated to the current home of the congregation on Councill Street, where it now serves as a chapel.
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