A small sepia-tone photograph of two young women. A note on the back reads, “Lin Sanders” and “Neva Brinson.” Clothing and a reference in the “Rhododendron,” the student annual of Appalachian State Teacher’s College, suggest that the portrait was taken on the college’s campus around 1930. Courtesy the Historic Boone society, Watauga County Public Library, and NCDigital.org.
February 13, 1889
“F.J. McMILLAN & SON of Mouth of Wilson, Va., Manufactures all kinds of woolen goods, which they will send to your door in exchange for wool,” announced an advertisement in this week’s edition of the Watauga Democrat. “They also keep a full line of goods on hand at SUTHERLANDS, ASHE Co., N.C.,” continued the notice. “They pay highest CASH prices for wool.”
A column entitled “Town and Country” included this reflection: “We are sorry to hear of so many of our good citizens leaving for the west, but we hope they may better themselves by the move.” At this period in Watauga County’s history, raising sheep was a staple of farm life, although many local inhabitants were moving to areas such as the Pacific Northwest states in search of grazing land.
“Gaston Barnes was tried in Taylorsville, at the recent term of court there, for his life, for the killing of Wheeler Robinet, and found guilty of man-slaughter and sentenced to the penitentiary for four years,” according to another article. “Messrs. Robbins, Linney and Burke appeared for the defense.”
Reported another short item, “[w]e have had a hard, cold and very uncomfortable week here in the printing office. The room has been too cold to set type and the ink too thick to spread readily.”
February 8, 1906
“Lot W. Greene,” read a front-page heading to an obituary on the front page of this week’s edition of the Watauga Democrat. “The subject of this tribute was born July 6, 1833, and died Sept. 22, 1905, aged 72 years, 2 months and 16 days,” began the notice. “He served in the war between the states in the 1st Reg. N.C. Cavalry in Co. D, under Capt Folk and J. C. Blair, and was seriously wounded in the left shoulder on the 9th day of June, 1863, on the Rappahannock river near Brandy Station, Va.”
“We now come to lay an offering of affectionate sorrow upon his grave, with a sadness such as falls upon the heart when a life-long friend whispers that last earthly farewell as the Spirit’s frail bark puts off into the dark; but with an abiding consciousness and unwavering faith that we shall meet again. For the Redeemer in His teachings on the sea shore and along the hillsides of Judea bade the desponding of earth’s pilgrims to take courage, for the grave is not the end of man.
He told his wife that he was prepared to go: that he had been praying all summer and everything was bright before him. He often said, while suffering intensely that he had rather die than suffer thus. And now, we bid our kind, benevolent, loving friend a tender farewell, until we meet again.”
The tribute was signed by “Z. T. Watson.”