August 29


Frank A. Linney, Attorney, of Boone. Frank A. Linney is the grandfather of Armfield Coffey, Frank Coffey and Linney Brewer. He was at one time U.S. District Attorney, but died before being named Federal Judge. Image courtesy of the archives of the Historic Boone Society, Watauga County Public Library, and

 August 25, 1910
“Those Pies of Boyhood,” a heading to an item in this week’s edition of the Watauga Democrat, introduced an advertisement masquerading as a news article. “How delicious were the pies of boyhood,” began the ad with a question. “No pies now ever taste so good. What’s changed? The pies? No. It’s you. You’ve lost the strong, healthy stomach, the vigorous liver, the active kidneys, the regular bowels of boyhood. Your digestion is poor and you blame the food. What’s needed? A complete toning up by Electric Bitters of all organs of digestion – Stomach, Liver, Kidneys, bowels – try them. They’ll restore your boyhood appetite and appreciation of food and fairly saturate your body with new health, strength, and vigor. 50c at all druggists.” A large bottle of the product from this time period was labeled “Electric Brand Laxative, Formerly called Electric Brand Bitters. A Family laxative … contains Senna, Rhubarb, Cascara, Sagrada, Hops, Aloes, Wahoo, Dandelion, Gentian, Uva Ursi, Tansey, Chamomile and Quassia, Combined with Aromatics…[and] 18% Alcohol.”
“Evangelistic Work,” a local news item this week, read, “Rev. K.L. Hagan, a student of the University of Chattanooga, is at present engaged in Evangelistic work in the counties of Ashe, Watauga, and Caldwell.” According to the article, “[o]n Aug. 10 he commenced a meeting at Brown’s Chapel, M.E. [Methodist Episcopal] Church near Rutherwood, N.C., which lasted for 10 days, resulted in 14 conversions and 12 accessions to the church. That was the first real revival there for ten years. Old-time enemies were found making friends and one young man, W.H. Johnson, felt a call to the ministry during the meeting.”

 August 30, 1945
“JAP [sic; Japanese] SURRENDER SIGNING SUNDAY,” a banner headline in this week’s newspaper, carried a subheading announcing, “Mighty Battlewagon Missouri Enters Tokyo Harbor; to Be Scene of Formal Surrender.” Reported the news article, bearing a dateline of “Manila, Aug. 29)”, “General MacArthur flew north today on his way to make a triumphal entry into Japan Thursday. As a plane carried him to Okinawa, the mighty battleship Missouri entered Tokyo Bay, where next Sunday Japan’s surrender will be signed aboard her. Admiral Halsey rode the 45,000-ton dreadnaught into the bay while sea and airborne forces were poised for large scale occupational landings. The unfolding of MacArthur’s master plan for the powerful occupation pointed toward the historic surrender signing Sept. 2 aboard the battleship Missouri in Tokyo Bay.” The surrender marked the final end of the hostilities of World War II, and came within weeks of the use of atomic bombs in the Japanese cities of Hiroshima and Nagasaki.
On the home front, “Clyde R. Greene, local hardware merchant, and for 19 years a leader in the affairs of the Junior Order in this community, was unanimously elected state councilor of the organization at the convention held in High Point last week.” According to the Democrat, “Mr. W.H. Gragg of Boone, member of the board of trustees of the Junior Order Home, placed the name of Mr. Greene in nomination, and paid glowing tribute to his worth as a Junior and as a citizen. No opposition to his candidacy developed.”

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August 22


“Valle Crucis Methodist Church,” an area landmark which dates back to the 1870s. Image courtesy of the archives of the Historic Boone Society, Watauga County Public Library, and

August 18, 1904

“Clarence Potter Acquitted,” a headline this week, introduced an article about a case still famous over a century later. “Our readers no doubt are familiar with this noted case,” began the paper’s coverage in this issue. “The defendant, Clarence Potter[,] was tried at spring term, 1903, for the murder of Amos Howell, a special officer, who together with a posse, viz.: Lucky Joe Wilson, Bill Hamby, Stilly Snider and Calvin Turnmire had gone to arrest Boone and Clarence Potter under warrants, charging the defendants with a misdemeanor. For some unknown reason, this posse, after being in company with the defendant for some time, allowed him to leave[,] whereupon these reputed officers of law pursued[,] and a battle ensued in which Amos Howell was slain by Boone Potter. Boone was not arrested[,] however, he was since slain by Bill Hamby.” The Democrat noted that the surviving brother of the slain killer had been “arrested, tried and convicted of murder in the first degree and sentenced to hang May the 8th 1903,” but “his case was taken to the [North Carolina] Supreme Court,” at which time a new trial was granted, “resulting in the acquittal of the defendant by a jury of our best citizens.” In the court proceedings reported at this date, the newspaper asserted that “[i]t seemed that all the lawyers were at their best and no stone was left unturned for and against the prisoner,” and that “our young lawyers covered themselves with glory in this noted battle.” Having been cleared of the charge of murder, Clarence Potter lived almost sixty more years, passing away in 1965.

August 19, 1943

“AIR PASSENGER SERVICE IS SEEN FOR THIS TOWN,” a banner headline in this week’s front page, introduced a feature which detailed that, “[a]n indication of ‘things to come’ is contained in the recent application filed with the Civil Aeronautics Board by the Greyhound Corporation for a nation-wide air-bus transportation system, in which it is proposed to operate helicopters of large carrying capacity to provide passenger[,] mail and express service to Boone and other points along the 60,000 miles of highway traversed by Greyhound buses.” “The most novel feature of the project,” continued the article, “says Mr. H.W Wilcox, local Greyhound manager and president of the Chamber of Commerce, and one for which helicopters is fitted, is the plan to adapt present bus terminals, bus garages, and other facilities close to central stations of cities and towns as landing ports and maintenance hangars.” The feature reported that “[t]he Chamber of Commerce is working closely with Greyhound so the new service may be made available to Boone as soon as possible.” Concluded the story, “[t]his probably would remove the immediate necessity of this city securing an airport,” as the Greyhound company “intends to build landing decks on top of present bus terminals.” Boone had a new Greyhound bus terminal at the intersection of South Depot Street and Rivers Street at this time.



Published in: on August 22, 2016 at 6:00 am  Leave a Comment  

August 10


“Scene from Horn in the West, Kermit Hunter’s Great Outdoor Drama, Boone, N.C.,” circa 1965. Image courtesy of the archives of the Historic Boone Society, Watauga County Public Library, and

August 13, 1908

“Cruelty to Animals” a headline in this  week’s edition of the Watauga Democrat introduced an article which opened, “The following is copied from the Charleston, S C. Lantern, and should be read and considered by many of our people: ‘We have seen protests in some of our exchanges against the custom of leaving horses standing in hitching lots for hours in the broiling sun. This is a cruel practice and should be prohibited by law, if the owners are too heartless to correct it themselves. It is only fair to say that there are times when it is almost unavoidable, but the merciful man will not make it a practice.” Continued the posting, “There is another evil, however, that is even worse, and that is leaving horses standing with the diabolical overcheck hooked up.” An overcheck is a type of horse tack connected to the bit in the horse’s mouth and attached near the back which is meant to keep the animal from lowering its head. Continued the article, “We trust that an appeal will not be in vain to our readers that they will use their influence to have every one in charge of a horse loose the check when the animal stops, if only for a few minutes, and even while driving let down the beast’s head, as some of the liverymen do as soon as they get out of town or out of sight of those in whose presence he wishes to show off. Better still, cut the abomination off the bridle altogether. The horse will look just as well, many of them look better, he will last much longer and his master will fare better in the sweet bye and bye.”

August 10, 1922

A feature on the front page of this week’s newpaper bore the bold heading, “TEN REASONS FOR SUPPORTING YOUR COUNTY PAPER.”The list of reasons was as follows: “1. Because when you were born it was the home paper that introduced you to the world. 2. When you grew up and graduated at the head of your class the home paper again gave you a nice write up about it. 3. When later you found your life companion and were happily married the home paper gave you and your bride a half column free complimentary account of the affair. 4. When sickness and misfortune invaded your home the sad news was distributed among your friends and relatives thru the medium of the home paper. 5. When you have been so successful in life and had been promoted to some important position perhaps, it was the home paper that heralded your ability. 6. If you sold out and removed to some other location the home paper followed and brought the news from friends and neighbors. 7. When some unscrupulous person tried to injure your character, it was the home paper that came to your aid. 8. Because the home paper boosts your town and its institutions, its people, its schools and churches and helps to promote good fellowship throughout the community. 9. Because the live merchants advertise their most attractive goods and best or lowest bargains in the home paper, which if bought, may save you many dollars. 10. And last, when you are finally laid away to rest in your silent grave, the home paper donates much space in giving your relatives and friends a complete history of your past life, extolling your excellent qualities and passing over many human frailties.”


Published in: on August 12, 2016 at 6:00 am  Leave a Comment  

August 3


“Night-time scene of Daniel Boone Hotel,” a postcard showing a former Downtown Boone landmark, constructed in 1925. Image courtesy of the archives of the Historic Boone Society, Watauga County Public Library, and










August 6, 1896

“Are You One,” began a heading for an item of advertising in this week’s edition of the Watauga Democrat, continuing: “… Of those unhappy people who are suffering from weak nerves, startling at every slight sound, unable to endure any unusual disturbance, finding it impossible to sleep?” Advised the ad, “[a]void opiate and nerve compounds. Feed the nerves upon blood made pure and nourished by the great blood purifier and true nerve tonic, Hood’s Sarsaparilla.”

“Our mountain resorts are now thronged with people,” offered a news posting. “Blowing Rock has its usual large crowd, and Linville also, and quite a large quota have left their sultry city homes, and sought shelter under the famous Hanging Rock, in the beautiful valley of Banner Elk.”
Related weather reporting noted, “the heat is now extreme, in the eastern and southern states”; and, “[t]he weather is now beautiful, but very warm. Just the time of year to make one good-humored and happy.”

“For a long time there has been a blockade still running in Ashe county that it seemed impossible for the officers to capture,” according to another news article. “But on Thursday of last week Deputy Collector J.C. Horton and Deputy Marshall N.N. Colvard located it on Horse Creek and now only scraps of copper are left t remind one of its former glory.” A “blockade” was a term for a moonshine still, having its origin in the reference to one making illegal alcohol as a “blockader.”

August 1, 1912

“FOR SALE & RENT,” a bold heading to an advertisement, introduced an announcement which read, “I have for sale a stock of goods, consisting of groceries, books, stationary, white goods[,] underwear, notions, novelties, jewelry, & etc., including fixtures, which I will sell at a BARGAIN. I have a good trade and location, situated nearly opposite the court house. Cash one-third down, reasonable terms on balance. Will rent the store building at a reasonable price.” The advertisement continued, “I also have for rent my 12 room Hotel property and lot situated on the same lot as the store. Will rent house furnished or unfurnished for a year with the privilege of longer time. Also have a good stable, well house and fine garden, I have a splendid run of custom. It is a good money maker for the right man. The town has an altitude of 2500 feet, four churches, a good city and co. high school and an intelligent and sociable people. Would like to let Hotel and store to the same person as they go together nicely. Will dispose of them separately if I don’t find a suitable person for both.” The notice ended, “[f]or full particulars write or call on me, Respectfully, M.W. Jackson, Mountain City, Tenn., July 17, 1912.”

1912 advertisement

Published in: on August 5, 2016 at 6:00 am  Leave a Comment