The Rev. W. M. Pruitt, pastor of First Presbyterian Church, was successful in his September 1942 campaign to have filling stations closed on Sunday.
The local operators wanted to close, but all said their customers wouldn’t allow it. If we do close, they said, our business would go elsewhere. So, Pruitt circulated a petition stating that the undersigned would close on Sunday providing that their competitors did also.
Signed by every operator in town, the petition stated: We, the undersigned owners and operators of garages and gasoline filling stations in the City of Water Valley, Mississippi, do hereby agree and bind ourselves to close any filling stations owned by or operated by us on the Lord’s Day, commonly called Sunday.
They agreed on a special exception that would allow one station north of Wood Street and one station South of Wood Street to remain open Sundays on a rotating basis to serve out-of-town customers.
Signing were Ed Harris Service Station, Hugh Brown Service Station and Garage, Throop Gulf Service, 1-2-3 Service Station, Hunter’s Service Station, T. R. McCullar’s Service Station, Edgar Service Station, Lion Service Station, W. B. Crews, Peacock Gulf Station and Wilbourn Motors.
The plan would give the garage men more time with their families and would also conserve rubber and tires in the national emergency.
• 5 years ago, Sep. 20, 2007 – The poultry processing plant was back in operation bringing 122 jobs to the area.
City aldermen denied an approximately $120,000 tax exemption to BorgWarner covering a $4 million expansion in 2001.
County supervisors voted 3-2 to set a special election on Dec. 11 to allow Yalobusha voters to determine the fate of beer and light wine in the county. The products had been banned since 1937.
Curtis Berry was recognized by the Lions Club International Foundation as a Melvin Jones Fellow.
The Red Hat Melons, a group of senior ladies, had lunch at Ground Zero and got their picture taken with actor Morgan Freeman. The lunch group included Mary Sue Stevens, Jonnie Mayo, Edwina Hyde, Janice Avant, Kathy Magee, Ann Surrette and Linda White.
The Blue Devils were defeated by Independence, 53-12. Several key players were out with injuries.
• 10 years ago, Sep. 19, 2002 – The late J. L. “Pete” Reid was honored by the Yalobusha County Farm Bureau at their annual meeting for his more than 50 years of serving as a committee member, county president and committee chairman. Richard Hall, who was building the new beef processing plant, spoke at the meeting and presented the plans of his organization.
The Blue Devils played hard but a handful of mistakes handed the game to Lafayette, 27-7.
The Lions Club hosted a hamburger supper for the football team.
First trumpet Byron Surrette was pictured playing during halftime at the Lafayette game.
The Blackmur Library was holding banned book week with titles such as To Kill A Mockingbird and The Adventures Of Huckleberry Finn.
Roy Bennett Stevens was pictured with his mules and wagon. He said, “In the fall of 1964 I got Mary Sue, a new Chevrolet car and a mule. I still have Mary Sue and the mule.”
• 20 years ago, Sep. 17, 1992 – The Blue Devils and the Coffeeville Pirates battled to a 0-0 standstill Friday night.
Nell Gholson, Janet Smith and Martha Lee Scarbrough were presented 50-year-pins by the Order of Eastern Star.
Mr. and Mrs. Bill Larson had the September Yard of the Month.
Senior Clerk Wallace Forsyth Jr. and Postmaster Roy McCullar were given a retirement reception at the Post Office.
The Extension Service modeling squad officers were Kellie Burns, president; Allison Willingham, vice-president; Bethany Caulfield, secretary-treasurer; and Karen Person and Courtney Parsons, parliamentarians.
• 30 years ago, Sep. 23, 1982 – City schools began their full day schedule after almost a month of partial days due to the heat.
The Blue Devils fell to Senatobia, 39-0.
Eddie Jarrell of Coffeeville won the Junior High Point Gaited Award at the state horse show.
Herbert Reese was pictured with a cluster of 24 sweet potatoes grown on a single stem.
Major Samuel C. Shoemake had arrived at Anderson AFB, Guam, and Senior Airman Tommy J. Sartain was on duty at Kunsan AFB, Korea.
The Village Flower Shoppe was open at its new location at 107 Main Street. The business had to be moved because of the Blackmur Hotel fire.
• 40 years ago, Sep. 21, 1972 – The assets of carpetbagger company, Ram Tool, were being sold at the Clarkesdale Federal Building.
An expansion was approved for the Mott’s, Inc. plant to install a cooking plant on the premises. Officials promised that the process was odorless and that wastewater was free of animal solids.
The Blue Dev-ils took Cold-water, 14-6, led by stouthearted work by fullback Cliff Craven, who prevented on three occasions Cougar touchdowns. Jaycee top players from the game were Lewis Langdon, best offensive player, and Ronnie Pinkerton, best defensive player.
Dudley Kelly was pictured with his all-original 1914 Model T Couplet. The car, which has had some minor spot painting, won at the annual auto show in Corinth.
• 50 years ago, Sep. 20, 1962 – Lucy Kendrick was named Queen of the Forest and her sister, Bena Lou, was named second alternate at the contest sponsored by the Jaycees in cooperation with the Forestry Commission. First runner-up was Lou McCormack of Coffeeville.
The Blue Devils took the Oakland Hornets, 6-0. The Oakland cheerleaders featured on the Herald’s front page were Sherry Robbinson, Mary Hartly, Mildred Allen, Margie Bailey and Charlotte Tippit.
The Tri-Lake Cee-Bee Club held an organizational meeting and elected Markley Trusty president.
The Jaycees sent a telegram of support to Gov. Ross Barnett on his stand on the Ole Miss issue.
The city board of aldermen set the millage rate at 39 miles.
Mrs. Linda Wright, new assistant Home Agent, was introduced by L. C. Stewart, president of the Yalobusha County 4-H Advisory Council.
Private Terry J. Vaughn, son of Mr. and Mrs. Roy Vaughn, was at Ft. Jackson, S.C., for basic army training.
• 60 years ago, Sep. 18, 1952 – Mary Frances Mullen of Oakland was selected as Yalobusha Queen of the Forest. Yvonne Russell of Water Valley was first alternate and Frances Lane of Oakland was second alternate.
The Blue Devils downed Senatobia, 25-13. The first score of the game was made by halfback Gaylon Booker.
Officers of the senior class at WVHS were President, Leo Reed; vice president, David Langford; secretary, Billy Baddley and treasurer, Bob Brooks.
• 70 years ago, Sep. 17, 1942 – A Water Valley institution, William Burney Mauldin, 72, died as the result of a stroke. Mr. Burney was vice-president of the Bank of Water Valley.
Former Miss Mississippi Carlisle Sykes and attorney John Throop had to postpone their marriage scheduled for Sept. 19 because Uncle Sam needed his services for Army business. The wedding would take place when Johnny comes marching home sometimes after Sept. 25, wrote acting editor Mrs. Jack Dale.
James O. Eastland, 37-year-old Batesville attorney and planter, was elected to the U. S. Senate, defeating by a heavy vote, Senator Wall Doxey of Holly Springs.