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Look Back In Yalobusha History

Through The Years From The Herald

• 5 years ago, June 4, 2009 – Government officials and interested civilians met at the North Mississippi Fish Hatchery Visitor Education Center to discuss the purchase of the section of railroad between Canton and Memphis that runs through Yalobusha County. The purposed purchaser, Grenada Railway, LLC, was an affiliate of a company engaged in railroad salvage. Mayor-elect Larry Hart and District One Supervisor Tommy Vaughn were selected to serve on the Railroad Coalition.
Kent Tobin took over as plant manager at BorgWarner, the seventh in less than a decade.
Yalobusha’s unemployment rate continued to rise, hitting 13.7 percent, while the overall state rate decreased.
Mayor-elect Larry Hart was uninjured after falling out of his boat during a fishing trip on Enid Lake near the Yalobusha-Lafayette line.
The 36-member Christian mission team – including 14 from Water Valley – left for the village of El Limonal, Nicaragua.
• 10 years ago, June 3, 2004 – A severe storm moved through the area knocking out service for more than 11,000 customers on the Tallahatchie Valley Electric Power Association. Yalobusha was one of the hardest hit areas.
A group of 21 World War II veterans were pictured on the front page after the Memorial Day observance downtown in Railroad Park.
Joe Turner, 24, drowned in Otoucalofa Creek near a small beach area in the Hawkins Crossing area.
Rico Polk was died as the result of an accident on West Lee Street May 26.
Three people from Yalobusha County, Lori Hardin, Michael A. Howell and Mary A. Gordon, were arrested in Memphis following the kidnapping of a three-year-old that involved a family dispute.
Danny Ross Ingram was named Progressive Breeder of the Year by the Mississippi Angus Association.
Gail Caldwell of Yalobusha County was selected as Area WalMart Teacher of the Year for 2004. She taught resources classes at Lafayette High School.
Robin Harkness, a trusty at the Yalobusha County Jail, was re-arrested after walking away from custody while assigned to a laundry detail.  
• 20 years ago, June 2, 1994 – Winners in the St. Jude Bike-A-Thon sponsored by the Anchor Club were Curtis Goodwin, who received a new bicycle, and runners-up John Bennett, Dawn Baker and Jill Terry each received a $50 Savings Bond.
Jim Edwards was the new County Forester in Yalobusha County.
Sholunda Rucker placed in the top ten at the DECA national convention in Detroit, Michigan. Ms. Rucker was Salutatorian of the Class of 1994. She was honored at the recent DECA Employer-Employee Banquet along with fellow DECA students Wendy Lockwood, Samantha Massey, Jennifer Jackson, Jason Hamann, Eddie White, Bennett Hill, Tyler Hill, Calvin Kee, Chastity Eubanks, Shannon Mustachia and Tamela Judson.
Angela Taylor of Oakland was promoted to Ole Miss Ambassador after completing the necessary volunteer hours at the university.
Michael Boone represented Yalobusha County at the Young Farmer and Rancher Conference in Biloxi sponsored by Farm Bureau.
Mrs. Dovie Burk of Boyd Street had the Garden Club of Water Valley Yard of the Month for June.
• 30 years ago, June 6, 1984 – Water Valley High School’s Problem Solving Team won an international first place at the international conference in Cedar Rapids, Iowa. Members included Robert Todd, John Person, Chris Goodwin, Denise Romberger, Sandra Evans, Angie Brooks, Susan Burress and Cindy Fernandez.
Four 11th grade students attended Girls’ State sponsored by the Curtis E. Pass Post No. 37 of the American Legion. They were Susan Burress, Lee Ann Todd, Julie Ingram and Marla Sharp.
The Deborah Kaye School of Dance gave a recital to raise money for the disaster fund. Presenting a check to Mayor Hamric Henry were cute little dancers Lara Smith, Candi Harris and Stacey Avant.
The Sheriffs Office installed a Toll-Free telephone so that citizens could call for help without having to pay long-distance telephone charges.
Winners in the anti-drug poster contest in Mrs. Joyce Burgess’ fifth grade class were Elaine Elliott, Casandra Woodard and Eric House.
The Fly Timber and Pulpwood Company of Coffeeville was commended by the Mississippi Legislature for contributing 30 people and much heavy equipment to the intense clean-up following the tornado in Water Valley.
• 40 years ago, June 6, 1974 – Water Valley’s Big Yank plant was shut down for an afternoon after a bomb scare. An anonymous female telephone caller informed the Herald that a bomb was set to go off around 2:30 p.m. The workers were dismissed from the plant and the building cleared. The state Highway Patrol Bomb Squad searched the building and declared in clear at 3:30 Tuesday afternoon.
Open house was scheduled for the new City Hall building on Blackmur Drive.
The WVHS Band Flag Team for 74-75 included Captain Mellisa Gurner, Linda Keen, Cindy Sutherland, Judy Horn, Shelia McMinn, Teresa Hill and alternates Brenda Tutor and Dana Williamson.
The Herald ran a photo of “tomatoes” growing on a potato plant. Similar photos have run in many newspapers through the years because of the strange growth. But, the “tomatoes” are just seed pods on the potato plant.
The Herald was presented a community service award by the Water Valley Jaycees and Jaycettes at their annual banquet.
Among the winners in the Homemaker Clubs county fashion show included, Mrs. J. G. Brower, best dress; Mrs. Bobby Pittman, tailored; and Mrs. Bernard Goodnight, pantsuits.
• 50 years ago, June 4, 1964 – The Little League season opened with a speech by former major league player Yalobusha Countian Sam Vick, who once pinch-hit for Babe Ruth. He introduced Corbert Edwards of Pontotoc, former major league pitcher and coach, who also spoke.
Mary Alice Moorman was named Public Health Representative for Yalobusha County. She was working in the Mississippi Intensive Immunization Program because a recent survey showed that 42 percent of children under the age of five were not protected against polio and 29 percent were not protected against diptheria, whooping cough and tetanus. According to the survey, two-thirds were not protected against small pox.
Mrs. Kathryn Littleton McCain died of injuries or burns sustained at her home in Vance in a manner that had not been determined.
Third place winners in the District 4-H Poultry Judging Contest were Tommy Dorris, Rickey Boatwright and Larry Wrenn.
Army Private Johnny Perkins participated in “Operation Dessert Strike,” the largest military exercise in the United States since 1955. It involved 100,000 Army and Air Force personnel covering 13 million acres in the Mojava Desert.
• 60 years ago, June 3, 1954 – Dr. and Mrs. D. E. Spears and their daughter, Nancy, aged 8, moved to Water Valley from Meridian. Dr. Spears opened his medical office over the A.C.W.A Union Hall on Main Street.
Superintendent Noel Bell announced that because of lack of interest, summer school had been cancelled. In the meantime the school building had been treated for termites and beetles and the underpinning and foundation repaired.
John Throop and Paul Parker were honored by the March of Dimes for their work on the latest campaign.
Rev. E. W. Reid, former pastor of the Magee Presbyterian Church, accepted the pastorate of the First Presbyterian Church of Water Valley.
Pvt. Bobby Tyler was home on leave from Fort Bragg, North Carolina.
• 70 years ago, June 1, 1944 – Fire destroyed the apartment complex on Blount Street belonging to James Thompson. Occupying the complex were Major Toungstill and Warrant Officer Marty Silverman together with their families.
Pfc. Theron Johnson was killed in action in Italy, according to information received by his sister, Mrs. Maude Johnson Edwards of Route 3.
Mississippi had contributed 124,715 men and women to the 7,500,000 personnel in the armed forces as of Jan. 1, 1944.
• 80 years ago, June 1, 1934 – An announcement in the Herald noted that Mr. and Mrs. D. L. Grantham had leased the Sunshine Inn, one mile south of the city on Highway 7. They were serving beer, cold drinks, sandwiches, etc. Drive down and enjoy a cool drink and lunch “in privacy,” urged the owners. Back then “in privacy” meant you could have a cold beer without everyone in town knowing about it.
Ex-governor Theo. G. Bilbo spoke in Water Valley after a rousing introduction by attorney John Horan. Bilbo, who was running for the Senate, was known as a master of the filibuster and a proud member of the Ku Klux Klan. He was short (5 ‘ 2”), wore flashy clothing, and was nicknamed “The Man” because refered to himself in the third person.

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