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Look Back in Yalobusha History

Area Farmers Were Exploring Growing Broilers For Processing Plant In 1957

10 Years—July 26, 2007

Watermelon Queen Margaret Black appeared on WTVA’s noon show on Wednesday as a representative for the Watermelon Carnival.

Circuit Clerk Daryl Burney stated that he expected 6,000 to 6,500 voters to turn out for the Democratic Primary.

Water Valley Chamber of Commerce Manager Bonnie Cox and Chamber President Joe Newman are pictured taking a peek at the newly arrived Carnival Program.

A group of Yalobushians were aggressively circulating beer petitions in hopes of legalizing beer in the county. While another group has launched a petition aimed at seeing that liquor is banished inside the City of Water Valley.

Water Valley High School senior Derrick Johnson, son of Betty Johnson, received the Elliott Scholarship, presented by the Water Valley Chamber of Commerce. This scholarship was established to honor Patsy and Joe Elliott’s efforts in reviving the Watermelon Carnival.

20 Years—July 31, 1997

Watermelon Queen Nancy Margaret Ray, daughter of Mr. and Mrs. Eddie Ray, was scheduled to be introduced at the Town and Country Garden Club’s Music Festival and reign over all Carnival events.

Laura Smith, 20-year-old daughter of Mr. and Mrs. Larry Smith was selected “Miss Yalobusha County.”

The Water Valley Lions Club, with the assistance of the Yalobusha County Economic Development Foundation, secured Bruce Gurner’s railroad collection of pictures and memorabilia collection for a permanent display at the Railroad Museum in the depot on Main Street.

The Mechanics Bank’s thermometer registered 97 degrees Sunday morning and later in the day the temp climbed into triple digits.

Allison Childs, daughter of Billy and Emily Childs, was selected as a finalist in the Pre-Teen Mississippi Scholarship and Recognition Program.

Pictured was the home of Pat and Eddie Ray all decked out for Watermelon Carnival Weekend.

Mandy Mills placed first in the Junior Public Speaking Contest, held recently at the Northwest District 4-H Horse Show in Greenville.

Tonya Logan ’s home was selected as Town and Country Garden Club’s “Country Yard of the Month” for following the theme in decorating with a watermelon motif.

30 Years—July 30, 1987

Pictured being greeted by Water Valley Attorney J. Katharine Ward was Jackson Mayor Dale Danks, who is seeking election as Mississippi’s Attorney General.


The Water Valley Board of Aldermen passed a resolution to issue $350,000 in

 General Obligation Bonds to finance a comprehensive public works program, which will include constructing or improving streets, sidewalks, and public parking facilities.

Major General Pete Odgers, Vice-Commander, Area Systems Division at Wright-Patterson Air Force Base in Dayton, Ohio, presented a Certificate of Training to Lt. Robert B. “Benjy” Gurner, son of Mr. and Mrs. Bruce Gurner.

Dollar General Stores started a program to encourage high school drop outs to take the GED Test.

Members of the Yalobusha County 4-H Horse Club earned many District Awards, which elevated them to the coveted title of  High Point County in the District.

40 Years—July 28, 1977

Hon. James L. Harris, son of Mr. and Mrs. Jimmy Harris of Water Valley, was elected Associate Judge of the Circuit Court of Cook County, Illinois.

Suzette Shields, daughter of Mr. and Mrs. Lincoln Shields, was elected to serve as District FHA President while attending the State FHA Convention with her advisor, Mrs. W. Y. Parker.

Mr. and Mrs. Louis Sartain celebrated their golden wedding anniversary at a reception hosted by their daughter, Mrs. C. E. Browning.

50 Years—July, 27 1967

Mayor L. C. Stewart was pictured breaking ground for the new telephone building to be constructed on the corner of Simmons and Calhoun Streets. Others pictured were: Doke French, president of the board of supervisors; Tom Bailey, District Manager of Southern Bell Telephone Company; Paul Parker, Water Valley Chamber of Commerce President;  Pauline Heflin, retired chief operator in the Water Valley Exchange; Bernice Jeffcoat, current chief operator; and Inez Henderson, chief night operator.

Mr. and Mrs. Billy Burns’ home was named “Yard of the Month” by The Garden Club of Water Valley.

Army Private Joe Bailey, Jr. of Water Valley was serving in Vietnam.

Airman Third Class William Tribble of Coffee-ville graduated from the U.S. Air Force technical training school at Keesler AFB.

Eleven Yalobushian received degrees from Ole Miss. They included Steven Fred Hedges, Joseph Benz, Margie Copeland, Genora Holloway, Joan McMinn, Robert Williams, Roy Hill, and Oscar Womble, all of Water Valley; and Frank Fernandez, Jr. and Sandra Craig of Tillatoba.

60 Years—July 25, 1957

Area citizens of Water Valley were investigating growing broilers. Processors would use 200,000 broilers weekly in a plant that would employ 150 people.

In a joint ceremony Water Valley Jaycettes and Jaycees installed new officers. Jaycette officers installed were: Genora Holloway, president; Faye Sanders, vice-president; Shirley Hall, secretary; Mary McCullar, treasurer; and Katherine Ashford, board member. New Jaycee officers are: H. M. “Red” Vines, president; Dr. Rayford Edgar, 1st vice president; Taylor Williamson, 2nd vice president; Jim Sanders, secretary; Harry Fair, treasurer; and Charley Holloway, board members. 

The top crop judging team in Mississippi was from Yalobusha County. Members were Larry Edwards, Ed Newman, Murry Green and Jimmy Edwards.

Leo Reed of Water Valley has joined the graduate student Training program of Westinghouse Electric Corporation.

Blu-Buck Mercantile Company  in a full page ad advertised a “Truck Load” sale of General Electric appliances. It was stated that you would enjoy a such cooler kitchen by installing an electric range.

A large number of Water Valley citizens completed a 14-week Dale Carnegie Course. Class officers were: Kyle Skinner, president; Aaron Gordon, vice-president; Mrs. Opal Hestler, secretary; and Ernie Aune, treasurer.

70–Years—July 31, 1947

A late evening fire destroyed the roof and interior of Holt’s Cafe and caused considerable damage to the roofs of Johnny McDonald’s Grocery and an unoccupied building.

Circuit Court ended after only two days work. Offices of the Court were: Gerald Chatham, District Attorney; C. B. Busby, Sheriff; Olin Taylor, Court Reporter; Carolyn Kennedy, Circuit Clerk; and Mrs. R. C. Knox, deputy clerk.

Pvt. David Harris, son of Mr. and Mrs. I. Harris, was serving with the famed Fighting Calvary on occupation duty in the Tokyo-Yokohoma Area.

Sgt. Lawrence Pass, son of Mr. and Mrs. H. E. Pass, is stationed in Manila with the Army Air Corps.

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