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Look Back In Yalobusha History

A memorial tree at the Legion Hut on the corner of Calhoun and Railroad Streets as it appears now. The tree was planted in 1944.

A memorial tree dedicated to the Yalobusha County boys who fought in World War I and to the boys who were in the service of their country was planted by The Garden Club of Water Valley on Friday, Feb. 18, 1944 in the yard of the American Legion Hut.

Mississippi’s tree, the magnolia, was selected to be a perpetual reminder of the service of these men to their country.
Mayor F. B. DeShon acted as master of ceremonies for the exercises and gave a talk. The high school girls’ Glee Club sang “God Bless America.”

The dedicatory address was delivered by Earl Fly, member of the American Legion. The closing prayer was by the Rev. E. H. Cunningham.

• 15 years ago, Feb. 26, 2009 – Longtime attorney Ben Horan called it quits after 50 years and closed his law office on Main Street.

A federal lawsuit filed by Fletcher Fly seeking to resolve ownership of a county road running through his property was tossed out of federal court.

An organization called Home Team was seeking to raise $9,350.70 to restore junior high baseball, junior high track and volleyball for the coming year to the Water Valley School District.

A new director, Mickey Howley, was named for the Water Valley Main Street Association.

• 20 years ago, Feb. 26, 2004 – An arsonist set seven fires in two hours along several county roads between Sylva Rena and Oakland.

Water Valley Factory Connection held a grand opening with Charlene McMinn as new manager.
The high school baseball program opened with the Blue Devils defeating Vardaman, 10-0, and Calhoun City, 17-1.
The late Ed Shearer III was honored for his contributions to the community at the Wildlife Tasting Buffet.

• 30 years ago, Feb. 24, 1994 – Tallahatchie Valley Electric Power Association reported that some 7,500 customers remained without service as a result of the ice storm out of 22,000 in a nine-county area served by the power company.

Electricity had been restored to all Water Valley Electric Department customers, according to Roy Bennett Stevens, city electrician.

• 40 years ago, March 1, 1984 – Attending the I-55 Band Clinic were WVHS Band students Marchelle Folson, Joe Gurner, Chris Goodwin, Gloria Joy, Kevin Herrera, Vet McLeod, Jimmy Huckaby, Amy Walley, Bill Sikma, Holley Guarr, Stefanie Boyd, Eric Morgan, Missy Dennis, Michelle Greer, Dana Singleton, Harold Turner, Gloria Joy, Missy Walton, Kim Herring, Luther Folson and Tim Rutherford.

Bob Singleton was pictured surrounded by Civil War era handguns as he demonstrated a percussion 1860 model Army Colt revolver at the Water Valley Elementary School.

• 50 years ago, Feb. 28, 1974 – Seeking the Miss Water Valley title were Kim Horan, Janice Crow, Wanda Davis, Zandra Morris, Cathy Chandler, Ginger Allen, Deborah White, Shan Stacy and Holly Hart. The contest was the first held in years.

Van Hedges of Water Valley was running for Associated Student Body President at the University of Mississippi.
Yalobushians did well at the Northwest Mississippi Livestock Show in Batesville including Vonda Varner, Daryl Burney, Keith Burney, Jeff Burney, Paul Martin and Shot Harbour of Coffeeville and Rich Ross of Oakland.

• 60 years ago, Feb. 27, 1964 – Three Yalobusha boys, Joel Surrette of Water Valley and Phil Sides Jr. and Harold Waller of Coffeeville, scored the highest number of points in the Northwest District Cotton Contest.
An accident survey conducted by the Mississippi Highway Safety Patrol showed that Yalobusha County had 111 accidents, 55 injuries and nine fatalities during 1963. Total cost to the local economy was $56,500.

Carnes McCormack of Coffeeville and Albert Wilbourn and Jimmy Dale Sartain of Water Valley were members of the cast of “South Pacific” at Northwest Mississippi Junior College.

A Memphis company was seeking a 100’ by 100’ lot for a Mug ‘N Cone Drive Inn in Water Valley.

• 70 years ago, Feb 25, 1954 – Jaycee members were pictured on the front page cooking pancakes for the breakfast at the grammar school. Jimmie Ware and Bailey Baddley were taking turns cooking the hot cakes while Pat Holloway Jr. and Ray Cox were doing K.P. Bill Hall was frying sausages and Pete Brassell watched.

A half page ad offered the Grand Theatre property along with the Valley Theatre and another leased property for a drive-in for $45,000.

• 80 years ago, Feb. 24, 1944 – Sgt. John Anthony was wounded in the South Pacific theater.

Appearing in the 1956 “Womanless Frolic” were (front row, from left) Harold Williams, John Throop, Jr., Marion Randall, “Red” Vines, Snooky Williams, Bill Johnson, Dr. W.S. Young, Hamric Henry, Watkins Turnage and Coley Taylor; (second row, from left) Bill Trusty, John Hunsicker, Carmon King, Herbert Woods, Dr. D.E. Spears, Crip Tyler, Dr. John Wright and Dr. Fred Hedges; (third row, from left) Harry Ross, Hervey Cook, Bluford McCullar, Clyde Ray, Kyle Skinner, Dr. Mabry McMillian and Dr. Rayford Edgar; and (top row) Brooks Chittom, “Tuffy” Williamson, Ruel Vaughn, Ed Ray Perkins, Jack Craven and Felix Bagguley.

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