20 Years Ago
Week of July 25, 2002
Pendleton On Par
With State, Region
Although Pendleton County has one of the highest percentages of college graduates—6.8 percent–of any county in the Potomac Highlands, it also has the highest percentage of residents who have never attended school beyond the ninth grade, 14.2 percent.
Those are figures from the 2000 census, as compiled by the Region VIII Planning and Development Council.
The counties included in that profile are Pendleton, Hardy, Hampshire, Mineral and Grant (highest percentage of college graduates, 7.5%).
30 Years Ago
Week of July 30, 1992
West Virginia High
In Retiree Perks
A study published in the July 1992 issue of “Money” magazine ranks West Virginia sixth in the nation in tax advantages available to retirees. Only Alaska, Wyoming, Delaware, Louisiana and Mississippi were rated higher in the magazine’s survey of the 50 states and the District of Columbia.
“In addition to West Virginia’s unrivaled quality of life, our retirees also benefit from one of the most favorable tax structures in the nation,”
Governor Caperton said. “We’re pleased that our efforts to ease the tax burden on retirees and their families have resulted in positive national recognition.”
West Virginia ranked well above the neighboring states of Virginia (18th), Ohio (27th), Kentucky (37th), Pennsylvania (48th) and Maryland (50th).
At a household average of $144 per year, West Virginia’s property taxes were rated fourth lowest in the nation.
40 Years Ago
Week of July 22, 1982
Do Not Heal, They
When a tree is injured, it doesn’t heal.
Wait a minute, you say. What happens to all the injured trees? Certainly they don’t die. Many old trees bear the scars of numerous run-ins with man and nature.
Come now, you say. Aren’t you just playing with words?
Well, if you use heal to mean “get well and keep on living,” yes. But if you use it in its true sense, to mean “repair or replace damaged parts,” no. In that case, the difference between compartmentalizing and healing for the tree is the difference between living and dying.
You see, trees aren’t physically able to heal, to repair the damage. That’s partly because of their cellular structure. Cells in a tree are like tiny building blocks, each locked into place and interconnected with those around it. Injure one and the damage would spread like wildfire.
Thanks to the process of compartmentalization, trees can wall off injury and prevent it from spreading out of control. Mature trees have hundreds or even thousands of injured and infected areas closed off in discrete compartments.
Trees are more than 200 million years old, but the idea of compartmentalization is a product of the last 25 years of research. The whole concept of what a tree is has changed recently, and along with it the idea of how a tree grows, reacts to injury, and recovers or dies.
A tree is, in a sense, many plants growing one on top the other in cone fashion. Each year some parts are shed, including leaves or needles, reproductive organs, and fine absorptive roots. The new tree grows over the old, woody frame.
If compartmentalization works so well, you might ask, why do some trees die? Many of the reasons can be summed up in one word: stress.
Take Dutch elm disease, for example. Scientists now know that trees only succumb when their energy supplies are so depleted that they can’t compartmentalize effectively. The weakened tree is then easy prey.
The same is true of gypsy moth-infested trees. The caterpillar itself doesn’t kill. But it creates a strain on the tree’s energy and weakens its natural defense system. Compartmentalization is the core of that system.
Once we know why trees die, we can better know how to treat them. The discovery of compartmentalization changed many of our ideas about tree care. We now know that wound dressings do not stop decay or aid healing…that the swollen collar at the base of a branch should not be injured or removed…that frost does not cause “frost cracks.” And on and on.
Trees need their own brand of medicine, not one adapted from concepts of animal or human care. If we continue to try to “heal” trees, little progress will come. We should treat trees like trees. And realize that, for them, survival means compartmentalizing.
Should We Plant
By the Signs?
By Josephine Maxham
In the spring when people come for plants, they ask us if we plant by the signs. We had not heard of this prior to moving to this area, so we hadn’t thought about how we determined when to plant. This question having been asked so many times, set us to thinking about just how we do plant, so this article is the conclusion reached.
How do the signs relate to planting? What does the Bible say about planting and what has God promised the just and faithful who believe?
There are several meanings for the word “sign” in the dictionary. The Bible principly uses two meanings of the word. The first use is “something that indicates a fact, quality, etc.; indication; token.” An illustration of this is the fact that Jesus and His followers are “for signs and for wonders.”
The second and probably most used is “an act or happening regarded as a miraculous demonstration of divine power.” The invisible things of God are understood by the visible creation of the world. Part of that creation–the sun, moon, and stars, were to be “for signs, and for seasons, and for days, and years.” As signs they testify of God, and were used in prophecy to denote the last days of this earth’s history just before the second coming of Jesus Christ. There is no indication in Gen. 1:14 in the account of the purposes of the creation of the sun, moon, and stars that they were to be used in determining when to plant. However, we have several promises in the Scriptures. One of the most important is in Isaiah 28:26 which says, “his (the sower) God instructs him correctly and teaches him.” We can trust our God for wisdom in planting. Another important promise is in Gen. 8:22. “While the earth remains, seedtime and harvest, cold and heat, summer and winter, and day and night shall not cease.” There is also instruction in caring for the land, trees, etc.
The meaning of “signs” as used today refers to the zodiac. Webster’s dictionary defines this as (1.) an imaginary belt in the heavens extending for eight degrees on either side of the apparent path of the sun and including the paths of the moon and the principle planets: it is divided into twelve equal parts, or signs, each named for a different constellation. (2.) a figure or diagram representing the zodiac and its signs; used in astrology. (3.) a circle or circuit. The Greek meaning for zodiac is circle, literally, circle of animals. In the Encyclopedia Britannica, 1943 edition, Page 959, under zodiac we read “In the technical sense of the word the 12 ‘signs’ are geometrical divisions 30 degrees in extent counting from the position of the sun at the vernal equinox.
In conclusion, we see that the sun, moon, and stars were not given as guides to determine when to plant, but were designed by God to be instruments in His hands to aid in the germination of the seed and growth and development of the products of the land. Furthermore, God has promised to give us wisdom to know when and how to plant and has also given us instruction throughout the Scriptures.
In addition He has promised to bless us with rain and sunshine and many other promises on condition of obedience.
50 Years Ago
Week of July 27, 1972
With much interest I read Miss Carolyn Ruddle’s letter to the editor protesting the killing of hawks. Some folks have asked me how I felt about this matter. When I was a boy, I often was much angered by hawks taking our young turkeys and chicks to the point that I would have held anyone’s coat to kill a hawk. When I grew older I began reading and studying about hawks. I found that the Coopers and sharp-shined were the most destructive here. Other hawks like the broad-winged hawk and sparrow hawk were very beneficial to the farmer along with some species of owls.
In McGuffey’s Readers that are respected and loved by the older folk is a selection “The Owl” which states that an owl will catch as many mice as a half dozen cats.
The hawk mentioned in her article was the broad-winged hawk, so read what Audubon Societies have to say about this hawk’s diet. Then visit a broad-winged hawk’s nest, if one can be found, and the answer is easy.
Years ago when the law began to protect deer, some men were hunting on Dickenson Mountain. One man let a deer pass without shooting at it, perhaps he feared the law. Another man in the hunting party said, “I would have shot that deer even if the prosecuting attorney had been riding straddle of the deer.
60 Years Ago
Week of July 26, 1962
100 YEARS AGO
McClellan Is Ordered Back to Washington
By LON K. SAVAGE
Editor’s Note—The following is one of a series of articles on the Civil War. Each weekly installment covers events which occurred exactly 100 years ago.
Gen. Henry W. Halleck, the federal government’s new commander-in-chief, traveled down from Washington to Harrison’s Landing on the James River just east of Richmond 100 years ago this week with an all-important decision to consider.
The decision was whether to pull Gen. George B. McClellan and his army of 100,000 back from Richmond toward Washington or to let the army try again to take the Confederate capitol.
Halleck and McClellan conferred along the river bank without reaching any basic agreement, but before the week was out the decision had been made. McClellan would withdraw and come north again. It had been reached partially because of the military situation at the time, but probably more because of politics and personalities.
Halleck and McClellan were cordial but stiff at the meeting, and no real decision was made. Halleck suggested that McClellan attack Richmond at once. McClellan indicated he would if he had 20,000 re-enforcements. (He estimated his enemy under Gen. Robert E.Lee at 200,000 strong when actually it was about 60,000). The meeting broke up with McClellan apparently thinking he would be reenforced, Halleck thinking otherwise but being non-committal.
Meanwhile, other machinery was working that would make the decision for them.
In Washington, word came in that week that the South’s “Stonewall” Jackson was coming north and already had reached central Virginia, menacing with his hard-fighting army the new federal army that had been assembled under Gen. John Pope.
Halleck, back in Washington and thinking Richmond might be weak without Jackson, telegraphed McClellan to feel out the Confederates around Richmond, and McClellan did so, bringing on a little skirmishing between one of his divisions and the Confederates. But the fighting petered out.
Still other forces were at work. President Lincoln had reached almost the end of his patience with McClellan. On his visit to McClellan earlier in the month, McClellan had given him a letter outlining what he considered would be the proper way to conduct the war—as if it were McClellan’s and not the President’s task to make such decisions. Moreover, Lincoln was fast approaching a decision to issue a proclamation emancipating the slaves, and McClellan had shown himself opposed to this step. There was a political difference between them, in addition to the many differences over military matters.
Finally, while McClellan still insisted upon re-enforcements—men who were not available—and while Jackson was threatening the federal troops in northern Virginia, the administration reached its decision. McClellan would have to pull back.
And as July came to an end, Halleck informed McClellan of the decision to withdraw his army and ordered him to start at once putting his men on transports to go up the Chesapeake Bay and Potomac River to a camp near Washington. McClellan, arguing all the way, complied.
Next week: Confederates plan to invade Kentucky.