10 Years Ago
Week of May 24, 2012
The Sense of Liberty
At All Ages
May blends spring and summer filling the days with wonder and surprises. Nature is accomplishing a maturity that will lead to summer fulfillment. May brings a closing to the doors of the school year and also graduation. There is no feeling that can compare in a child’s life with the freedom of school letting out. One can never forget that sense of liberty when the school term is over for the year. The pressure is lifted. The heart is glad and the anticipation of summer’s fun is almost too much to hold.
Week of May 31, 2012
And Marriages Have
Seen Many Changes
One has to go back to the beginning when discussing the mountain folk and their courtships. In the past, courtships and marriages in these mountains were quite different than today.
In the olden days, the woman’s role was to take care of the home, raise the children and provide for their husband, who was undoubtedly the head of the household, with the wife doing exactly as she was told to do. People were mostly bonded together within their own families. More often than not, an entire family would live on the same piece of property up in a hollow. Everyone knew their own kin.
Family members prearranged just about all the relationships. Courtships were generally short-lived. The term of two or three weeks was deemed sufficient, with the marriage being consummated. The couple could be quite young…most generally in their “teens.”
Most weddings took place in the home of the bride, since church weddings were quite rare. Many times the young couple and their families would make a trip to the county courthouse and the county judge would perform the ceremony. Quite possibly the term “goin’ courtin’” originated from this practice.
In many rural areas, there weren’t enough preachers for each town to have one living there on a permanent basis so there were itinerant preachers who “rode the circuit.” They traveled mostly on horseback to the many different small towns and villages doing weddings, funerals and baptisms. Depending on the era, the mode of transportation and size of their circuit, they might only get to each town every few months. Since money was absent, there was no thought of a honeymoon. Most often, the couple would reside at the bride’s home the first night, and sometimes reside in this home for six months to a year. The length of the stay would generally be a term long enough for the groom to save enough money to build a house.
The man’s job was to earn money, probably from farming, coal mining, or logging. The woman’s job was to provide for the man…supervising the cooking, cleaning, feeding the livestock and raising the children. While the men absorbed the fine meals, the women would eat theirs in the kitchen, since it was inappropriate for them to be seen while their husbands were eating.
Women were seldom seen out in public. It was commonplace to see a man walking down the road with his wife walking behind him. Most couples attended church in those days. If so, the woman was required to wear a veil over her face. It was regarded as wrong to look at another man’s wife in the eyes, and if a married woman would look at another man in the eyes, it was considered flirting.
30 Years Ago
Week of June 4, 1992
The Case Of The
Fickle Microwave Oven
Does the power in your microwave oven mysteriously come and go? Does it take two minutes to boil a cup of water one day, then three minutes the next day?
The problem, according to appliance experts from Whirlpool Corporation, could be that your refrigerator is “stealing” energy from the microwave oven.
A frost-free refrigerator requires extra power when the compressor is running or it’s in the defrost cycle. And when a microwave oven and refrigerator are on a common circuit—even though they may be plugged into separate outlets—the refrigerator always takes precedence.
So your oven may be in perfect working order, but it may appear to be cooking erratically, either in the difference in the time it takes or the sound it makes.
It doesn’t take a detective to crack this case, say the Whirlpool appliance experts. A quick check of your circuit box will tell you if the microwave oven and refrigerator are on the same circuit. If they are, simply switch one to an outlet serving another circuit in your kitchen, to give you top working results for both refrigerator and microwave oven.
Bought 70 Acres
In Pendleton in 1788
The first deed entered of record in Pendleton County was filed at the Clerk’s Office when the county seat was at Ruddle, six miles north of Franklin on the 13 day of June 1788; thirty-five pounds current money of Virginia to the Joseph Bennett in hand paid, doth bargain and sell into the said Isaac Hinkle, Esq. to him and his heirs one tract of land in the county of Pendleton, being on the North Fork of the South Branch of Potowmack at the great Clover Lick containing seventy acres. The said Joseph Bennett and Mary, his wife, for themselves and their heirs doth covenant with the said Isaac Hinkle and admitted to record August 4, 1788. Garvin Hamilton.
60 Years Ago
Week of May 31, 1962
They Are Not Forgotten—
One of the impressive features of the memorial service at Upper Tract last Sunday was the appearance of the Upper Tract Cemetery.
Seldom does one see a cemetery in a rural community that appears to be so meticulously cared for—where the grass is so neatly mowed and trimmed, where the graves are so carefully filled in and sodded over, and where the grounds are so free of clippings and litter—as in the one at Upper Tract.
This cemetery gives one the feeling that those buried there have not been forgotten—that their final resting places are receiving all the care and attention that it is possible for them to have.
The people of Upper Tract are to be commended for the cooperative effort they obviously have exerted in maintaining a cemetery such as this.
100 YEARS AGO
Lee Takes Command
At Seven Pines
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. Joseph E. Johnston, commanding the Army of Northern Virginia’s last-ditch stand outside Richmond against the onslaught of federal Gen. George B. McClellan, saw his chance to act 100 years ago this week.
And act he did. Attacking a portion of McClellan’s army at a crossroads named Seven Pines, he brought on the first of the Civil War’s many big bloody battles in the Richmond area, and he brought on his own departure from the Confederacy’s top leadership. For Johnston was wounded at Seven Pines, and he was replaced by a military genius who would lead the Army of Northern Virginia until the end of the war at Appomattox. He was Robert E. Lee.
Each side lost about 5,000 men killed and wouned in the battle, and it ended in a stalemate. But stalemates or not, it caused another delay in McClellan’s plans, and the delay proved vital for the South.
But if Seven Pines wasn’t everything the North had wished, Northerners received encouraging word from the West. In the same week, Gen. Henry W. Halleck completed his investment of Corinth in northeastern Mississippi, and the important railroad junction fell into his hands. Confederate Gen. P. G. T. Beauregard, outnumbered two to one, had slipped away in the night to Tupelo, 50 miles south.
Johnston saw his chance to act at Richmond on May 28. On that day he heard that federal Gen. Irvin McDowell, who had been heading south to join McClellan, was returning north (to go after “Stonewall” Jackson). At the same time, McClellan’s army was split—three corps on the north side of the little Chickahominy River, two on the south side. Johnston decided to attack the two corps on the south side and whip them before the other three corps could save them.
And aided by a heavy rainstorm that flooded the Chickahominy, making it even harder for McClellan to bring his army together, Johnston attacked on May 31.
The whole battle was confusion—bloody confusion. Johnston’s division commanders got mixed up about the roads they were to take to the front, and the battle was hours late in starting. Confederate Gen. D. H. Hill launched the attack at Seven Pines and dislodged the federals under Gen. Silas Casey. The battle raged northward to a railroad station named Fair Oaks (the battle is also called Fair Oaks), and people fell all along the line, some drowning in pools of rainwater.
McClellan’s day was saved by Gen. E. V. Sumner, who had been on the north side of the river when the battle started. Upon the first shot, Sumner prepared his men for battle and, when ordered, advanced them to the swollen river. The men crossed on a little grapevine bridge which, unsteady and swaying in the river’s heavy current, became firm and solid under the troopers’ weight. Sumner arrived at Fair Oaks just in time to halt the Southern attack.
Johnston ordered his men to sleep where they were that night and then received his wounds—first a musket ball in the shoulder and then a shell fragment in the chest. He was carried from the field.
Next morning, the Confederates, now under Gen. Gustavus W. Smith, resumed their attack without success. The federals gained the ground they had lost and the battle ended in a draw. That afternoon, Lee assumed command of Johnston’s army—and it probably was the most significant result of the battle.
Next week: Memphis falls.
The Stream of Life
This is Soil Stewardship Week, a time for renewing man’s responsibility to the land. It is not just a reminder to the farmer alone, but a reminder to everyone who would put a spade to the soil.
Both rural and urban dwellers have an interest in the use of our natural resources, particularly the soil. This interest goes beyond the present use of our land. It must take into consideration the demands that will be placed on the land by future generations, and the obligation that we have to those who will follow us.
The farmer recognizes his responsibility to the land through the day-to-day application of good land use practices on farm and ranch. The non-agricultural land users should grasp the meaning of soil stewardship as they reap the harvest of the land in good moderate-cost groceries, clothing they wear, the houses they live in, and as they see the beauty of the land in their Sunday drives to the country where lush green meadows, clear rippling brooks, and cool shady woodlands help to satisfy that innate desire to be near the wonders of Mother Nature.
In observing these events, all of us should reflect upon the blessings that have come from the richness of our land and the skill of our people. We should express special thanks for our great human and natural resources, be appreciative for our vast agricultural abundance, and seek ways of working together to improve and conserve these precious gifts of the Creator.
The latter part of May has been designated as Mailbox Improvement Week. Patrons should furnish mail receptacles which are convenient and safe to use, neat appearing and protect the mail. Boxes that are properly erected and maintaind contribute to efficient speedy delivery of mail.
Mail boxes must be located on the right side of the road in the direction of travel of carriers so the carriers can reach the box without getting out of the truck.
An approved box must be provided by patrons when a new box is erected or an old one replaced, on star routes having delivery and collection service.