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Today in Johnson City History: January 4

Rebecca Henderson and Johnson City Press • Jan 4, 2020 at 5:45 AM

Jan. 4, 1894: The Comet carried the obituary for Mrs. Laura Lillian Mathes, wife of Tennessee State Rep. John A. Mathes. Laura Mathes had died two days earlier at the home of her mother, Mrs. Mary Gentry, on Jobe Street. 

Jan. 4, 1912: Dr. W.S. Buchanan had preached his last sermon at the Christian Church in Johnson City the previous Sunday and would be moving to Washington. During Dr. Buchanan’s time as minister, church membership increased from 500 to 800. Church officers also had been elected that Sunday: J.E. Crouch, superintendent; D.S. Burleson, superintendent of the adult department; A.B. Crouch, superintendent of the intermediate department; and Mrs. J.E. Crouch and S.O. Culler, superintendents of the junior departments.

Jan. 4, 1930: Seals Coach Line owner Roy Seals stated that buses between Kingsport and Johnson City would be added if the Clinchfield Railroad Co. discontinued one of its passenger trains.

Jan. 4, 1950: Former City Manager Murphy U. Snoderly accepted a position as the first consultant on engineering and public works with the Municipal Technical Advisory Service at the University of Tennessee. Snoderly was Johnson City’s first city manager, having served from 1939-41 and 1943-47.

Jan. 4, 1950: The Johnson City Press-Chronicle published a photo from the annual New Year's Eve dance given  by the Thirty-Niners and the membership committee of the Junior Chamber of Commerce at the John Sevier Hotel ballroom.

Jan. 4, 1969: Road crews were braving cold temperatures to crush rock and slice through the countryside in Gray to develop the new U.S. Highway 23 between Kingsport and Johnson City (now Interstate 26).

Jan. 4, 1989: The Washington County/Johnson City Animal Shelter was housing Chase, a German shepherd, as a favor to the Johnson City Police Department. Chase had been donated by a Hampton family for possible training as a K-9 police dog.

Jan. 4, 2006: Florida Atlantic’s Kevin Green missed a 3-point shot at the buzzer, allowing the East Tennessee State University Buccaneers to escape with a 63-61 victory in an Atlantic Sun Conference game at Memorial Center. It was the Bucs’ third win in a row and their first in their new league.

Sources: The Comet; Johnson City Chronicle; Johnson City Press-Chronicle; Ted Bowers/Johnson City, Tennessee, Memories; Johnson City Press

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