Feb. 21, 1868: The East Tennessee Union Flag reported on the death of a prominent citizen. “We regret to have to record the death of Lieut. Jas. Henry Miller, late of Co. “A,” 8th Tennessee Cavalry Volunteers, U. S. A., which occurred at his residence at Buffalo Ridge in this County, on Wednesday the 12th instant. He leaves a widow, three children and a large circle of friends to mourn his untimely demise. He is another victim to rebel barbarity – having lost his health while scouting from rebel soldiers and conscript officers. He was captured and sent to Vicksburg, but it was not long till he made his escape, and joined the Federal Army, where he proved himself to be a brave and efficient officer, as many a hard-contested battlefield.”

The East Tennessee Union Flag was a newspaper published in Jonesborough, which was spelled that way in 1868.

Feb. 21, 1885: The Comet gave readers a smile with the weather forecast: “For the next week, sunshine, rain, snow, freezes, thaws, spews, blizzards, winds, and very cloudy and very clear weather.”

Feb. 21, 1892: “Dr. Johnston, the specialist, who is to treat Mrs. Molesworth, arrived from Cincinnati last evening,” according to The Comet.

There was no mention of Mrs. Molesworth’s malady.

Feb. 21, 1905: With a Johnson City dateline, readers of The Chattanooga News learned, “At the recent semi-monthly meeting of the city council a resolution was passed to pay the fire laddies 25 cents per hour for services.”

“An ordinance governing construction of buildings in the fire limits, was passed on the second reading.”

Twenty-five cents in 1905 is now worth about $7.40. (Source: www.in2013dollars.com)

There was not a daily newspaper published in Johnson City in February 1905.

Feb. 21, 1907: Scam artists are nothing new. Readers of The Chat-tanooga News read of a scam artist operating in Johnson City. Readers were alerted, “For the past few weeks a man has invaded the fashionable part of the city and presented his beautiful scheme of fine portrait painting or pastel work from photos free of charge. He represented to the possible purchaser that he sends his work to a ‘Studio of Fine Arts, Knoxville, Tenn.’ He has not had smooth sailing here. Last week an indignant husband collared the alleged fraud and marched him to his home and compelled him to shell out the coin. In doing so he is said to have doubled up a $5 bill with some $1 bills and gave short change.”

The Comet, a weekly newspaper, was the only newspaper published in Johnson City in February 1907.

One dollar in 1907 is now worth about $27.71, so $5 in 1907 would be worth approximately $138.55 today. (Source: www.in2013dollars.com)

Feb. 21, 1919: The Johnson City Daily Staff regaled readers regarding a recent dinner party. “Mr. and Mrs. Adam Crouch entertained on last evening with a beautifully appointed dinner party honoring Judge and Mrs. Samuel C. Williams.”

“The table decorations of yellow and white were beautiful and elaborate. Handsome hand-painted place cards were effectively used.”

“A delicious seven course dinner was faultlessly served to the guests invited who were Mr. and Mrs. Allen Harris, Mr. and Mrs. Chas. Cargille, Mr. and Mrs. Jas. A. Summers, M. and Mrs. Geo. T. Wofford, Mr. and Mrs. Leslie Driver, Mrs. W.P. Harris and Mrs. Pearl Williams Kelley, Mr. Roscoe Long, and Mr. John D. Cox of Jonesboro.”

Jonesboro was spelled that way in 1919.

Feb. 21, 1920: With a dateline of Johnson City, readers of The Bristol Herald Courier learned Johnson City had a new Kiwanis Club. “With the necessary membership quota of seventy-five completed and formal applications made for a charter to the international Secretary of Chicago, the Kiwanis Club of Johnson City completed its organization yesterday at noon, proceeded to elect permanent officers and a board of directors and shortly proposes getting behind many important civic propositions under consideration. Temporary officers chosen at the first meeting were re-elected to serve for the first year of the club organization. Joe A. Summers heads the body as president, with W. J. Exum, vice-president and W.B. Miller treasurer.”

There was not a newspaper published in Johnson City on February 21, 1920.

Feb. 21, 1927: The Knoxville News-Sentinel reported, with a dateline of Johnson City, on a police matter in Johnson City. “Police chief (sic) Hatcher has been bound over to the grand jury under $500 bond, charged with felonious assault on Manuel Patterson, a young man. Chief Hatcher and other officers recently made a raid on a hotel and as they were coming out of the building the young man is alleged to have been struck.”

More details revealed, “The chief admits slapping the boy, but said Patterson with others was blocking the way and making remarks. Hatcher was arraigned before Magistrate Dickinson.”

Five hundred dollars in 1927 is now worth approximately $7485. (Source: www.in2013dollars.com)

There was not a newspaper published in Johnson City on February 21, 1927.

Feb. 21, 1936: The Morristown Gazette and Mail reported, with a dateline of Johnson City, information about TVA. “City and county officials yesterday began laying plans for acquiring Tennessee Valley Authority power for this section.”

The article continued to say, “Mayor Marion Sell said he would name a committee soon to confer with TVA authorities, while County Judge John M. Mongold declared steps would be taken to include Washington county (sic) in the rural electrification program.”

Finally, readers learned, “The TVA already has been granted permission to erect transmission line poles in this county.”

There was not a newspaper published in Johnson City on this date.

Feb. 21, 1943: The Sunday Press-Chronicle alerted readers that FDR would address the nation the following evening. “President Franklin D. Roosevelt will address the nation at 10:30 Monday night over all the networks, with WJHL carrying the broadcast locally. The occasion will be the celebration of George Washington’s birthday. Although the President’s subject has not been announced, it is expected that his message will touch on the new war measures which go into effect on the homefront (sic) his week, with perhaps broad hints at others in the offing.”

Feb. 21, 1949: According to an advertisement in the Johnson City Press Chronicle, The Music Mart was the place to go for the best buy in band instruments.

Feb. 21, 1958: Two Johnson City businesses had recently been vandalized, according to the Johnson City Press-Chronicle. “Doyle Tire and Recapping Co., 502 W. Market St., was entered through a rear window and ransacked Wednesday night. However, nothing was reported taken.”

Doyle’s is still in business and at the same location.

“Police Wednesday night found the office door of the White City Laundry open. Officers notified the owner.”

Feb. 21, 1968: In a captioned photograph, readers of the Johnson City Press-Chronicle read: ‘While a light burns brightly, firemen spray the pole in an effort to extinguish a fire which is burning inside the pole. Traffic was rerouted and the area faced the possibility of being in darkness when the pole on West Market Street, at Henry Johnson Elementary School, caught fire last night.”

Feb. 21, 1978: An advertisement in the Johnson City Press-Chronicle informed readers that United American Bank was sponsoring the Up With People musical show on March 7. The show would be held at Freedom Hall Civic Center. Tickets were $5 for adults and $2.50 for children, students, and senior citizens. Tickets were available at several locations, including the Freedom Hall Box Office and all local United American Bank locations.

Five dollars in 1978 is now worth about $19.97 today. (Source: www.in2013dollars.com)

Feb. 21, 1988: The Johnson City Press carried several recent college basketball scores on the front page, over the masthead. Wake Forest won over East Tennessee State University, by a score of 87 to 66. Auburn bested Tennessee, 73 to 68. Milligan College defeated Bryan College, 91 to 89. Virginia Military Institute defeated Appalachian State, 66 to 65. Vanderbilt won over Georgia by a score of 77 to 71, and Alabama beat LSU by a score of 72 to 59.

Milligan College is now Milligan University.



Rebecca Henderson is a contributing columnist for Johnson City Press.

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