Sept. 13, 1884: The Comet printed several thoughts worth thinking about regarding an upcoming election, and other issues in a column entitled, “Comet Sparks.” Some of those thoughts include: “The golden key unlocks to door to office.”

“Merit wins applause but money gets the votes.”

“An old proverb says that raw haste is half sister (sic) to delay.”

“Some men put so much lumber to their heads that they crowd out their brains.”

“Where is the freedom of a country when its voters are bought like hogs to the market?”

“There is a Yankee saying that a little piece of soap in some men’s mouths will make a big foam.”

“Nothing carries a man through the world, says a writer, like a true genuine national impudence.”

“If a fellow could walk out of himself and take a good look at himself is it likely that he would walk back into himself?”

“Some men go to high places like the noble eagle. Others go like the worm by crawling, leaving a trail of (indecipherable) all the way behind.”

Sept. 13, 1892: According to The Comet, “Some of Elizabethton’s citizens are talking of building an opera house at that city. C. A. Wells of that city has offered to donate a site free for the opera house, if it is put up.”

Sept. 13, 1910: The Johnson City Comet reported news about several Johnson Citians. “Cleveland Coe, a valued employee of the Unaka National Bank, and one of the brightest boys in Johnson City, leaves today to attend school in New York state.”

“Miss Leona Feathers, Gump Bro’s popular cashier, is spending a few days in Erwin. She will go from there to Knoxville for the remainder of her vacation.”

“Herman Gibson and wife spent Sunday in Johnson City.”

“Harry B. Range left yesterday for Emory and Henry College.”

“Mr. and Mrs. E. W. Brown are the happy parents of an 8-pound girl.”

“Miss Anita Jobe, of Sycamore Shoals, was a visitor to the city yesterday.”

“Elder W. S. Buchanan is in Bristol assisting Elder Ferris in a protracted meeting.”

“Yesterday afternoon Mrs. O. R. Morgan gave an informal bridge party at her Watauga avenue (sic) home.”

Sept. 13, 1918: The Johnson City Daily Staff reported news about recent surgeries of two area residents. “Sam Purcell, of Jonesboro, who was operated on for appendicitis at Memorial Hospital Wednesday is improving fast.”

“Chas. E. Bolton underwent a successful operation for appendicitis at Memorial Hospital (sic) Wednesday. His many friends hope for him a speedy recovery.”

Jonesboro was spelled in that way in 1918.

That Memorial Hospital was a forerunner to the Appalachian Hospital, which was a forerunner to a different Memorial Hospital, which was a forerunner to the current Johnson City Medical Center.

Sept. 13, 1921: A century ago today, The Knoxville Sentinel reported news with a dateline from Johnson City. “To clear the lot for the new half-million dollar hotel, wrecking of the Boxwood Inn building will begin at once.”

The Knoxville Sentinel is now published as the Knoxville News-Sentinel. We do not have access to any newspapers that were published in Johnson City in 1921.

Sept. 13, 1935: The Chattanooga Times, with a dateline from Johnson City, and a date from Sept. 12, reported, “An appeal has been perfected from Circuit Judge Ben Allen’s decision holding that Johnson City’s new corporation court cannot exclude magistrates from trying cases originating in the city.”

“Judge Allen ruled that the new court and magistrates have concurrent jurisdiction in the city. The corporation court was created by an act of the recent legislation.”

“William E. Miller, member of a Bar association (sic) committee defending the court, said the transcript in the case, a habeas corpus proceeding, had been prepared, and the appeal will be heard by the state superior court, which meets in Knoxville Sept. 30.”

The Chattanooga Times is now published as the Chattanooga Times Free Press.

Sept. 13, 1946: Seventy-five years ago today, in a follow-up to a news account from Sept. 12, 1946, the Johnson City Press-Chronicle reported, “Circuit Judge D. A. Vines, who collapsed in the Washington county (sic) courthouse Wednesday morning just after recessing court, was reported ‘considerably improved’ yesterday.”

“At first reported to have suffered a ‘light stroke’ it was learned later the veteran jurist was ill of a stomach disorder.”

Sept. 13, 1968: The Johnson City Press-Chronicle gave readers a chuckle, but also wise words to ponder, on the front page. “You can never plow a field by just turning it over in your mind.”

Sept. 13, 1971: Fifty years ago today, according to the Johnson City Press-Chronicle, “Mrs. Nannie Burge Shumate, 86, 1712 N. Roan St., died unexpectedly at her home early today.”

“She was the wife of the late L. H. Shumate, who was president of Empire Furniture co.”

Mrs. Shumate had lived in Johnson City since 1915, but was a native of Martinsville, Virginia.

“Mrs. Shumate was a member of Central Baptist Church where she had taken an active part in all church affairs and had served as president of the Women’s Missionary Society. She was a former member of the Monday Club and the Fortnightly Club.”

“Survivors are two sons, Lewis H. Jr. and William F., both of Johnson City; one sister, Mrs. David Carter, Clinton, N. C.; one brother, Newton F. Burge, Jr., Galax, Va.; six grandchildren; and seven great-grandchildren.”

Sept. 13, 1996: Twenty-five years ago today, with a dateline from Grandfather Mountain, N.C., the Johnson City Press reported news about that historic place. “All grandmothers are admitted free to Grandfather Mountain during the month of September. Grandmothers need only present a photo of their grandchildren to gain free admission. Grandfathers are admitted free in May.”

“Grandfather Mountain is located at the intersection of U.S. Highway 221 and the Blue Ridge Parkway, two miles north of Linville and 17 miles south of Boone and Blowing Rock. September hours are 9 a.m.-6:30 p.m., with ticket sales ending one hour before closing.”

Grandfather Mountain is about 45 miles from Johnson City. Boone is approximately 53 miles from Johnson City. Blowing Rock is just a bit further, or about 57 miles from Johnson City. Linville is 42 miles from Johnson City.

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Sources: 

Rebecca Henderson is a contributing columnist for Johnson City Press.

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