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75 YEARS AGO: FLASH FLOOD HITS PEARL
150 Years Ago – Aug. 24, 1871
We haven’t had enough rain to wash the dust off a setting hen. Another chap is in jail, charged with burning wheat stacks. If he had let them alone for a day or two they would have burned of their own accord just to get out of the way of this awful hot weather.
We are glad to learn that the coming state fair, to be held in Du Quoin in September, promises to be eminently successful. The fairground embraces about 40 acres, the facilities for reaching the grounds are excellent and the arrangement as perfect as could be reasonably expected.
125 Years Ago – Aug. 19, 1896
Wheat about all threshed, worth 20 to 50 cents. Corn never better, except where creeks drowned it out. Potatoes are number one, livestock scarce, hay plentiful.
The ice supply has given out, and the demand is now supplied from Louisiana. It retails in Nebo at $1 per hundred, rather expensive coolness.
Sunday the heated term was broken, and pleasant summer weather now rules the day.
Lou Bybee of Pleasant Hill was bitten on the toe by a rattlesnake Friday. By close attention to Dr. J. S. Thomas and a quart of whiskey, two chickens, etc. he was brought through all right.
One of the best games of ball played in the county was between Summer Hill and New Hartford. The game was for blood, and the score ended 11-6 in favor of Summer Hill.
Of late we have had nothing to report but high water, hot weather, sickness and death. But we have a wedding booked, of which we expect to write in the near future. We expect to measure the item by the piece of cake we receive.
100 Years Ago – Aug. 24, 1921
An engineering firm from Jacksonville made a survey of a well that has been sunk in the Carrel pasture near the Dutton spring north of Pittsfield. There seems to be plenty of water, but it cannot be filtered through the sand, which is on the order of quicksand.
A packed grandstand and full sidelines greeted the Pleasant Hill-Pittsfield baseball game. The score was 10-9 in favor of Pittsfield.
More than 1,000 chickens have been stolen down in the Martinsburg country south of Pittsfield in the past few months. Chicken pirates are also said to be plying a profitable trade along Pike County’s border rivers.
The annual report by County Superintendent of Schools Theo. C. Moore shows that 6,298 pupils were enrolled in the several schools of Pike County in 1921, which shows an increase of 191 over 1920.
75 Years Ago – Aug. 21, 1946
The worst water disaster in Pike County’s history occurred Thursday night when a flash flood from the hills swept through the village of Pearl, bringing thousands of tons of sand with it, and changing the map of the town. Fortunately, no lives were lost, as the Cecil Jones family spent the night in two trees, and Eutha Grimes and daughter Janet and a visiting girlfriend stood for 2 ½ hours in the kitchen sink as the waters rose in the house.
Pleasant Hill and Nebo also suffered from the deluge. Twenty-two homes were flooded in Pleasant Hill, mostly in the southwest part of town. Water got into all the homes but two, west of Main Street in Nebo. Jake Wall ran a motorboat to rescue some stranded residents in Nebo. Logan Weaver of Nebo, reported that a government rain gauge showed that seven inches of rain fell in a five-hour period.
The worst traffic accident in Pike’s history occurred on the following Saturday night, as a Greyhound bus overturned east of Pittsfield, causing the death of two women passengers and injury to the other 33 passengers and the bus driver. One of the fatalities was Mrs. Fern Baughman, wife of Supervisor Walter Baughman of Martinsburg Township, who had boarded the bus at the Bowl in Pittsfield.
50 Years Ago – Aug. 25, 1971
Pittsfield Fall Festival parade this year will be commemorating the 150th birthday of Pike County.
Mrs. Ila Couch will be closing her nursing home at 521 East Washington in Pittsfield for good. The 72-year-old widow has been operating the home for 21 years, but she says that more stringent governmental regulations make it prohibitive for her to continue.
It will be possible for 18-year-olds to vote in the next election, due to the amendment to the U.S. Constitution. Seven teens interviewed by the Pike Press indicated they have registered, or will register when they turn 18. Rick Orr, who graduated this past spring from Perry High School, has been vice chairman of the Young Democrats for two years. He says he will be at the office of County Clerk Wayne Lightle on Oct. 7, the day he turns 18.
Congressman Paul Findley has announced that the Farmers Home Administration has approved an insured loan and a grant for the Village of Nebo to build a modern sewer system for 171 homes, and 19 public commercial establishments, including an elementary school of 150 students, four churches and two service stations.
The Christian churches of Pike County are raising money to build three buildings at their new Mississippi Valley Christian Service Camp, located on route 100 about ½ mile south of Detroit on 23 acres of donated land.
25 Years Ago – Aug. 21, 1996
The path to the completion of Pikeland Community School, Unit 10’s new middle school for grades 3-8, has been as smooth as a 2-1 voter approval rate for an $8 million bond referendum—and as bumpy as the last minute delays which have forced the district to open only part of the building.
Pikeland students living more than a mile and a half from their school can take a school bus. That includes many who live in Pittsfield. Buses coming into Pittsfield from various directions will alter their routes to pick up students in designated areas.
10 years Ago – Aug. 24, 2011
The bridge north of Barry on County Highway 4 has been closed since sheer cracks were discovered in the bridge. County Engineer Chris Johnson said, “I have determined that it is not viable to repair the bridge for long-term. The most viable thing is going to be to replace it.”
Pike County State’s Attorney Frank McCartney announced today that he is seeking the position of Pike County resident circuit judge in the Eighth Judicial Circuit. McCartney has served as Pike County State’s Attorney since December, 2000.
The Chambersburg post office will be closing Sept. 9, and it is a sad day for the community. Officer in charge Terri Smith, a native of Chambersburg, will transfer to the Perry facility where she will be postmaster relief.
Pastor Darin Workman, minister of the Nebo Nazarene Church, was named grand marshal for the Vin Fiz parade, which celebrated the 100th anniversary of the flight of the Vin Fiz.
• Compiled by Michael Boren