75 YEARS AGO - 1944
March 25 - 31
- The Santee-Cooper project is demonstrating its efficiency as a flood-control factor in the present rainy season, and indications are that it could care for twice as much water as now is being handled by the …
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- The Santee-Cooper project is demonstrating its efficiency as a flood-control factor in the present rainy season, and indications are that it could care for twice as much water as now is being handled by the Santee River and its tributaries, the South Carolina Public Service Authority reported. A maximum of 16 of the project's 62 gates were opened Saturday and Sunday to care for 5 inches of rainfall which has fallen in the Piedmont, but some of these are being closed. It is expected that soon only six will be open.
- Duke endowment trustees appropriated $674,379.43 to 97 hospitals and 40 orphanage homes in the Carolinas at their meeting today. Announcement of the action from the endowment offices said appropriations were made on the basis of the institution's charity work in 1943. The list included: Sumter: Tuomey Hospital, $10,192; John K. Crosswell Home for children, $1,864. 69; and the Children's Home, $403.15.
- The $13,500 well begun in February for the city by the Layne-Atlantic Co. of Norfolk, Virginia, and Savannah, Georgia, is completed, and the water department held a celebration barbeque dinner for company employees. The 631-foot-deep well is in the process of being cleared and tested, J. A. Raffield, city manager, noted. Approximately 1,400 gallons of water per minute is the estimated flow. Workmen have been on the job 24 hours a day, he continued.
- Staff Sgt. Henry S. (Hamp) Flowers has been reported missing since March 8 in action over Germany, according to a message from the adjutant general to Mr. and Mrs. W. H. Flowers. Sgt. Flowers, an only son, is a radio operator on a Flying Fortress and has been stationed in England since Jan. 1. Prior to going across, he was based in Tennessee. Sgt. Flowers graduated from Sumter High School in 1940.
- Two young Alcolu girls were found slain early this morning, climaxing an all-night search when the children failed to return from picking flowers. Mary Emma Thames, 7, and Betty June Binnicker, 11, were the victims. Deputy Sheriff H. S. Newman, of Clarendon County, told The Item that George Junius Stinney, 14-year-old boy, had been arrested in connection with the crime.
- After serving 19 months in the Marines, where he believes he was the youngest corporal in the Corps, Earl Edward Griffin, 17, of Paxville, has gone over to the Navy. With his mother's consent, Griffin enlisted in the Marines in 1941 at the age of 14, and after 10 months of training at Parris Island he served nine months in the Southwest Pacific until an older brother revealed his age. "After fighting with the Leathernecks, I'm anxious to serve in the Navy - the outfit that gets them there," said the youthful veteran.
- WAVE recruiting specialist Ruth E. Loven will be available in Sumter, from 10 to 5 o'clock Monday, March 27, at the Navy Recruiting Station in the City Hall to talk with young women of this area interested in service with the WAVES of the U. S. Navy. Specialist Loven will have at hand detailed information needed by young women who are interested in learning whether they are qualified for service with the Navy's WAVES and are desirous of learning more about the many and varied billets now being filled by WAVES.
- The Sumter Y team, in its final game of the local season, eked out a 40-39 victory over the Charlotte Y all-stars on the Y court. It was a thrilling victory for the local team, and the crowd was standing and yelling at the finish. The Sumter Y five started off like a whirlwind and at the end of the first quarter was leading by the score of 14-0. However, the superior height and weight of the Charlotte quintet soon enabled them to bring up the score, and the half ended with the locals in the lead by 22-18.
- The Western Auto Associate Store is to be sold to the Western Auto Supply Co., it was learned today. The store will be closed for approximately two weeks during which time it will be redecorated, restocked and opened under the management of W. J. Barham of Greenville. The store was formerly owned by W. H. Christie. Mr. Barham, formerly assistant manager of the Greenville branch of the Western Auto Supply Co., is to move to Sumter with his wife and daughter as soon as arrangements are completed.
- The first forum of the Institute of International Understanding sponsored by the Rotary Club of Sumter will be held in the Edmunds High School auditorium at 8 o'clock. Tickets may be secured from members of the club. Prof. I. J. Fisher, of Vancouver, B.C., Canada, will be the speaker and his topic "The Oriental Nations as Contributors to a New World Order." Professor Fisher, educator and lecturer, was born and raised in England and received his college and university training in the USA. He attended Adrian College, Adrian, Michigan; Heidelberg College, Tiffin, Ohio; and did graduate work at Columbia University.
50 YEARS AGO - 1968
Nov. 25 - 30
- Edmunds High School won its fourth-straight cross country meet, defeating a field of four other high schools in the Airport Invitational Meet. Sumter has 37 points to 61 for Brookland-Cayce, 66 for A.C. Flora, 70 for Airport and 123 for Rock Hill. This was the final team meet to be held prior to the state championship competition to be run in Sumter.
- Bids for addition and remodeling to Sumter County Health Department will be received at the Sumter County courthouse, according to William Hodge, chairman of the County Board of Commissioners. If the bids fall within the allocated funds, construction is expected to begin around Jan. 1, Dr. E. Alex Heise, medical director Sumter County Health Department, added.
- The Columbia Swim Club smashed 22 Sumter YMCA records here to dazzle the home town club in a dual meet. Four Sumter swimmers broke local records to spark it in the dismal loss. The defeat came after a victory over Charleston. Lori Ogle of Sumter was the outstanding individual in the meet to claim some honor for the home towners.
- One hundred thirty turkeys would almost feed an Army - or an Air Force. Shaw Air Force Base is doing just that on Thanksgiving with 2,600 pounds of turkey, 900 pounds of ham, 400 pies and a wide assortment of 30 other traditional items. "This is the one time of year we look forward to," said Senior Master Sgt. Emerson Williamson, supervisor of dining halls. "The food service likes to show off on this day with a big meal. We really go all out for the Thanksgiving Day dinner," he added.
- Miss Louise McLeod, 18-year-old daughter of Mr. and Mrs. J.H. McLeod of Pinewood, was crowned 1968-69 Buddy Poppy Queen at the VFW. The queen is a 1968 graduate of Furman High School, where she held the titles of "Miss Furman," "Miss Chieftain," "Miss South," Homecoming Queen, Miss DAR and was first runner-up in "Miss Sumter Pageant." Susan Allene Prescott, daughter of Mr. and Mrs. J. Allen Prescott, was named second runner-up. Miriam Evelyn Jackson, daughter of Mrs. W.S. Jackson, was named Miss Congeniality.
- The new wing of Edmunds High School, the W.S. Jackson wing, will be dedicated. Among the local and state dignitaries expected to attend are Gov. Robert McNair, former governor, Secretary of State and Supreme Court Justice James F. Byrnes, U.S. Sen. Strom Thurmond, Sen. Ernest F. Hollings and former mayor Clifton G. Brown.
- Capt. James E. Stone of the Prospect community was killed in action in Vietnam on Nov. 20. Funeral services will be at Prospect Pentecostal Holy Church. The service will be conducted by the Rev. Rhett Ward, the Rev. Joe Cagle and the Rev. Terry Tripp.
- The old adage "statistics are for losers" is true in many cases, but in the light of a combined 26-1 record by Sumter Junior High and the Edmunds Jayvees, they can hold truths for winners. It was a dazzling season for sub-varsity performers in Sumter, with Edmund's jayvees finishing at 12-0, McLaurin Junior High at 9-0 and Alice Drive Junior High at 7-1. Speculation for future gridiron prospect is always moot; so much can happen in the off season. Kids suffer injuries, move away, etc. Coaches can never really count on athletes until practices really start.
- Danny Hill, an avid sportsman in Sumter, has been selected to serve as area chairman for Ducks Unlimited, a conservation organization. Hill was picked by Billy Pate, chairman of the South Carolina Ducks Unlimited Organization. "In view of the duck hunting situation in South Carolina, this chapter is being organized in Sumter to promote not only duck hunting, but the conservation of our waterfowl resources which have been in drastic danger for a number of years."
- In the halls of Tuomey Hospital and on the ground floor of the Nurses' Home, Sumter's 13 practical nursing students are learning the ins and outs of their future profession in the first and only school of practical nursing in this area. Founded last March, the school offers a 12-month course in practical nursing under the supervision of the Trade and Industrial Education section of the South Carolina State Department of Education, which provides money for the school.
- A class of 35 new volunteers recently completed their orientation for Red Cross volunteers under the direction of Mrs. Fred H. Bounds. These volunteers are currently working in Shaw Heights Elementary School conducting the school health room on a daily basis while school is in operation. Another group of volunteers is working at the Base Dental Clinic and undergoing special training. Still a third group is working in many areas of the base hospital to provide assistance to the staff and service to members of the Air Force and their dependents.
- Rosa Gurganus of Shaw shot an 82 to win the low field gross honors in the WAGS Invitational Golf Tournament. Women from Sunset, Manning, Forest Lake and Columbia participated in the handicap affair. Taking low field net honors was Mary Casoli of Shaw with a 69. Caral Dupre of Columbia took low field putts with 30.
25 YEARS AGO - 1993
Aug. 27 - Sept. 2
- Congress said some viewers could save as much as 10 percent on their cable television bill under the 1992 Cable Act, but just the opposite is going to happen next week to half of the 21,000 cable subscribers in Sumter County. Vision Cable of Sumter announced that starting Sept. 1, the monthly bills of cable customers with one "hook-up" will jump between $1.74 and $4.49, depending on which channels a customer receives and whether he has a "cable-ready" television or a converter box.
- For Phil Parnell, taking over as athletic director at the Sumter County Recreation Department is a challenge. Sure he held the same position for four years in his hometown of Darlington, but Sumter's different. "It's a lot broader," Parnell said. "When I was in Darlington, we covered only the city. Here, it's a whole county." Parnell is already faced with registrations for fall programs. Youth soccer, football and cheerleading are scheduled to begin in October. "Basically, I've got to learn who everybody is around here," he said. "I really don't know that many people here, and it will take some time for me to get adjusted to what's going on. I've been making a lot of phone calls, trying to contact some of the people who coached last year. It's just a matter of getting in contact with everybody and getting things started. I guess I kind of came in here at a bad time, but things will get better."
- A Sumter mobile home dealer has let one of his homes go to the dogs. Shot McLendon, owner of McLendon's Town and Country Mobile Homes, donated the home to the Sumter Law Enforcement K-9 Unit after he learned that police were looking to buy a mobile home for the unit. According to Sumter Police Chief Harold Johnson, the K-9 unit, which is run jointly by the police department and Sumter County Sheriff's Department, began looking for a mobile home to cut down on the amount of time it took to get a dog to a crime scene.
- Tom Lewis doesn't mince words. "I don't want to sound like we're blowing our own horns, but I believe we should be right there at the top," he said. It's difficult to argue with that assessment. Over the last eight years, Lewis' Sumter High School football program has produced five trips to the 4A Division 1 state championship game and a pair of state titles. The Gamecocks followed a state title in 1990 with consecutive state championship losses to Spartanburg and Gaffney in 1991 and 1992.
- All things considered, Sumter High head football coach Tom Lewis was well pleased with his team's 26-14 win over Battery Creek. "Battery Creek doesn't have a bad football team," said Lewis, whose Gamecocks defeated Battery Creek 38-6 last year. "You could tell it was the first game for both teams, but we didn't have too many offensive penalties and no turnovers. Defensively, we also didn't have too many stupid penalties, which you worry about with a young team on opening night."
- Sumter resident Jim Barnard vividly remembers how the truck hurled his friend past him in the accident on Pinewood Road two years ago. "I was ahead of him, so I didn't see the accident happen," Barnard said. "I just remember seeing him go flying past me, and then hitting the ground and rolling for about 130 feet. I remember thinking that I couldn't believe a person could fly so far in the air." The bicyclist was hit from behind by a truck traveling at a high rate of speed. Unfortunately for bicyclists around the state, such accidents are on the rise.
- It has been absolutely relentless. It started the last of April and has held its grip on the multi-county area since that time. It is the "1993 Drought." For those of us who experienced the droughts of 1977, 1980, 1986 and 1990, this year's drought has to be placed in a category all by itself. It simply has not let up and is predicted to be here through the end of September. If an analogy could be made to a hurricane, it would closely equal Hugo or Andrew.
- June Floyd is what some might term a "guardian angel." But her actual title is "Guardian ad Litem" of Sumter County, and her job is to act as an advocate for abused or neglected children. "Sometimes I cry, sometimes I hurt," she said. "But nobody can know that. I can't go to the child and say, 'I wish this didn't happen to you.' But I can go home in my car and cry. It can be frustrating and very personal, but sometimes you have to back up and get control of your emotions, because if you get too emotional, you can't do a good job."
- Laidlaw Environmental Services Inc. - routinely despised and praised for its hazardous-waste landfill in Sumter County - is playing a waiting game. It is waiting for a ruling on its permanent operating permit from the board of trustees of the state health department. It is waiting for state health officials to announce a fine for multiple regulatory violations discovered this spring at the company's 279-acre hazardous-waste landfill near Lake Marion. It is waiting to learn if it will once again be allowed to take federal Superfund waste after the federal EPA banned shipments to the site. It is waiting for pending state and federal lawsuits against Sumter County's zoning ordinance.
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