New library given official approval by its board of trustees

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75 YEARS AGO - 1943

May 29 - June 4

  • First Lt. Benjamin F. Fizzano, 23, and Pilot Officer George Lammie of the Royal Air Force, 20, both of whom were stationed at Shaw Field, were among eight men killed in the crash of a B-24 bomber at Smyrna, Tennessee, the Shaw Field public relations office announced. Two other occupants of the plane were seriously injured, it was reported.
  • A large group of boys and their parents attended the annual Parents Night program at the YMCA. The Rev. W.H. Stender opened the program by asking the invocation. Awards were presented to the boys by the following members of the Y board of directors: George Bultman, W.C. Eldridge, Logan L. Phillips, George Hurst Jr., the Rev. W.H. Stender, C.R. Penny and W.E. Bynum.
  • Austin M. Francis, general secretary of the Sumter YMCA since 1930, leaves for New York City to take a special course of study for the next three weeks at Columbia University before assuming duties as executive director of the USO-YMCA service program at Warner Robins Air Base, Warner Robins, Georgia. ... In his new field, Mr. Francis will direct the social, recreational and athletic activities in a newly developed town of war workers and their families.
  • The Pilot Club held its regular meeting at the Coca-Cola Community Room with the new president, Ruth Lawrence presiding. The attendance was unusually good. Louise Earle presented Maude Bateman, district governor of District No. 5, and Lucile McKiever, district secretary. Ruth Jennings, program chairman presented Priscilla Shaw, executive director of the Citizens Service Corps, who made a most instructive talk about the work for national defense being done in Sumter County.
  • A highly interesting talk on the topic "Radio, and its Future" was given to members of the Sumter Kiwanis Club at the regular meeting by Douglas Youngblood, vice president of radio station WFIG. A visitor present at the meeting was Lt. John Baily Littlejohn, son of Dr. and Mrs. T.R. Littlejohn. The speaker traced the early part radio played in the war and then told of the many new inventions planned by radio experts for the world tomorrow.
  • Farmers of Sumter County seem to have found what county agent J.M. Eleazer calls "the missing link in our livestock grazing program" in a combination of small grains and legumes for winter grazing pastures. "One of our farmers, J.F. Bland, has such an outstanding piece of winter grazing that we have induced most of our livestock farmers to see it and all of them are greatly impressed with it," says Mr. Eleazer.
  • Robert J. Bauman, 22, son of Mr. and Mrs. A.J. Bauman won his Navy "Wings of Gold" and was commissioned a second lieutenant in the Marine Corps Reserve following completion of the prescribed flight training course at the Naval Air Training Center, Pensacola, Florida. Prior to entering the Naval service, Bauman attended Belmont Abbey for two years and Clemson College for one year where he was a member of the varsity football, baseball and tracks teams.
  • The Lincoln Public Library will open for the first time, Superintendent William Henry Shaw of Sumter City Schools announced today. The library will occupy a building on the Lincoln High School grounds, which has been completely renovated and fitted for library purposes. Established under the auspices of the Carnegie Public Library and the city schools, it was given a special appropriation of $500 from the city of Sumter for the purchase of books. Sally Barnow, a graduate of Lincoln High School last year and a first-year honor student at the State College for Negroes in Orangeburg where she did library work, has been appointed librarian. She will be on duty from 10 until 12 in the morning and from 5 until 9 in the afternoon.


50 YEARS AGO - 1968

Jan. 28 - Feb. 3

  • Lee Quinn, a sea adventurer, addressed the Executive Club on Feb. 29. Quinn, a fellow of just 40 years of age has been sailing the seven seas and making newspaper headlines while doing it, spoke to the club at the Legion Home. He insisted that he is not an adventurer by profession. "Things just happened," he said. "I don't plan them - they just come about naturally.
  • The Sumter basketball team sputtered for three quarters before erupting for 20 points in the final period to turn back a youthful Hartsville team, 56-37, in a non-conference basketball contest at the Edmunds gym. The Gamecocks won their ninth game of the year against four setbacks, worked their offensive patterns beautifully during three-fourths of the game, breaking loose for easy lay-ups most of the night. Spearheading the Sumter attack was Jimmy Trembley, who tallied 26 points, followed by Sidney Brown with 16. They were the only Gamecocks to finish in double figures.
  • A $139,591 project covering construction of curb and gutters, sidewalks, street paving and drainage on Atlantic Avenue and Maney, Meehan and Fulton streets will begin soon, according to W.M. Hodge, chairman of the Sumter County Board of Commissioners.
  • An award of a $963,837 contract for construction of an additional road to provide a four-lane divided highway on U. S. 76 through the Wateree River Swamp in Richland and Sumter counties was announced by the State Highway Department. The contact was awarded to L-J, Incorporated and Eastern Contractors, Inc. of Columbia, according to Chief Highway Commissioner Silas N. Pearman. Six bids were entered ranging as high as $1,686, 240 and the Columbia firms was the lowest. The project, 3.93 miles long, extends from the end of the four-lane section west of the Wateree River to the beginning of four lanes east of the river. This is the only section of the Route 76 between Columbia and Sumter which does not now have four lanes.
  • James W. Weeks Jr., of Pinewood completed his initial training at Delta Air Lines training school at the Atlanta Airport and was assigned to the airline's Atlanta pilot base as a second officer. Weeks graduated from the Darlington School at Rome, Georgia, and attended Clemson University. Prior to joining Delta, he was a pilot in the U. S. Navy for 11 years, retiring as a lieutenant (senior grade).
  • Announcement was made today by Fulton B. Creech that he would erect an addition to the Edward's store on North Main street that would add 10,000 square feet of floor space to the present building. With the new addition, Edwards would have approximately 25,000 square feet of floor space on the ground, plus warehouse space on the second floor and mezzanine. The buildings that would be razed for the addition were the store recently vacated by the Perfection Bakery and the former home of the National Bank of South Carolina and in recent years radio station WFIG.
  • Hugh Toland Stoddard Jr. of Sumter represented Furman University as a member of the General Electric College Bowl team on the nationally televised G.E. College Bowl on NBC on Feb. 4 at 6 p.m. Furman will play the University of Pittsburg, which will be going for its third "win," having defeated the Universities of Kansas and Missouri. Stoddard is the son of Dr. and Mrs. Hugh Stoddard and is a senior at Furman majoring in French and chemistry. A Furman Scholar, he was accorded special recognition on Scholarship Day in 1965, 1966 and 1967.
  • After taking a 40-34 halftime lead, Sumter's Gamecocks fell apart in the last two quarters as Lancaster rolled to an 84-63 victory at Sumter by outscoring the Gamecocks, 27-6 in the third quarter to take a 61-46 advantage and coast the rest of the way. The Blue Hurricane placed four men in double figures with Rick Kerr and Lynn Rushing leading the way with 23 and 21 points respectively.
  • Groundbreaking ceremonies for the Sumter Little Theater have been scheduled for Saturday, Feb. 3, according to Marvin Trapp, president of the local theater group, which has been out of a permanent home since 1965. The site of the theater, the construction of which is scheduled to begin Feb. 5, by Trotter Construction Co., is located west of Clemson University at Sumter and east of the water tower behind Alice Drive Junior High School. The site may be reached via a dirt road between Alice Drive Junior High and Alice Drive Baptist Church off Miller Road.
  • Sumter County's gleaming new library was given official approval by its board of trustees but is not expected to be open to the public until Feb. 14. The $317,679 structure, the first building in Sumter's Civic Center, has a capacity of 120,000 books and is designed for the next 20 years of growth. It contains over 15,000 square feet of floor space. Librarian Chapman J. Milling Jr. said he plans to close the old library on West Library Street (Carnegie) on Feb. 7. He anticipates a week will be needed to move the estimated 50,000 volumes into their new home.

25 YEARS AGO - 1992

Oct. 30 - Nov. 5

  • Bates Middle School coach Coley White was almost too kind for his own good at Memorial Stadium. Leading 38-0 in the third quarter of the annual rival clash with Alice Drive Middle School, White elected to sit his regulars down, only to see the Hawks rally for 22 third-quarter points before Bates' starters returned to nail down a 44-22 win.
  • Although Republican support for Sumter businessman Bill Horne is growing is South Carolina's 5th Congressional District, few expect him to unseat five-term incumbent Rep. John Spratt in the general election. Spratt, a Democrat, is favored to win re-election.
  • Sumter residents found out earlier this year that one day can make a difference in improving the community. Many residents spent Feb. 29 - Leap Day - helping others and doing special things in the community. While Leap Day has passed, Jo Anne Morris, director of Volunteer Sumter, wants residents to volunteer their services again. Morris said residents are invited to spend Saturday, Nov. 14, the same way hundreds of volunteers spent Leap Day - cleaning up the community. Due to the overwhelming success of February's project, "Make a Difference Day" has been established as an annual project.
  • The Sumter School District 2 Board of Trustees will hold a ceremony to dedicate the district's administrative office building in honor of the late Joseph D. Lefft, a former superintendent of the district. Lefft was killed in a car accident while on his way to work just four months after taking over as superintendent.
  • Oblivious to dozens of blue and yellow balloons drifting overhead, a tiny girl with ribbons in her hair scowled with concentration as she hefted a shovel twice her size and turned over a blade full of dusty earth. She was one of many children and adults who came to celebrate the groundbreaking for the new high school to be built in Clarendon School District 1. The school will be located on U.S. 301 across from the Federal-Mogul plant.
  • Sumter High football coach Tom Lewis had a bad feeling going into the game against Richland Northeast. The Gamecocks were coming off an emotional win over then-unbeaten Irmo and Lewis expected a mental letdown against the 1-8 Cavaliers. He must have been into the predicting business before coaching because the Gamecocks had to overcome a first-quarter struggle before beating Richland Northeast 28-18 at Harry Parone Stadium.
  • George Washington Murray described himself to Congress as the sole voice that blacks had in Washington, D.C. And he meant it. Murray, a Sumter County native, was the only black serving in Congress when he told lawmakers in 1893 that he could hear the "common people," implying that the senators and representatives could not. Now, as area residents prepare to vote in the new black-majority 6th Congressional District, which includes part of Sumter County, he is chiefly remembered as South Carolina's last black congressman.

Reach Sumter Item Archivist Sammy Way at waysammy@yahoo.com or (803) 774-1294.