Whitesburg, Letcher County, Kentucky, Thursday, April
Vol. 58, No. 48
Tax raise seen
Higher school taxes appear to
be in the offing for Letcher County
A citizens committee asked by
the Letcher County Board of Education to help It find ways of obtaining more funds to build and
operate schools In the county has
1. That the board take the 10
per cent Increase in property taxes made possible this year and rcxt
year at a special session of the legislature and apply all proceeds to
2. That the board levy whichever of three permissive taxes authorized by the legislature will
bring in the most money and apply tnat money to buildings under
a priority list recommended several years ago by the state.
Members of the Neighborhood Youth Corps look on as County Judge James M. Caudill signs an order
proclaiming "Neighborhood Youth Corps Week" in Letcher County. The students are (left to right)
Cynthia cook, a senior at Fleming-NeoRegina Sergent, a senior at Fleming-Neosenior at Kingdom Come; Donald Sexton, a senior at Letcher; Bob Fisher, a junior
This is "Neighborhood Youth
Corps Week" in Letcher County,
proclaimed by County Judge
James M. Caudill to honor an
anti -- poverty agency which will
observe its first anniversary in
the county May 10.
The youth corps employs 355
high school boys and girls for 10
hours a week at $1.25 an hour.
It permits them to earn money
to stay in school when otherwise
many of them might have to drop
out because they did not have
money to buy clothing or
textbooks or meals.
All boys and girls who take part
in the program come from families which have an income of
$750 or less each year for each
person in the family.
Youth corps memDers are chosen by committees of faculty
members at their high schools.
Twenty-eighigh school dropouts have been able to return to
school as a result of the youth
All youth corps members work
for some public or
During the past year they have:
Painted the interiors of five
Built bleachers, dugouts and
concession buildings at two schools.
Helped landscape grounds at several schools.
Painted four lunchrooms.
Developed a playground at one
Provided janitor service to 14
small schools which previously
had none and janitor assistance
at all consolidated schools.
Served as cafeteria aides for
the larger schools and during the
summer Head Start program.
Served as safety patrolmen at
Served as clerical aids in most
public offices and all county high
Served as library aids in all high
schools, he public library and
many co.nmunity center libraries.
Serveu as teacher aids in adult
education programs, high schools
and elementary schools.
Processed ana distributed clothing for the needy, sewed clothing
for the needy and made a county-wid- e
survey to find the number of
poor familiesall under supervision of the Letcher County Economic Opportunity Committee.
Worked for the Appalachian Re- -
Poverty staff hired
Ottis Amburgey, a lifelong resident of Letcher County, was employed this week to direct the war
on poverty here.
Amburgey has been assistant director of the county
program for the past year.
Amburgey wa s hired by the
Letcher County Economic Opportunity Committee Inc., the focal agency responsible for conducting the war on poverty, at
its April meeting Monday night.
He was nominated for the job
by Varon Campbell, a member
of the EOC and of the screening
ans selection committee named
to help the committee choose its
professional employees. Amburgey earlier had been recommended for continued employment in
the job of assistant director and
had been hired. Ike Caudill, the
former county director, had been
by the county 'committee over the objections of the
screening committee but later
had resigned to take another job.
The county committee also
hired two other professional staff
members, both recommended
by the screening committee.
Ihey are William Banks, a guidance counselor and teacher at
Letcher High School, as director
of the Blackey Community Center, and Mrs, Tom Gish, managing editor of The Mountain
Eagle, as information and guidance counselor for the county-wiprogram. Banks has resigned his job at Letcher and
Mrs. Gish will resign from her
job with the newspaper at the
end of this week.
(Mountain Eagle Editor Tom
Gish was a member of the committee named to screen and select professional staff members,
but he did not participate in interviews or committee decisions
concerning Mrs, Gish or other
applicants for the job. )
The committee approved the
nominations by unanimous vote.
Amburgey, 45, is a graduate
of Bowling Green College of
Commerce and has worked as a
bookkeeper and accountant. For
eight years he was county tax
commissioner; he served as chief
office deputy under Sheriff Lewis
Hall, before Decoming assistant
director of the
Banks is a graduate of Plke-vil- le
College and holds a
on Page 2)
clonal Hospital in the pharmacy,
laboratory, cafeteria, Housekeeping, maintenance, business office
and admissions department.
Youth corps members receive
counseling, testing and some supervision from the Neighborhood
Youth Corps staff members, who
are Ellis Magcard, director, and
Rueben Watts and Tom Lewis,
assistants. They are supervised on
their jobs by staff members of the
institutions for which they, work.
Youth corps staff membe'rs also
help the students get more schooling and find jobs;
It's Library Week
Next week is national Library
Week, and officials of the Letcher County Public Library say
they hope local citizens will observe it by beginning to make
regular visits to the library.
Books, records, pictures, magazines and sports equipment are
available for the borrowing, they
point out. As a donation from
the Whitesburg Rotary Club, the
Herald will soon be available at
the library daily and Sunday.
The library is located in the
back section of the courthouse
and is open from 11 a. m. to
4;30 p. m. Monday' through Friday and from 9 a. m. to 2 p. m.
on Saturdays and G:30 to 8:30 p.
m. on Mondays.
More housing sought
The school board, at its April
meeting Friday, voted to levy the
10 per cent increase in property
taxes and to give the money to
Varon Campbell, president of
the Letcher County Teachers' Organization, presented a request
from teachers that the board levy
the tax increase. His request was
supported by J. W. Back, president of the Letcher County local
of the American Federation of
Teachers, and by Gene Moore,
chairman of the Letcher County
Citizens' Committee for Better
Estimates are that the tax increase will bring in $22, 544 next
year and $24, 798 additional the
following year. Campbell said
this would permit a $200 salary
increase for each teacher.
The board decided to study the
second tax proposal further before
acting on it.
The finance committeecomposed of Russell Price, Gene Moore,
Remious Day, Mrs. Joe Newell and
Mrs. Tom Gish, said it also would
(Continued on Page 8)
The City of Whitesburg will apply to tiie federal Department of
Housing and Urban Development
for 100 additional low-re- nt
City Council approved the application Tuesday night.
The city's first 40-uhousing
project is almost ready for occuUnion miners in Letcher County
are three times
pancy, and there
were out on strike today, in an
as many applicants as there are
effort to force coal operators to
housing units available.
The construction firm which
negotiate a new wage contract.
In other parts of the country,
built the housing project is insome miners returned to work on
solvent, and the bonding comorders from the United Mine
pany has taken over to complete
Workers of America, but in Easthe work. Don Brown, director
tern Kentucky the orders had no
of the Municipal Housing Commission, said only touch-u- p work effect.
No incideits had been reported
is needed to get the houses ready
in Letcher County.
Double funeral he
Double funeral services were
held tljis morning at Mt. Olivet
Regular Baptist Church in "lackey for an elderly man and his
It was the second funeral for
Miss Orplia Dixon, who died unexpectedly last Saturday at her
home at Blackey. Her funeral
was in process Tuesday morning
at the Mt. Olivet Church when
tier aged father, Ira Dixon, 80,
slumped over dead. The funeral
for Miss Dixon was halted, and
a joint service was scheduled.
Miss Dixon, an employee of
the local public assistance office for many years, was born
at Ulvah. Her mother, Mrs.
Phoebe Brown Dixon, survives.
Mrs. Dixon also has been ill for
Elders I. D. Back, Manus Ison
and Ray Collins officiated at the
funeral service. Burial was in
on Elk Creek
Surviving besides the wife and
mother, Mrs. Phoebe Dixon, are
Dexter Dixon of Ulvah, and Mrs.
Verna Back of Blackey, son and
daughter of Ira Dixon and brother
and sister of Orpha Dixon; two
grandchildren and two greatgrandchildren of Ira Dixon; a sister of Ira Dixon, Mrs. Allie Collins of Indianapolis, and three
brothers oflra Dixon, T. A. Dixon of Blackey, I. T. Dixon of
Ulvah, and William N. Dixon of
Moore and Craft Funeral Home
had charge of funeral arrange -ments.
Tragedies sadden community
By LARRY CAUDILL
The subconscious mind is strange
and marvelous and we know very
little about it. Maybe that is
where we get premonitions, intuition, hunches or maybe dreams
Personally I know very little
it, but I firmly believe there
is such a thing that somehow forecasts coming events. I woke up
in the middle of the night for one
of my customary periods of insomnia. There was no perceptible
dream, or nightmare. Perhaps
it was extrasensory perception.
Just a firm, fervent feeling
that something terrible lay in the
immediate future; some tragedy.
When I got up the first news
was of three deaths of people beloved over a long time in the
Orpha Dixon, the girl who always found time for a cheery
greeting, was dead. She was the
daughter of Uncle Ira and Aunt
Phoebe Dixon. A former school
teacher, Orpha had wo rked for
10 years in the Department of
Economic Security at Whitesburg,
a tireless and sympathetic social
worker. She died in tier sleep.
The word came from Beckley,
W. Va., that Vinton Caudill's
wife, Fanny, had died. Vinton
was orphaned as a boy. He was
put in the old Stuart Robinson
dormitory, later came to our
He went through Stuart Robinson High School, then Centre
College, as a brother to my brother Fred and me. He helped
develop and market the carbon
dioxide explosive which was used
in mining. Fanny had been an
invalid for years.
The third Item of tragic news
was the passing of Mrs. Leslie
Cockerham at jackson. Her husband was the Presbyterian minister at Doermann Memorial Church
for a dozen years - and never has
a personality so impressed itself
on a community.
through the Depression Decade
of the 1930's.
Many stories are told of the wide
diversity of his activities as a
minister. He could comfort the
bereaved, carpenter a cupboard
or pitch in and help hoe out a
Later in the morning came the
phone call that Glenwood Wilson was dead in a train mishap
near lexington and there was the
problem of taking the sad word
to Ms widowed mother, Mrs.
Liza Wilson, one of our most beloved and respected churchwomen.
But the Grim Reaper had taken
only a brief recess from bad news.
Tuesday morning the community
overflowed little Mount Olivet
Regular Baptist Church for the
funeral of Orpha Dixon.
Elder I. D. Back had just started
the funeral oration. He looked
down into the family pew and saw
Orpha's father, Ira Dixon, 81,
slump in his seat. He paused and
asked if Dr. Lundy Adams or Mrs.
Gladys Buckhold, retired nurse,
would come forward.
(Continued on Page 2)