Saturday, December 20, 2014

Singleton describes the final days of Spanish explorer Hernando DeSoto

(For decades, local historian and paranormal investigator George “Buster” Singleton published a weekly newspaper column called “Somewhere in Time.” The column below, which was titled “Oct. 12, 1540 was a day of decision for DeSoto,” was originally published in the Oct. 14, 1993 edition of The Monroe Journal in Monroeville, Ala.)

The 12th of October 1540 was a typical autumn day along the high banks of the river that would later come to be known as the Alabama. There was much activity along the west bank, just about a mile down river from where the new bridge now stands at the old town of Claiborne.

The Spanish explorer Hernando DeSoto and his army of more than 400 soldiers were about to take a major step into history. Along with many others, such as herdsmen, bearers and many Indians who had been forced to come along against their will, this group would spend the entire day crossing the river.

Due to the time of the year, the waters of the great river were at a very low level. Only a narrow space out in the center of the great stream was deep enough that the horses and cattle and a large herd of hogs had to swim. The soldiers of DeSoto’s army were busy stacking body armor and weapons on rafts that had been hurriedly assembled from fallen and decaying timbers found along the river bank.

DeSoto was growing more and more restless as he sat his horse and watched the activity of his followers. His army scouts had reported to him that the natives had grown very suspicious of his being in this area. And, too, the natives were not in agreement of the many of their men who were being used as slave labor by his army. The women of the tribes had suffered, too, from the abuse of this army of rapists and killers.

The journey, to now, had been a long one. The legendary Seven Cities of Gold seemed as far away as ever. DeSoto and his whole army were suffering from severe dysentery. He had been told that this illness could be cured by a medicine man who lived in the village was reported to be only a few hours march up the east side of the river, once the crossing was accomplished.

The welcome at Piachi was not the kind that DeSoto had hoped for. A feeling of unrest and suspicion lay over the village as the army rested and their illness were treated. A certain weed had been burned, and the ashes were mixed into the food of the army; the illness became less severe.

DeSoto and his followers would stay at Piachi for almost three days. During this time, it was reported to him that two of his soldiers were missing; no evidence could be found as to their whereabouts.

DeSoto threatened to burn at the stake his prisoner, Chief Tuscaloosa, if his men were not returned to him by the time he reached the town of Maubila. But this never happened. Chief Tuscaloosa would escape from the army’s grasp upon their arrival at the gates of the village of Maubila. Little did DeSoto realize that this large, fortified Indian village would be the downfall of him and his army.

As he and his men rode into the village of Maubila and dismounted their horses, little did they know that some of them would never see another sunrise.

The large thatched huts within the heavy log walls were filled with armed warriors who had assembled there earlier. Word had preceded DeSoto of the rape and pillage his army had committed against the Indians who had befriended the Spanish.

The battle of Maubila would cost DeSoto’s army almost a hundred of its best soldiers, not to mention 120 of its best war horses. Many of the army’s weapons would be lost or destroyed by the attacking Indians. The village ground would turn red with the blood of the dead and wounded. DeSoto would, himself, receive a serious wound to the head that would affect his ability to reason for the remainder of his life. This serious head wound would be later instrumental in the cause of his death.

No true figure is known as to the number of Indians who were killed in this great battle. But many historians believe that well over 4,000 fell beneath the sharp sword blades, crossbows and smoking muskets of DeSoto’s army.

As the battle for Maubila raged within the village and open fields nearby, the dead and dying lay everywhere. Due to inexperience, the army’s only physician was unable to answer many of the cries of the wounded and dying. Many of the dead would later be found with dried grass and weeds forced into their wounds as they tried in vain to stop the bleeding.

It is believed that not one Indian warrior was left alive in the village of Maubila. Although the body of Chief Tuscaloosa was never found, the son of Tuscaloosa was found dead with a Spanish lance through his chest.

Seeking shelter within the shattered remains of the village of Maubila, DeSoto and his army would linger here for a period of 28 days. This time was spent trying to heal their wounds of battle and burying the decomposed bodies of their fallen comrades. Those who were able gathered and repaired weapons and body armor that had been damaged in the battle.

Against the advice of his officers, DeSoto declined to turn south and rendezvous with the fleet of ships that awaited along the coast for the return trip to Spain. Instead, he and his army turned to the northwest.

It is my belief that the great river was crossed again from east side to west side near the area of what is now known as Ghee’s Bend in Wilcox County. They would journey through the lower portion of the now Marengo County, near the community of Dixons Mills.

Discouraged and sick from the head would that he received at Maubila, DeSoto’s hopes of finding the fabled Seven Cities of Gold were vanishing on the chilly winds of the coming winter.

Hernando DeSoto’s journey would end in the chilly waters of the mighty Mississippi River.

Death overtook Hernando DeSoto after he and his weary army crossed the great river that later was to bear the name Mississippi. His frail and crippled body was placed inside a hollow log and buried beneath the swift waters of the mighty river. His search for the mythical cities of gold had ended in defeat and heartbreak.

Should you travel Highway 84 and cross the Alabama River at Claiborne, look down river to the south and remember that here is where it all started. This was the beginning of the end for the explorer and gold-seeker Hernando DeSoto.

Oct. 12, 1540 – 453 years ago Tuesday was the day of decision. Had he not chosen to cross the river here that fateful day, history might have been different, but then that would be another story.

(Singleton, the author of the 1991 book “Of Foxfire and Phantom Soldiers,” passed away at the age of 79 on July 19, 2007. A longtime resident of Monroeville, he was born on Dec. 14, 1927 in Marengo County and served as the administrator of the Monroeville National Guard unit from 1964 to 1987. He is buried in Pineville Cemetery in Monroeville. The column above and all of Singleton’s other columns are available to the public through the microfilm records at the Monroe County Public Library in Monroeville. Singleton’s columns are presented here each week for research and scholarship purposes and as part of an effort to keep his work and memory alive.)

Today in History for Dec. 20, 2014

Dec. 20, 1522 – During the Siege of Rhodes, Suleiman the Magnificent accepted the surrender of the surviving Knights of Rhodes, who were allowed to evacuate. They eventually settled on Malta and became known as the Knights of Malta.

Dec. 20, 1606 - The "Susan Constant," "Godspeed" and "Discovery" set sail from London. Their landing at Jamestown, Va. was the start of the first permanent English settlement in America.

Dec. 20, 1803 – The United States Senate ratified a treaty that included the purchase of the Louisiana Territories from France for $15 million. The transfer, known now as the “Louisiana Purchase,” was completed with formal ceremonies in New Orleans.

Dec. 20, 1820 – The Town of Claiborne in Monroe County, Ala. was officially incorporated.

Dec. 20, 1820 – Pickens County, Ala. was established and named for revolutionary war hero General Andrew Pickens of South Carolina.

Dec. 20, 1820 – Garrett Longmire took office as Justice of the Conecuh County Court. He owned Longmire’s Store, which was an early trading center, stage stop and post office as early as 1818.

Dec. 20, 1823 – Capt. Hayden set the then record for fastest trip from Mobile, Ala. to Montgomery, Ala., making the 450-mile trip in three days and 10 hours in the 123-ton steamboat, The Henderson, which sank on April 27, 1825 after colliding with the Balize about one mile from Claiborne.

Dec. 20, 1824 – During his tour of the United States, the Marquis de Lafayette was formally received at the statehouse in Annapolis, Md.

Dec. 20, 1827 – The organizational charter was issued to Dale Masonic Lodge No. 25 in Camden, Ala.

Dec. 20, 1833 - Samuel Mudd, the physician that set John Wilkes Booth's leg after the assassination of President Abraham Lincoln, was born in Charles County, Md.

Dec. 20, 1860 - South Carolina became the first state to secede from the Union when state official ratified the ordinance of secession from the United States.

Dec. 20, 1862 - Confederate General Earl Van Dorn attacked Union General Ulysses S. Grant's supplies at Holly Springs, Mississippi. The attacked thwarted Grant's first attempt to capture Vicksburg, Miss.

Dec. 20, 1864 - Confederate forces under General William Hardee evacuated Savannah, Ga. as Union General William T. Sherman continued his "March to the Sea."

Dec. 20, 1881 – Baseball Hall of Fame catcher, manager and executive Branch Rickey was born in Stockdale, Ohio. He would go on to play for the St. Louis Browns and the New York Highlanders. He went on to manage the Browns and the St. Louis Cardinals.

Dec. 20, 1883 – Confederate veteran Joseph R. Bass of Evergreen arrived in Caddo Mills, Texas. He’d moved to Caddo Mills from Jefferson, Texas, where he’d lived for about 18 years. He moved to Texas from Evergreen in December 1865, following the Civil War.

Dec. 20, 1900 – Major League Baseball catcher Charles Leo “Gabby” Hartnett was born in Woonsocket, R.I. He would go on to play for the Chicago Cubs and the New York Giants. He also managed the Cubs from 1938 to 1940.

Dec. 20, 1901 – Physicist Robert Van de Graaff was born in Tuscaloosa, Ala. and is best known for the electrical generator that carries his name. A Van de Graaff generator primarily consists of a hollow metal globe standing on a thick, hollow pole. Inside the pole, a pair of pulleys drive a belt of silk over a pointed metal comb that is hooked to an external power supply. The comb and one pulley sit at the base of the pole, the second pulley sits inside the metal globe, and as the belt runs it builds up impressively large static electric charges — Van de Graaff’s original hand-built generator, which is now housed at the Boston Museum of Science, can generate more than 2 million volts on a dry day.

Dec. 20, 1904 – Major League Baseball catcher and manager Virgil Lawrence “Spud” Davis was born in Birmingham, Ala. He went on to play for the Cincinnati Reds, the Philadelphia Phillies, the Pittsburgh Pirates and the St. Louis Cardinals. He also managed the Pittsburgh Pirates.

Dec. 20, 1905 – The Ina Lehr Stock Company was scheduled to perform “East Lynne” at the Opera House in Evergreen, Ala.

Dec. 20, 1918 – During World War I, Army Pvt. William J. Ledkins of Flomaton, Ala. and Army PFC Robert Coats of Grove Hill, Ala. “died from disease.”

Dec. 20, 1928 – Pro Football Hall of Fame safety and coach Jack Leroy Christiansen was born in Sublette, Kansas. He would go on to play for Colorado State and the Detroit Lions.

Dec. 20, 1931 – In Lovecraftian fiction, the Starkweather-Moore Expedition, led by Professor Eustace Blake, left Bremen on their way to Antarctica to follow up on Miskatonic’s Pabodie expedition. The Starkweather-Moore Expedition is first mentioned in “At the Mountains of Madness” by H.P. Lovecraft.

Dec. 20, 1942 – Pro Football Hall of Fame wide receiver Bob Hayes was born in Jacksonville, Fla. He would go on to play for the Dallas Cowboys and the San Francisco 49ers.

Dec. 20, 1946 - The Frank Capra film "It's A Wonderful Life" had a preview showing for charity at New York City's Globe Theatre, a day before its "official" world premiere. James Stewart and Donna Reed star in the film.

Dec. 20, 1946 – Self-proclaimed spoon-bending psychic Uri Geller was born in Tel Aviv.

Dec. 20, 1949 – Major League Baseball outfielder and designated hitter Oscar Gamble was born in Ramer, Ala. He would go on to play for the Chicago Cubs, the Chicago White Sox, the Cleveland Indians, the Philadelphia Phillies, the New York Yankees, the San Diego Padres and the Texas Rangers.

Dec. 20, 1949 – Major League Baseball first baseman and manager Cecil Cooper was born in Brenham, Texas.

Dec. 20, 1955 – Evergreen High School’s boys basketball team picked up its sixth straight win by beating McGill Institute, 52-37, in Mobile, Ala. Randy White led Evergreen with 26 points.

Dec. 20, 1959 - A television version of Alabama author Ambrose Bierce's story "An Occurrence at Owl Creek Bridge" was broadcast as part of the “Alfred Hitchcock Presents” series.

Dec. 20, 1966 – Marine Lance Cpl. Dalton Buster Lowery of Brewton, Ala. was killed in action in Vietnam.

Dec. 20, 1968 – The Zodiac Killer killed Betty Lou Jenson and David Faraday in Vallejo, Calif..

Dec. 20, 1968 - Author John Steinbeck died at the age of 66 in New York City.

Dec. 20, 1985 – Weather reporter Earl Windham reported a low tempeature of 24 degrees in Evergreen, Ala.

Dec. 20, 1991 - Oliver Stone's "JFK" opened in the U.S.

Dec. 20, 1993 - It was announced that NBC would retain the rights to the National Football League's (NFL) AFC package.

Dec. 20, 1995 - Oliver Stone's "Nixon" opened in the U.S.

Dec. 20, 1998 - Brett Favre of the Green Bay Packers became the first NFL player to throw at least 30 touchdown passes for five seasons.

Dec. 20, 2000 – Weather reporter Harry Ellis reported a low temperature of 15 degrees in Evergreen, Ala.

Dec. 20, 2008 - The Dallas Cowboys played their final game in Texas Stadium before moving to their new stadium in Arlington, Texas. 

Daily Weather Observations from SW Alabama for Sat., Dec. 20, 2014

Rainfall (past 24 hours): 0.80 inches

Week to Date Rainfall: 0.90 inches

Month to Date Rainfall: 1.10 inches

Fall to Date Rainfall: 6.15 inches

Year to Date Rainfall: 56.60 inches

NOTES: Today is the 353rd day of 2014 and the 89th day of Fall. There are 12 days left in the year.

Readings taken at 0700 hrs Central Standard Time (1300 GMT) daily, just west of the Monroe-Conecuh County line, near Excel, Alabama, USA, in the vicinity of Lat 31.42834°N Lon 87.30131°W. Elevation: 400 feet above sea level. CoCoRaHS Station No. AL-MN-4, Station Name: Excel 2.5 ESE. 

Friday, December 19, 2014

Evergreen native departed for Texas soon after the end of the Civil War

What ever became of Joseph R. Bass?

That’s a question some of you may have asked after reading my column in this space last week. That column mentioned a letter that Bass had written to Courant editor George W. Salter Jr. on Dec. 21, 1914. The letter was so interesting that Salter printed it on the front page of the Dec. 30, 1914 edition of The Courant.

That letter, under the headline “Former Conecuh Citizen Writes From Texas,” read as follows:

“Dear Sir – Through the courtesy of my nephew, A.G. Smith, Evergreen, I receive The Courant and enjoy its pages.
“In November 1862, I went to Camp Tatne, near Brewton station, and joined Co. H, 2nd Alabama Cavalry. At that time, Jim Cunningham was colonel and J.H. McCreary, captain. We went from there to Mississippi, then to Alabama, to Georgia, to South Carolina and North Carolina and back to Georgia.
“Was discharged at Forsythe, Ga., 8th day of May 1865 and reached home, Evergreen, on 15th of May 1865.
“I left Evergreen on 28th of December 1865 for Texas and arrived at Jefferson January 1866, living near there 18 years.
“Dec. 20, 1883, I came to Caddo Mills, Hunt County, Texas; was 77 years old last July 27, and am in good health and enjoying life, except am troubled by failing sight.
“Yours truly, Joseph R. Bass.”

According to the 1912 book “Reminiscences of the Boys in Gray, 1861-1865” by Mamie Yeary, Bass was born on July 27, 1837 at Marion Court House, S.C. That book says that he enlisted in the Confederate Army in September 1862 at Britton Station as a private in Co. H, Second Alabama Regiment. He was never wounded, taken prisoner, changed or promoted, according to Yeary’s book.

Bass was detailed as a courier when the brigade was formed and he fought in skirmishes daily from May 1864, fighting Union General Tecumseh Sherman through Georgia. The largest battle he ever fought in was in Atlanta and from Savannah, his unit went through South Carolina and as far north as Greensboro, N.C.

“There we met President Jeff Davis on his retreat from Richmond and accompanied him back to Georgia,” he was quoted as saying in the book. “The soldiers were paid in silver and gold at Washington, Ga. I received $15 in silver, was paroled at Forsythe, Ga., reached home, Evergreen, Ala., on May 10, 1865.”

Bass passed away in Caddo Mills, Texas at the age of 79 on Jan. 17, 1917. He is buried in the Odd Fellows Cemetery in Caddo Mills, which is in Hunt County, Texas. There are around 2,200 graves in this cemetery, and Bass’ grave is one of the oldest, and he’s one of four Confederate soldiers buried there.

If you visit this cemetery today, you’ll find an historical marker that was erected in 2001. According to this marker, Caddo Mills was a railroad stop on the Missouri, Kansas and Texas Railroad. Named after the Caddo Indians, the town’s post office opened in 1879, which indicates that Bass was among the town’s early settlers. Today, the town has about 1,300 residents. 

Today in History for Dec. 19, 2014

Dec. 19, 1732 - Benjamin Franklin began publishing "Poor Richard's Almanac."

Dec. 19, 1817 - Confederate General James Archer was born in Harford County, Maryland.

Dec. 19, 1843 - Charles Dickens' "A Christmas Carol" was first published in England.
Dec. 19, 1870 – George A. Green was named postmaster at Burnt Corn, Ala.

Dec. 19, 1871 - The city of Birmingham was incorporated by the Alabama state legislature. The act called for the governor to appoint the first mayor and eight aldermen and allowed the mayor to require all male inhabitants ages 18-45 to work five days each year on the streets and roadways of the city.

Dec. 19, 1910 – James Smith, the son of Ben Smith, was shot and killed at Georgiana, Ala. His remains were brought to Evergreen the following day, and he was buried near the China community in Conecuh County.

Dec. 19, 1918 – During World War I, Army Pvt. James G. Ezell of Georgiana, Ala. “died from disease.”

Dec. 19, 1918 - Robert Ripley began his "Believe It or Not" column in "The New York Globe".

Dec. 19, 1928 – Confederate soldier John S. Crawford passed away at the age of 88 and was buried at Old Bethany Baptist Church at Burnt Corn. During the Civil War, he served with Co. B, 3rd Alabama Cavalry Regiment, CSA.

Dec. 19, 1934 – Major League Baseball right fielder Al Kaline was born in Baltimore, Md. He played his entire career for the Detroit Tigers.

Dec. 19, 1941 – During World War II, Adolf Hitler became the Supreme Commander-in-chief of the German Army.

Dec. 19, 1950 – Frisco City’s boys basketball team beat Evergreen, 44-42, in Memorial Gym in Evergren, Ala. Center B.B. Barnes led Coach Wallace Joiner’s Frisco City team. Gwyn Daniels led Evergreen with 20 points.

Dec. 19, 1950 – In the early morning hours, a fire of “undetermined origin,” destroyed the home of Mr. and Mrs. A.J. Potts, who had four children, on Owassa Road, about four miles from Evergreen, Ala. The home was owned by D.T. Stuart.

Dec. 19, 1955 - A fire on this night completely destroyed a house on the Loree Road, about two miles from Evergreen, Ala. The house was occupied by Willie Houston Lee and family.

Dec. 19, 1955 - The Williams Store, about a mile from Repton, Ala. on the Range Road, was broken into and robbed on this night. About $25 in currency, eight cartons of cigarettes and an automobile battery were taken during the burglary.

Dec. 19, 1959 – Penn State’s Nittany Lions beat Alabama, 7-0, in the first Liberty Bowl football game.

Dec. 19, 1959 - Walter Williams died in Houston, Texas at the age of 117. He was said to be the last surviving veteran of the U.S. Civil War.

Dec. 19, 1964 - ABC used an overhead camera for the first time. The event was the Liberty Bowl.

Dec. 19, 1972 – Pro Football Hall of Fame defensive tackle Warren Sapp was born in Orlando, Fla.

Dec/ 19, 1972 - The last manned lunar flight, Apollo 17, crewed by Eugene Cernan, Ron Evans and Harrison Schmitt, returned to Earth.

Dec. 19, 1975 – George and Kathy Lutz and their three children moved into the house at 112 Ocean Ave. in Amityville, N.Y.

Dec. 19, 1985 – Weather reporter Earl Windham reported a low temperature of 24 degrees in Evergreen, Ala.

Dec. 19, 1985 - Jan Stenerud announced his retirement from the NFL. The football kicker held the record for the most career field goals with 373.

Dec. 19, 1985 - ABC Sports announced that it was severing ties with Howard Cosell and released ‘The Mouth’ from all TV commitments. Cosell continued on ABC Radio for another five years.

Dec. 19, 1986 - Michael Sergio was sentenced to 100 hours of community service and fined $500. Sergio, a Mets fan, had parachuted into Shea Stadium during Game 6 of the World Series.

Dec. 19, 1988 - The NCAA placed the Oklahoma Sooners football program on probation for violations.

Dec. 19, 1990 – Alabama native Bo Jackson of the Los Angeles Raiders became the first athlete to be chosen for All Star Games in two sports.

Dec. 19, 1991 - Pitcher Steve Howe of the New York Yankees was arrested for cocaine possession.

Dec. 19, 1994 - A television version of Alabama author Truman Capote's book “One Christmas” was first broadcast. Directed by Tony Bill, the movie starred Katherine Hepburn and Henry Winkler.
Dec. 19, 1999 - Orlando Brown of the Cleveland Browns was ejected from a game for pushing referee Jeff Triplette to the ground. Triplette had accidentally hit Brown in the eye with a weighted penalty flag.

Dec. 19, 2000 – Weather reporter Harry Ellis reported a low of 15 degrees in Evergreen, Ala.

Dec. 19, 2000 – Conecuh County native Wade Dees Nobles Jr., 80, died at Thomas Hospital in Baldwin County, Ala. He was born Dec. 3, 1920 in Conecuh County, served in the Army for 35 years and was a veteran of World War II and the Korean War.

Dec. 19, 2003 - The baseball that was deflected by a fan in the stands during a Chicago Cubs game was sold for $106,600 at auction. The foul ball appeared to be headed for the glove of left fielder Moises Alou in Game 6 of the National League Championship series. The Florida Marlins ended up winning the game, 8-3. The Cubs then lost Game 7.

Daily Weather Observations from SW Alabama for Fri., Dec. 19, 2014

Rainfall (past 24 hours): 0.00 inches

Week to Date Rainfall: 0.10 inches

Month to Date Rainfall: 0.20 inches

Fall to Date Rainfall: 5.35 inches

Year to Date Rainfall: 55.80 inches

NOTES: Today is the 352nd day of 2014 and the 88th day of Fall. There are 13 days left in the year.

Readings taken at 0700 hrs Central Standard Time (1300 GMT) daily, just west of the Monroe-Conecuh County line, near Excel, Alabama, USA, in the vicinity of Lat 31.42834°N Lon 87.30131°W. Elevation: 400 feet above sea level. CoCoRaHS Station No. AL-MN-4, Station Name: Excel 2.5 ESE. 

Thursday, December 18, 2014

The Evergreen Courant's Sports Flashback for Dec. 18, 2014

DEC. 16, 1965

From “Front Page, Upper Left Corner” by Bob Bozeman - “The Evergreen Quarterbacks have pulled one off the top shelf in getting Richard Williamson as speaker for the football banquet on Jan. 7. Richard is one of Bear Bryant’s top young assistants, in fact he was put in charge of preliminary planning for Nebraska in the Orange Bowl.
“I’m sure most of you will remember Richard as a fine pass receiver and very tough defensive end for the 1961 National Championship team at ‘Bama. I understand he doesn’t rate any way but at the top when it comes to saying a few words after dinner too.
“Tickets for the banquet go on sale Friday morning. Only $2 for men and $1 for boys. So, buy early and plan now to hear Richard Williamson, one of America’s top young coaches and a fine young man along with it.
“Incidentally, he plans to bring with him John Moseley, the fine safetyman and sideback on the Tide’s defensive team last year and this year. Bear says that John handles punts better than any player he has ever coached. You might not know this, but John was coached in high school by none other than our Evergreen High principal, Morris Ward. Morris was coach over at Thomaston for 10 years and one of the state’s finest.”

“Holiday meet is underway at Evergreen Hi: Evergreen High School’s annual Holiday Invitational Basketball Tournament ends tonight with games scheduled at 6:30 and 8 o’clock at Memorial Gymnasium.”

DEC. 21, 1950

“Douglas Potts Named On News All-State Team: Douglas Potts, 197-pound Evergreen High Aggie tackle, was named to a tackle post on the second string of The Birmingham News Class A All-State Football Team announced Sunday. The News selected two all-state teams this year, one for the big schools and one for schools with less than 400 enrolled in the senior grades.
“Being named to this team was quite an honor for Douglas and for the Aggies. He is a senior and has already signed a scholarship with the University of Alabama.
“The only other Aggie to get mention on any of the all-state selections was Max Pope, husky senior guard, who received honorable mention on The Montgomery Advertiser-Journal team.”

“Aggies Edge Lyeffion For Third Straight Win: The Evergreen High Aggies edged the Lyeffion High Yellow Jackets, 27-22, Monday night in Memorial Gym here for their third straight win of the season.
“Jeff Moorer was the key man in the win for Evergreen. Battling Jeff topped the Aggie scorers with eight points in addition to doing about 90 percent of the rebounding for the short Aggie squad. Gwyn Daniels basketed seven points and Ed Hooks six. Gillis Morgan shot four, and Bobby (Pistol Pete) Wells two to finish up the scoring for Evergreen.
“Miller Dees tossed in three field goals and as may foul shots to account for nine points of the Lyeffion total. George Waters had six, Hilton Dees four and Jack Jones three.
“In a preliminary contest, the Lyeffion Bees took a close 29-25 decision over the Evergreen junior varsity.
“Charlie Brock furnished the punch for Lyeffion, dropping 14 points. Pace Bozeman collected nine points before leaving the game on five personal fouls to lead the Aggies.
“Officials were Harvill and Lewis of the Central Alabama Officials Association, Montgomery.”

“NEW FULLBACK BREAKS INTO LINEUP AT EVERGREEN HIGH: A new fullback broke into the lineup at Evergreen High School this week. Although his program weight, seven pounds, 10 ounces, is a little light for line-bucking chores, it’s understood that the newest Aggie can really throw his weight around. The new fullback probably won’t get the nod to open a game until the fall of 1966 or 1967.
“Giving this back more than the usual amount of attention is Coach Wendell Hart, who is also father of the newborn Aggie. The birth took place at Stabler’s Infirmary Monday afternoon.
“Coach and Mrs. Hart, the former Gerry Godwin, have named their son James Wendell Jr.
“Local football fans hope the Aggies will only do as well when young Wendell is playing as they have done since Coach Hart became headman in 1946. Evergreen has won 35, lost seven and tied five under Coach Hart.”

“Lyeffion Losses To Miller; Defeats Repton by 28-20: The Lyeffion Yellow Jackets broke even in a pair of games last week losing to T.R. Miller, 33-19, in Brewton last Wednesday and beating Repton, 28-20, in Repton Friday night.
“Jerry Woods pushed 16 points through the cords to pace Coach Hal Wyatt’s Millers to their second win of the season over the Jackets. Bobby Long and Bill Rowell each had five.
“Hilton Dees hit for 10 points as he joined with Miller Dees to furnish most of the scoring punch for Coach Morris Ward’s Jackets. Miller Dees had six points, George Waters two and Jack Jones one.
“Friday night the Jackets tripped Repton, 28-20, in the Repton Gym to avenge a close, 29-28, loss handed them by the Bulldogs a week earlier. This game was close and exciting throughout.
“Miller Dees led the way to the win by basketing 10 points. Jack Jones had six, George Waters and Hilton Dees, four each; and Frank Burt and Billy Booker, two each.
“Coach Charles Pouncey’s Bulldogs were led by James Andrews and Junior McMillan with six points each. Burt had five; Holley, two; and William Ivey, one.
“The Jackets wound up their Pre-Christmas slate Tuesday night playing Castleberry at Lyeffion. They return to action Jan. 9 playing McKenzie at Lyeffion.”

“Evergreen Eagles Trounce Andalusia 105 to 20: The Evergreen Eagles girls and boys basketball teams opened their 1950-51 basketball season here last Fri., Dec. 15, by running up record scores against Andalusia’s girls and boys teams.
“The girls played the opening game and defeated the girls from Andalusia by a score of 48-7.
“The Eagles with one of the best teams in the school’s history completely outclassed Andalusia. Outstanding players were Herbert Rankins with 42 points; Leonard Goldsmith, 19; James Welch, 18; Louis Ingram, 16. The game ended 105-20 in favor of the Eagles.
“Coaches Kennedy, Cheatham and King will test their teams this week by engaging in two games with Atmore.”

“Aggies Lose First Game To Frisco City By 44-42: Coach Wallace Joiner’s Frisco City Whippets snapped at three straight an early-season undefeated string of the Evergreen Aggies in a touch-and-go contest here Tuesday night in Memorial Gym.
“Gwyn Daniels, Evergreen’s leading scorer in all but one game, had a ‘hot’ third quarter in which he racked six field goals as the Aggies all but overcame Frisco’s halftime lead. He had dropped four points in the first half and added four in the final frame to total 20 and top the scorers.
“Center B.B. Barnes furnished the big blows in the Frisco offense and totaled 18 points to lead their scorers. Pugh and Gulsby had eight each, Baas, seven, and King, six, for Frisco. Jeff Moorer bagged eight; Ed Hooks, six; and Gillis Morgan and Pete Wells, four each.”

DEC. 19, 1935

“Former Evergreen Boy Dist. Scout Executive: Roscoe E. Stevens, formerly of Evergreen, is the new executive for the Southeast Alabama area, Boy Scouts of America, according to a newspaper article published last week in The Abbeville (Ala.) Herald.
“Stevens is a graduate of the Evergreen Agricultural School and is a nephew of L.M. Stevens of this city.”

DEC. 15, 1920

“Visitors to our community (Fairfield) must not forget to ask Gordon Nichols the latest method on catching and keeping opossums, as he’s having much success lately.”