Monday, May 29, 2017

The Evergreen Courant's Sports Flashback for May 29, 2017

Thomas Roy "Goat" Walker of Troy, Ala.
JUNE 5, 2014

All-Star teams announced: Evergreen’s Cal Ripken Baseball League released the names of their 11-and-12-Year-Old All-Star Team on Tuesday morning, and the team’s roster features the names of 12 of the best youth baseball players in Conecuh County.
Players making the All-Star cut this year include Tyrus Bruce, Jacobee Bryant, Kenjarvis Bryant, Jalien Powell, Preston Sims, Frank Carson, Cam Riley, Jalien Johnson, Marvae Lee, Andray Pope, T.K. Brantley and Brady Gorum.
The team will represent Conecuh County in the district tournament, which is scheduled to begin Fri., June 13, at 6 p.m. in East Brewton. In the opening game of the tourney, Evergreen will play Covington County. At the same time on another field, Andalusia will play East Brewton.
Officials with Evergreen’s Cal Ripken youth baseball league announced the members of the league’s 7-and-8-Year-Old All Star Team last week
Members of that all-star team are Jacob Bradley, Dion Franklin, Alijah Smith, Christian Ingram, Martin Lee, Damien Rankins, Jermonte Stallworth, Jackson Sullivan, Kobe Wallace, Demarion Wallace, Colton Phillips and Ethan Waters.
The 7-and-8-year-old all-star tournament is scheduled to begin on Thurs., June 12, at Johnson Park in Andalusia when Covington County plays Opp at 6 p.m. and Brewton plays Andalusia at 6 p.m.

The Sunflowers won the local Cal Ripken Softball League Championship by beating the Rampage, 14-3, in the league championship game Tuesday of last week at Evergreen Municipal Park.
The Sunflowers finished the season with a 6-2 overall record and overcame a pair of losses to the Rampage earlier in the season.
Players on the team included Alexis Albritton, Madison Barnes, LaBrina Beasley, LaTerrica Bradley, Morgan Cook, Kendall Johnson, Audreonna Lopez, Paige Matthews, Jatonie McConnico, Shanecia Robinson, Tamirah Robinson and Tiliyah Wiggins. The teams coaches were Antonio Woods and Juanita Woods.

The Evergreen Cardinals picked up another win last week in local Babe Ruth baseball action as they downed the Evergreen Braves, 16-9, at Evergreen Municipal Park.
Jarrett Taylor and Kobe Bradley pitched for the Cardinals, and Bradley led the team at the plate with two singles and a double. Taylor also hit a pair of singles.
KeDedric Ingram and Jarrett Kirk hit two singles each. Dalton Ward recorded a double. Colton Lambert and Victor Johnson hit two singles each.
Jeremy Dees, Austin Roper and Sean Kelly all pitched for the Braves.
At the plate, the Braves were led by Kelly, Dakota Coleman and Noah Pettis, who hit two singles each. Roper, Nick Beasley and Logan Thompson chipped in a single each.

JUNE 1, 1989

HORSE SHOW IN ANDY: The Blue Ribbon Saddle Club of Andalusia will sponsor an open horse show on Sat., June 3, beginning at 2 p.m. There will be pleasure, racking and timed event classes. Points earned will apply toward the D.H.S.A. year-end high points.

JUNE 4, 1964

SR. LEAGUE SCHEDULE: The Evergreen Senior Baseball League will start play next Monday night at six o’clock. Game time for all games will be 6 p.m. The league will take a breather July 5 through July 12 for Boy Scout Camp.

Sr. League meets, lists players: The second meeting of the Evergreen Senior League was held in the Civic Room of the Court House Monday night, June 1, 1964, at 7:30. The meeting was presided over by President Bill Chapman.
The rosters for the Senior League are:
Braves, Johnny Brown, Jud Stinson, George Stinson, Bobby Sasser, James Adams, Grover Jackson, Don Hansen, Forrest Simpson, Charley Wild, John Adams, Gray Sullivan and Eddie Rawls.
Pirates: Mike Moorer, Tommy Chapman, Benny Burt, Ronnie Chastain, Steve Baggett, Johnny Thornley, Glenn Bolton, Eddie Thornley, Harold Hamiter, Ralph Deason, Elliott Quarles and Wayne Hicks.
Indians: Knud Nielsen, Claude Nielsen, Ed Smith, Bill Snowden, Bubba Mininger, Bill Bailey, Wayne Caylor, Jerry Caylor, Thomas Riley, Larry Wright, Tommy Weaver and Dan Johnson.
Tigers: Wayne Pate, Eddie Ellis, Miles Covin, Ronnie Elliott, Jerry Johnson, Bubba Faulkner, Donald Brewton, Herbert Ellis Jr., Bobby Jernigan, Dallas Kelly and Emmett Price.

About 50 youths are expected to participate in the Evergreen Rotary Club’s 5th annual Conecuh County 4-H Fish & Wildlife Camp next Tuesday and Wednesday (at Tal Stuart’s Pond near Belleville).

JUNE 1, 1939

Lee Anthony Making Good In South Atlantic League: Lee Anthony, former Evergreen and Andalusia pitcher, is upholding his reputation as an ace pitcher by winning five games out of six starts with the Jacksonville club of the South Atlantic League. His only defeat so far this season came as a result of an error by Manager Goat Walker in the ninth inning with two out and one on. Walker dropped a fly ball.
Arthur Goetz, also a former Evergreen hurler, now playing with the Albany club of the Georgia-Florida League, struck out eight men and shut out the Cordele club 3-0 May 25. However the game was played under protest of Manager Harry Rice, who at one time managed the Evergreen club.
Bruno Shedis, another former Evergreen pitcher, has won three and lost three for the Elmira club of the Eastern League.

Greenies Win One, Lose One During Week: Behind the four-hit pitching of their ace flinger, Watson, the Greenies clubbed their way to a 5 to 3 win over the Jay, Fla. team here Thursday afternoon. For the first four innings, McCurdy, Jay’s twirler, had the Greenies handcuffed, pitching no-hit ball up to the fifth stanza, at which time third-sacker Raines tapped a single. Jay scored in the first inning when Prickett scored from third on a single by Lashley, after the locals had committed two errors. Jay scored again in the third as North crossed the plate as a result of three errors and a double.
In the sixth, the Greenies started a rally that netted them five runs out of four hits and a walk. Barfield cleared the bases with what is technically a double but in reality it was a homer. The all was a hard hit one to left that went to the fence, rolled through a crack and down to the swamp. In the eighth, Jay pulled in another run off a walk, two stolen bases and a double. Watson whiffed nine Jay batters while his mound opponent salted away five.

The Monroeville baseballers washed into town Sunday afternoon and lambasted their way to a 5 to 2 victory over the Greenies behind the five-hit pitching of Zuber, their ace moundsman. Greenie errors helped the Monroeville cause to a considerable extent and was the cause of three Monroeville scores in the seventh inning. Watson, Greenie hurler, matched Zuber’s performance, allowing only five hits to leave the Monroe bats.

JUNE 3, 1914

Fishing parties are numerous and frequent during the warm clear weather of the past few weeks. Some of the anglers report excellent success while others have little to say.

Hon. D.F. Crum sustained a painful accident one day last week and was confined to his room for several days in consequence. He and J.D. Moorer were fishing on Murder Creek and while he was sitting near the railroad trestle a piece of coal or some other missile fell from a passing engine striking him with great force on the forehead producing an ugly wound. He was brought home as quickly as possible and given medical attention. He has about recovered we are glad to note.

Today in History for May 29, 2017

May 29, 1500 – Portuguese explorer Bartolomeu Dias died at the age of 48 (some sources say 49) in a shipwreck near the Cape of Good Hope.

May 29, 1677 – The Treaty of Middle Plantation established peace between the Virginia colonists and the local Natives.

May 29, 1721 - South Carolina was formally incorporated as a royal colony.

May 29, 1736 – American “Founding Father” and first Virginia governor Patrick Henry was born in Hanover County, Colony of Virginia, British America.

May 29, 1765 - Patrick Henry denounced the Stamp Act before Virginia's House of Burgesses.

May 29, 1780 – During the American Revolutionary War, at the Battle of Waxhaws near Lancaster, S.C., the British, under commander Lt. Col. Banastre Tarleton, continued attacking after the Continentals laid down their arms, killing 113 and critically wounding all but 53 that remained.

May 29, 1781 - Captain John Barry, commander of the American warship Alliance captured the HMS Atlanta and the HMS Trepassy.

May 29, 1790 – Rhode Island became the last of the original United States' colonies to ratify the Constitution and was admitted as the 13th U.S. state.

May 29, 1825 – During his tour of the United States, the Marquis de Lafayette visited Braddock, Pa.

May 29, 1848 – Wisconsin was admitted as the 30th U.S. state.

May 29, 1862 - P.T. Beauregard began moving troops out of Corinth, Miss. The evacuation was completed the next day.

May 29, 1862 – During the Civil War, a skirmish was fought at Whitesburg, near Huntsville, Ala.

May 29, 1862 – During the Civil War, skirmishes were fought near Seven Pines, Virginia; near Boonville and Corinth, Mississippi; at Kickapoo Bottom, Arkansas; and near Wardensville, West Virginia.

May 29, 1863 - Ambrose Burnside offered his resignation over the Vallandigham affair. Lincoln refused to accept it.

May 29, 1863 – The siege at Vicksburg, Miss. entered Day 11.

May 29, 1864 - Union troops lost another foot race with the Confederates in a minor stop on the long and terrible campaign between Ulysses S. Grant’s Army of the Potomac and Robert E. Lee’s Army of Northern Virginia. Grant was getting frustrated. After the Totopotomoy, Grant slid south to Cold Harbor, just 10 miles from Richmond. His impatience may have gotten the best of him. At Cold Harbor, Grant would commit the foolish mistake of hurling his troops at well-fortified Confederates, creating a slaughter nearly unmatched during the war

May 29, 1864 – During the Civil War, an “action” occurred at Moulton, in Lawrence County, Ala.

May 29, 1864 – During the Civil War, skirmishes were fought on the Fordoche Bayou Road in Louisiana and at Hamlin, West Virginia.

May 29, 1865 – During the Civil War, a skirmish was fought near Austin, Nevada.

May 29, 1865 - Andrew Johnson granted a Presidential pardon to those who directly or indirectly aided the Southern war effort. He restored property rights to the South with the exception of slaves. Unlike Lincoln's declaration in December 1863, Johnson created an exception for property owners whose holdings totaled $20,000 dollars or more.

May 29, 1865 - President Andrew Johnson appointed William Holden as provisional governor of North Carolina, a blueprint for his plans of Presidential Reconstruction. Holden was instructed to call a constitutional convention of men who had signed an oath of allegiance to the United States.

May 29, 1874 – English author G.K. Chesterton was born Gilbert Keith Chesterton in London.

May 29, 1880 – German philosopher Oswald Spengler was born in Blankenburg, Germany.

May 29, 1886 – The pharmacist John Pemberton placed his first advertisement for Coca-Cola, which appeared in The Atlanta Journal.

May 29, 1886 – The (Monroe) County Convention was scheduled to meet on this Saturday, according to The Monroe Journal.

May 29, 1896 - Mr. J. Falkner, representing Alabama Mercantile Co. of Montgomery, was in Pineville on this Friday.

May 29, 1900 – Charles Pawson Atmore, General Passenger Agent of the Louisville & Nashville Railroad, passed away from apoplexy at the age of 66 in Louisville, Ky. He was buried in the Cave Hill Cemetery in Louisville, Ky.

May 29, 1901 - Seven days into the Constitutional Convention of 1901 a petition submitted by Booker T. Washington and 23 other African-American leaders was read to convention delegates, all of whom were white. The petition asked that the black Alabamian be given "some humble share in choosing those who shall rule over him." Nevertheless, with the ratification of the Constitution of 1901 in November, blacks--along with poor whites--were effectively disfranchised.

May 29, 1903 – Comedian Bob Hope was born Leslie Townes Hope in Eltham, near London, England.

May 29, 1904 – The Rev. W.N. Huckabee preached at the Sowell Old Field School House (Monroe County?) on this fifth Sunday evening at 5 p.m.

May 29, 1906 – English author T.H. White was born Terence Hanbury White in Bombay, India, to English parents employed by the British civil service. He is best known for his sequence of Arthurian novels, “The Once and Future King,” first published together in 1958.

May 29, 1909 – The Conecuh Record reported that about four inches of rain fell in Evergreen, Ala. on this day and 1-1/2 inches fell the day before.

May 29, 1911 – The government thermometer reached 100 degrees on this day in Evergreen, Ala.

May 29, 1913 – Igor Stravinsky’s “The Rite of Spring” premiered at the Theatre des Champs-Elysees in Paris.

May 29, 1914 – English explorer, hunter and author Henry Seton-Karr passed died at the age of 61 in Canada’s greatest maritime disaster when the Empress of Ireland sank in the St. Lawrence River when he was returning to England from a hunting trip in British Columbia.

May 29, 1914 – Edgar Lee Masters published the first poem of what would later be collected and published as “The Spoon River Anthology” in 1915.

May 29, 1915 – The Bowles baseball team beat Skinnerton, 17-12, on this Saturday.

May 29, 1916 - The New York Giants won their 17th consecutive road game.

May 29, 1916 - Author Virginia Pounds Brown was born in Birmingham, Ala.

May 29, 1916 – As part of the closing exercises of the Second District Agricultural School in Evergreen on this Monday evening, a Chinese operetta, ‘The Feast of the Little Lanterns,’ was presented to “a large and appreciative audience,” according to The Conecuh Record. “All the girls in the play acquitted themselves splendidly; those deserving special mention are Misses Sara Cunningham, Edith Shields and Evelyn Chapman. Mrs. Dr. Hairston of Burnt Corn, who ably assisted Miss Gammon, played the part of a ‘Japanese Juggler Maid’ and her work could not have been surpassed.”

May 29, 1916 - The state high school commission, at its meeting in Montgomery on this Monday, reelected Prof. G.A. Harris as principal of the Monroe County High School for the ensuing year. Principals of the 50 other high schools in the state were named at the meeting, among their number being Prof. G.M. Veasey for Chambers, Prof. Claud Hardy for Wilcox and Prof. C.A. Peavey for Escambia.

May 29, 1917 - John Fitzgerald Kennedy, the 35th President of the United States, was born in Brookline, Mass.

May 29, 1917 – “Another noble old veteran in the person of Mr. D.M. McNeil has called to his reward, his death occurring suddenly at his home near Axle” on this Tuesday evening, aged upward of 70 years.

May 29, 1918 – Wm. T. Broughton and Zeilin Simpson, who both died in World War I, were inducted into the Army and sent to Camp Sevier, S.C. for training.

May 29, 1922 - The U.S. Supreme Court ruled that organized baseball was a sport, and not subject to antitrust laws.

May 29, 1922 – In connection with the ongoing commencement exercises at the State Secondary Agricultural School in Evergreen, Ala., a baseball game was scheduled to be held on this Monday at 3:30 p.m.

May 29, 1932 – World War I veterans began to assemble in Washington, D.C., in the Bonus Army to request cash bonuses promised to them to be paid in 1945.

May 29, 1942 - A movie version of Alabama author Octavus Roy Cohen's book “Gallant Lady” was released.

May 29, 1943 - Marvin Coleman died of a heart attack on this Saturday night about 11:30 p.m. He was on duty as town marshal of Frisco City when death came.

May 29, 1946 – German SS officer Martin Gottfried Weiss, after being found guilty of "violating the laws and usages of war," was executed by hanging at Landsberg prison at the age of 40.

May 29, 1949 - Barzell Griffin, 24-year-old who escaped from the Conecuh County Jail in Evergreen on Tues., May 24, was picked up by law enforcers in Birmingham on this Sunday after a tip from the sheriff’s office in Evergreen, Conecuh County Sheriff W.D. Lewis reported. The Jefferson County law enforcers picked up Griffin by watching his wife, who lived in Birmingham, after receiving the information from Sheriff Lewis. Lewis also informed The Courant that Griffin was being held in Birmingham to face trial on a burglary indictment from several months before. Griffin was also wanted in Selma and Pensacola, Fla. Griffin was being held in Evergreen for breaking into Brown Supply Co. and cracking their safe. He got away with $300 after smashing the safe with an axe. When Griffin broke out of the county jail in Evergreen it marked the sixth time he had escaped from civil and army authorities since beginning his career of crime 13 years before at the age of 11.

May 29, 1950 – The St. Roch, the first ship to circumnavigate North America, arrived in Halifax, Nova Scotia, Canada.

May 29, 1951 - C.F. Blair became the first man to fly over the North Pole in single engine plane.

May 29, 1952 – Country music legend Hank Williams and his wife, Audrey, were divorced.

May 29, 1953 – Edmund Hillary and Sherpa Tenzing Norgay of Nepal became the first people to reach the summit of Mount Everest, on Tenzing Norgay's (adopted) 39th birthday. "A symmetrical, beautiful, snow cone summit," Hillary said of the peak that is 29,028 feet above sea level.

May 29, 1954 - The first meeting of the annual Bilderberg group, a secretive, invitation-only gathering with the elite from such fields as politics, commerce, and banking, was held.

May 29, 1955 – New Hope Baptist Church at Natchez, Ala. held its 100th anniversary homecoming.

May 29, 1955 - John Hinckley Jr., who attempted to assassinate U.S. President Ronald Reagan in 1981, was born in Ardmore, Okla.

May 29, 1959 – Repton High School was scheduled to hold its graduation exercises at 8 p.m. in Repton, Ala. Starr Smith of Montgomery was to deliver the graduation address, and Principal E.H. Penny was to deliver the diplomas.

May 29, 1962 – First baseman Fred Whitfield, a native of Vandiver, Ala., made his first Major League start, two days after his Major League debut. He went 1-for-4 for the St. Louis Cardinals at Pittsburgh’s Forbes Field with his first hit coming in the fourth inning, a RBI single off Al McBean that scored Red Schoendienst.

May 29, 1962 - Buck (John) O’Neil became the first black coach in Major League Baseball when he accepted the job with the Chicago Cubs.

May 29, 1963 - A delegation of Monroe County, Ala. residents planned to meet with Gov. George Wallace and State Superintendent of Education Austin Meadows in Montgomery on this Wednesday to discuss Monroe County as a location for a new prospective junior college.

May 29, 1965 – Repton High School was scheduled to hold graduation exercises on this Saturday night at 8 p.m. in the school auditorium in Repton, Ala. Dorothy Waller was the valedictorian, and Willene Powell was the salutatorian. Twenty-three seniors were expected to receive diplomas.

May 29, 1965 - Dick Allen of the Philadelphia Phillies hit a 529-foot home run out of Connie Mack Stadium.

May 29, 1967 - Noel Gallagher, the lead guitarist, co-lead vocalist and principal songwriter of the rock band Oasis, was born in Longsight, Manchester, England.

May 29, 1967 - Economist and “Freakonomics” co-author Steven Levitt was born in St. Paul, Minn.

May 29, 1972 – Sparta Academy held its first ever graduation exercises on this day at 8 p.m. at Stuart-McGehee Field in Evergreen, Ala. Members of the class included Forrest Brantley, Robert Carleton, Terry Chapman, Martha Gaines, Gary Gibson, Donnie Griggers, Beth Harper (salutatorian), Kitty Horton, Deborah Josey, Crawford King (valedictorian), Mary Ann Mack, Charlotte McCreary, Mike McKenzie, Joey Nix, Carey Stinson, Larry Tranum, Mike Turner, Shelia Ward and Dwight Watson.

May 29, 1972 - In a joint communique issued by the United States and the Soviet Union following the conclusion of summit talks with General Secretary Leonid Brezhnev during President Richard Nixon’s visit to Moscow (the first visit ever by an U.S. president), both countries set forth their standard positions on Vietnam. The United States insisted that the future of South Vietnam should be left to the South Vietnamese without interference. The Soviet Union insisted on a withdrawal of U.S. and Allied forces from South Vietnam and an end to the bombing of North Vietnam.

May 29, 1974 - U.S. President Richard Nixon agreed to turn over 1,200 pages of edited Watergate transcripts.

May 29, 1976 – Major League Baseball infielder and outfielder Jerry Hairston Jr. was born in Des Moines, Iowa. He went on to play for the Baltimore Orioles, the Chicago Cubs, the Texas Rangers, the Cincinnati Reds, the New York Yankees, the San Diego Padres, the Washington Nationals, the Milwaukee Brewers and the Los Angeles Dodgers.

May 29, 1976 – NBA power forward and center Raef LaFrentz was born in Hampton, Iowa. He went on to play for Kansas, the Denver Nuggets, the Dallas Mavericks, the Boston Celtics and the Portland Trail Blazers.

May 29, 1981 – The Sloss Furnaces in Birmingham, Ala. were designated a National Historic Landmark.

May 29, 1984 - The Boston Red Sox retired the No. 9 jersey of Ted Williams and the No. 4 jersey of Joe Cronin.

May 29, 1986 - The first issue of "The Frisco Citian" newspaper was published in Frisco City, Ala.

May 29, 1987 – In Monroeville, Ala., Alabama Bureau of Investigations agent Simon Benson conducted a tape-recorded interview in the county courthouse with Karen Kelly, whom he suspected of lying about the Vickie Lynn Pittman murder, according to Pete Earley’s book “Circumstantial Evidence.”

May 29, 1990 - Rickey Henderson stole his 893rd base, breaking Ty Cobb's record.

May 29, 1992 - Tim Raines of the Chicago White Sox stole his 700th career base.

May 29, 2001 - In New York, four followers of Osama bin Laden were convicted of a global conspiracy to murder Americans. The crimes included the 1998 bombings of two U.S. embassies in Africa that killed 224 people.

May 29, 2003 – High Ground Burial in Baldwin County, Ala. and the Dulaney Cemetery in Wilcox County, Ala. were added to the Alabama Historic Cemetery Register.

May 29, 2004 – The National World War II Memorial was dedicated in Washington, D.C.

May 29, 2015 – NFL defensive back and Olympic track athlete Henry Carr, a native of Montgomery, Ala., died at the age of 73 in Griffin, Ga. He played football at Arizona State and for the New York Giants.

Daily Rainfall Observations from SW Alabama for Mon., May 29, 2017

Rainfall (Past 24 Hours): 0.00 inches

Week to Date Rainfall: 0.00 inches.

Month to Date Rainfall:  9.90 inches.

Spring to Date Rainfall: 16.35 inches.

Year to Date Rainfall: 36.75 inches.

Notes: Today is the 149th day of 2017 and the 71st day of Spring. There are 216 days left in the year.

Readings taken at 0700 hours Central Standard Time (1300 GMT) daily, just west of the Monroe-Conecuh County line and south of U.S. Highway 84, near Excel, Alabama, USA, in the vicinity of Lat 31.42834N Lon 87.30131W. Elevation 400 feet above sea level. CoCoRaHS Station No. AL-MN-4, Station Name: Excel 2.5 ESE.

Sunday, May 28, 2017

130-year-old news highlights from The Monroe Journal from May 1887

The Monroe Journal newspaper in Monroeville, Ala., under the direction of publisher Q. Salter, published four editions 130 years ago during the month of May 1887. Those issues, which were dated May 5, May 12, May 19 and May 26, can be found on microfilm at the Monroe County Library in Monroeville, Ala. What follows are a few news highlights from those editions. Enjoy.

MAY 5, 1887

Editor J.W. Davison of the Evergreen Star and traveling agent for the Montgomery Advertiser was in town last week in the interests of the latter paper.

Circuit court adjourned last Saturday at noon.

Photographer Smith has folded his tent and departed.

Judge Clarke and Solicitor Taylor left immediately after the adjournment of court Saturday for Mobile via Claiborne to hold Baldwin County court.

Rev. Mr. Sturgeon filled his regular appointment at the Presbyterian church last Sunday. His congregations are large and attentive and his sermons highly edifying.

We are glad to learn that the Methodist church at this place is soon to have an organ.

We learn that the work of repairing and beautifying the graveyards at this place will be commenced at an early day.

County court convened Monday. His honor Judge W.C. Sowell presiding.

There will be a basket picnic at Fore’s bridge on Limestone Creek on Thursday the 19th inst. Those desiring to spend a pleasant day should not fail to attend.

Mr. W.B. Lucas, the Tombstone man of Starkville, Miss., is in town.

MAY 12, 1887

Dr. J.T. Packer left Tuesday for Brewton with the view of making that place his future home. During his residence here, Dr. Packer has succeeded in gaining to a flattering degree, the respect, confidence and esteem of this community. He was attentive and kind towards his patients and successful as a physician while his genial manner, candor and honesty had endeared him to many friends socially.

Dr. McMillan has purchased Dr. Packer’s stock of drugs and has also taken charge of his large and lucrative practice.

Died – Mr. John Holly, who has been for more than 70 years a citizen of this county, died at his home near River Ridge recently, aged about 80 years.

Died – In Brewton, on Sunday, May 1, 1887, Dr. R.W. Farish in his 50th year. Dr. Farish came to our little town in 1882 from Monroe County, during his short stay here, many became warmly attached to him, he had built up a lucrative practice and was held in his esteem by his professional associates, he was an honorable, high-toned, conscientious gentleman – had never attached himself to any church, but he held in high regard as a conscientious Christian and had profound respect for religion. Brewton has lost a good citizen and the medical fraternity a consistent member, his wife a devoted husband, his children a kind, affectionate and indulgent father. – Brewton Times.

Perdue Hill Items – Perdue Hill’s having a boom in a debating Society and literary club, meeting every Friday night at the Academy.

MAY 19, 1887

A very fine organ has been purchased for the Methodist Sunday school at this place.

A.M. Leslie, Esq., left Tuesday for Washington, D.C., via Mobile, to attend the National drill. He will visit New York and other places of interest at the North during his absence.

Editor Jno. W. Davison of the Star and Mr. Charlie Savage of Evergreen gave us a call Wednesday. Mr. Davison was in town in the interest of his paper and Mr. Savage was en route to visit his father, Col. H.J. Savage at Perdue Hill.

Tax collector Stevens has gone to Montgomery to make his annual settlement with the State.

The first picnic of the season was given at Fore’s Bridge on Limestone yesterday (Wednesday). It was largely attended by young and old, and a most pleasant time is reported.

Perdue Hill – The closing exercises of the Perdue Hill High School will take place at Perdue Hill Friday, the 27th inst. A grand public entertainment will be given in honor of the event, commencing at eight o’clock p.m. Those desiring to spend a pleasant time should not fail to attend.

Died – At Flomaton, Escambia County, Ala., on the afternoon of May the 9, 1887, Mr. Henry Oguynn, aged 44 years.
The deceased was for many years a resident of Monroe County, Ala., where he has many friends and acquaintances. Death was the result of cancer of the abdomen.

MAY 26, 1887

A bold but unsuccessful attempt at jail delivery was made here last Sunday while Mr. Pack Burns, the deputy sheriff and keeper of the jail, was at Sunday school. He locked the room in which the jail keys were kept, and left a little negro boy in charge of the place. The boy says that about 11 o’clock, while he was down in the cellar, he heard someone trying to open the door, and ran up to see who it was. He found two men, who he did not know, endeavoring to effect an entrance. He asked them what they wanted, and they replied that they saw Mr. Burns at church who told them to go and get the keys. The boy refused to give them up. They said they were determined to have them and began pounding upon the door with an axe. The boy pointed a cocked pistol out the window at them and threatened to shoot them if they did not leave, whereupon they took to their heels and fled. It is not known who the parties were or who they intended to liberate.

We acknowledge the receipt of an invitation to attend the closing exercises of Prof. Thos. Williams’ school at Pineville, June 10. A grand barbecue will be given on the occasion – just such a one as the people of Pineville only know how to give. Jno. Y. Kilpatrick and D.T. McMillan of Camden and B.F. Elmore of Clarke County are expected to deliver addresses before the school. The public is cordially invited to attend.

Master Hugh Jones, one of the compositors on The Journal, is confined to his bed with dysentery, which is prevailing in this community to an alarming extent.

Dr. J.T. Packer of Brewton was in town Wednesday.

Today in History for May 28, 2017

May 28, 585 BC - A solar eclipse in Asia Minor occurred, leading to a battle truce, and historical astronomy has set May 28th, 585 BC as the likely day for this event. This became a cardinal point from which other dates in ancient history have been calculated.

May 28, 1754 – In the first engagement of the French and Indian War, Virginia militia under 22-year-old Lieutenant colonel George Washington defeated a French reconnaissance party and Indian scouts in the Battle of Jumonville Glen in what is now Fayette County in southwestern Pennsylvania.

May 28, 1828 – A United States arsenal was established at Mt. Vernon, Ala., near the juncture of the Tombigbee and Alabama Rivers. It had previously been the headquarters for General Claiborne in the Creek War of 1813-1814. In 1873, the Arsenal was converted into a barracks, which from 1887 to 1894 housed Apache Indian prisoners, including Geronimo. In 1895 the land was conveyed to the State of Alabama and became the site of the Mt. Vernon Hospital.

May 28, 1830 – U.S. President Andrew Jackson signed the Indian Removal Act which relocated Native Americans. The policy primarily affected five tribes: the Cherokee, Choctaw, Creek, Chickasaw, and Seminole nations of the southeastern United States.

May 28, 1832 – Confederate officer William Hugh Means King was born in Madison in Morgan County, Ga. He would go on to serve as captain of Co. H of the 5th Georgia Regiment and organized a company of infantry called the Hardee Rifles in Georgia. The unit mustered in at Pensacola, Fla. on May 12, 1861, and King was cited for gallantry at Santa Rosa Island, Fla. He was promoted to major and served as brigade adjutant for Gen. R.H. Anderson, Brigadier General Kirby Smith and General Braxton Bragg. He was ordered to collect scattered cavalry troops and report to Gen. Joseph Wheeler, where he served until the end of the war. King was a graduate of State University of Georgia in Athens and was a lawyer, Mayor of Evergreen and served as principal of the Evergreen Academy. He passed away in Evergreen at the age of 82 on June 3, 1914 (some sources say June 5) and he was buried in the Old Evergreen Cemetery.

May 28, 1861 – During the Civil War, Robert Anderson assumed command of the Department of Kentucky. Irvin McDowell assumed command of the Department of Northeastern Virginia. Confederates seized the Baltimore and Ohio Railroad from Point of Rocks to Cumberland Maryland.

May 28, 1862 - Since long before the Revolutionary War, it had been the tradition in British naval service to issue sailors a ration of a pint of rum per day at sea. This tradition had carried over to American sailors. Not willing to leave a good thing alone, Asst. Navy Sec. Fox wrote on this day to a senator, “I beg you for the enduring good of the service, to abolish the spirit ration and forbid any distilled liquors being placed on board any vessel belonging to the United States, excepting of course the Medical Department. All insubordination, all misery, every deviltry on board ships can be traced to rum.” The forces of enforced temperance would eventually prevail.

May 28, 1863 – During the Civil War, a skirmish was fought at Florence, Ala.

May 28, 1863 - The 54th Massachusetts Infantry, the Army’s first black regiment, left Boston for combat in the South when they marched onto a steamer and set sail for Port Royal, South Carolina. The unit saw action right away, taking part in a raid into Georgia and withstanding a Confederate attack near Charleston, South Carolina. The story the 54th Massachusetts was immortalized in the critically acclaimed 1990 movie Glory, starring Mathew Broderick, Denzell Washington, and Morgan Freeman.

May 28, 1863 – During the Civil War, a skirmish was fought near Fort Gibson in the Indian Territory.

May 28, 1863 – During the Civil War, the siege of Vicksburg, Miss. entered its tenth day.

May 28, 1864 – During the Civil War, skirmishes were fought at Jones's Farm, Totopotomoy River, Crump's Creek and Haw's Chop in Virginia.

May 28, 1865 – During the Civil War, a skirmish was fought at Sweetwater Station, Wyoming.

May 28, 1878 – French sinologist and explorer Paul Pelliot was born in Paris, France. He is best known for his explorations of Central Asia and his discovery of many important Chinese texts among the Dunhuang manuscripts.

May 28, 1885 – Major C.L. Scott of Monroeville and his private secretary, Col. B.L. Hibbard, were to set sail from New York for Caracas on this day. Earlier in the month, U.S. President Grover Cleveland appointed Scott to be U.S. Minister to Venezuela.

May 28, 1887 - Olympic athlete, baseball and basketball player Jim Thorpe was born in Pottawatomie County, Oklahoma.

May 28, 1892 – In San Francisco, John Muir organized the Sierra Club.

May 28, 1892 – German SS general Sepp Dietrich was born in Hawangen, Bavaria, German Empire.

May 28, 1896 – The Monroe Journal reported that A.T. Sowell had accepted a position as salesman for the Bear Creek Mill Co.

May 28, 1896 – The Monroe Journal reported that J.S. Lambert of Mount Pleasant was in Atlanta, Ga., being treated by the doctors of the National Surgical Institute.

May 28, 1896 – The Monroe Journal reported, in news from the Manistee community, that the Bear Creek Mill was running regular after some repairs.

May 28, 1902 - Owen Wister’s “The Virginian” was published by Macmillan Press. It was the first “serious” Western and one of the most influential in the genre.

May 28, 1907 - Journalist Eddy Gilmore was born in Selma, Ala.

May 28, 1908 - Author, journalist and “James Bond” creator Ian Fleming was born in London.

May 28, 1909 – The Conecuh Record reported that 1.5 inches of rain fell in Evergreen, Ala. and about four inches fell on the following day.

May 28, 1913 – Poet May Swenson was born in Logan, Utah.

May 28, 1913 - The second annual commencement of the Monroe County High School concluded on this Wednesday evening with the baccalaureate address by Hon. John McDuffie and the award of the Coxwell medal in the oratorical contest. The medal was awarded to Mr. Riffie Simmons. “A pleasant incident connected with the delivery of a diploma to Miss May Belle Broughton, the first to complete the high school course, was the presentation of a beautiful gold watch as a memento from citizens of Monroeville and friends of the school,” according to The Monroe Journal. The presentation speech was delivered by Judge W.G. McCorvey. Prof. G.A. Harris was announced as the principal of the high school for the ensuring year with Miss Mamie Borough and Miss Adele Kirk as assistants.

May 28, 1916 – Novelist Walker Percy was born in Birmingham, and he is best known for his 1961 novel, “The Moviegoer.”

May 28, 1916 – As part of the closing exercises of the Second District Agricultural School in Evergreen, Dr. J.A. Hendrix of Howard College preached the baccalaureate sermon at the Baptist church on this Sunday morning to “an appreciative congregation.”

May 28, 1918 - In the first sustained American offensive of World War I, an Allied force including a full brigade of nearly 4,000 United States soldiers captured the village of Cantigny, on the Somme River in France, from their German enemy.

May 28, 1922 - Alabama author John Allan Wyeth died in New York, N.Y.

May 28, 1929 – Conecuh County High School in Castleberry, Ala. was scheduled to hold graduation exercises and the commencement address was to be delivered by Dr. E.C. Moore, president of the Downing-Shofner Institute of Brewton. Also that night, CCHS principal G.M. Veazey was to deliver diplomas to 13 seniors. Members of the senior class included Anna Ree Brandon, Harvey Beard, Jessie Mae Ellis, Emma Lee Holland, Earle Howington, Ralph Howington, Lottie Lynch, Allene Miniard, Charles Price, Mary Ester Stapleton, Lillie Belle Stone, Hazel Clair Riley and Ercie Ward.

May 28, 1935 - John Steinbeck’s first successful novel, Tortilla Flat, was first published.

May 28, 1937 – The Golden Gate Bridge in San Francisco, California, was officially opened by President Franklin D. Roosevelt in Washington, D.C., who pushed a button to signal the start of vehicle traffic over the span.

May 28, 1940 – During World War II, Belgium surrendered to Nazi Germany to end the Battle of Belgium.

May 28, 1941 - The first night baseball game in Washington, D.C. took place. The Yankees beat the Senators, 6-5, at Griffith Stadium.

May 28, 1942 – During World War II, in retaliation for the assassination attempt on Reinhard Heydrich, Nazis in Czechoslovakia killed over 1,800 people.

May 28, 1945 – The USS Eldridge departed New York City for service in the Pacific. En route to Saipan in July, it made contact with an underwater object and immediately attacked, but no results were observed.

May 28, 1946 - The first night game in the original Yankee Stadium took place. The Senators beat the Yankees, 2-1.

May 28, 1948 - Graduation exercises at Conecuh County Training School were scheduled to be held in the school auditorium on this Friday at 8 p.m. Dr. Robert C. Hatch, Supervisor of Instruction of the Division of Negro Education, State Department of Education, Montgomery, Ala., was to deliver the commencement address. Fifty-three students were scheduled to receive diplomas.

May 28, 1950 – On this Sunday afternoon, the Evergreen Greenies of the Dixie Amateur League were scheduled to play a doubleheader against Bay Minette in Bay Minette, Ala.

May 28, 1951 - Batting for the New York Giants against the Boston Braves, Alabama native Willie Mays got his first hit in the Major Leagues--a home run. Born near Birmingham, the "Say Hey Kid" went on to be named National League Rookie of the Year and hit 660 homers in a legendary Hall of Fame career.

May 28, 1956 - Dale Long became the first player to hit home runs in eight consecutive games.

May 28, 1957 - National League club owners voted to allow the Brooklyn Dodgers to move to Los Angeles and that the New York Giants could move to San Francisco.

May 28, 1959 – Lyeffion High School’s graduation ceremony was scheduled to begin at 8 p.m. in Lyeffion, Ala. Dr. L.Y. Trapp of Troy State Teachers College was to deliver the graduation address, and Principal J.O. Yawn was to pass out diplomas to 28 graduates. Carolyn Brown was the valedictorian, and Betty Jane Riley was the salutatorian.

May 28, 1959 - Two monkeys, Able and Baker, became the first living creatures to survive a space flight. Their voyage reached speeds of 10,000 mph and lasted 15 minutes. Miss Baker, a squirrel monkey, and Miss Able, a rhesus monkey, took a historic flight into space aboard a Jupiter rocket. It was the first NASA mission in which living mammals returned alive following a flight in space. Following her trip to space, Miss Baker became an attraction at the U.S. Space and Rocket Center in Huntsville, where she lived for 25 years. She died in 1984 of kidney failure. (Miss Able died a few days after the flight, during a medical procedure to remove an electrode.) Miss Baker was inducted into the Alabama Animal Hall of Fame in 2005.

May 28, 1965 – Evergreen High School was scheduled to hold graduation exercises on this Friday night in Memorial Gymnasium at 8 p.m. Kay Holman was the valedictorian, and Nancy Nix was the salutatorian. Sixty-five students were expected to receive diplomas.

May 28, 1965 – Conecuh County High School in Castleberry, Ala. was scheduled to hold graduation exercises on this Friday night at 8 p.m. Donald Sawyer was the valedictorian, and Jimmy Oliver was the salutatorian. Twenty-nine seniors were expected to receive diplomas.

May 28, 1968 – Atomic submarine USS Scorpion, with a crew of 99, failed to return to its homeport in Norfolk, Va., seven days after sending its last routine message 250 miles west of the Azores. Presumed lost on June 5, a naval oceanographic research ship several months later would find its wreckage at more than 10,000 feet on the edge of the Sargasso Sea. The reason for its sinking remains undetermined.

May 28, 1969 – Army Cpl. Clarence Taylor, 25, of Greenville, Ala. was killed in action in Vietnam while serving in the 173rd Airborne Brigade. Taylor was featured in the June 27, 1969 edition of LIFE magazine in a cover story titled “The Faces of the American Dead in Vietnam: One Week’s Toll.” Born on Feb. 6, 1944 in Greenville, he is buried in the Sweet Home AME Zion Church Cemetery in Butler County. (Some sources give his rank as Private First Class.)

May 28, 1969 – During the Vietnam War, U.S. troops abandoned Ap Bia Mountain.

May 28, 1974 – John Drew of Beatrice, Ala. was drafted in the second round of the NBA draft by the Atlanta Hawks.

May 28, 1988 – Major League Baseball relief pitcher Craig Kimbrel was born in Huntsville, Ala. During his career, he has played for the Atlanta Braves, the San Diego Padres and the Boston Red Sox.
May 28, 1993 – English amputee and sprint runner Jonathan “Jonnie” Peacock was born in Cambridge, England. An amputee and sprint runner, he won gold at the 2012 Summer Paralympics, representing Great Britain in the T44 men's 100 metres event.

May 28, 1995 - The White Sox and the Tigers combined for 12 home runs at Tiger Stadium.

May 28, 2002 – The last steel girder was removed from the original World Trade Center site. Cleanup duties officially end with closing ceremonies at Ground Zero in Manhattan, New York City.

May 28, 2004 – The Iraqi Governing Council chose Ayad Allawi, a longtime anti-Saddam Hussein exile, as prime minister of Iraq's interim government.

May 28, 2006 - Barry Bonds of the San Francisco Giants hit his 715th career home run, allowing Bonds to pass Babe Ruth on the all time list into second place.

May 28, 2012 – The Conecuh County Veterans Monument was officially dedicated during special ceremony attended by over 100 people.

Daily Rainfall Observations from SW Alabama for Sun., May 28, 2017

Rainfall (Past 24 Hours): 0.00 inches

Week to Date Rainfall: 2.50 inches.

Month to Date Rainfall:  9.90 inches.

Spring to Date Rainfall: 16.35 inches.

Year to Date Rainfall: 36.75 inches.

Notes: Today is the 148th day of 2017 and the 70th day of Spring. There are 217 days left in the year.

Readings taken at 0700 hours Central Standard Time (1300 GMT) daily, just west of the Monroe-Conecuh County line and south of U.S. Highway 84, near Excel, Alabama, USA, in the vicinity of Lat 31.42834N Lon 87.30131W. Elevation 400 feet above sea level. CoCoRaHS Station No. AL-MN-4, Station Name: Excel 2.5 ESE.

Saturday, May 27, 2017

Singleton writes of the watermelon-stealing escapades of his teenage years

1933 B Model Ford
(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 “Memories of some country boys” was originally published in the May 23, 2002 edition of The Monroe Journal in Monroeville, Ala.)

Saturday, the 18th of May, my graduating class from high school had its annual reunion. We got together at a catfish cafĂ© over on the bank of the Tombigbee River for a wonderful meal and some fun times together. Each told stories about some of the happenings that took place during our last years in high school. Much to my surprise, the story listed here was told by one of the young ladies who was involved in the watermelon patch raid that took place that cloudy night on her father’s farm near the area where we all grew up. I have added a little to it so that my readers will know more about the event.

During the years of my teenage life, I wasn’t all bad. I admit that I was guilty, many times being a part of a watermelon patch raid or swiping a few fresh ripe peaches from a grouchy old man’s peach orchard who lived in the farming community where I grew up. But, as I look back, it seems that this kind of behavior was expected from the youth of those times. On several occasions, I overheard my father and other men laughing and telling about certain events that were set up to try to frighten the living daylights out of my older brothers and some of their friends when they would raid a watermelon patch or a peach or apple orchard.

Always, if visitors or relatives from the city came to the farm communities during the time of year when the melons were ripe, a raid was always organized so as to frighten the living daylights out of the city slickers. Many times, it was always proper to show one’s courage to the country girls, to carry them on a watermelon patch raid on the night of a date. This is a story of one of those not so organized raids.

It was during the summer after we completed the 11th grade in high school period. A friend of mine managed to borrow his brother’s 1933 B Model Ford for a night on the town. Since there wasn’t a town nearby, other than Sweet Water, that we could have a night on, we decided to just carry our dates on a tour of the area. Hardly had the night gotten under way, when someone mentioned, “Why not raid someone’s watermelon patch?” Since my father’s death, we had discontinued any type of farming. My dear mother and I had moved from the farm to the town of Sweet Water. I had become a city boy of sorts; and city boys didn’t have watermelon patches. We couldn’t go to my friend’s family patch since he was afraid that he would be seen and he might have the car taken from him.

The dark haired young lady that I was dating excitingly suggested that we visit her father’s watermelon patch. She assured us that she knew a way to get to the patch without being seen. Hearing her talk left no reason to think that she didn’t know the trail to the patch and that she was very familiar with the area. She assured us once again that she had grown up on this farm and she knew the lay of the land by heart.

Parking the old Ford at the spot where my date instructed us to, we crossed the narrow country road and headed across a large field that lay on the side of a sloping hill. There was full moon above, but the heavy clouds that floated around the moon caused it to disappear behind the clouds at times, causing total darkness. After losing our way several times, we finally came upon the watermelon patch that belonged to the father of my date.

As the heavy clouds slowly moved across the face of the full moon, we eased along the melon rows, seeking out a couple of good, juicy watermelons. After “thumping” about half the melons in the patch, we selected the two we thought that would best suit our taste for a sweet juicy watermelon eating on a creek bank that was not too far from where we had parked our vehicle. Now all we had to do was return to the old Ford and load up and head to this favorite parking place. As we slowly made our way down a narrow path in the direction we thought would lead us to the narrow country road where the B Model had been left, the heavy clouds completely covered the face of the full moon. Within minutes, the night had become very dark. As we slowly moved along the faint path, it seemed to me that this wasn’t the path that we had traveled on our way to the melon patch. I confronted my date about the path not being familiar. She insured me in no uncertain terms that we were on the right path. She reminded me in a firm voice that she had grown up on this farm; she certainly knew where she was going. Shouldering my watermelon, I said no more and followed the young lady down the hill with my friend and his date coming along behind.

All at once, the full moon broke from behind the heavy clouds. To our amazement, we were just a few short steps from the wooden fence that surrounded the family barn yard. Whispering among ourselves, we tried to decide what the next course of action would be. My date, who seemed to know everything, suggested that we slip through the barnyard and out to the road that was not too far from where we were standing. I knew that we couldn’t retrace the path we had taken down the hill, because it had grown dark once again and we needed to get to the dirt road somehow quickly as possible.

Slowly we opened the barnyard gate and eased into the enclosed area. All at once, a young mule that was in the barnyard began to snort loudly and race around the barn. Fearing that we might be run over by the frightened mule, we raced for the other gate that we had been told was on the other side of the barnyard. To make matters worse, a small calf lay on the ground there in the darkness. Trying to reach the safety of the gate without dropping my watermelon, I stepped up on the back of the calf, not knowing it was there. This was when all heck broke loose; I fell broadside in the barnyard filth, losing my watermelon. The frightened mule continued to snort loudly and race wildly around the barn. My date’s father (I was to learn later) came out of the house with nothing on but his night shirt and began to fire his shotgun up into the air. This really caused the raiding party to hook up and get up the road to where we had left the car.

As we finally regained our breath, all wanted to know what had happened to the watermelon that I was carrying. When I told them that I had dropped it when I fell over the sleeping calf, everyone seemed to get quite angry that I had dropped the watermelon. They couldn’t understand why I didn’t hold on to the watermelon. Nothing was mentioned about my buddy losing the melon he was carrying in all the excitement. Needless to say, there was no watermelon cutting that night there on the creek bank.

As usual, my darling mother was awake when I arrived home that night. As I tried to slip in the house without her seeing me, she turned on the light. There I stood in my new sharkskin pants, dirty and filthy from falling over the sleeping calf. Her words were: “Lord, son, what in the world has happened?” I replied to her that she could go on back to bed; if I told her what had happened, she would not believe it anyway.

(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, graduated from Sweet Water High School, served in the Korean War, lived for a time among Apache Indians, moved to Monroe County in June 1964 (some sources say 1961) and served as the administrator of the Monroeville National Guard unit from 1964 to 1987. For years, Singleton’s column “Somewhere in Time” appeared in The Monroe Journal, and he wrote a lengthy series of articles about Monroe County that appeared in Alabama Life magazine. Some of his earlier columns also appeared under the heading of “Monroe County History: Did You Know?” 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 May 27, 2017

May 27, 1692 – In connection with the Salem witchcraft trials, William Phips issued a commission for a Court of Oyer and Terminer and appointed as judges John Hathorne, Nathaniel Saltonstall, Bartholomew Gedney, Peter Sergeant, Samuel Sewall, Wait Still Winthrop and Lieutenant Governor William Stoughton.

May 27, 1790 – Wealthy English heir Jeremiah Carlton, the “laziest man in history,” passed away at the age of 89. He went to bed one day and stayed there for 70 years.

May 27, 1813 - Former President Thomas Jefferson wrote to former President John Adams to inform him that Dr. Benjamin Rush had died.

May 27, 1813 – During the War of 1812, in Canada, American forces captured Fort George.

May 27, 1819 – Poet Julia Ward Howe, who wrote "The Battle Hymn of the Republic,” was born in New York City.

May 27, 1827 - Unable to support himself, Edgar Allan Poe enlisted in the United States Army as a private. Using the name "Edgar A. Perry," he claimed he was 22 years old even though he was 18.

May 27, 1831 – American hunter, explorer, and author Jedediah Smith was mortally wounded by Comanche warriors while searching for water off the Sante Fe Trail and died at the age of 32, south of Ulysses, Kansas. Surviving three massacres and one bear mauling, Smith's explorations and documented discoveries were highly significant in opening the American West to expansion by white settlers and cattlemen.

May 27, 1837 – Gunfighter, scout and lawman James Butler “Wild Bill” Hickok was born in Troy Grove, Ill.

May 27, 1862 – During the Civil War, an engagement was fought at Hanover Court House, Virginia, and a skirmish was fought at Big Indian Creek, Arkansas.

May 27, 1863 - Chief Justice Roger B. Taney issued ex parte Merryman to challenge the authority of Abraham Lincoln and the military to suspend the writ of habeas corpus (the legal procedure that prevents the government from holding an individual indefinitely without showing cause) in Maryland. Taney denounced Lincoln’s interference with civil liberties and argued that only Congress had the power to suspend the writ.

May 27, 1863 – During the Civil War, the first Assault on the Confederate works at the Siege of Port Hudson occurred as Nathaniel Banks' Union forces opened fire on Port Hudson with cannons and riverboats. The fort did not surrender until July 8 when Confederate General Franklin Gardner was convinced that further resistance was futile.

May 27, 1863 – During the Civil War, on day nine of the Vicksburg, Miss. siege, there was an engagement between the Vicksburg batteries and the USS Cincinnati.

May 27, 1864 – During the Civil War, an “action” took place at Pond Springs, Ala.

May 27, 1864 – During the Civil War, the Battle of Pickett’s Mill was fought in Paulding County, Ga.

May 27, 1864 – During the Civil War, multiple skirmishes were fought at Sexton's Station, Mount Carmel Church, Dabney's Ferry, Hanover Junction, Pole Cat Creek, Salem Church and Little River in Virginia.

May 27, 1865 – During the Civil War, skirmishes were fought at Switzler's Mill, Missouri and at Saint Mary's Station, Wyoming.

May 27, 1873 - The first Preakness Stakes was won by Survivor.

May 27, 1886 – The Monroe Journal reported that Capt. Wiggins was “having his store nicely painted.”

May 27, 1886 – In this day’s edition of The Monroe Journal, publisher Q. Salter told readers that “we owe an apology to our readers for non-appearance of The Journal last week, which was due to our absence, having been called away on business.”

May 27, 1886 – The Monroe Journal reported that “a very pleasant and enjoyable picnic was given at the Mineral Springs, near the residence of Dr. J.T. Russell. It was gotten up under the auspices of Miss Ida and Miss Mattie Russell.”

May 27, 1886 – The Monroe Journal reported that Mrs. W.K. Agee of Perdue Hill was visiting her mother, Mrs. T.W. Daugette.

May 27, 1886 – The Monroe Journal reported that Mr. C.M. Simmons was on the sick list.

May 27, 1886 – The Monroe Journal reported that Mr. R.G. and Dr. Gladin Scott of Mt. Pleasant were in Monroeville during the previous week.

May 27, 1886 - The following officers of the Alabama Press Association were elected for the ensuring year at Marion on this day: President, W.M. Meeks of The Gadsden Times; Vice Presidents, Thos. Hudson of The Marion Standard and H.G. McCall of The Shelby Sentinel; Secretary, J.H. Nunnelee of The Tuscaloosa Gazette; Treasurer, Robt. Rawls of The Athens Courier.

May 27, 1894 – Novelist Dashiell Hammett was born in St. Mary’s County, Md.

May 27, 1904 - Dennis McGann set a Major League record when he stole five bases.

May 27, 1906 – The Rev. M.E. Grant filled his regular appointment at the Methodist church at Wilkinsonville on this Sunday, but the congregation was quite small on account of rain, according to The Monroe Journal.

May 27, 1906 – The Rev. J.B. Kilpatrick filled his regular appointment at Pleasant Hill Church on this Sunday.

May 27, 1907 – Ecologist and nature writer Rachel Carson was born in Pennsylvania.

May 27, 1911 – Marie Louise Woodson passed away at the Orphans Home in Evergreen, Ala. after an illness of several years. Her remains were taken to Selma, her hometown, for burial. Years before, she deeded property to the Orphans Home, which bore her name, the Louise Short Baptist Widows and Orphans Home.

May 27, 1912 – Major League Baseball outfielder Terry Moore was born in Vernon in Lamar County, Ala. He would play his entire career for the St. Louis Cardinals. He was a four-time All Star and was part of two World Series championship teams.

May 27, 1912 – Novelist and short story writer John Cheever was born in Quincy, Mass.

May 27, 1915 – The Arcade Theatre in Evergreen, Ala. was scheduled to begin showing a three-reel featured called “Jim Webb the Senator,” featuring King Baggot.

May 27, 1918 - In the early morning hours, the German army began the Third Battle of the Aisne with an attack on Allied positions at the Chemin des Dames ridge, in the Aisne River region of France.

May 27, 1923 – James O. Archer, the last surviving son of four Confederate soldier sons of Amos Archer of Monroe County, Ala., passed away at the age of 79 at his home near Monroeville. after an illness of several months. Born on Oct. 1, 1843, he enlisted in Monroeville as a private in Co. F of the 36th Alabama Infantry (under Capt. W.S. Wiggins) on April 10, 1862. He was discharged on Jan. 23, 1863. He was buried in the Methodist Cemetery in Monroeville, Ala.

May 27, 1926 - Bronze figures of Huck Finn and Tom Sawyer were erected in Hannibal, Mo.

May 27, 1926 – Evergreen’s baseball team beat Georgiana, 28-3, in Georgiana, Ala. Evergreen first baseman Miller hit three home runs, two doubles and a single in six trips to the plate. The week before, Evergreen beat Georgiana, 5-4.

May 27, 1929 – Denny Chimes was officially dedicated on The Quad at the University of Alabama in Tuscaloosa, Ala. with Gov. Bib Graves presiding. This monument in honor of University President George H. Denny was built by Skinner, Maxwell & Co.

May 27, 1930 – The 1,046 feet Chrysler Building in New York City, the tallest man-made structure at the time, opened to the public.

May 27, 1932 – Poet Linda Pastan was born in the Bronx.

May 27, 1937 – In California, the Golden Gate Bridge opened to pedestrian traffic, creating a vital link between San Francisco and Marin County, California.

May 27, 1948 – The Evergreen Courant reported that “local political front was broadened” by the entry of five new candidates for places on the city council. The total at that point in the race for council posts was nine with five to be elected. Tues., June 1, was the last day for qualifying. The five announcing for council posts that week were J.W. Shannon, H.H. Beasley, H.J. Kinzer, H.A. Deer and D.T. Stuart. There were no further announcements for mayor. Present mayor, J.H. Robison, and M.M. Cardwell announced for that office the week before. The first primary of the municipal elections was to be held on June 29. A second, if necessary, was to be held on July 27. Candidates nominated in the primary elections would be entered in the general election to be held Sept. 20. New officials would take office on Oct. 1, 1948.

May 27, 1948 – The Monroe Journal reported that the work of marking the streets of Monroeville, Ala. was well under way that week and Mayor Charles Cole said it would continue until all streets on which persons were at that time residing were properly marked. The work was the outgrowth of efforts of the town to obtain free mail delivery within its corporate limits. The Post Office Department had refused to consider such delivery until streets had been named and marked and houses numbered.

May 27, 1951 – Truman Capote finished his novel, “The Grass Harp,” which he began writing in June 1950. It would be released by Random House on Oct. 1, 1951.

May 27, 1953 – Evergreen High School Assistant Coach Ralph Law was scheduled to report to Moody Air Force Base in Valdosta, Ga.

May 27, 1953 – National Baseball Hall of Fame left fielder Jesse Burkett passed away at the age of 84 in Worcester, Mass. During his career, he played for the New York Giants, the Cleveland Spiders, the St. Louis Perfectos/Cardinals, the St. Louis Browns and the Boston Americans. He was inducted into the Hall of Fame in 1946.

May 27, 1954 – Pro Football Hall of Fame offensive tackle Jackie Slater was born in Jackson, Miss. He went on to play for Jackson State and the Los Angeles/St. Louis Rams. He was inducted into the Hall of Fame in 2001.

May 27, 1955 - Norm Zauchin of the Boston Red Sox got 10 RBIs against the Senators.

May 27, 1962 – First baseman Fred Whitfield, a native of Vandiver, Ala., made his Major League debut, pinch-hitting for future Baseball Hall of Famer Bob Gibson. Whitfield drew a walk off Bob Shaw of the Milwaukee Braves, but was promptly erased in a double play.

May 27, 1963 - Graduation exercises at all of Monroe County’s high schools were scheduled to be held on this Monday night with 146 students slated to received diplomas. All baccalaureate sermons were scheduled to be held on Sun., May 26.

May 27, 1965 – During the Vietnam War, American warships began the first bombardment of National Liberation Front targets within South Vietnam.

May 27, 1968 - After 48 years as coach of the Chicago Bears, George Halas retired.

May 27, 1968 - It was announced that baseball franchises had been awarded to Montreal and San Diego. The Montreal team, the Expos, was the first MLB franchise in Canada and the first franchise outside the United States.

May 27, 1968 – National Baseball Hall of Fame first baseman and designated hitter Frank Thomas was born in Columbus, Ga. He went on to play for the Chicago White Sox, the Oakland Athletics and the Toronto Blue Jays. He was inducted into the Hall of Fame in 2014.

May 27, 1969 - Construction of Walt Disney World began in Florida.

May 27, 1971 – Oakleigh Mansion in Mobile, Ala. was added to the National Register of Historic Places. (haunted)

May 27, 1971 - In Sweden, Foreign Minister Torsten Nilsson revealed that Sweden had been providing assistance to the Viet Cong, including some $550,000 worth of medical supplies.

May 27, 1974 – At Monroe County High School’s annual basketball-baseball awards banquet, sophomore pitcher Terry Coleman was named the baseball team’s Most Valuable Player. Johnny Bartlett was named the team’s best hitter, and Buddy Black was named team captain. Tim Pullen was named the team’s best fielder.

May 27, 1986 - Mel Fisher recovered a jar that contained 2,300 emeralds from the Spanish ship Atocha. The ship sank in the 17th century.

May 27, 1987 - Phil Niekro of the New York Yankees became the third pitcher to make 700 starts.

May 27, 1989 - The television program “La Strega,” teleplay by Alabama author Robert McDowell, was broadcast as part of the “Monsters” series.
May 27, 1993 - Mack Roberts, Alabama Highway Director, announced on this day that the contract for repairing the bridge on Interstate Highway 65 had been let. The apparent low bidder was McInnis Corp. of Montgomery, with an apparent low bid of $283,000. The bridge, which collapsed after an 18-wheeler hit the concrete support, fell on I-65, blocking the entire southbound roadway. The accident occurred just after midnight on Wed., May 19. The roadway was opened to traffic that evening by 7:30 p.m.

May 27, 1993 – The Monroe Journal reported that Jeff Howard, a 6-foot-1 standout pitcher at Monroe County High School for the previous four years, had signed a baseball scholarship with Faulkner State Junior College in Bay Minette, Ala. Howard completed his senior season with an .080 earned-run average, a 10-2 pitching record, 108 strikeouts, seven home runs and a .385 batting average. The highly sought-after left-hander led MCHS to the semifinals of the 5A state baseball playoffs, where the team suffered a pair of losses to eventual state champion Daphne High School.

May 27, 1994 - The highest temperature created by humans, a balmy 920,000,000 F degrees (30 times hotter than the center of the sun) was produced at the Tokamak Fusion Test Reactor at the Princeton Plasma Physics Laboratory.

May 27, 1998 - Michael Fortier was sentenced to 12 years in prison for not warning anyone about the plot to bomb an Oklahoma City federal building.

May 27, 2012 – Matt Adams of the St. Louis Cardinals hit his first Major League home run. After being robbed by Shane Victorino’s leaping catch at the wall two innings earlier, Adams left no doubt about his first MLB home run. The highly touted rookie blasted the first pitch he saw from Phillies reliver Chad Qualls deep into the right field seats for a solo shot that helped the Cardinals to an 8-3 win.

Daily Rainfall Observations from SW Alabama for Sat., May 27, 2017

Rainfall (Past 24 Hours): 0.00 inches

Week to Date Rainfall: 2.50 inches.

Month to Date Rainfall:  9.90 inches.

Spring to Date Rainfall: 16.35 inches.

Year to Date Rainfall: 36.75 inches.

Notes: Today is the 147th day of 2017 and the 69th day of Spring. There are 218 days left in the year.

Readings taken at 0700 hours Central Standard Time (1300 GMT) daily, just west of the Monroe-Conecuh County line and south of U.S. Highway 84, near Excel, Alabama, USA, in the vicinity of Lat 31.42834N Lon 87.30131W. Elevation 400 feet above sea level. CoCoRaHS Station No. AL-MN-4, Station Name: Excel 2.5 ESE.

'WALK TO MORDOR' UPDATE: 1,274 miles down and 525 miles to go

Legolas the Elf.
I continued my (virtual) “Walk to Mordor” during the past week by logging 10 more miles since my last update. I walked/jogged five miles on Sunday and five miles yesterday (Friday). So far, I’ve logged 1,274 total miles on this virtual trip to Mount Doom, and I’ve got 525 more miles to go before I reach Mordor. All in all, I’ve completed about 70.8 percent of the total trip.

In relation to Frodo’s overall journey to destroy the One Ring at Mount Doom in Mordor, I’m on the tenth day of the trip past Lothlorien, which is Feb. 25 on the Middle Earth calendar. I left off my last update on Mile 1264, which was nine miles past where Frodo’s group, the Fellowship of the Ring, departed their camp on the eighth day/night of the trip. Three miles later, at Mile 1267, around midnight, Sam hears racing water as the group reaches the north edge of the rapids of Sarn Gebir.


At this point, the group is attacked by orcs, but the group manages to reach the western shore of the river. During this battle, Legolas shoots a Nazgul’s flying beast as the group moves upstream to a small shallow bay. It’s here that the group huddles in their boats for the rest of the night.


As the next day (Feb. 24) dawns, the group awakens to heavy fog, and they cover a total of two miles as they make two trips carrying their boats and packs to the foot of the rapids. Likely, exhausted, they camp by the pool that night, at Mile 1269.


The next day (Feb. 25), the group arises and leaves at full light, around 7:30 a.m. I’ve traveled five miles past this point, to Mile 1274. The next significant milestone, Mile 1281, comes four miles later, when the group passes through a brief, but heavy, rain.


For those of you reading this for the first time, I began this “Walk to Mordor” fitness challenge on Jan. 1, 2015. Using a book called “The Atlas of Middle-Earth” by Karen Wynn Fonstad, fans of “The Lord of the Rings” created this challenge by mapping out Frodo’s fictional trek to Mordor, calculating the total distance at 1,799 miles. They also used the original "Lord of the Rings" text to outline the journey, so you can follow their route by keeping up with your total mileage.


The folks who worked out the nuts and bolts of this virtual journey have divided it into four parts. It’s 458 miles from Hobbiton to Rivendell, 462 miles from Rivendell through Moria to Lothlorien, 389 miles from Lothlorien down the Anduin to Rauros Falls and 470 miles from Rauros to Mount Doom. (Those locations should sound very familiar to “Lord of the Rings” fans.) The hobbits averaged 18 miles a day, but if you walk (or jog, as I sometimes do) five miles a day, it’s possible to cover 1,799 miles in a year.


If you’re interested in learning more about the “Walk to Mordor Challenge,” I suggest you check out two Web sites, and Both of these sites provide a ton of details about the challenge, including how to get started.


In the end, check back next Friday for another update and to see how much closer I am to Mordor. I hope to knock out at least 10 more miles next week, and I’ll include all that in my update next week.