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Scott County, Virginia

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Sesquicentennial

Kingsport Times-News Thursday, April 16, 1964

Scott To Celebrate 150th Birthday

In 1965

By Jack Helms

GATE CITY, Va. – Tentative plans are underway for a giant celebration of Scott County's 150th birthday.

     The county will be 150 years old next year, and several interested civic groups in addition to the Board of Supervisors have Initiated plans for a book to contain records of the county's progress, history, and pictures of its outstanding landmarks.

     Roy V. Wolfe Sr.--- one of the county's leading historians and educators—has been appointed to head the committee to publish the book and conduct the celebration.

     Wolfe said work will get underway immediately as gathering material and publishing the book will be very time consuming and will require much research on the part of the committee and many other persons who will be asked to contribute to its contents.

     Wolfe said he hopes to have the book ready to publish by February of next year and the product ready for sale in the county by summer of 1969.

     He pointed out that the people working on the project will be donating their time and efforts, and that the cost of the publication will be only to cover the expenses incurred in its construction and printing.

     According to Wolfe, the book will cover the county's history and progress mainly in the last 50 years in addition to other factors that have played important roles in the county's development since its formation in 1815.

     The county has only one book that relates its history since its founding. The book was written by the late Robert M. Addington—a man who spent the greater part of his life in the county's school system.

     It was from a similar celebration that Addington conceived his idea to write a book on the history of the county. His book was published in 1932.

     In 1915 the county celebrated its 100th anniversary, and Addington was asked to prepare a brief outline of the county's history to present as part of the program.

     Addington called his outline "A Syllabus of Scott County History." The outline was so impressive that it was distributed to all the school teachers in the county for use in their history classes.

     The teachers, school children and civic leaders in the count were so impressed by his work that Addington was encouraged to prepare a larger and more comprehensive history of the county.

     For the next decade, Addington spent practically all of his spare time in research and gathering data for his book. Since its publication, his book has been the authoritative source of the county's recorded history.

     It is the idea of the committee to pick up where Addington's book finished and bring the county's history up to the present.

     The centennial celebration in 1915 was actually considered a failure as about everything planned went wrong.

     All schools in the county were turned out so the students could participate in the celebration, and a mass march was planned from Gate City to Moccasin gap-the site of the first court held in the county.

     The school officials were informed to bring all children to Gate City where they would be decorated with ribbons and all would march the two miles to

     Moccasin Gap for the unveiling of a monument erected on the site of the first court.

     In addition to all the school children, bands, and many interested citizens were scheduled to participate in the march and thousands of picnic lunches were prepared for the participants when they arrived at the site.

     The organizers of the celebration stressed the fact that this was the only time that Scott County residents would have a chance to participate in such a celebration and most everyone in the county was expected.

     On the morning of the celebration, rain began falling in torrents. The march had to be cancelled, the picnic dinner was also called off, and the exercises had to be moved to the courthouse which was overflowing.

     The rain did stop for a while in the late afternoon and the monument was unveiled before a sparse crowd.

     Despite all the problems and failures of the celebration one of the most prized possessions of the county had its beginning--"Addington's History of Scott County."


Kingsport Times-News     August 14, 1965


 

 

Kingsport Times-News August 16, 1965

Scott Drama To Debut Tuesday

GATE CITY-Tuesday night will open the outdoor spectacular drama in celebration of Scott County's 150th birthday The pageant, "Great Scroll," will at Kane Athletic Field at 8 p.m., with a 15-minule display of fireworks planned at the end of the drama.

     Among the most elaborate displays will be the spelling of "Happy Birthday, Scott County," and a small recreation of the smoke mushroom cloud of an atomic bomb.

     Narrators will tell the story of Scott County's history, beginning with Indian villages through the War Between the States, the Roaring 20's, World War II, and up to the present day.

     There will be 13 episodes in the 90-minute pageant, including a reenactment of the Indian massacre of Daniel Boone's son Boone's trek through the wilderness which was Scott County, on his route to Kentucky; and the arrival of settlers in Scott County.

     Interwoven into the drama will be dancing girls, gunfighters, and Indian dancers.

     In the scenes depicting the "Roaring 20's", the great stars of a bygone age will be depicted.

     The celebration week was kicked off with the wagon train parade through Gate City on Saturday afternoon. Commeration of Scott County's 150th birthday will continue through Saturday of this week.

     Covered wagons, horsemen, and costumed men and women walking re-created the mode of travel settlers used when first coming to the county more than a century ago.

     Scott County was formed by an act of the General Assembly on Nov. 24, 1814, from parts of Washington, Lee, and Russell counties. The county was named for General Winfield Scott.

     Saturday night, The Carter Family of Grand Ole Opry fame, appeared at Kane Field, playing before an overflow crowd.

     Sunday morning, the churches in the county saw a variety of period clothing as well as modern dress. Costumes ranged from Martha Washington's era, through the "Gay 90's," and up to the present day. Church choirs appeared without the traditional robes so their costumes could be seen by the congregation, in seeping with the celebration sermon topics were in keeping with the day, "Faith of Our Fathers".

     Sunday night more than 300 persons gathered in Kane Athletic Field to hear Dr. Mahlon Miller, and to participate in the worship.

     Tonight will see the crowning of "Miss Sesquicentennial" at 8 o'clock at the National Guard Armory. This event will be followed by dancing and refreshments. Dress for the occasion will be "costumes through the ages". Tickets will be available at the Sesquicentennial Headquarters or at the door.

     Tuesday morning at 10, the Founders' Day Celebration will begin with Nathan Cabot Hale, noted New York sculptor, speaking at Kane Field.

     Hale is the great-grandson of D. S. Hale, who was one of only two Scott Countians who voted for Abraham Lincoln as president in 1860.

     Other noted speakers of the day will include Lee Blackwell, Earl Broadwater, and Luther F. Addington.


Home ] Up ] Court House ] Court Houses Changes ] Scott History ] Trading ] Gateway ] W. D. Smith ] Murders ] School Board ] Shoemaker Fire ] Shoemaker Remembered ] Highlights-1957 ] McConnell Mill ] Creed Frazier ] Creed Dies ] Barnett Hearing ] Frazier Funeral ] Barnett Trial-Day 1 ] Barnett Trial-Day-2 ] Barnett Trial-Day 3 ] Barnett Trial-Day 4 ] Barnett Trial-Day-5 ] Barnett Trial Motions ] Barnett Trial-2 Day-1 ] Barnett Trial-2 Day-2 ] Barnett Trial-2 Day-3 ] Barnett Final Motion - Sentence ] Basketball ] Fire ] Misc. News Items ] Wolfe-1936 ] [ Sesqui ]