100 years ago — 1911
Tidbits of Danville news include: The Queen and Crescent Route is installing a telephone line along its railway system. The telephone will be ready for service in two months; Lost — karat diamond. It came out of a ring while C.R. Martin was preparing meat orders. Those who purchased meat from him last Friday are urged to carefully examine the meat and a reward is offered to whoever finds the diamond and returns it; Mr. Happy Hooligan Williams, the well-known young barber has returned from Lexington and will take a position with Mr. A.L. Bates, whose shop is in the Quisenberry building next door to the Freeman Furniture Co.’s store; Mr. C.M. McClane, who lives on Perryville Pike on the farm of Col. Clifton Rodes Anderson, has made a wonderful record raising chickens. His Barred Plymouth Rock rooster, which is a registered thoroughbred, as well as his hens cost him $50. This past year he has sold 123 cockerels at an average of $2 per head and 100 pullets at an average of $1.50 per head.
Georgia, was shot and killed on Walnut Street by Milton Camper. It was reported that both men had been drinking and that Wilson was in pursuit of Camper with a knife. However, other reports are conflicting and say a small pistol was used. Wilson was shot in the heart and soon died and Camper gave himself up and was placed in jail. Wilson had come here to dig barytes and had been working at the tobacco warehouse. The claim is that a certain class of blind tiger whisky is being sold in Danville that absolutely drives the drinkers of it violently insane. This particular brand is said to have been responsible for at least two of the killings of the past few weeks.
75 years ago — 1936
As a service to veterans of the World War, officials of Boyle Post No. 46 of the American Legion have announced that arrangements have been made to help them in filling out their applications for immediate payment of the bonus. All veterans of the World War are invited to attend the meeting to hear complete details for applying for the bonus.
A “believe it or not” admission in court was the first of its kind in Danville. Preston Crowdus was being tried for stealing a pistol from Robert Glore. The prosecution had an air-tight case that included the testimony of four witnesses, one of whom purchased the stolen gun from the defendant. Things were beginning to look bad for Crowdus, when James Riley, a young spectator in the audience stood up and asked if he might say something. “I’m the one who stole the gun, Judge. I did wrong and want to pay the penalty. I stole the gun and gave it to Crowdus with the instructions that he could keep all over nine dollars he received.” The judge gasped and said, “Do you realize that you are talking yourself straight into the penitentiary?” Riley said yes and that he was guilty and wanted to pay off. The judge, accustomed to the and dramatics that come out in trial court, studied him for a full minute and said that ordinarily grand larceny case is $500, but he was making the young man’s bond at $50, and the judge said softly, “I hope you make it.”
50 years ago — 1961
The Danville Library, desiring to make known its facilities and to be of greater service to the community, has sent six-month courtesy cards to members of the Danville Newcomers Club. While this is a subscription library with dues of $2 per year, membership is available to any resident of the city and the reading and reference rooms are open to members and non-members. Anyone new to Danville is invited to visit the library and receive his or her “welcome” card.
For weeks, Ben King, who lives near Cheanault Bridge, has been missing chickens and hens. He trapped fox and weasels and looked for dogs, but the poultry continued to suffer. The mystery was solved when Clayton Arnold went into King’s henhouse and found a Great Horned Owl. The bird of prey already had killed four hens when Arnold apprehended and killed it with a stick. The bird’s wing span was 56 inches. The local conservation officer said the Great Horned Owl is a very destructive bird and is one of six unprotected birds in the United States.
25 years ago — 1986
On the wall of Cordelia Kubale’s science classroom at Boyle County High School hangs a picture of Christa McAuliffe, the teacher chosen to fly on the space shuttle Challenger. The picture has been there for several weeks advertising the fact that civilians were about to join the exploration of space, but she never got the chance. She died along with six astronauts in the fiery explosion of the Challenger Tuesday morning. “All science teachers, all teachers for that matter, feel touched and moved by Christa’s death,” Kubale said. James Atkins, principal at Edna Toliver Elementary School, said he had radio coverage of the event played over the school’s intercom system and he conducted a moment of silent meditation. He also said, “It’s just so sad and unbelievable that people so important to our nation could perish just like that.”
Bobbie Jean Holtzclaw, a math teacher at Danville High School, also was moved by the explosion of the space shuttle Challenger. She said those aboard the Challenger may be gone but their lives won’t be forgotten. “The lives of Christa and the other six people will always speak to us, and their lives already said a lot to us about dedication, adventure and reaching out for seemingly unattainable goals,” Holtzclaw said.
Lisa Edwards, a former Danville resident and daughter of Advocate-Messenger reporter Brenda Edwards, is living in Melbourne, Fla., and was going to a restaurant with a friend when the Challenger exploded. And like most people living near the Cape, she usually watches the shuttle launches. “We were just coming out of the office when we noticed a lot of people in the parking lot looking up at the sky,” she said in a telephone interview. After seeing the explosion, “We started listening to the radio and heard what happened. I started bawling, I couldn’t help it.”