Augustus and the Norris Reservior

Augustus and the Norris Reservior

Years before Harry Potter inspired older children to keep reading, Augustus inspired me, late in the primary grades, to keep reading. We were about the same age when we met at the school library. Eventually I grew up, but I never forgot him. In my imagination, he will always be out there somewhere on the Mississippi River with his kind, well meaning, but somewhat dysfunctional family.

Augustus' family not only lived in a houseboat on the river, but also lived off the river. What could be more exciting to an eight-year-old boy?

The Augustus Books by Le Grand Henderson (1901-1964), were unique in that they were written specifically for boys, within the age range at which I discovered them, barely ready to transition from material that relied on illustrations for motivation and interpretation to material that required readers to create pictures within their own mind based on the text.

For generations, American children were introduced to the world of written language by characters with names like "Dick and Jane", "Tom and Betty", and "Alice and Jerry". The three sets of children were products of three different publishing houses. In a time when learning disabilities were poorly understood, I required the assistance of all three sets of children and a determined mother in my personal pursuit of literacy. An elementary teacher by profession, she amassed a collection of beginning readers, now among my most treasured possessions, in a successful effort to teach me an essential skill that I was not acquiring at school.

In the not so distant past, poor people, like Augustus' family, lived in houseboats on the river and in shanties along Knoxville's waterfront. Some fished for a living, but others were known to make and sell moonshine. Well known writer, Cormac McCarthy, in a work of autobiographical fiction, set in 1951, captures the essence of the bygone era through the eyes of his title character Cornelius Suttree. My cousin Sarah Hutson Reynolds, a retired teacher, remembers, as a young girl, looking down from the Gay Street Bridge and seeing laundry hung out to dry in a haphazard style among the makeshift housing below.

“Mud”, a fairly recent movie starring Matthew McConaughey, set on the Mississippi River, depicts social conditions among those who continue to maintain a meager existence along its banks.

It is doubtful that many, if any, of the current owners of the floating houses found today upon TVA's reservoirs are desperately poor like Augustus family, Cornelius Suttree's friends, or the characters in McConaughey's movie.

At the headwaters of the TVA system, Norris Reservoir with its narrow channels and numerous coves is best suited for low impact use such as fishing, canoeing, bird watching, simply enjoying nature, puttering around in small leisure craft as well as camping and hiking along its shores.

Accessibility to the public, including those who do not own motorboats, is paramount, but secondary to maintaining water quality standards. We ourselves drink of its waters and the vital national defense operations downstream at Oak Ridge depend on the supply of water released from its depths at Norris Dam into the Clinch River.

It is unlikely that TVA or any other government entity has the resources to monitor for sewage leaks or intentional discharges of waste water from over 900 floating homes. It is even more unlikely the technology exist that would make such monitoring possible. Outside the visitor center at Norris Dam, overlooking the spillway below, an interpretative plaque reminds that us the dam was "Built for the people of the United States by the Tennessee Valley Authority"

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Patriots Celebrate First Playoffs in 14 Years

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The Union County High School football Patriots may have lost against Anderson County in state playoffs on Nov. 2, but the season was stacked with wins for the team. And while the loss to Anderson County may have stung, it also marked the first time the Patriots made it to state playoffs in 14 years.

Coach Larry Kerr counts this as a cause to celebrate.

"It's like I told the kids, once you get past the pain of that loss, you'll be able to look at what you all have accomplished this year that's never been done before," he said.

Union County Childrens Charity Under The Tree

Chief Elf Brooke Simpson and Gina Buckner putting a tree up at Food City.  Brooke is the brains amongst the paper work to keep things organized.

The Union County Children’s Charity (Under The Tree) has been working since August for the 2018 Toy Drive Campaign. Applications went out and ornaments have been made with the children’s wishes. Trees went up at local businesses: Janet’s Hair and Tan, Food City, Tolliver's Market, Commercial Bank, Pete’s Place, Rhonda’s in Sharps Chapel, First Century Bank, New South Credit Union, Union County Trustees Office, Union County High School Beta and Okies Pharmacy. Also, American Business & Equipment along with CSI are collecting new unwrapped toys.

Union County FCE Flannel Blanket Workshop

Left to right: Carrie Cook, Janet Wolfenbarger, Judi Gerew, Annie Grau, Mary Johnson, Sue Ross, Carolyn Shields, Terry Reinitz

On November 5, 2018, eight Union County Family & Community Education (FCE) members and 1 guest (Joyce DeRoy, not pictured) met at the UT Extension Office in Maynardville, TN to make flannel baby blankets to donate to the NICU in Knoxville. The group made 15 baby blankets before running out of material.

Club Sandwiches

Club Sandwiches

We have gotten away from the club sandwich. McDonald's and Burger King have spoiled us with their tasty hamburgers and fries. I remember seeing my first Mickey D's. There was no going back to just plain sandwiches, or even club sandwiches. Back in the day, every lunch counter had their specialty club sandwich. They were made fresh as you watched the counter girl pile on the goodies. Most homes didn't have fresh tomatoes or lettuce out of season. What a treat!

The Nostalgia of KARM

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My wife has taken on a new interest—she is taking art classes from Betty Bullen, a fellow graduate in the Horace Maynard High School Class of 1968, I believe.

Of course, the interests of a spouse often have effects on the other marriage partner. On more than one Sunday after church and between Baptist meals, I have driven my wife to Jerry’s Art-O-Rama just off Kingston Pike to purchase supplies. On the first visit, I went inside the art store with her, but found practically nothing to interest me.

Your Hair Didn't Get Wet

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I came of age in the 80s; also known as the Big Hair decade. If you were a teenage girl at that time, you had at least 3 things in your hair arsenal: hot rollers, curling iron, and hair spray that could also be used as liquid cement. And if you had straight hair like me, you also kept a curly perm. It’s a wonder I have any hair left on my head.

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Indian Summer

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Falling for Fall in Tennessee

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October may be gone but with the colors of fall hanging around a bit longer this year why not head out for a day trip to one of Tennessee’s well-loved local areas or a beautiful state or national park. While the Great Smoky Mountains are a forever favorite, locals can bypass many of the crowds for other beauty within a day’s drive.

Events

UCBPA Meeting

Tuesday, November 13, 2018 - 12:00

UCBPA meets the second Tuesday of each month for approximately one hour. Membership is $25 annually. The meeting begins at noon at Hardee's in Maynardville. Anyone interested in making Union County a better place to live, work, worship, or play may attend.

Lego Club

Tuesday, November 13, 2018 - 16:00

Kids school age and up can enjoy a movie and the fun of playing with Lego's and making friends! We usually have a theme or specific thing to build as well as a movie to watch while building!

Facebook 101 for Direct Farmers

Thursday, November 15, 2018 - 08:00

Taught by UT Extension Marketing Specialist, Megan Bruch Leffew, and Area Information Technology Specialist, David Yates, the workshops will be held:

• November 14 in Kingsport
• November 15 in Knoxville
• November 28 in Jackson
• November 29 in Nashville
• December 5 in McMinnville

Exact location information will be emailed to registered participants the week prior to workshops. Participants can bring their own laptop or tablet or use a tablet provided by the instructors. Because of the hands-on nature of the workshop, space is limited.

Obituary

Helen Marie Hulsey

Helen Marie Hulsey, 95, of Knoxville, passed away peacefully on November 12, 2018. Born on October 30, 1923 to Giuseppe and Mary Vazzana. Preceded in death by husband of 34 years, John W. Hulsey; daughters, Judy Petree and Brenda Underwood.
Survived by children Deborah Hulsey of Knoxville, James Hulsey, Mary James, and John Hulsey, all of Indianapolis. 16 grandchildren, 20 great grandchildren, 1 great great grandson, and her brother and 2 sisters. She will be deeply missed by her family, friends, and all who knew her.

Ruth Jean Campbell

Ruth Jean Campbell-age 79 of Sharps Chapel passed away Monday morning, November 12, 2018 at North Knoxville Medical Center. She was preceded in death by her husband of 56 years, Wayne T. (Kayo) Campbell; parents, Toby and Edith (Wright) Sharp; sisters, Viola and Mona Grace Sharp; brothers, Clio and Sam Sharp.

Survivors: daughter, Donna Campbell of Sharps Chapel; sister, Dot and J. C. Cox of Maynardville; brothers, Larry and Helen Sharp; Jack and Brenda Sharp, all of Sharp Chapel. Several nieces and nephews.

Richard Lewis 'Bud' Richardson

Richard Lewis “Bud” Richardson-age 57 of Maynardville, born October 16, 1961 passed away suddenly Saturday morning, November 10, 2018 at North Knoxville Medical Center. Preceded in death by parents, E. R. and Mary (Anderson) Richardson; brother, Eddie Richardson.

Survivors: children, Jason, David and April; four grandchildren. Sisters, Patsy (Billy) Humphrey, Vickie Shope; brothers, Jeff and Jessie (Jessica) Richardson. Several other family members and a host of friends.

Wanda Lee Eldridge

Wanda Lee Eldridge-age 77 of Luttrell passed away Friday evening, November 9, 2018 at her home. She along with her late husband were the owners of the former Mark’s Market in Luttrell. Preceded in death by husband, Alvin A. “Mountain Man” Eldridge; daughter, Robbin Fortenberry; granddaughter, Misty Leann Childress, parents, Samuel and Nana Lane Seivers; brothers, Robert and Bobby Seivers

Curtis Nathan Case

It is with great sadness that the family of Curtis Nathan Case announces he was received into the arms of the Lord after a brief illness Friday, November 9, 2018 at the age of 53 years. Curtis was preceded in death by his father, James Edward Case, mother, Dorothy Ann Case, brother, Michael Case, father-in-law, Ross Miller Sr., brother-in-law, Ross Miller Jr.

Lucy M. Grigsby

Lucy M. Grigsby – age 93 of Luttrell, went home to be with Jesus on Monday, November 12, 2018. She was a lifelong member of Cedar Ford Baptist Church. Lucy made an impact on the community through her service to Luttrell Elementary School and her church.

Rev. William Darrell Brewer

Rev. William Darrell Brewer-age 77 of Maynardville went to be with the Lord Friday, November 9, 2018 at his home. Preceded in death by parents, William O. Brewer and Imogene Sherritze Brewer; sister, Janice Robins.

Survivors: wife, Jean M. Brewer; daughters, Charlotte (Robert) Jones, Elaine (Tim) Smith, Sandra (Rich) Griffith; step-children, Boyd (Mindy) Peters, Eric (Connie) Peters, Kelly (Donnie) Wiggins, 15 Grandchildren, 20 Great-Grandchildren. Brother, Mike; sisters, Kay, Sue and Kathy. Special friend and caregiver, Rebecca Collins.

Linda Sue Wilkerson

Linda Sue Wilkerson-age 71 of Corryton passed away Thursday morning, November 8, 2018. She was a member of Hoitt Avenue Baptist Church. Preceded in death by husband, Harold G. Wilkerson; daughter, Deborah Atkins.

Survivors: children, Mark, Denise, Lonnie and Gabriel; ten grandchildren, Josh Atkins; Suzanne, Amber, Dexter and Steven Bolden; Jake, Riley, Maddy, Jackson and Delilah Wilkerson; six great-grandchildren, Hayden, Hayley, Haylynn, Hadley, Jasper and Emilee. Special aunt, Hettie Paul; special cousin, Ricky Vance.

Evelyn Grace Helton

Evelyn Grace Helton of Knoxville went to be with Jesus on November 6, 2018. She was the newborn daughter of Cynthia Helton and granddaughter of Jo Ellen Helton and Fred Anderson Helton; niece of Kristen Boisbert. Service will be private. Mynatt Funeral Home of Fountain City is honored to serve the Helton Family. Online condolences may be left at www.mynattfh.com.

DeAnna Alexi

DeAnna Alexi, age 47, of Knoxville TN, daughter of Tony and Margo Alexi, of Knoxville, went home to be with the Lord on Tuesday, November 6, 2018, under the care of the amazing staff at UT Medical Center, with her family holding her hands at her bedside. DeAnna had been under the care of UT Hospice at home prior to hospitalization. She was preceded in death by her maternal grandparents, Gertrude and Herman Cruze of Knoxville TN and her paternal grandparents Anthony and Betty Oleksy of New York. She was born in Silver Springs, MD on January 30, 1971. Survivors are her husband Christopher L.

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