East Tennessee geographically is situated almost in the center of the late rebellious states; Virginia, North Carolina, Georgia, and the Middle and Western Divisions of the state on the west. The question arises why it should stand out almost alone in its devotion to the Union. When the state cast its fortunes with the Confederacy through the dominating influence of the civil and military authorities, a large majority of the people of East Tennessee adhered to the Union cause.
Do It Yourself!
There is really something to be said for the instruction, “Do it yourself.” It’s the best way to learn, and it’s the best way to excel at whatever you do. This is the title of the cook book Evelyn Monroe Johnson wrote for her family–her children and grandchildren. Evelyn was employed many years at the Registration Office of The University of Tennessee; but, like many of the rest of us, learned that if you will cook, “they” will come. Eventually, I’m sure she got so many requests for recipes and how to do this or that it was just easier to sit down and write them a book. Her daughter-in-law actually asked her to write down all her recipes in her own handwriting. On Evelyn’s 80th birthday, Evelyn’s family, extended family, three UT bosses, and 20 student workers who worked in her office many years ago all came to Townsend to celebrate the unveiling of "Do it Yourself". Some years ago, Evelyn moved from Union County to Murfreesboro to be near her son, Tony, and his family. Her son Danny has passed away.
While the book was written for Evelyn’s family, in many ways it is a history of Union County cooking. Evelyn grew up in Union County, the daughter of Walter and Vada Lynch Monroe–sister to L. D. She’s the granddaughter of Judge William Preston and Callie Edmondson Monroe as well as Charles H. and Della Nash Lynch. I know her recipes are drawn from both families’ traditions. Judge Monroe attended law school at Cumberland College in Lebanon, Tennessee. Evelyn still has a shoe box of letters from him written in 1911. Judge Monroe’s vote helped get the Women’s Suffrage Act passed in Tennessee. He was a circuit court judge and a state senator; however, he died much too early of Lou Gehrig’s Disease at age 53. Both Judge Monroe and Lou Gehrig were patients at the same time at the same hospital in Philadelphia, Pa. The two families became acquainted and Mrs. Monroe and Mrs. Gehrig corresponded for a while. During the Judge’s illness--Evelyn was about 8 or 9--and would sit with him and call her Mamaw Callie if he needed anything.
Maynardville had a different setting at the time Evelyn was growing up. She says Grandpa Press and Mamaw Callie, who lived a few feet from the courthouse, had a garden, fruit trees, berries, a cow and chickens and a barn across old Hwy. 33. She says her grandma cooked the freshest and best, but she never saw her have a cookbook. Evelyn recalls that her Mamaw Monroe would pin a list to her dress and send her to Walt Baker’s store. She would give her an egg to swap for candy, and he would charge the rest. One day Evelyn went to the old kitchen cabinet drawer and helped herself to an egg and went to the store. She says she looked around and picked up an angel food cake. Walt asked her, “What do you want with your egg?” She said, “Dis this.” She says he never quit telling that story.
Spoody’s Pecan Pie has an interesting lineage. Louvenia “Aunt Vene” Sharp Ousley gave the recipe to her daughter, Drama Ousley Beeler, who gave the recipe to Jessie Lynch Booker, who gave the recipe to Spoody (Mona Lynch George), who gave the recipe to Evelyn.
After some years as a Union County elementary school teacher, Evelyn’s mother, Vada, opened a restaurant across from the courthouse (her cousin, Clifford Stiner’s, buildings), called the Star Café. In no time, the restaurant was always packed. People drove from miles around to enjoy Vada’s cooking. The restaurant operated from 1952 to 1977. Some of Vada’s staff members at the Star Café were Alice McCaleb, Lorene Sexton Simmons, Johnnie Campbell and Marie Wilmouth.
"Do it Yourself" includes many valuable details and suggested brands that make all the difference in a successful dish. One detail is–it takes 13 minutes to boil a “hard boiled egg.” Evelyn also says you must use fresh squeezed lemon juice, not concentrated canned juice.
Some favorite brands listed in the book are:
1. Campbell’s Cream of Chicken/Mushroom soup (in the same can).
2. Pet and Carnation evaporated milk
3. Blue Bonnet margarine
4. White Lily flour, self-rising, unbleached
5 JFG coffee, 1 teaspoon per cup. Evelyn says you can’t read the paper through it, but neither will it walk to the table!
6. Hellman’s mayonnaise
There’s lots more advice sprinkled throughout the book.
I now have gotten up the nerve to make hot tamales using Evelyn’s recipe. I not only made them. I have used her recipe three times now. The following is an Evelyn Johnson original:
Bake two racks of Baby Back Ribs. To prepare, wash, salt, pepper and sprinkle with lots of onion powder. Stand on edge and pour two inches of water in bottom of pan. Cover and cook until tender. This takes two or more hours. Pick meat off bone and set aside. Strain and save broth.
One box Lasagna. Break each lasagna noodle into 3 pieces, add water and cook until tender. Don’t drain. Set aside and the lasagna will absorb the water.
Then add broth from ribs; Add 2 cans of Kraut (drained), then simmer for 30 to 40 minutes.
Add the pork ribs last and don’t stir after you add the meat. You can layer the meat and noodles in a crock pot if you choose.
Serve with greens, cornbread, onion, white beans and a smile!
Oh! Weary mothers, rolling dough,
Don’t you wish that food would grow?
How happy all the world would be,
With a Cookie Bush and a Donut Tree.
Do it yourself can be purchased at the Union County Museum, or by calling Evelyn at 615-631-5605.
A lot of traffic has gone past the intersection of Highway 33 and Ailor Gap Road since 1968, a lot of cars and a lot of people with stories to tell, but one business has been there through it all. Heiskell's Service Center has used a lot of names over the years. It's been a Boron, an Exxon, a Gulf and a BP. But one thing has remained constant, and that's the dedication of owner James Heiskell to making this Union County landmark a success.
Union County native Patricia McKelvey has spent most of her life sharing her knowledge and aiding the students of Union County. A college graduate at the young age of nineteen, McKelvey viewed her future as a chance to give back. Raised in Union County by a widowed mother of three who was also a teacher, McKelvey is no stranger to hard work.
“I started working right out of high school at American Clothing Company making $20 a week,” said McKelvey. “Once all of us kids were out of the house, my mother went back to school and got her degree in Education.”
The Union County Art Council has sponsored a project called “Paint the Town” and several local businesses have jumped on board to participate. Union County Property Assessor Randy Turner was the first to have UCHS Senior Cadie Chappel to paint the windows of his office at the UC Court House. After telling the Art Council what he hired Cadie to do with the windows in his office, the Art Council came up with the “Paint the Town” Project. He said “he gets compliments all day” on his windows.
Two weeks ago I shared an instance in which I let the preconceived notions of others affect the way I felt about my work study supervisor. Last week I shared instances in which I have incorrectly judged a person to be kind. This week I will relate instances where impressions have come into play for (and against) me.
Sometimes I am around those who give their honest opinions about various things and people. I have myself said of some, “If s/he was standing on a stack of Bibles shaking hands with Jesus himself I wouldn’t believe a word s/he said.” I always find it amusing if someone then asks me, “What’s your real opinion?”
Has there ever been an Arthur Treacher's Fish and Chips place around here? I consider their fish the best ever. I read on Facebook that there is one located somewhere in Ohio. That won't help my yearning for their fish triangles. But I do have the recipe that I will share with you.
You know, copy-cat recipes are published for popular restaurant dishes from time to time. Usually, they only taste somewhat like the desired item. There are even cookbooks published that claim to have prized recipes. This is the only recipe I have ever found to be as good as the original.
When you lived in the country, shopping in town was an all day affair. You would plan to eat lunch there. For me, it was the highlight of the trip. I planned my route and time to take me to my favorite spot for lunch. Isn't that a deliciously sounding word - “lunch”? I made a list of my shopping needs. I knew which store sold what at the price I could afford. I always planned to afford lunch.
For all you warm weather people out there, your time has come. The vernal (spring) equinox is upon us, which is the official beginning of Spring, arriving this year on March 20.
The event is not only a promise of warmer weather, it also plays a key role in determining what date Easter occurs, which can move around quite a bit year to year.
"Tonight perhaps a happy mother sits on the threshold of her humble cabin and sings a lullaby to her babe or perchance has the children at her side and tells them stories about father’s return. Anxiously she listens for the clashing of the horse’s hoofs upon the road, she awaits the ring of the chains upon the front gate heralding her husband's approach-she listens in vain. The shadows of night veils that home in darkness, a flickering candle is placed in the window to guide his footsteps when he returns: the mountains cast their gloom over the place.
My Papaw Kitts, known as “Runt,” was a fox hunter. He was my mom’s dad and the oldest of ten kids. His real name was Samuel Ernest Kitts, otherwise known as “S.E.” or just “Runt” Kitts. He had a brother, William Cloyd Kitts, known as “Poss” Kitts, who also shared this love of fox hunting – east Tennessee style.
Maynardville Public Library along with the Union County Business and Professional Association and The Canton of Hochwald will be hosting a Small Business Expo on Saturday March 24th from 9am until 1pm at Maynardville Public Library 296 Main Street, Maynardville. The Expo is for all small businesses in the county and everyone is welcome to attend this event! This is a FREE event where patrons will be able to visit businesses and purchase from them if they desire. The Farmers Mkt. will have a popup here come check them out.
Hello March, I have Big Plans For You...
Music in March at The Winery!!
2 Amazing Bands and Delicious Food Truck
Live Music From:
The Lick Skillet Band Noon-3:30pm
KUDZU: The Band 4- 8pm
Delicious Food From:
Cubish Food Truck
Please consider carpooling if at all possible. Parking is limited. The parking crew THANKS you in advance.
Fellowship Christian Church located at 746 Tazewell Pike Luttrell TN 37779 will pickup anyone in the local area needing a ride to church. Call Sam at 865-607-3741 to schedule a ride.
Sunday School 10:00 AM
Sunday Worship Service 11:00 A.M
Sunday Evening Service 6:30 P.M
Wednesday Service 7:00 P.M
"We invite all area Worship Leaders, Pastors, and Faith community leaders to come together on the last Thursday of each month at Hardee's at 7:30 am. This is to be a time of fellowship, prayer, and discussion about how we as a community of Faith can work together to have a positive impact on our county. All are welcome!" Margaret Chesney
Prayer Breakfast Good Friday March 30 @ 8:00 am, Aaron Russell will be the speaker. Breakfast is by Teresa's Bakery with all the fixins . Tickets are $10.00 each .
Prayer Breakfast--Besides the obvious benefits of prayer and words of inspiration, proceeds from the Prayer Breakfast fund donations to Lion's Club, Friends of Maynardville Public Library, UCPS Music Department, 4H, and Union County Children's Charities (Under the Tree). Come and be a part of this celebration on Good Friday at 8:00 at the Senior Center in Maynardville. [$10] March 30
Charlotte Alana Ridenour-age 69 of Knoxville passed away Wednesday, March 21, 2018 at Ft. Sander’s Regional Medical Center. Preceded in death by son, Randy Ridenour; parents, mother, Eula Vee Ridenour; fathers, Lillard Ray and Wade Ridenour; sisters, Pat (Spooks) Ricker; Bobbie Ray; brother, Jack Painter. Charlotte was a loving mother and grandmother.
Anna Mae Mason – age 91 of Maynardville, was called home at 1:18 p.m., Tuesday, March 20, 2018. She was a longtime member of Hubbs Grove Baptist Church.
She is preceded in death by husband, William Berl Mason. Anna is survived by sons and daughters-in-law, Gerald and Debbie Mason and Kenneth and Shelia Mason; five grandchildren; eight great grandchildren; sister, Margaret Ellen Williams; brothers, Tommy Perry and Fred Perry; and several nieces and nephews.
Brenda Gail Kiser – 68 of Maynardville, went to her Heavenly home on Tuesday, March 20, 2018 after a courageous battle with cancer. She passed away at home surrounded by loved ones. Brenda was of the Baptist faith.
Michael “Shane” Guinn age 40 of Knoxville passed away March 18, 2018. He was a loving son, brother and uncle. He was preceded in death by his father William “Randy” Guinn survived by mother Kathy Quinn, sister Jessica Guinn, niece Brittany Thomas, nephew Michael Woody and great niece Breelyn Gordon. The family will receive friends 5:00p.m. until 7:00p.m. Wednesday at Mynatt Funeral Home Fountain City Chapel. Please leave online condolences at www.mynattfh.com
Allan “Buck” Smith, age 77, went to be with the Lord on March 15, 2018. He was a member of The Church at Sterchi Hills and was retired from KUB. He was preceded in death by wife, Judy Smith; parents, Paul and Carrie Smith; sisters, Joanne and Lois; brother Ed. He is survived by son, Neil Smith (Tina); brother Tommy; sister, Sylvia; granddaughter Kaitlin and numerous extended family and friends. The family will receive friends at Mynatt Funeral Home Halls Chapel on Sunday, March 18th from 6-8pm with a service to follow.
Ruby King, age 95, of Knoxville, Tennessee, went to be with the Lord on Thursday, March 15th, 2018. She was a wonderful mother who will be greatly missed. Ruby was preceded in death by her husband of 45 years Pinkton “Pink” Tolbert, son Donald King and daughter Peggy Seavers. She is survived by daughter Pat Bradley, 8 grandchildren, 12 great-grandchildren, 4 great-great-grandchild, and numerous extended family and friends. The family will receive friends on Monday, March 19th, 2018 from 4:30 p.m. to 6:30 p.m. at Mynatt Funeral Home, Fountain City Chapel.
Steven Powers, age 68, of Knoxville, TN, passed away on Thursday, March 15th, 2018. He was preceded in death by parents Lewis and Mary Powers, grandmother Anna Arnold, aunt Laura Henderson, uncle Joe Church, brother-in-law Kenneth Trent, niece Michelle Durbrow, great-niece Holland Durbrow. He is survived by sisters Debra Trent and Diane Vineyard, brother-in-law Donnie Roach. The family will receive friends on Sunday, March 18th, 2018 from 4:00 p.m. to 6:00 p.m. at Mynatt Funeral Home, Fountain City Chapel. Family and friends will meet at 12:45 p.m.
Franklin Danny Hayes – age 75 of Maynardville, Tennessee passed away at home surrounded by family on Thursday, March 15, 2018. He was born March 31, 1942 in Knoxville, Tennessee. He was saved in 1956 at the age of 14 during a revival at Hines Creek Baptist Church and is a member of Community Baptist Church. Frank retired from Coca-Cola after 25 years of service and enjoyed working outside, sports, and his grandchildren.
Jonathan Michael Whitson – age 45 of Maynardville, passed away on Thursday, March 15, 2018. He was of the Baptist faith.
Michael is preceded in death by his father, Johnny Whitson; and grandparents, Virgie and James Whitson. He is survived by his sons, Jonathan Nicholas and Jaylan Shane Whitson; mother, Rita Grahl; sisters, Chaunta (Chuck) Boggs and Angela (Billy) Wilkerson; brother, Darren (Kim) Whitson; nieces, Hannah Whitson and Kaylee Wilkerson; and nephew, Hunter Collins.