Wood Dale IV

This is the fourth of a series of articles on the history of Wood Dale School in Union County, Tennessee.

In the first article I shared information about Wood Dale School from 1900 through the depression years to 1940 as related in Our Union County Heritage: A Historical and Biographical Album of Union County—People, Places, Events by Kathleen George Graves and Winnie Palmer McDonald (© 1978 Josten’s); Ms. Bonnie Heiskell Peter’s book Union County Schoolday Memories: A Pictorial History of Union County Elementary Schools From the mid-1800’s to the 1960s; and from available school registers on file at the Union County Board of Education.

In the second article I shared information about Wood Dale School during the World War II years (1940 through 1945) as related in available school registers on file at the Union County Board of Education.

The third article commenced with the school year beginning August 6, 1945 through March 29, 1946. In that article I shared information about Wood Dale School through the post-World War II years (1945 through 1949) as related in available school registers on file at the Union County Board of Education.

This article continues the discussion of Wood Dale School from the term that began on August 8, 1949. That fall, one of the greatest educators to ever teach in Union County (and there have been and continue to be many) was assigned to Wood Dale, the late, great Florence Eva Beeler Chesney. I will share in later paragraphs why I have presented such a biased statement in a historical article.

According to the personnel records on file at the Union County Board of Education, Florence Chesney was born July 8, 1913. She and I share a birthday, I to be born 52 years later.

Ms. Chesney attended Lincoln Memorial University and the University of Tennessee intermittently from 1934-50, never obtaining a degree but accruing 90 quarter hours of credit.

She was teaching on a permit her first full year at Wood Dale, but would obtain a lifetime teaching certificate at some point before the start of the 1952-53 school year. She served Union County as a teacher for 37 years, many of them spent in the small one- or two-room community schools spread throughout the county. Eighty-five years ago in 1935 she was assigned to her first teaching job at Oakland School. She remained at Oakland for three eight-month terms, then was assigned to Cedar Grove for the eight-month 1938-39 term. She was reassigned for the following eight-month term to Raccoon [Valley].

There followed terms when Ms. Chesney taught only a few months for each of several years. Perhaps this was due to Ms. Chesney taking time off to raise her daughter, as her later registers record that Carolyn (who married H. E. “Smiley” Richardson) was born around the time Ms. Chesney taught the two month term at Wood Dale during
1940-41. She returned to Raccoon [Valley] for six and one-half months during 1942-43. From 1943-45 Ms. Chesney taught two months each at Maynardville, Beech Grove and Bull Run schools. In 1946 Ms. Chesney taught three months at Brocks (sic) School.

In the fall of 1946 Ms. Chesney returned to full-time teaching for an eight month term at Brocks (sic) School. Ms. Chesney taught the following nine-month term at Brocks (sic) through 1948 (it appears Tennessee state law increased the length of the school term from eight to nine months beginning fall 1947). During school year 1948-49, Ms. Chesney taught at Hubbs Grove School.

It was in the fall of 1949 that Ms. Chesney was assigned to her first of two full-year terms to teach grades 4-8 at Wood Dale School. She concurrently served as principal of the two-room school. Her teaching partner was Ms. Anna Lou Nicely (later to become Mrs. Jessee Dyer), a former Wood Dale student. I quote from Ms. Anna Lou’s obituary as published on May 23, 2016 in the Knoxville News Sentinel :

She was a member of Pennington Chapel Baptist Church. Anna attended Lincoln Memorial University. She taught grades 1 through 8 at Wooddale, a one room school in Union County. She had many fond memories of her students.

Ms. Anna Lou and Ms. Chesney both kept immaculate registers. I was privileged to meet Ms. Anna Lou, a most charming and gracious lady, when I was her granddaughter’s teacher at Luttrell Elementary.

Ms. Anna Lou was as of yet unmarried, seventeen years younger than her teacher/principal colleague. She taught grades 1-3 for both the 1949-50 and 1950-51 terms. Her register indicates that these were her first years as a teacher. Her salary for the 1949-50 term was $125 per month (it increased to $138 per month the following year). She retained five of twenty-five students the first year, all for irregular attendance, three males, two females, two different last names (from two families, perhaps?), and none expected to attend high school. Students who “failed”, their families and peers were all “prepared for it by the teacher so that no feeling of shame or punishment was felt” (directly quoted from the register). Two of my sisters (Helen and Madaline) were in Ms. Anna Lou’s second and third grades respectively in 1949-50, and both were promoted to the next grade. Helen was again promoted the following year, and so was Madalene, though she was then in Ms. Chesney’s class.

Ms. Anna Lou reported that most of the pupils in grades 1-4 of the Wood Dale community spent their leisure time “playing”. She classified her students by a combination of her own judgment, student marks/grades, and test results, though her grading system was based on exams. She had minimum grade standards for promotion to the next grade and reported that most non-promoted students failed to sufficiently master those standards in arithmetic, speller, writing and reader (in that order). She reported providing much remedial instruction in arithmetic, using “different levels of material” and “enrichment and variety in extra practice for slow learners”. Ms. Anna Lou’s Daily Schedule of Work follows.

8:30- 8:45 Bible Reading/Attendance Checked
8:45- 9:45 1st, 2nd, 3rd Readers and Writing
9:45-10:00 3rd Grade English
10:00-10:15 Rest Period (time taken for water and toilet)
10:15-11:00 1st, 2nd, 3rd Speller
11:00-11:30 1st, 2nd Readers
11:30-12:30 Lunch Period
12:30- 1:00 2nd, 3rd Arithmetic
1:00- 2:00 5th History, 3rd Health
2:00- 2:15 Rest Period (time taken for water and toilet)
2:15- 3:15 3rd Geography, 1st, 2nd Readers
3:15- 3:30 Stories or Unfinished Work

Ms. Anna Lou listed the following as her instructional plans and objectives for the school year:

I plan to raise money to buy books and a teachers desk. I also plan to
clean all rubbish from play ground (total value of playground equipment $5.00 for
1949-50) and set out shrubbery.

Her summary of the achievements during the school year:

We had a pie supper and raised money to buy a teachers desk, window shades, two chairs, and some library books.
We have cleaned play ground and set out shade trees and flowers.
We also got S C F (or T?) for the school.

Ms. Anna Lou’s register for the following school year had neither instructional plans and objectives nor achievements during the school year listed. Her daily schedule of work for the second year did not have the depth of detail as her first. Her second 1st through 3rd grade class was composed of nineteen boys and ten girls. Eight of these students, five male and two female, were not promoted to the next grade and were almost evenly divided by grade, retained for the sole stated reason of irregular attendance. Ms. Anna listed the following as her record of year’s work for 1950-51:

Speller: 1st day meeting new words in story or letter
2nd day spell new words.
3rd day take a pretest
4th Studying most difficult words
5th day taking a test of the unit
Arithmetic: Home work: working some of the difficult problems on board
Reading. Silent and oral reading.
Geography: making charts, studying maps, class discussion.
English: Class discussion, written lessons and test

Ms. Chesney’s registers were more detailed than Ms. Anna Lou’s, in part I’m sure because Ms. Chesney was principal. Her daily schedule of work for 1949-50 was similar to Ms. Anna Lou’s, though Ms. Chesney included “recognition of special days” as part of her opening exercises. The entire school had the same one hour lunch period, back-to-back morning and common afternoon rest periods. Ms. Chesney taught civics for the last fifteen minutes of each school day. At the end of her daily work schedule, Ms. Chesney wrote: “Some of these I alternate with science, art, hand writing, physical activity music appreciation or singing”.
For her instructional plans and objectives for the school year, she included:

“ . . . To teach by the block system . . . I hope to get the toilets repaired . . . I am planning on having a new flag pole erected. I also plan to raise money to buy bookshelves . . . I plan to have school programs during the school yr.”

As part of Ms. Chesney’s summary of achievements during the school year, she listed:

. . . We also bought wash basins and soap. We have had hand washing since we got our hand washing facilities. We bought refills for the first aid cabinit (sic). We bought new books and started a library center. [Ms. Chesney’s Annual Property Report for 1949-50 reports one fifteen volume set of encyclopedias and one dictionary valued at $60. During the year 25 library books and two dictionaries were added, total value $14, and 125 library books were secured during the year.] We joined the S. C. F. and got a sponcer (sic) shortly after we joined. We have accomplished much through her contributions for the school such as maps, crayons, puzzels (sic), books, pictures and etc. We have worked on the play ground and tried to remedy some of the most eroded soil . . .

Ms. Chesney taught grades 4, 5, 6, and 8 (there were no 7th graders in 1949-50). Her class was composed of eleven boys and eleven girls (including daughter Carolyn). Among her students in 1949-50 were my two half-brothers Billy [Howard—pronounced “Haired”] and J. C. Both were 4th graders, though J. C. was promoted to 5th grade at the end of the year and Billy Howard was retained.

I was thrilled when I discovered that J. C. also had Ms. Chesney as a teacher. He remembered her as a big, tall woman. On the first day of school, J. C. said that she introduced herself: “My name is Ms. Chesney. I’m here to teach, and you’re here to learn, and if you don’t learn it, I’ll beat it into you!” J. C. liked her tough approach, and said he decided he’d best get on her good side. J. C. says he became her “pet”. If so, it must have kept him in school, for of 177 days in the school year, J. C. was present 145. Brother Billy Howard missed forty days more than J. C., and their cousin John Henry Thomas was only present 69. Both Billy [Howard] and John Henry were retained that year.
There might not have been many days that J. C. and Cousin John Henry were present on the same day, but on at least one of them Ms. Chesney sent them to the spring to get a bucket of water. J. C. said they slipped and “peed” in the bucket. J. C. said the first person to take a drink was none other than Ms. Chesney herself!

J. C. also told me that Ms. Chesney had one boy in her class that was a constant problem. Ms. Chesney would send him home, and his daddy would send him right back. One day J. C. said that Ms. Chesney picked that boy up and set him down inside a heating stove jacket!

Nine of 22 of Ms. Chesney’s students were retained in 1949-50, seven boys and two girls, irregular attendance being the principal cause. Other contributing factors listed by Ms. Chesney included speech defects, inefficient work and study habits, lack of interest, and lack of study. Ms. Chesney said most all students spent their leisure time playing, while boys also fished and girls sewed. Ms. Chesney reported her grading system as “exams & curve system”.

Ms. Chesney’s record of year’s work 1949-50 follows.

In Arithmetics (sic) we used the text and solved the problem in it then we took the same type problem and applied them to practical things in the schoolroom for example when we were studying areas and perimeter we measured tabletops areas of floors of the different rooms and found area and perimeter
In Readers we studied for thought more than Just to Keep from missing a word. I find that makes a better reader, because they become interested in their stories and will read on and be more particular about mispronouncing the word. They soon realize they don’t get the full meaning if they miss lot of words. We did silent reading, defined all new words. In our Spellers We became acquainted with a new lesson every Monday morning We spelled the words off the book pronounced them. Then on Tuesday we spelled the words. Wednesday we wrote the words Thursday we looked them up in the dictionary and made sentences. Friday we had a test. In Geographies (sic) we drew maps, studied each continent separate and a cross country imaginary flight across the U. S. learned each state, its Capital, and large cities and what each state grew, what each mfg. In Histories (sic) and Grammers (sic). We dealt pretty close to the texts.

In her Record of the Year’s Work for the following term, Ms. Chesney would also include themes, essays and current events for history and grammar.

Both Ms. Chesney and Ms. Anna Lou returned to Wood Dale for the 1950-51 school term. Like Ms. Anna Lou, Ms. Chesney’s daily schedule of work was more simplified in her register than in the prior year. For her second year as principal/teacher at Wood Dale, Ms. Chesney recorded in her instructional plans and objectives for the school year, she included:

We plan to have a safer water supply installed. We plan to get the house repaired. We also plan to get some new basket ball goals put up . . . We would like to buy a new basketball and other play ground equipment. We would like to buy some school room furniture such as book, filing cabinet and desk and chair. We plan to add new books to the library we have started.

As part of Ms. Chesney’s summary of achievements during the school year, she listed:

A new well was dug.
The basket ball goals were put up.
We got a new basket ball.
We added some new books to our library. [16 at a total cost of $18, plus 125 secured from regional library]
We worked some on soil erosion by filling up some gullies.
We had two new window sashes put in. We oiled the floors . . . We had regular 4-H club meetings and programs. We had ball games with other schools.

This second year Ms. Chesney taught eleven boys and fourteen girls in all grades 4-8. She retained fourteen of her total 25 students, all due to irregular attendance, the bane of educational progress in small country schools. Interestingly, for all of the retained 8th grade girls, Ms. Chesney listed H. S. (High School) for the grade in which they should be placed the following year. Possibly this was because of age, for two of the three would turn sixteen, the other fifteen, during the summer or next school year. On her Report of Pupil Progress, Ms. Chesney added “laziness” and “over-age” as probable causes of pupil failure. She also listed “playing” and “working” for the ways most pupils in the Wood Dale community spent their leisure time.

For school year 1951-52, Ms. Chesney taught at Nave Hill. In 1952-53 she returned to Hubbs Grove for one year, where she taught all eight grades. Then she taught from 1953-57 at Bull Run. At Bull Run she taught grades 1-2 in 1953-54 and combinations of grades 5-8 until 1956-58. For the next two terms, 1958-60, Ms. Chesney returned to Raccoon Valley, teaching grades 1-4 both years.

It was in the fall of 1960 that Ms. Chesney began her last assignment, teaching third grade at Maynardville Elementary. This is where Ms. Chesney had me as a student in 1973-74. I knew her well even before she was my teacher. We both attended Maynardville Baptist Church. One of the best memories I have is Ms. Chesney’s reading class. She was adept at grouping students for effective instruction. When we would begin a new story, she would read it to us on the first day, with the exact diction she wished us to imitate when we read orally the next day. This was her method of teaching reading expression. To encourage us to greater levels of expression, she staged friendly competitions. Her discussions of the stories always tied into morals and values. We always said grace every day before we went to lunch: God is great, God is good, let us thank Him for our food. Amen (pronounced “Ah-men”). In her class we memorized the multiplication tables through the sixes. Ms. Chesney used cooperative grouping as a teaching strategy long before it became a modern “catch phrase”. It was nothing unusual for her to let us get a “study buddy” and get under tables or the coat rack to study our lessons. Noise was good at this time—it showed that we were working together. Long time Union County Schools Supervisor of Instruction Ms. Patricia McKelvey told me once that Ms. Chesney’s room sometimes looked and sounded like chaos, but she could call everybody to their seats in order with just a word. Every student excelled at something, and Ms. Chesney made sure to write each pupil’s accomplishments on a section of a paper earthworm that she posted around the room. She gave each pupil his/her section at the close of the school year.

When I was in her class, Ms. Chesney motivated me to memorize an entire story from our reading book about an aardvark named Arthur. She coached me into using effective vocal inflection and body expression, and encouraged me to enter the school talent show. I think I won second place (I’ll have to consult my earthworm section) and was given the opportunity to perform at the county talent show at Horace Maynard High School. That was no problem, for our class and perhaps the rest of the school walked to the high school for the show. The problem came when the opportunity arose to go to Big Ridge Elementary to perform there. My father was not approachable about such things, and Ms. Chesney took the initiative and put me on the bus without parental consent to go to Big Ridge. She told me in later years that she prayed that nothing would happen to me, for she didn’t want to face Frank Mincey’s wrath!

Ms. Chesney would teach only two more classes after mine. She retired in spring 1976. In a visit with her many years afterward, Ms. Chesney told me she felt she had been practically pushed into retirement. She said that an administrator asked her, “Florence, why don’t you just retire? I know you’re tired.”

But Ms. Chesney did not sit at home doing nothing. She signed up to be a substitute teacher. Unlike most substitutes, Ms. Chesney actually taught. She also continued to be a motivator. She substituted in our 7th grade homeroom on a day instructions had been left to practice our 4-H meeting between lunch and our next class. Our singing wasn’t “up to snuff”, in her opinion, so she did what she did so often in 3rd grade, she led by example. She demonstrated for us how we should put feeling into the song. She had every one of us 7th graders, even the boys, singing at the top of our lungs. We left for our first class of that afternoon with a song in our heart and a spring in our step, for sure! During retirement, Ms. Chesney also became active in the senior citizens center and ceramics.

Ms. Chesney genuinely loved teaching, and she loved her students and respected their parents. That was the key to her success. When we visited, she would recall students that it would not seem possible she would remember. She was once ill, and she told me afterward that her husband Sam said that during her delirium she must have retaught every class she ever had. I visited Ms. Chesney frequently from the time I began teaching until she passed away. We talked about many things, but there were always two constants—school and church, the two solid foundations to which she devoted her entire life.

One of the greatest obstacles in life is the lack of ability or opportunity to express to others how much they have meant to us. I have liked every teacher I’ve had all throughout the Union County Public Schools and the equivalent of ten years of college work at Lincoln Memorial University, with one exception. I had one other teacher that I liked but personally but did not respect his teaching ability.

But Florence Chesney was special to me. When I learned to drive and had the means to visit her, I visited her home at least once per year, more often in later years. Not only was she my hero, she let me know I was special to her. On one of my visits, she asked me to read a poem to her, Henry Wadsworth Longfellow’s “A Psalm of Life”. When I finished, she told me that she felt that poem summed up what she had tried to aspire to during her life. She told me that she felt that I more than any of her other students had risen to the potential she saw in me as a child in her class. She asked me if I would read that poem at her funeral, but at the same time told me not to even consider it if it would cause me “one moment of dread”. I wouldn’t say I’ve had a lot of recognition heaped upon me during life thus far, nor do I seek it, but Ms. Chesney’s request was without doubt the greatest honor of my life. I don’t expect it to be surpassed.

My last visit with Ms. Chesney was when she was in her final sickness. I don’t remember much about the visit, except an overwhelming sadness that this was to be the last time I’d see my dear friend and mentor alive on this earth. She passed away on September 30, 2002, age 89.

In this article I have shared information about Wood Dale School from August 8, 1949 through May 4, 1951 as related in available school registers and personnel records on file at the Union County Board of Education, from Ms. Anna Lou Nicely Dyer’s obituary printed in the Knoxville News Sentinel on May 23, 2016, and from Ailor Mortuary Records 2000-July 13, 2009: Compiled and typed by Martha Jean Atkins Carter (© 2010).


I went to Paulette School when I was a child in the 50s and 60s. I knew many of the community schools around but never heard of Wood Dale. Where was it?



Circuit Court Clerk on a Mission

Barbara J. Williams, Union County TN Court Clerk

Mission Statement: “Union County Circuit Court Clerk’s Office strives to promote a high standard in the Judicial System as we provide courteous and efficient service to the citizens of Union County, judges, attorneys, law enforcement agencies and all the people having business with the Courts.”

Just a Sewing

It’s a good thing we don’t have to make our own clothes any more. My family and I would be in big trouble. Unfortunately, I didn’t inherit my mom and Mamaw Jo’s ability to sew.
Technically, they were talented seamstresses, especially Mamaw Jo.


In Conclusion

Picture it—church on Sunday morning. The pastor has delivered the points of his message, and the congregation has responded in many ways. Some follow the pastor’s every word, focusing on him intently.

There are others, however, that rarely if ever focus on the Sunday morning sermon. What is going through these people’s minds?

Remorse for a Pigeon

There are times I feel sad that I did not get to see things that are long gone. The American chestnut tree was once the dominant tree in our forest but is now reduced to scattered surviving stump sprouts. The passenger pigeon (Ectopistes migratorius) was once considered the most abundant bird on the planet, with flocks that could darken the sky for days as they migrated. This bird is now only a stuffed animal in the Smithsonian museum.


Baked Fillets and Onions

You wouldn't expect onions to go so well with fish, but it does. Just don't use the onions raw. Fried in butter or margarine until golden brings out a delicate flavor that complements the fish. Of course, a little bacon is always welcome.

UT Extension Union County Brings Afterschool Program to Big Ridge Community

Kelly Irick, Site Director of BRIGHT afterschool program

Kelly Irick, Site Director of BRIGHT afterschool program

Union County is quite a special place when it comes to community recognizing opportunity and making it happen. This year of changes due to Covid-19 has been proof that all the effort Union County, and its organizations, put forth is “one step ahead.” UT Extension Union County has been staying “one step ahead” in a variety of ways during 2020. One example is by bringing an afterschool program to Big Ridge Elementary School for the next 5 years.

An Honorable Profession

Judge Darryl Edmondson

A Butcher, a Baker, a Candlestick Maker…Mother Goose nursery rhymes of yore had youngsters thinking of various professions in a fun and lyrical manner. Then, in the mid-twentieth century, as television entered America’s family rooms, the possibilities were more easily imagined. Wide-eyed kids began to imagine being an Astronaut, a Police Detective, a Rock-n-roll Musician, a Soldier, a Wilderness Explorer, or even President. Honorable Darryl Edmondson, General Sessions Court Judge, was one of those kids.

Wright wins Writing Award

Award-winning author Tilmer Wright

Award-winning author Tilmer Wright

Historic Union County readers know the name Tilmer Wright Jr. from his many interesting and informative articles written for HUC. Wright was recently honored by Reader’s Favorite for his book "The Bit Dance" in its annual international book award contest, winning the Bronze Medal in the Fiction - Science Fiction category.
Readers' Favorite International Book Award Contest featured thousands of contestants from over a dozen countries, ranging from new independent authors to NYT best-sellers and celebrities.

Chiropractic in the military

The very nature of the job puts soldiers at an increased risk for developing chronic pain. The regular demands and stress are often multiplied when a tough-it-out mentality does not seek medical attention until serious, chronic pain results ... and it often does. Cumulative stress, single-event trauma, and surgery are all contributing factors. Although these will likely remain a constant of military service, chiropractic care may be a helpful solution.

The Need for Alternative Treatments

In Suspense

I just shared a Facebook past with a very special classmate of mine from my undergraduate days at Lincoln Memorial University. We were recalling how simple times were then. I was thinking about how smart I thought I was then, and how misguided I was in reality.
I remember a visit I made during my freshman year to the girls’ dormitory lounge. It was the one place in the female dormitory that males were legitimately allowed to visit every day, but only at prescribed hours.

On the Line

It was the one time where you didn’t hide your unmentionables.
As a child, I don’t know how many times we visited somebody else’s home and they had their clothes hanging out on the line. I mainly remember seeing bedsheets and underwear flapping in the wind.


Folks who would like a taste of some wild food ought to get out and hunt persimmons here soon when they get ripe. They are abundant in our area and easy to find in fencerows and woodland edges.

There are many varieties of persimmon trees in tropical areas of the world, but only two in the United States. The one growing here is called "common persimmon" (Diospyros Virginiana), or "possum tree" by some.

Waldorf Salad Plus

Apple picking time will soon be here. There are so many things you can do with apples, from cider to apple pie. Waldorf Salad is an old timey fruit salad. The traditional one had apples, walnuts and celery. This is not a traditional recipe. Back in the day, we didn't buy seedless table grapes or canned pineapple on our limited grocery budget. What a difference seventy years make. Back then it was hard to come up with variety in our diet. Now, Food City carries just about everything and we can afford to make this salad.

Grants fix up Union County, says Mayor Bailey

At one of Mayor Bailey's early commission meetings, he promised to seek as much funding from grants as possible.
True to his word, he requested acceptance of another state grant, the Tourism Enhancement Grant, for $75,000 with a 5% county match of $3,750, at the August Union County Commission meeting. Commissioners eagerly approved the motion and second by Commissioners Bill Cox and Keck along with multiple seconds.

UCEA president says teachers frustrated, worn out, exhausted

When Chairman David Coppock realized that the Union County Board of Education lacked a quorum and would need to postpone the meeting, he called on UCEA President Carolyn Murr to speak during the workshop.
Murr quickly described the current school situation, “Teachers are frustrated, worn out, and exhausted,” she admonished. “ Some are working until 2 a.m. to record lessons and do distance learning after they teach during the day.”

Election Commissioner Debra Viles assures ballots secure

By Laura White and staff
In a recent interview with the Election Commissioner in Union County, Debra Viles explained the process of voting, absentee voting and mail-in voting.
With the upcoming presidential election, many are hearing the arguments that votes are changed or that they weren’t right. As far as Union County goes, something like this happening is nearly impossible, if not actually impossible.

US Census last count day is September 30

By now you may have received the census worker's “knock at your door.” You may also have received a second census form in the mail if you have not already responded. Please respond by mail, by phone or by internet (https://my2020census.gov/). If you receive a visit, please cooperate with the census worker.

Entrepreneurial spirit alive and well

Amanda and Jeff Smith in front of their new bright green totes!

There is a new garbage collection service in Maynardville. No matter how much we reduce, reuse and recycle, every household generates waste.
What to do with it is the question.
Introducing Jeffrey and Amanda Smith, the owners of Garbage Buddy, a new trash pickup service that opened on July 6 of this year. The business, officially Smith Sanitation, LLC, is off to a great start, staying busy, and adding customers daily. They already have plans to expand to Grainger, Anderson, and Knox counties, as they are receiving service requests from those areas.

New groomer at Thunder Road Vet

Groomer Mitzi Eiler recently began grooming at the Thunder Road Veterinary Services in Maynardville. Grooming was not something she planned on doing as a career, but a turn of events changed her vocational goals.
The new groomer has been in this profession for nearly 15 years. She began her work here in Union County in April, after working at PetsMart. While working in Oak Ridge (where she’d worked for almost 17 years), Mitzi was taking her pet to be groomed when the opportunity to be trained as a groomer was presented. She took the chance to do something she says she now loves.

Chiropractic treatments for kyphosis

Kyphosis is an excessive forward curvature or “hunch” of the upper spine in older adults.

Your chiropractor may use a type of spinal manipulation—also called a spinal adjustment—to improve joint motion. Spinal manipulation is an active, hands-on treatment, and there are multiple variations of this technique.

Flexion-distraction technique is a gentle, non-thrusting spinal manipulation that is used for people with kyphosis that is associated with degenerative disc disease and/or motion restrictions in the thoracic spine (mid-back).

World War II 75 Anniversary

Jim Heiskell 488th Quartermaster Depot Company
APO 517 United States Army

The second World War officially ended 75 years ago on Sept 2, 1945 — V Day. The documents were signed abord the USS Missouri in Tokyo Bay.
More than 16 million men and women served our nation during World War II. Forty-five thousand gave their lives and 55,000 were wounded.
My uncle Jim Heiskell was one of those who served. Uncle Jim is now passed on but when reviewing some of his belongings I found his military papers along with an article from his unit of the history of the unit.


The decline and fall of the Roman Empire

Trevi Fountain in Rome (1762) made famous by Frank Sinatra’s song, “Three Coins in the Fountain,” (1953). The water was supplied by aqueduct built in first century. photo by F. Sharp

Figure 1
The dramatic phase “the fall of the Roman Empire” is a misnomer and is in fact a shorthand for the long, slow process for the exchange of one lifestyle for another. The Roman Empire had 100 years of peace called the Pax Romana — then the lull before the storm.
(Harrison, 1965) The most pressing problem of the third century was that of imperial succession. During the period of the “good emperors” (A.D. 90-180) each ruler had chosen an able, experienced man to succeed him.

Qualified to be a devil

The Apostle James in his letter says, “faith without works is dead.”
The Apostle Paul tells the Ephesians that salvation is: “Not of works, lest any man should boast.”
Do we have a contradiction in the pages of the Bible? Is James disagreeing with Paul regarding salvation?
At first glance it seems Paul and James do disagree and we have a contradiction, which is often the problem with first glances without knowledge.


Church and my PJS

Just so you’ll know, I didn’t go to church in my PJs. Well not in the sanctuary anyway.
Over the last few years, I have noticed more and more people wearing their PJs out in public. But, I was the most shocked by that during a Christmas concert a few years ago.
When our daughter was attending the University of the Cumberlands, she was in The Cumberland Singers. One Christmas, we went up to hear them sing during the traditional “Hanging of the Greens.” So there we sat in the chapel. I was wearing my “Sunday-go-to-meeting clothes” as was Tim.

Tree mathematics

By Steve Roark
Volunteer Interpreter, Cumberland Gap National Historical Park.
Confession time: I am not good at math. I use it, it’s great, we went to the moon with it, yada yada.
I don’t think well mathematically and must strive to understand it. But I was amazed to discover that trees use mathematics to arrange their leaves on a twig to optimize their collection of sunlight for the photosynthesis thing.


Misconceptions of incompetence

Ruth Suckow was an early- to mid-twentieth century American writer. She is worth a Google search and a Wikipedia read. One of Ms. Suckow’s short stories, “A Start in Life,” was published in school literature texts during the latter half of the twentieth century.
“A Start in Life” recalls an episode of a poor country girl named Daisy who was “hired out” to work for a well-to-do family that lived a respectable distance from her home. This is both her first time away from home and her introduction to the world of work.

Easy Skillet Tacos

Who doesn't like Tacos or Taco Salad? Try this recipe. If salt is a problem for you, you can limit the salt. These tacos get their flavor from the chili powder and the cumin. If you don't have any taco shells on hand, make your own. Don't let the long list of ingredients scare you. It goes together easily.

Melba Greene - a child of God

Country Connections By James and Ellen Perry
1936 was a good year and a bad year. The depression was still raging. The Nazis were being emboldened by the pacifist actions of both Britain and the United States, although the United States had ramped up air and army support against the Japanese military and their savagery in China and Burma. There was peace in the United States and Roosevelt’s programs were improving poverty in most of the U.S. But war clouds swirled.

Union County Farmers Market

If you’re ever looking for produce and fresh vegetable plants, meats, honey, flowers, and yummy baked goods, the Union County Farmers Market is the place to go. Not only will you get a good price for local, wholesome goods, but you get the unique chance to meet the producers too! You can speak with them and learn firsthand how best to prepare or store the goods you are purchasing. And no worries about second-hand items or repackaged things, everything you find at the Union County Farmers Market is first-rate and has been picked or prepared that day, or the day before.

Meet the Union County, Tennessee, County Attorney

David Myers, County Attorney

Whether an elected official or appointed official, there are hundreds of people serving Maynardville and its neighboring communities within Union County in local, county, and state government offices every day. Some carry familiar titles (thanks to fictional TV characters and highly publicized local elections), such as City Commissioner, Mayor, or County Sheriff. There are dozens of other titles, not as commonly known but no less vital, that are given to people who are as dedicated to our communities as high-profile positions.

State Rep. Dennis Powers announces grant to expand broadband in Campbell County

State Rep. Dennis Powers, R- Jacksboro, today announced a $221,516 emergency broadband grant would be awarded to Campbell County through the state’s Coronavirus Relief Fund allotment from the federal government.

The grant is part of $61 million in emergency broadband package for 62 projects announced by Gov. Bill Lee last week and distributed by the Tennessee Department of Economic and Community Development (ECD) to improve access to broadband internet across the state.

Boomers: how to exercise safely

Baby boomers have become increasingly active as they age. One thing to keep in mind is that
when you are 50, you may injure your body more easily than when you were 20. Joints,
tissues and muscles may not be as flexible as they used to be. So as boomers age, they should
take extra steps to protect themselves from injuries when exercising. A little extra stretching
before and after exercise, for example, goes a long way.

Here are some tips to help boomers prevent exercise-related injuries:

Air and Water, the Building Blocks of Trees

When I ask kids why trees are important their number one answer is that they produce oxygen. Plant leaves are solar collectors that take sun energy to produce food through the miracle of photosynthesis, a complex chemical process where carbon dioxide and water are converted to a glucose sugar. This sugar is used for food energy or converted to a starch called cellulose for building the plant’s body (stem, limbs, etc.). In trees we call this wood, something we use a lot of.


How many of us old-timers remember the television theme song to Cheers—“sometimes you want to go, where everybody knows your name”? Sometimes we are the exact opposite—we want to go where no one knows anything about us.

I received an email today that gave me pause for thought. Some people worry about being in the “in” crowd. That is usually a place I do not crave, as the admission price is sometimes greater than I wish to pay. According to the thoughts expressed in the email, I may have tried, possibly even succeeded, more often that I thought.

Tractor Treat

You would think my papaw’s barn was some kind of tourist attraction.

Whenever any of my cousins or friends came over to play, they usually asked if we could go to the barn. To be honest, I didn’t want to go there. To me it was a stinky place that I tried to avoid.

I even heard stories from my cousins who were my mom’s childhood playmates. And guess what? They all wanted to play in the barn too. Their favorite thing was to jump out of the loft and onto the hay. I have to admit, that does sound like fun, but it’s something my mom would have never let me do.


Making Biscuits

We have had no company since the pandemic begin last spring, that is until Jackie came to spend a week with us. Jackie is married to Anne's brother Brian. They live in Albion, Michigan. She quarantined in place before coming to Tennessee to visit us.

One of the highlights of her visit was our biscuit making project. Jackie can make a decent biscuit. I made biscuits the day after she arrived. She loved them and wanted to know how I made them.


Fried corn cut fresh from the cob is great, but this recipe is prettier and just as tasty. Try it.

4 cups very fresh corn, cut from the cobs
1 tablespoon sugar
1/4 cup chopped red peppers
1/4 cup chopped green pepper
1/4 cup, butter, melted
Salt and pepper to taste

Union County Plans to Proceed With Sports

With all the new changes going on in the school system due to Covid-19, sports is something I know many are concerned/curious about. It is something some schools have chosen not to do, and some inter-collegiate sports are not being held this semester. Following TMSAA guidelines, Union County Schools are continue their sports, but there will be some things students and fans will find different.

Postmaster Griffey of the USPS Delivers for You

Brad Griffey pictured with wife Laura, son Weston, and daughter Kailyn

You have likely heard a lot of talk in the news lately about the United States Postal Service (USPS), which is an independent establishment of the Executive Branch of the U.S. Government. Despite the varying opinions and impressions of the USPS, it has always been, and continues to be, a revered and well-regarded institution in the minds of its fellow Americans.

A Very Present Help

I once attended a service at Loveland Baptist Church when Rev. Oliver Wolfenbarger was pastor. He rose to preach and announced his text. It was the same text he had used the previous Sunday.

Preacher Wolfenbarger said, “I know what you’re thinking—poor ol’ Wolfenbarger’s losing it. He don’t remember that he preached on these same verses last week. I just want you to know, that I know I preached this last week, but I didn’t get finished. What’s more, I’m just as crazy as you think I am.”

Who You Gonna Call

I didn’t expect to see Tim at all, but God had other plans.

My good friend Gwen and I stood on the sidewalk in front of the high school. We were waiting on our school bus that was running late due to mechanical problems. All of our friends who had vehicles had already left. Or so we thought.


Backpack safety

Picking out the latest and greatest backpack is an end-of-summer tradition for many young
students, but this essential back-to-school item has the potential to cause a lifetime of back
and neck ailments. Here are some tips to correctly choose and use a backpack:

Much Ado about Dew Point

When you watch the weather forecast you invariably see a listing of current conditions: temperature, wind speed, relatively humidity, and dew point. Like you or I use those readings to predict how the weather is going to impact my comfort if out in it. But why is dew point important enough to be listed, and how does it impact your day?

Floating Island

Now this is really an old timey dessert. I remember first making it when I was a 15 year old cook and housekeeper during World War II. (I was too young to get a job in a factory.) The lady of the house taught me to make it. It takes a while to make but is worth it. You should have everything in your pantry.

Fried Red Cabbage

I don't usually cook with red cabbage, but every once in a while a head of red cabbage looks so good. This is the only recipe that I have found that meets my taste test. Oh yes, I like a few strands of red cabbage in coleslaw sometimes, but this is my favorite way with the red.

Backpacks can mean backaches

Millions of children struggle under the weight of an overstuffed backpack, putting themselves at risk of injury.

Parents should inspect their child’s backpack from time to time. They often carry much more than they should with extra shoes, toys and other unnecessary items.

A backpack shouldn’t weigh more than 15 percent of the child’s weight, or about seven pounds for a child who weighs 50 pounds. If it is textbooks that are making the bag too heavy, parents should speak with the teacher—sometimes these books can be left at school.


Union County Board of Education

Thursday, October 1, 2020 - 18:00

There will be a Special Called Meeting of the Union County Board of Education on Thursday, October 1, 2020 at 6:00 p.m. at Union County High School to discuss Capital Projects.

The next regular workshop and meeting of the Union County Board of Education was scheduled for Thursday, October 8, 2020 at Union County High School. The workshop will begin at 6:00 p.m. with the meeting immediately to follow.


Ophelia Graves Washam Williams

Ophelia Graves Washam Williams-age 85 of Luttrell gained her angel wings Wednesday, September 23, 2020 at her home. She was a lifetime member of Mountain View Church of God, Luttrell. She loved her Jesus, her family and to know her was to love her. She is preceded in death by her husbands, Bobby Washam and Doffise Williams, her parents, Theodore and Bonnie “Rouse” Graves along with four brothers.

William Mitchell Weaver

William “Mitchell” Weaver – Age 77 of Luttrell, TN made heaven his home September 9, 2020. He was a huge fan of both Nascar and the Atlanta Braves. He began his career in outdoor advertising and continued in the sign business until retirement.

Hazel Morris

Hazel Louellen Morris, 72, of Maynardville, Tennessee went to be with her Lord and Savior on (Tuesday), 15 September 2020. She passed from this mortal coil at her family home in Maynardville, Tennessee.

Shelma Jean Dunn

Shelma Jean Dunn, age 83 of Knoxville, passed away at her home on September 15, 2020. She was a member of Clapps Chapel United Methodist Church.
Preceded in death by parents, Clayton and Nellie Loope; sister, Mary Ruth Loope; brothers, Junior, Earl, Winfred, and Don Loope.

Deborah Elaine Wolfenbarger

Debbie Wolfenbarger, age 62 of Powell, passed away September 16, 2020. Preceded in death by parents Nellie Rose and Willie Clark Arnold, sister Judith Johnson, brother Gary Arnold. Survived by husband Kenneth Lloyd Wolfenbarger Jr., brothers Greg (Joann) Arnold and Spencer Arnold, brother-in-law David Johnson, sister-in-law Kathy (Kirt) Senft; nephews Tyler Arnold, Brandon Seeber, Tim Johnson, Aaron Johnson, Robby Arnold, Scott Arnold, nieces Brittany Arnold Lett, Lexie Arnold, Ceati Seeber, and several great-nephews and nieces and other family members and acquaintances.

Edward Clayton Shipley "Ed"

Edward Clayton Shipley “Ed” age 78 of Mascot passed away Sunday, September 13, 2020. Ed was a prominent business man and friend to many. He operated Ed Shipley Guttering for over 40 years. A member of the Fraternal Order of Eagles. Preceded in death by his parents Eston and Mildred Shipley; siblings Myra Ann Shipley, Jackie Ray Shipley, Barbara Ruth Cartwright, Melba Jean Ferguson.

Rodney Collins

Rodney Lynn (Rod) Collins-age 46 of Washburn passed away unexpectedly Thursday morning, September 17, 2020 at his home. He was preceded in death by mother, Kathy Bell; father, Earl Collins; sister, Laura Wilkerson; brother, Christopher “Outlaw” Dyer.

Ola Mae Wilkerson

Ola Mae Wilkerson, age 88 of Halls Crossroads, passed away Thursday, September 17, 2020 at Tennova North Medical Center. She was a member of Bethany Baptist Church. Preceded in death by parents Oliff and Maggie Wilkerson, siblings Elizabeth, Sophie, Mildred, Teresa, Cecil, Holbert, Carl, and Bob Wilkerson, Geraldine Hansard, and Annabelle Lyons. Survived by son Terry (Angie) Wilkerson, siblings Helen Monroe, Ruth Martin, Pearl Wilkerson, Clifford (Charlotte) Wilkerson, and several nieces and nephews.

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