75 YEARS AGO – 1939
The Great Atlantic & Pacific Tea Company tomorrow morning will inaugurate in Sumter its new, low price, self-service Super Market system with the opening at 7:30 a.m. in its present 118 Main St. store, which has been completely remodeled and enlarged into this new Self-Service Supermarket system. L.O. Edwards is manager.
The powerful Sumter Generals, composed of some of the finest basketball stars in the state, will open the season against a strong Holly Hill team Thursday night at 8 o’clock at the YMCA gymnasium. The team comprises Julian Propst, Bill Hander, Jimmy Bryan, Leon Blanding, Louis Folley, Joe Carrol, Howard Lindsay, Bernard James, O.V. Player Jr., “Bubba” Epps, Bill Brown and Hugh Stoddard.
The Sumter High School basketball team that has been working out in the new Edmunds High gymnasium will comprise four veterans of last year’s team and a number of YMCA players that have had a great deal of experience.
City Manager J.A. Raffield and City Clerk and Treasurer S.K. Rowland attended a zone meeting of cities in Darlington Tuesday night. Municipal problems of a mutual interest were discussed during the evening. Mr. Caldwell, the association secretary, was present. Other cities represented were Darlington, Hartsville, Dillon and Florence.
Columbia and Greenville High schools each placed three men on the All-State high school team picked today by 39 coaches and sports writers for High News, Greenville High school student publication. Pitts DeLorme was chosen for a tackle position.
Next Tuesday at 10:30 a.m. the Board of County Commissioners and the members of the legislative delegation will meet in join sessions in the court room to review county affairs and discuss the 1940-41 budget. This will, as customary for a number of years, be an open meeting and any citizen who has any suggestions to make should be present and speak out.
There is a large family of orphans at the Children’s’ Home that have no Santa Claus but the people of Sumter County.”
There are plenty of turkeys in Sumter County to meet the demand for Christmas dinners, but it will be well to engage the gobbler you want before Christmas Eve.
The development of the First Mill annex to the Swan Lake Iris Garden is progressing, but those who continually inquire, “When will the garden be finished?” should remember that it was undertaken as a three to five year program. Even at the end of five years the garden will not be “finished.” A real garden continues to develop and improve year after year – with intelligent care.
50 YEARS AGO – 1964
One of the last of Sumter County’s “old country stores” will soon be but a memory. With the closing of H.H. Sanders’ General Merchandise Store at Borden will also come the moving to other quarters of the post office which has been located in the store for 41 years. At the age of 70, Sanders is retiring from his postmastership and disposing of his store this month. The post office which occupies one corner of the front portion of his store served some 50 families in the area. Mail service to the office is by star route carrier on the Sumter-Camden run.
Louis Bertrand Hanks Darr, 96, one of Sumter’s oldest citizens, died at his home Sunday afternoon after a brief illness. Born in Sumter Jan. 9, 1868, he was the son of Natalie Anna Flowers and Horatio Lincoln Darr. He had once been active in the newspaper business for a number of years and upon his retirement served as court crier. His father was co-owner of one of Sumter’s earliest newspapers, the Watchman.
“I go junking to find a gem at a reasonable price.” That’s the way a Bishopville antique collector sums up the pursuit of her hobby. Mrs. Ralph McLendon started her hobby more than 30 years ago as a little girl. Her interest became aroused when she was given an old milk pitcher that belonged to her grandmother. “I hunt for plain old primitive things,” said Mrs. McLendon. “I’d rather have an old bootblack shoe shine stool for a quarter than to have all the finery from Paris.”
I. Byrd Parnell, Sumter County sheriff, has been named state director of the National Sheriff’s Association, it has recently been announced. As state director, Parnell will serve as liaison for the National Association at all state meetings and conventions. He will be the spokesman for the national body in South Carolina.
Furman scholars have been chosen recently. Nancy Newman and Tom Harper were chosen as the seniors with the highest averages; four others were elected by the faculty and senior class. They are Jimmy Buck, Barry McCoy, Floride Owens and Peggy Thomas. These six will spend a weekend on the Furman University campus in Greenville this fall.
Miss Lou Ann Player of Sumter has been chosen as one of 125 candidates in the United States who are vying for the “Miss Teenage America” title. Lou Ann, a senior at Edmunds High School, also holds the title of Miss South Carolina Majorette of 1963 in addition to many other baton twirling honors.
When report cards are passed out at Edmunds High School Monday, parents will get their first look at the new report cards being used at Edmunds High this year, W. S. Jackson, principal of Edmunds announced today. Differing mainly in format, the new card contains all the information of the old system plus adding information about character traits of the students. This card was designed by a five-teacher committee at Edmunds High after studying other reporting systems for over one year.
Today marks the 70th anniversary of the founding of the Sumter Daily Item. On Oct. 15, 1894, the late H.G. Osteen started Sumter’s first and only daily newspaper in a year of depression. The Item survived this depression and later the Great Depression in the 1930s to take its place as one of the state’s foremost afternoon dailies.
Leading the promising Manning Monarchs this year has been a scrappy 5-foot 10-inch quarterback named Toy McCord. Toy, who weighs 170, has been the backbone of the Manning squad which lost several lettermen by graduation. The ex-6A champs have been doing their best with the material available but McCord has clearly proved his value.
Radio Station WFIG, Sumter, will become an affiliate of the Columbia Broadcasting System after almost a quarter of a century as part of the Mutual Broadcasting Co. The switch-over is planned for 7 a.m. Oct. 25, according to Station Manager Fred Pelle.
Cole Porter, one of the 30th century’s great composers and lyricists, died Thursday night at a Santa Monica hospital where he underwent kidney surgery Oct. 13. He was 71. Doctors said Porter “simply stopped breathing.” They did not give an official cause of death but said Porter’s general physical condition even before he was admitted to the hospital Sept. 22 for a routine checkup was poor.
Hillcrest 4-H’ers Danny LeNoir and Ellen Jackson walked off with top honors Wednesday night at the 33rd Annual Achievement Awards Program sponsored by the Sumter Kiwanis Club. Miss Jackson led all winners with seven awards, including the coveted Outstanding Sumter County 4-H Girl award. Danny was named as the county’s Outstanding 4-H Boy.
Repeating as women’s golf champion at Sunset Country Club is Katie Danner, who defeated Frankie Barr in the finals for the golfing honors. Winner of the Championship Flight consolation title was Mary Lovan. In the first flight, the champion proved to be Nita Kneece with Frances Dabbs runner-up. Consolation winner was Margaret Hunter. Second flight winner was Gene Heise with Peg Wrentmore runner-up and Anne Bell consolation winner.
The Lincoln High Bulldogs are ready for their Homecoming foe, Roberts High School. The Bulldogs have worked hard on defense during the past week, a weak link in the chain, and Coach Robert Jenkins thinks his boys have finally come around.
South Carolina’s observance of National Newspaperboy Day began a day early with visits and tours in Columbia. Two Item newsboys, Gene Boyce Jr., and Phil DuBose, were chosen to participate in the day’s events because of their outstanding record of service to the Item and to their customers. They will meet Gov. Donald S. Russell and tour Fort Jackson while in Columbia. Gene is the son of Mr. and Mrs. R.E. Boyce, while Phil’s parents are Mr. and Mrs. P.S. DuBose.
Four young men – Charles Wakefield, Julian Seale, Jimmy Gulledge and Wesley Blanding – members of the Jessie F. Lyndon Chapter of DeMolay, will be among 30 DeMolays calling on homes throughout the city for the next two weeks to encourage participating at the Nov. 3 presidential election.
25 YEARS AGO – 1984
The “lazy, hazy, crazy days of summer” are quickly passing by, but for Annette Brown, they have been mostly crazy and never lazy. Brown is a former track and field standout for Sumter High. She is the two-time defending state champion in the 100 and 200 meter dashes and will be attending Clemson University on a track scholarship this fall. Brown is keeping a summer schedule that will make college seem like a break. In addition to maintaining a regular workout program provided by the Clemson track coaches, Brown competed in the National Junior Championships and will be attending the Olympic Development Camp.
David Purdy and his 12-year-old son Darren enjoy playing doubles together on the tennis court. Just for the fun of it. Occasionally though they like to team up and play competitively in a father-son tournament. They played their first tournament while on vacation in Calloway Gardens, Ga., when Darren was 9 and “didn’t do very well” according to the younger Purdy. They played in their most recent father-son tournament June 24-25 at Coldstream Country Club in Irmo and did very well.
Karen Cooper has been driving a race car competitively in the Gamecock Girls class at Sumter Speedway for just over a year. During that time she has been successful. Last year in the second half of the season, she won five races and won the points championship. She has been even more dominant so far this season, winning seven of 13 races and easily winning the first-half points championship.
Leon McDonald says he has some “big shoes to fill” as the new chairman of the Sumter County Development Board, and there’s evidence that suggests he’s right. McDonald, senior vice president and regional executive at South Carolina National Bank in Sumter, was recently unanimously elected to the post after Charles McCreight, a partner at the architectural firm of Demosthenes and McCreight, announced he would not seek an eighth term.
“One guy’s Lizard Man can be another’s treasure. Just ask Chris Davis. The merchants of Bishopville and other cities and media worldwide might well agree with the taciturn, soft-spoken 18-year-old. They beat a path to his door to turn a profit and news stories out of what was apparently a genuinely terrifying experience for the teenager – the first sighting of the since-lionized Lizard Man.
Bill Stuckey, the new president of Nu-Idea School Supply in Sumter, says if he’s lucky, people won’t even notice that his company is under new leadership. “We hope our customers don’t see any changes,” he said. “Like they say, if it ain’t broke, don’t fix it.”
The remains of R.A. Stubberfield will be buried at Arlington National Cemetery with full military honors July 20, 24 years after the colonel was shot down over North Vietnam. Stubberfield, who was stationed at Shaw Air Force Base from 1960-62, was flying an RF-101C on a photo reconnaissance mission in May of 1965 when his plane was shot down by enemy fire. Until early this year, he had been declared missing in action.
In an odd way, the second story of the house at 6 Park Avenue has gone full circle. The home was built in 1896 by Col. B.C. Wallace, but the top story, it is thought, was added in the late ‘20s or early ‘30s to provide living quarters for teachers when housing was scarce. This year some changes were made to the addition at the top of the staircase to accommodate out-of-town guests interested in experiencing the charm of one of Sumter’s historic homes by way of the Sumter Bed & Breakfast.
A recent $1,000 donation is bringing the Maj. Gen. George L. Mabry Jr. Veterans Memorial Park one step closer to becoming a reality. Sub Station II Inc. of Sumter made the gift, the first toward a goal of $50,000 set by organizers of the drive to build a park and memorial to honor all Sumterites killed in 20th century wars. A 200-by-300-foot plot of land adjacent to Shaw Air Force Base on U.S. 76-378 was donated by Sumter city and county councils, and a groundbreaking ceremony was held on Memorial Day with armed forces dignitaries on hand to do the honors.
Mike Scoggins was the winner of the thrice-delayed Hardee’s Pure Stock Special at Sumter Speedway Tuesday. Lane Viavoda won the first consolation race, while Ferien McCoy won the second consolation race.
Reach Item Archivist Sammy Way at firstname.lastname@example.org or (803) 774-1294.