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Yesteryear by Sammy Way: Housing opens for Shaw Field personnel; P-15's winning streak ends

Sumter Item archivist and historian
Posted 6/13/20

75 YEARS AGO - 1945

Jan. 4 - 10

- Larry Wayne Nunnery, born New Year's Day to Mr. and Mrs. George Nunnery of Wedgefield, took top honors in the Item's 1946 Stork Derby as the first baby of the New Year in Sumter County. Local merchants …

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Yesteryear by Sammy Way: Housing opens for Shaw Field personnel; P-15's winning streak ends


75 YEARS AGO - 1945

Jan. 4 - 10

- Larry Wayne Nunnery, born New Year's Day to Mr. and Mrs. George Nunnery of Wedgefield, took top honors in the Item's 1946 Stork Derby as the first baby of the New Year in Sumter County. Local merchants presented the recent arrival with many useful and beautiful gifts including clothing, jewelry and furniture.

- The Sumter High School Gamecocks met Olympia High in the opening basketball game of the season for the Gamecocks. In a preliminary game, the Sumter YMCA Midgets staged a game between two of the Y teams.

- Mrs. Alwin C. Burns was presented an Air Medal, posthumously awarded to her son, 2nd Lt. Alwin Burns Jr., at a ceremony held in the office of the base commander. Included at the ceremony were Alwin C. Burns Sr. and Richard and Francis Burns. The medal was awarded with the following citation: "In recognition of meritorious achievement while participating in aerial flights in the European theater of operation, he (Lt. Burns) having completed the required number of operational sorties against the enemy."

- The Army slapped the brakes on demobilization today with a declaration that replacements would be insufficient to maintain necessary forces abroad at the present date. By full use of available shipping, all of about 1,553,000 overseas troops who are or will become eligible could be returned to the United States in three months, a War Department official said at a news conference. Instead, the Army plans to spread the returns over six months.

- Karston's "Atomic Scandals" was the stage attraction at the Sumter Theater for four shows. Featured in this newest post-war vaudeville were The Great Darrell, Europe's greatest magician; the transparent Dolores Cecilia, the girl lighter than air; Mareita, the girl who diminishes before your eyes; and Dr. Weird's Chamber of Horrors. Many more attractions make up the show.

- The Sumter High Gamecocks lost to Olympia High of Columbia, 20 to 17, at the Edmunds High School gymnasium in a scrappy contest that was anybody's game until the last few seconds. At the end of the half time, Sumter was leading 8 to 6, Olympia not being able to take the lead until the third quarter. In the last two periods, the score was tied several times, one team would go ahead for a minute and then the other one would take the lead. Chandler for Sumter and Ridgeway for Olympia tied for scoring honors, each making 8 points.

- Plans for the 1946 March of Dimes in the fight against infantile paralysis moved forward today with the appointment of Mrs. J. J. Williams and Will J. Shaw as co-chairman for the appeal in Sumter County.

- A $50,000 housing project, dedicated "almost exclusively" to the use of Shaw Field personnel, will be open for occupation early this week, Mayor E. B. Boyle, owner, said today. Ten houses already have been completed and most of the furnishings assembled, and three others are under construction. The project, located just off Broad Street, some distance west of Purdy, will be known as Broad Court.

- A charge that a uniformed man, representing himself as an officer, examined hundreds of soldiers' telegrams protesting to congress a demobilization slowdown was made as Manila still echoed to a massed demonstration by thousands of milling U.S. enlisted men. The charge was made by Earl Baumgardner, manager of the Manila branch of the Radio Corp. of America, shortly after the soldiers demonstrated outside the office of their recommending general and called another mass meeting for tonight.

- Johnny "Bubber" Moore of Rembert, one of the leading pitchers for Newark, New Jersey, in the International League last season and in 1944, declared the strike-out king of the Eastern League, left home sometime for St. Petersburg, Florida, where he will join the regular New York Yankee squad for spring training. Johnny is a local boy who made good in big-time baseball. He is the son of Dr. and Mrs. T. M. Moore.

- According to Lt. Col. John T. Hill, South Carolina Army recruiting and induction officer, the year 1945 closed with a large number of voluntary enlistments. "Veterans as well as men without past military service," Col. Hill said, "are now realizing that the Army is offering greater opportunities than ever before. The fact, too, that an enlisted man in the regular Army can now retire at one-half pay after 20 years' service is one of the highlights in the new recruiting program."

- The return of Hugh T. Stoddard, on terminal leave from the Marine Corps, to the Sumter city schools was announced by E. R. Crow, superintendent. Mr. Stoddard was given charge of the veterans' education program in the schools for the remainder of the school year, according to Mr. Crow, who spoke representing the city board of education.

50 YEARS AGO - 1970

Sept. 7 - 13

- Richard P. Moses, vice president of organization for the Sumter Chamber of Commerce, reviews with Philip Ballinger, Chamber Executive vice president, and James Eaves, Chamber manager, plans for forthcoming significant events. Of particular interest was the discussion of the Program of Work which will establish Chamber objectives for the coming year. Also discussed was the election of directors which is scheduled for Sept. 15.

- The Sumter Lions' Club will be out in force selling brooms, doormats, light bulbs and other household accessories in their annual project to raise funds for Sight Conservation and Blind Education in Sumter County. Of last year's proceeds, over $3,000 was spent for eye examinations and glasses. This money was allocated through the Child Health and Welfare Association.

- Mike Altman led only three laps of the modified main event at Sumter Speedway, but that was all that was needed to become the seventh different driver to win in the modified division in seven races. In the claim action, Guy Gamble picked up his third win of the season.

- The county seat will turn international on Nov. 14 when the Colonial Cup, a $100,000 steeple-chase race, heads a diversified five-race program. To be the world's most lucrative one-day race meeting, the event is part of the South Carolina Tri-centennial Celebration.

- Horatio Grange members received many honors at the annual State Grange meeting. William LeNoir was crowned State Prince just after Beverly LeNoir, 1969 State Princess, crowned her successor, Sara Harrington, of Macedonia Grange. Steve LeNoir was named as Outstanding Junior Granger for South Carolina. Bambi Wilson was first runner-up in the Talent Contest. Horatio Junior Grange was presented the Achievement Awards.

- Miss Jeanie Harvin, daughter of Mr. and Mrs. Will Harvin of Manning, recently completed a month's internship in the Washington office of Sen. Strom Thurmond (R-SC). During her stay in the nation's capitol, Jeanie attended committee meetings and debates on the Senate floor. She also toured many of the historical sites in Washington, as well as government agencies and departments.

- The Sumter Darts tennis team continued their winning ways as they defeated Columbia in a crucial match at the Swan Lake Courts. The Darts disposed of Columbia 7-2 to clinch the Eastern Division of the South Carolina Inter-City Tennis League and earn the right to meet Greenville for the state title. Jim Boykin, Sumter's fine No. 1 player, set the trend in his tough match with Sam Daniels, who for many years was South Carolina Champion.

- Some cotton farmers in areas affected by adverse weather conditions are considering the abandonment of cotton crops in the field, according to the local ASCS office. "Farmers are wondering whether the harvesting of a poor crop will adversely affect the farm yield for payment purposes in future years," said Joe Heriot Jr., ASCS office manager.

- Some 57 young ladies and three young men worked about 5,000 hours this past summer as Red Cross volunteer youth aids at the USAF Regional Hospital here. For the month of July alone, Red Cross officials said that the volunteers worked some 2,500 hours. Youth aids, often confused with "candystripers," range in age from 14 to 18 years.

- The 307th Field Training Detachment FTD chose TSgt. Ralph R. Ruff as its September Instructor of the Month. Sgt. Ruff, who came to Shaw from an assignment in the Republic of Vietnam, is an EB-66 instructor technician. His job requires many hours of preparation and updating to ensure that his students are current in their studies.

- The initial "Item Player of the Week" selection for the 1970 football season is Sumter High Quarterback Freddie Solomon. The choice was made easy for The Item this week after Solomon's dazzling performance in Sumter's 46-20 victory over Manning. Receiving honorable mention this week are Leroy Ellison, Furman; Joe Lewis Hampton, East Clarendon; C.A. Wilson, Sumter; and Mike Shorter, Manning.

- Many taxpayers have noticed that their city water bills have been somewhat higher since the new water rates went into effect on July 1 for the current fiscal year. The new rates reflect an increase of 50 cents per month inside the city limits and 75 cents per month outside the city on a minimum rate for the first 3,000 gallons of water.

- Blood donors from three new group contract firms, General Telephone Co., Life of Georgia Insurance Co. and Public Savings Life Insurance Co., helped put the bloodmobile visit over quota. Harold Lyles, Blood Program chairman, reports 114 pints of blood were donated, bringing the total collected for the four visits held thus far this fiscal year to 447.

- Virginia Ruth Wrigley, Little Miss Sumter, will leave Sept. 16 for the Little Miss Hemisphere competition Sept. 17-20 in Wildwood, New Jersey. Contestants, ages 5-10, will be judged in evening gown, swimsuit and a native costume. Judging is based on beauty, charm, poise and personality.

25 YEARS AGO - 1995

June 7 - 13

- After more than a month of preparation, Sumter City Council approved a $20.8 million budget for 1995-96. Council's final approval comes two weeks ahead of the June 30 deadline, partly because its spending decisions bore little controversy. That's fine by both council members and the mayor, who gave much of the credit for the budget's smooth course to City Manager Talmadge Tobias.

- It was a cotton field 39 years ago; today it's brimming with blooming flower beds and deeply rooted trees and shrubs. Irises, nasturtiums, gloriosa lilies, chrysanthemums, cannas, pansies, blue and red salvias, vincas, impatiens, Mexican sunflowers and snapdragons grow in the yard of Clara and I.D. Elmore.

- Dalzell head coach Spencer Jordan had no trouble picking out the cause of his team's 11-1 loss to the Sumter P-15's in the American Legion baseball opener for both teams at Riley Park. His team did some appalling things. Whether it was first-game jitters or not, Dalzell's mistakes decided the outcome of the game. Jordan, in his debut as Dalzell's head coach, watched his ball club drop fly balls, make bad throws and commit five errors in one inning. But despite his team's many misfortunes, Jordan managed to find a few bright spots in a nine-inning game that was cut to seven because of the 10-run rule.

- Standing in the Turbeville High School auditorium June 4, 1945, valedictorian Eva Mae Dukes asked her classmates, "What do we all desire of life?" and answered for them, "Happiness, peace and prosperity." Standing with most of her surviving classmates a day short of 50 years later, Eva Mae Dukes Sims said many had fulfilled those desires.

- While the extent of most elementary school foreign language training is a rousting round of Feliz Navidad at Christmas, some students at St. Anne's Elementary School are avidly working toward becoming bilingual. Forty-five students in the fourth, fifth, and sixth grades learned the basics this past year in the school's voluntary, after-school beginning Spanish program.

- Thirty-eight games is a long time in terms of American Legion baseball - almost two seasons to be precise. That was how long it had been since Sumter's P-15's had been defeated in a regular season game. The streak is now over, and there was no question as to why following Sumter's 7-5 loss to Camden at their home field. "We were out-fielded and out-hit," said P-15's coach Wallie Jones.

- Bobby Richardson knew there was no way he could be at the side of his friend and former New York Yankee teammate Mickey Mantle as he waited in a Dallas hospital for a donor for a liver transplant. He also knew the odds of making telephone contact with Mantle or his family was probably the same as visiting him. So Richardson let the Mantle family know of his concern by messenger. Richardson wired one of his endless contacts in the Christian community, the Rev. John West of Prestonwood Baptist Church in Dallas, to meet with the family on his behalf.

- The six-day survival of an American fighter pilot shot down over the former Yugoslavia will give "the greatest boost" to the confidence of Air Force pilots, the commander of flying at Shaw Air Force Base said. That's because the incident will renew pilots' faith in their survival training and equipment. Confidence is a big part of it.

- A lot of new things are being done behind the scenes to make Sumter School District 17 schools safer. Handheld metal detectors have been purchased, new two-way intercoms are on their way in Bates Middle School and Sumter High School, and committees are being formed to create new emergency response plans for all of the districts' 10 schools.

- "Artillery is an international language." That's the lesson Henry Richardson learned on a recent trip to the former communist country of Albania. Richardson, a lieutenant colonel in the South Carolina National Guard, made the trip to observe the Albanian army as part of NATO's Partnership for Peace, a program to promote cooperation between militaries in the west and the former Eastern Bloc.

- Behind the blue vine of cobwebs in his family's attic, Sumter's Pete Dubay recently discovered Civil War-era letters that may cause historians' hearts to beat a bit faster. By now, 130 years after the war's end, most Southern families have already discovered their Confederate heirlooms, and historians have already picked through the tidbits to recreate a bigger picture of the past.