77 YEARS AGO - 1945
May 18 - May 24
- Betty Lou, that dancing sensation of Hollywood, brings her personality, pop and unusual dancing ability to the stage of the Sumter Theatre only as one of the featured acts on Linton DeWolfe's famous "Stork …
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- Betty Lou, that dancing sensation of Hollywood, brings her personality, pop and unusual dancing ability to the stage of the Sumter Theatre only as one of the featured acts on Linton DeWolfe's famous "Stork Club Scandals." Born in New York state, Betty Lou spent most of her childhood in Philadelphia with her family. There she attended dancing school until she was 15 years old and mastered all of the intricate acrobatic steps. While appearing one night in a neighborhood theater as part of a high school program, she was observed by an official of one of the major motion picture studios and was given a dancing role immediately.
- The Okinawa campaign is slowly shaping into a decisive phase with the Sixth Marine Division battling to broaden a bridgehead in the capital city, Naha, and three divisions steadily closing on the fortress city of Shuri from three sides. Now 48 days old, the Okinawa campaign already ranks as one of the Pacific war's toughest. There is still no evidence suggesting any collapse in the grim defense by an estimated 34,000 Japanese and Okinawan "home guard" survivors of an original garrison force of 80,000 or more troops.
- Shovuos, or "The Feast of Weeks," is observed this year on Friday. Its name is derived from the seven weeks which elapsed between the departure of the Children of Israel from Egypt (Passover) and their arrival at Mt. Sinai ( to receive the Ten Commandments). At Temple Sinai, Rabbi Shillman will speak on "Ten Commandments and the World Today."
- The Shaw Field Fliers will pit their strength against the Congaree Marines under the lights at municipal stadium. Lt. Crostwaite will probably be on the mound for the Fliers to start, and several line-up changes are expected. The Shaw team will break out in new uniforms featuring red caps and socks.
- The annual Carolina Coca-Cola Bottling Co. handicap is now underway at Sunset Country Club, and Pro Galloway said that some 20 golfers have already entered the tourney which began last weekend. Thirty-two persons are expected to be in the running before it is over. Eighteen-hole qualifying runs are being conducted through this week. The two flights will have match plays, the pro said, after which finals will be held. Ladies are cordially invited to take part in the competition. The entry fee is 50 cents.
- The eighth grade of Junior High School will present the operetta "Tom Sawyer" at 8 o'clock at the Junior High. The three-act presentation will be free to the public. The chorus for the operetta will consist of the Junior High School vested choir and the boys' high school chorus under the direction of Miss Lucie Anne Cuttino, who is in charge of music.
- Miss Harriett Kirven, generally known as "Bo," the name by which everyone knows her, is a big shot in the truest sense of the term. She is a sharpshooter whose skill has not, and indeed cannot, be denied. Bo made a record when she was just 13 or 14 years of age for obtaining a score of 196 bullseyes out of a possible 200. This feat she accomplished with a .357 magnum revolver at a distance of 25 yards. She is now 17 years young and a member of the current graduating class of Edmunds High School, where she is editor of the Sumter High News.
- Capt. Bill Eldridge called on all auxiliary police today to attend the FBI conference here at the Coca-Cola Community Room. Jiu jitsu, disarming methods and other law enforcement phases are on the program, and light refreshments will be served.
- A source close to the house food committee noted that the group is drafting a sharply critical report charging the government with mis-handling sugar stocks to the point of extreme shortage. The individual asked that his name be withheld. He said the document, which may be filed with the house next week, can be expected to blame the OPA, War Food Administration and other government agencies for an approaching sugar crisis that may be the worst of the war.
- The first general in the Seventh War Loan army here is Mrs. Ethel Tisdale of Ben E. Ness Store, it was announced today by Mrs. Hope Harby, secretary of the merchants' association. Mrs. Tisdale has sold $7,500 in bonds and has attained the rank of four-star general in the "army," Mrs. Harby said. By the second day of the war bond campaign, Mrs. Tisdale was a two-star general.
50 YEARS AGO - 1970
Jan. 18 - 24
- A $4.9 million contract for paving a 17.5-mile section of Interstate 95 in Clarendon and Orangeburg counties was authorized by the South Carolina State Highway Commission. Following approval by the U.S. Bureau of Public Roads, a contract will be awarded to Claussen-Lawrence Construction Co. of Augusta on the basis of the firm's bid, the lowest of three submitted.
- Sumter's gleaming new art gallery opened with the South Carolina Art Collection, an exhibit of some of the best paintings, sculpture, collages and engravings by native artists. Located in the old Carnegie Library on West Liberty Street, the gallery was completely refurbished with funds from the State Arts Commission, Sumter County, the city of Sumter, the Sumter Artists Guild and local donations.
- The Edmunds High School football team remained undefeated after a "Mile of Dimes" contest with the Sumter Jaycees. Both teams met on Main Street at 11 a.m. Every dime contributed to one of the teams for the local March of Dimes drive advances the team one step. By the conclusion of the contest at 2 p.m., the Gamecocks had advanced to the tune of $179.75 to the Jaycees' $129.2.
- It was misty and gloomy outside the Columbia High School gym, and conditions inside were little better for the Edmunds High basketball team. The Gamecocks ran into a smooth bunch of Capitals and returned to Sumter 83-67. The non-region clash did no harm to the birds' 3-1 record in 4A, Region III play, but it dropped their overall mark to a still respectable 9-4. The win put Columbia High even for the season with a 5-5 record. Tip Kilby led the Gamecocks' scoring with 22 points. Mike Heriot led the EHS rebounding with 10.
- This week has been recognized by Mayor Robert E. Graham as Jaycee Week in recognition of the founding of the service organization of young men and its 50th anniversary. In a proclamation signed last week, Mayor Graham noted that "this organization of young men has contributed materially to the betterment of this community throughout the year." The United States Jaycees and its affiliated state and local organizations have set aside the week of Jan. 18-24 as a three-pronged observance: Jaycee Week, Founder's Day and 50th Anniversary. President of the Sumter Jaycees is James P. Nettles Jr.
- Shaw Air Force Base will host Eagle Scouts of the Pee Dee Area Council of the Boy Scouts of America in observance of a "Recognition Day" for the Scouts from the 11-county Scouting District. The Pee Dee Council is composed of Marion, Florence, Horry, Chesterfield, Sumter, Clarendon, Williamsburg, Dillon, Lee, Darlington and Marlboro counties. Project officer at Shaw for the recognition day activities is Capt. William Davis.
- The Atlanta Tip-off Club honored Harold Thames as the Georgia Junior College Athletic Association Player of the Week at its weekly meeting. Thames, a 6'7 " sophomore for the Dalton Junior College Roadrunners, is a native of Sumter. Thames was accorded the GJCAA Player of the Week Award for his play as he scored 74 points and garnered 45 rebounds in three games.
- Temperatures going into the 40s today were expected to complete the job of snowcleaning of South Carolina streets and roads, covered Friday morning by a white blanket of fluff. The snow ranged up to five inches deep in the northwest, but only rain fell in the southeast. The average was of about one to two inches. A lot of melting, especially in well-traveled highways and streets, occurred Friday afternoon as temperatures moved above freezing and traffic increased.
- Darlington and Greenville County school systems, already partly integrated, have until no later than Feb. 17 to fully integrate their schools. The U.S. Fourth Circuit Court of Appeals called for a revised integration plan from both districts. "I would take issue with the timing of the court order," Cyril Busbee, South Carolina superintendent of education, said in a statement at Columbia. "The plan will be inescapably disruptive," he said, "if implemented in the middle of a school year. I wish we could have been allowed until the beginning of the next school year."
25 YEARS AGO - 1994
Oct. 19 - 25
- Sumter High School's Marcus Burns and Mayewood High School's David Toney have been named the Sumter Touchdown Club's offensive and defensive players of the week. Burns, a junior tailback, won the offensive award for the second time this season in helping the Gamecocks to a 19-6 win over Spring Valley. Burns, a 5'7", 162-pounder, carried the football 26 times for 153 yards and two touchdowns. Toney, a 5'10", 225-pound senior inside linebacker, had an outstanding performance despite Mayewood's 25-0 loss to C.E. Murray. Toney had 24 total tackles and two fumble recoveries for the Vikings.
- A small number of support personnel from Shaw Air Force Base who were sent to the Persian Gulf last week are turning around and coming home because they are not needed, a base official said. Between 15 and 30 Shaw-based people could return home. Base spokesman Steve Pivnick said the return is not a redeployment of any of Shaw's forces now in the Gulf, but a "minor adjustment" to personnel levels.
- A new Shoney's has opened its doors here, creating nearly 100 jobs for local residents. The restaurant's owner, Rex Graves, said 96-98 people will be employed at the new restaurant. Located at the intersection of S.C. 261 and Interstate 95, next to the Wendy's restaurant, the Shoney's will be open from 6 a.m. to 11 p.m., Sunday through Thursday, and from 6 a.m. to midnight on Friday and Saturday.
- Alice Drive Middle School football coach David Wright finally has an offense he likes. The Hawks lined up in a stack-I for the first time this season against Bates Middle School in the annual clash between the two rivals at Memorial Stadium. The result was a 24-0 Alice Drive victory and a satisfied Wright. The Hawks, with backs Jason Witherspoon and Tory Jackson lined up behind fullback Timothy Buddin, powered for 186 yards on 29 rushes - an average of 6.6 yards per carry.
- Fifth District U.S. Rep. John Spratt and his Republican opponent, Larry Bigham, attended a forum in Sumter that quickly broke out into a full-fledged debate about the possible closure of Shaw Air Force Base. Bigham, a Rock Hill businessman, said Spratt's claims that he can save Shaw from closure are ridiculous. No single congressman can save an Air Force base, Bigham said. "John Spratt will say anything to get re-elected," Bigham said. Spratt said he's never claimed to be able to "save" Shaw. Instead, he listed the things he's done to help Shaw become more valuable, to help keep it off the 1995 federal base closure list.
- Six local utilities have "invested" $65,000 in the Sumter Base Defense Committee and its effort to keep open Shaw Air Force Base. The money - from Black River Electric Cooperative, Carolina Power & Light, GTE South, Santee Cooper, Farmers Telephone Cooperative and Vision Cable of Sumter - is the first the committee has received from sources other than the city of Sumter, Sumter County and the state. Executives of the utilities gave checks to the committee before a press conference at the Opera House. Sumter Mayor Steve Creech and Sumter County Council Chairman Joe Davis thanked the utilities for their donations.
- Sumter High School's Homecoming matchup against Irmo had all the elements for disaster for the host team. Irmo, with just one win this season, has been struggling while the Gamecocks, who moved into the 4A AP poll this week, are on a roll. That combination had SHS head coach Tom Lewis a little concerned. "I was more worried about this game than I was about the Spring Valley game," said Lewis, whose team handled Irmo 35-6 at Sumter's Memorial Stadium to improve to 4-1 in the region, 7-2 overall.
- You're a medium-sized city in a rural county that is going through some hard times. What do you do? You need a good shot of economic development encouragement. You need to come see Sumter. That's what representatives of Martinsville and Henry County, Virginia, did last week. The three visitors toured a number of Sumter-area facilities and participated in discussions with local government and business leaders about how to create a strategic plan for economic development.
- Bishopville has received a $283,000 grant through the state governor's office to help pay for an upgrade of the city's water system. The new well and pumping station off Piedmont Road will facilitate a $14 million expansion of South Atlantic Canners that is expected to create 35-45 new jobs. "Bishopville leaders have worked hard in recent years to create an atmosphere which stimulates business growth, and I'm pleased to lend my assistance to job creation efforts," Gov. Carroll Campbell said in a statement announcing the grant award.
- Wilson Hall's girls' tennis team's hopes for a SCISAA state championship came to an end in the finals. Ashley Hall, which took the Palmetto Athletic Conference title a year ago, swept all six of the singles matches and downed the Barons 8-1 at Sunset Country Club. Monday's victory over Wilson Hall capped a 12-0 season for Ashley Hall. The Panthers ended the 1994 campaign without suffering a single loss.
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