This week in local history:
70 years ago - Feb. 17, 1949
• Western Carolina guard Bob McGinn led all scorers in the North State Conference with 301 points after 12 games.
• Radio station WWNC out of Asheville touted its strong signal and its Sunday CBS lineup of “Spike Jones & Co.,” “Jack Benny” and “Amos ‘n Andy” in an ad in The Sylva Herald.
• An ad for Jackson Coal and Lumber Company touted its expertise in installing asbestos siding.
60 years ago - Feb. 17, 1959
• Congressman David Hall of Sylva was expected to be discharged from the Bethesda Naval Hospital in Maryland. Hall had entered the hospital for a routine checkup but doctors kept him for a week to evaluate a urinary tract infection.
• The Jackson County Chamber of Commerce hailed the hiring of J. Ramsey Buchanan to direct its promotional work.
• Schulman’s offered boy’s sport shirts for 50 cents each during its Washington’s Birthday Sale.
50 years ago - Feb. 20, 1969
• Jackson County’s biggest snowstorm of the season hit, with accumulation totals ranging from nine inches in Sylva to 18 inches in Norton.
• A bear cub moved into a dog house in Sylva but was rousted by the home’s rightful occupants. The baby bruin climbed a nearby tree where wildlife protector Bill Danner attempted to saw it out; the bear jumped to another limb which was roped and rocked, dropping the cub to safety.
40 years ago - Feb. 15, 1979
• Southwestern Technical Institute Trustees approved five new programs: Medical Laboratory Assistant, Medical Laboratory Technology, Instrumentation Technology, Social Mechanics and Musical Instrument Repair.
• The Herald editorialized on the chances of passage of the Equal Rights Amendment in North Carolina, saying its chances were dim after opponents sowed fears about its potential impact, including unisex bathrooms and gay marriage.
30 years ago - Feb. 16, 1989
• As many as 300 students at Smoky Mountain High School were facing the prospect of vaccinations for red measles (rubeola) after a student came down with a suspected case of the disease.
• Smoky Mountain’s Jamie Extine signed a National Letter of Intent to play football at Western Carolina University. Extine set a school record with 13 interceptions in his senior year.
20 years ago - Feb. 18, 1999
• School officials were considering a request from a local nonprofit to turn the old Canada School into an Appalachian cultural center.
• The Eastern Band of Cherokee began construction on a new dialysis center on the Qualla Boundary.
• Smoky Mountain’s Johnny Jaimez and Jordan Novgrod won Western Regional wrestling championships and were set to move on to the State 3-A Tournament, along with teammate Jordan Bartell, who finished fourth in the regionals.
10 years ago - Feb. 19, 2009
• Jackson County was well represented at the National Prayer Breakfast in Washington D.C. Eastern Band of Cherokee Indians Principal Chief Michell Hicks gave the opening prayer in the Cherokee language, and the Rev. John Reid of Sylva was in attendance as well.
• Members of the Tuckaseigee Water and Sewer Authority considered a policy to help customers dealing with the difficult economic conditions. Officials discussed a proposed “hardship policy” during their Feb. 10 work session.
• Dropout rates in Jackson County Schools were on the rise; the 2007-08 school year saw a dropout rate of 7.45 percent, or 87 students. That was an increase from 6.9 percent – or 82 students dropping out – the previous year.