70 years ago - Jan. 10, 1950


• The Herald reported that the contract for finishing the road in South Carolina to join N.C. 107 would be let in February. Hope was running high that tourists would flood the southern part of Jackson County after the road’s completion.

• In an editorial the Herald noted “it is to be admitted that shooting out street lights with air rifles, or pitching rocks at one and hearing the ‘pop’ is fun,” but went on to point out things were getting out of hand as 45 streetlights mysteriously went on the blink over the course of three days.

• Three Sylva Hurricane football players were being scouted by major programs –  Zollie Fincannon and Wesley Warren by Wake Forest, UNC and Tennessee, and Tom Henry by Wake Forest.


60 years ago - Jan. 21, 1960


• The Jackson County Wildlife Club received a shipment of 220 raccoons which were released in various areas of the county in hopes of increasing the local raccoon population.

• The Herald carried an opinion article from Sen. B. Everett Jordan warning of the dangers of raising the minimum wage to $1.25, up from $1.

• A review of 1959 showed a total of 30 forest fires reported across Jackson County for the year.


50 years ago - Jan. 22, 1970


• The Sylva-Webster High School Marching Band was invited to compete in the Greatest Bands in Dixie contest in New Orleans in February.

• Plans at Southwestern Technical Institute for “Operation Handi,” a special program for disadvantaged and handicapped students, were announced by STI President E.E. Bryson.

• Winning by pins in the three final bouts, Western Carolina University’s wrestlers defeated Milligan College 25-21 


40 years ago - Jan. 24, 1980


• A petition asking the board of commissioners to provide for an animal shelter was set to be distributed throughout Jackson County.

• A $100,000 scholarship gift was made to the Development Foundation of Western Carolina University by Mr. and Mrs. J. W. Palmer of Birmingham, Ala.

• The Cullowhee Rebels men’s basketball team ran its record to 12-3 with a win over the Blue Ridge Bobcats.


30 years ago - Jan. 25, 1990


• County commissioners approved a Technical Preparation program for Smoky Mountain High School.

• Western Carolina Chancellor Myron Coulter’s term as chair of the American Association of State Colleges and Universities expired, but the Cullowhee connection continued with the naming of Betty Siegal, former WCU dean, to the post.

• County Planner Tom Massie told a gathering of the Committee of 100 that Jackson had recycled 270 tons of cardboard and five tons of glass at Webster Enterprises.


20 years ago - Jan. 20, 2000


• A man driving a stolen vehicle led local law enforcement on a high-speed chase from the U.S. 23-74 Bypass near Sylva, to Dillsboro, through Sylva and past Cullowhee and back toward Cullowhee before the pursuit finally ended near Cane Creek.

• A surprise bout of freezing ice led to 39 wrecks across the county.

• 1983 Catamount grad Phil Cauley was named to head WCU’s admissions office.


10 years ago - Jan. 21, 2010


• After a five-plus year legal battle with Jackson County commissioners, Duke Energy began demolishing the Dillsboro powerhouse. Superior Court Judge Zoro Guice had cleared the way for dam and powerhouse demolition, which has been ordered by the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission, to proceed. Guice refused to issue the injunction Jackson County leaders sought in order to prevent Duke from dismantling the dam and powerhouse.

• Sylva lost two business and community leaders on the same day early in 2010. Both Allison Outdoor Advertising founder and president George Allison, 76, and Quin Theaters co-owner and longtime banker Forrest Bryson, 64, died Jan. 10. Both were residents of Sylva, and both were members of First Baptist Church, where both their funerals were held.