100 years ago with Charlie Miller

Charlie Miller - Contributing Columnist

Sept. 24, 1915

Madison County Democrat — (No news, this is a continuation of last week’s column on conditions of Main Street.) Travelers will note with contentment and satisfaction of the work of the steam shovel with men and teams, and engineers at work on the grade for the new street improvement. A system of sewer drainage is being put in with drops at the intersections of the streets for surface water.

The village council recently sold $40,000 worth of bonds and let a contract for rebuilding the streets. It is hoped the work will be completed by mid winter. West Jefferson is becoming substantial and further improvements and developments will be added as time and public welfare will warrant.

We are located on the great National Pike, built by the government less than 100 years ago that stagecoaches and freight lines might be established so its people could settle and develop the West.

The writer lives outside the corporation limits and started out to give you an idea of the criticism and amusement over the predicament of the town. However, when the new street is completed the cause of censure will have passed. The town with its nearness to the capital city, good roads in all directions, hospitable people who greet strangers with a maximum amount of kindness, all tend to make it a good country village.

Part II

The Madison Press — Aug. 11, 1955 — West Jefferson’s political aspirants began to make noise like candidates as the time for signing of petitions for nominations begin. The incumbent, Mayor Homer Braithwaite, will no doubt run again, it is rumored that two other citizens are interested in the job. Six councilmen are to be elected. The incumbents are “Doc” Mellott, George Baber, Herb Allerton, Wendell Steinmetz, Larry Kaho and Gerald Poulson. Four others are thinking about running. They are Misters Spellman, Whipple, Edwards and Strother.

• Mr. and Mrs. Edward Arganbright invited guests to a picnic dinner at their home near Gillivan to celebrate the birthday of their daughter, Miss Martha Sue. Those enjoying the occasion were Mr. and Mrs. Miller Clark, Mrs. Bessie Speasmaker and daughter, Miss Ann, Miss Peggy McKinley, Mrs. Martha Arganbright, and Mr. Albert Clark.

• The Gradale Sorority had their annual family meeting Thursday evening at the Recreation Park. Annis Shepherd had charge of a vesper service with the singing of hymns and phonograph record music. The next regular meeting will be held Aug. 18 at the home of Mrs. Clara Stratton with a potluck supper.

• Major William A. Bridenstine and family of Etowah, Tennessee were guests last week of his parents, Mr. and Mrs. Roy Bridenstine. Major Bridenstine recently returned from Korea and he and family will make their future home in Washington, D.C.

• Mr. James Arganbright and mother, Mrs. S.W. Arganbright spent several days with the latter’s sister, Mrs. Frank Meeker and Mr. Meeker in Londonderry.

Charlie Miller is the former mayor of West Jefferson and local historian. He has been writing West Jefferson 100 years ago off and on since 1976. He can be reached at Charlie_m_miller@yahoo.com.


Charlie Miller

Contributing Columnist