Editor’s note: This article features news and photos from past editions of the Watauga Democrat.
June 6, 1929
In the June 13, 1929, edition of the Watauga Democrat, it was reported that Watauga County would receive $51,765.45 in school aid from the state board of equalization, an increase of almost $15 million from the previous year.
B.B. Dougherty, a Boone resident and founding father of what is now Appalachian State University, was on the board that approved the funds.
The amount was part of $4.95 million divided between 94 counties in North Carolina, with six others being denied a share in the funds.
Also in the news that week was the dedication festival of Grace Evangelical Lutheran Church in Boone.
“Dr. F.F. Fry of New York City, secretary of the board of home mission of the United Lutheran Church in America, preached the dedicatory sermon on the subject, ‘What the Church Stands For,’ on the fourth Sunday morning.”
June 6, 1968
In the June 6, 1968, edition of the Watauga Democrat, the commencement ceremonies for Appalachian State University were that morning with 764 students receiving degrees. Dr. Felix Robb, director of the Southern Association of College and Schools, was to give the address to the graduates.
“The 645 undergraduate degree total and the 118 Master’s degree total are record figures for Appalachian,” the article explained.
The ASU entrance was also about to be updated with two new signs that was “widened and beautified.” The signs were the work of Mr. and Mrs. Clyde Smith of Spruce Pine and faced both directions of U.S. 321 in Boone.
June 9, 2000
The June 9, 2000, cover story in the Watauga Democrat was headlined “New asphalt permit in the works: Plant would be set up in the ETJ area.” Details were reported on an asphalt plant permit application for land at 5605 Bamboo Road, the location of Radford Quarries.
“According to Tom Mather, (North Carolina) Division of Air Quality public information officer, the agency received an application last week from Boone Asphalt Company for a hot-mix asphalt plant with a maximum 100,000 tons per year capacity,” the article states.
The applicant and company president, Danny Cecile, requested a public hearing on the application. A county-wide moratorium on polluting industries was in effect until April 2001, the article states.
While the asphalt plant on Bamboo Road did not occur, Cecile and Radford subsidiary Appalachian Materials are currently trying to build an asphalt plant on Rainbow Trail Road.
Also in the issue, the widening of Hardin Street to five lanes was about to start later in the month.