Editor’s note: This article features news and photos from past editions of the Watauga Democrat.
Sept. 30, 1965
The Board of Trustees of Appalachian State Teachers College, now Appalachian State University, granted President W.H. Plemmons permission to make an application for a loan for funds needed for the construction of four additional residence halls, according to a Watauga Democrat article titled “$3,600,000 authorized for new ASTC dorms.”
“The loan application is totaled at $3,600,000 — $900,000 being allotted for each proposed structure,” the article states. “Current plans call for two men’s and two women’s dormitories, each housing 300 students.”
Also, five North Carolina architecture firms were employed for campus construction projects, totaling $7,578,160. Along with the $3.6 million in residence hall projects, firms were fired for the $255,000 renovation of Appalachian High School, $190,000 for an addition to the Fine Arts Building, $25,160 for acoustical treatment to the Fine Arts Building, $1.245 million for classroom construction, $1.8 million for a library building, $423,000 for an addition to the Industrial Arts Building and $40,000 for expansion of the water system.
Sept. 25, 1989
Flood and wind damages estimated at around $1 million occurred as the remnants of Hurricane Hugo slammed into the High Country on Friday, Sept. 22, 1989, according to the Watauga Democrat article “High Country recovering.”
The damages were not enough to qualify for federal disaster aid, according to county officials, but neighboring counties Alleghany, Ashe, Wilkes, Caldwell, Avery, Mitchell and McDowell were recommended for federal aid.
Nearly all Watauga roads were passable by that Saturday, with the most damage occurring in Deep Gap. Blue Ridge Parkway officials spent thousands of hours cleaning up the damage.
Local parking areas were flooded, leaving emergency crews to use boats on Meadowview Drive to reach stranded people. According to the newspaper and subsequent reports, no deaths were recorded in Watauga County.
Sept. 24, 2008
Postal services were allowed to continue after the town of Boone paid $1.25 million to purchase the downtown post office, as reported in the Watauga Democrat in the article titled “Boone buys post office.”
The purchase came after the U.S. Postal Service announced in January 2008 their plans to sell the building. Renovations were also completed at the location.
“The renovations sectioned off a 625-square-foot section of the building, which the U.S. Postal Service has agreed to lease at the rate of $18 per square foot for 20 years,” the article stated.
The building, listed on the National Register of Historic Places, was constructed in 1938 by the Works Progress Administration, a Great Depression-era program designed to provide people with jobs, the article stated.