Through passenger train No. 7, one of the finest on the Louisville & Nashville system, traveling from Cincinnati to New Orleans, ran into a broken rail at Hays Mill, four miles north of Athens just after midnight. While running at a rate of 67 mph, and within an hour’s time, the handsome train, consisting of 10 coaches, brilliantly lighted by electricity, had been wiped out of existence by fire. One person, C.N. Childers, express messenger, was killed in the blaze and 127 passengers were injured. Many of those injured suffered broken noses and other bumps and bruises. The entire train ditched after hitting the broken rail.
Morgan County was one of the principal winners at the Alabama State Fair this year in farm exhibits. The county amassed quite an interesting array of trophies and a total of $465 in cash prizes. The Morgan County agricultural exhibit was sponsored by the Danville Future Farm Boys and won the highest total number of points of any exhibit in the state, with 12 counties competing. Howard Landers of Morgan County also won sixth place for individual farm display.
An announcement was made today that Congressman Lister Hill of Montgomery, will bring his senatorial campaign into Morgan County on Monday. Congressman Hill will speak at the courthouse at 11 a.m., following the opening of court. The second district congressman seeing the senate seat vacated by Justice Hugo Black, is making his race as an advocate of the New Deal, and defends the wages and hours bill and the Roosevelt court reform proposals.
Cotton Farmer Days will be held in Decatur with the participation of 35 to 40 local merchants. The three-day entertainment and sales event is sponsored by the merchants division of the Chamber of Commerce in appreciation of the vast contribution which the farmers of Morgan, Lawrence and Limestone counties make to the area. The highlight of the event will be a show given by Country Boy Eddie and his band. Area talent will also be present.
J. Gilmer Blackburn was selected president of the Board of City Commissioners at the first meeting of the City Commission for the year 1962-63. Jack Higginbotham, as president pro tem, presided at the opening of the meeting, and following the resolution marking Blackburn mayor, the newly elected mayor took charge of the meeting. The second item of business was to name Fred S. Hunt Jr. as president pro tem.
Decatur General Hospital is facing a nursing shortage. It is not as critical as in other parts of the nation, but acute shortages may not be far away if current trends continue. Jeanne Reinhardt, director of nursing and David Jones, personnel manager, both agree the nursing field is showing a downward trend. Statistics gathered by the American Nurses Association predict a shortfall of some 900,000 four-year-degree nurses, or BSNs, by the year 1990.
The doors of the Beltline Mall J.C. Penney opened as usual at 10 a.m. today, but there was a difference. Employees were told the store will close Jan. 30. Parisian, Inc. has an interest in the location when the Penney store vacates, according to Hal Abrams, Parisian executive vice president and chief operating officer.
Since October of 2001, vandals have stolen about 300 Decatur street signs, and the thefts are costing taxpayers thousands. And the police want the thefts to stop. People caught with street signs could face charges of criminals mischief, theft and receiving stolen property, said Lt. Vince Baer of Decatur police’s Traffic Division. If convicted, they could face hefty fines and jail time.
Following an order to trim 10 percent from their budget requests, Morgan County officials cut almost $70,000 from their travel expenses for 2003, making it the lowest allotment in the past four years. County Administrator Willa Dockery said some officials and department heads voluntarily cut their budgets and other expenses after Chairman Larry Bennich instructed them to reduce their budget requests about two weeks ago.