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Thursday, May 23, 1968

Hominy Falls

John Moore, Jr., of Buckeye, and Joe Fitzwater, of Rupert, were two of six men who miraculously survived the mine disaster at Hominy Falls and were brought out last Thursday. Fifteen men had been rescued earlier and four of the remaining ten were found dead, but the six men survived ten days – seven days without food – in a small room next to the scene of the water break-through. Junior was able to return home to his thankful family and community on Sunday, after a few days in the hospital at Richwood. He was credited with wise leadership during the long entrapment underground.

Boys in Service

Army Specialist Four Gary B. Phillips, 18, son of Mr. and Mrs. Claude Phillips, of Marlinton, was assigned to the 9th Infantry Division in Vietnam, May 3.


On behalf of the Board of Education and the Administrative Staff of Pocahontas County Schools, I want to thank you individually and collectively for accepting your responsibility in the passage of the School Bond Issue. We will not realize immediate progress of the County as a result; however, it will be forthcoming in the years that lie ahead…

Grey M. Cassell, Superintendent


Didn’t you feel proud of Pocahontas last week? We felt “ten feet tall,” realizing we had met our responsibility to provide an improved education for our young people, and we didn’t waste time and money by fooling around with two, three or a dozen elections. We think that decisive action will set the tone for a forward movement in Pocahontas.


The State Fire Marshal has made a recommendation to the State Superintendent of Schools that the Marlinton Graded School building not be used next year. The school, built in 1906, falls short of several fire protection requirements… If it is not feasible to use the building, housing arrangements will have to be made for the students now attending Marlinton Graded School.


Grace Jane Moore, daughter of Mr. and Mrs. Charles Moore, of Buckeye, has been selected valedictorian of her graduating class of Hillsboro. Grace Jane has maintained a 4.00 grade average all during her high school years…

Miss Ramona Nell Chappell, daughter of Mr. and Mrs. John Chappell, of Hillsboro, will deliver the welcome address for her graduating class June 10.

Ramona has maintained a 3.899 average during her high school years…


Fire destroyed two frame buildings at Campbelltown about 2 a.m. Monday morning, one used for storage and one housing Dixieland tavern. The fire was seen and reported by Mrs. Edna Webb, of the El Poca, and they hurriedly awakened the occupants of the upstairs apartment, Mrs. Phyllis McLaughlin and children, and her sister and children, probably saving their lives. The fire had a big start and completely destroyed the buildings, but a garage building and houses nearby were protected.

These buildings, built in the early 1900s, were the original Campbell Lumber company store, which was cut in two and moved to the present position when the State Road was constructed right through its location.

The buildings were owned by A. C. Pifer. Spurgeon Underwood operated the tavern.


Dan Canter, assistant chief of the Game and Fish Division, Department of Natural Resources, writes about mountain lions, Here or Gone, in the May issue of Outdoors West Virginia. He reports a small cougar, 48 pounds, was bagged in Pennsylvania last year and a larger cat, estimated to be eight feet long and weighing up to 200 pounds, escaped. It is said not more than 100 survive in eastern North America, exclusive of Florida. He wants to protect any that may be left.
After reading this article, see what came in the mail:

Are Panthers Coming Back?

I have heard my parents tell stories of panthers in the days gone by. How panthers would sometimes follow people at night, usually keeping a few yards behind the person they were following; then when the person stopped because they thought they heard something, the panther would stand still but would pat its tail on the leaves. I imagine this would give anyone quite a scare.

There was also the story about a man riding his horse on a road through a thickly wooded area. As he passed under a limb overhanging the road, a panther jumped from the limb at the man, but missed him and instead the panther’s claws raked over the horses’ hip, leaving deep cuts, which was probably a good topic of conversation for quite a time.

Lately, several people in the Back Mountain area have seen animals which they think are panthers. The older people would probably know for sure if they saw a panther, but the younger generation is not used to seeing panthers running around loose. Some people also have lambs missing and think that it could very well be a panther taking the lambs if there really are any in this section of the country.

Allie Smith


The pool at Watoga State Park will open this Sunday, and will continue open for the summer. Rates are increased this year to 50 and 75 cents…


Mr. and Mrs. William H. Barrett, of Marlinton, have announced the engagement of their daughter, Carmen Lucille, to Gary Lee Friel, son of Mr. and Mrs. Oscar Friel, also of Marlinton.
A June wedding is being planned.


Born to Mr. and Mrs. Walter Alderman, of Minnehaha Springs, a son, named Andrew Walter.

Born to Mr. and Mrs. James Y. Pritchard, of Marlinton, a son, named James Y. Pritchard, II.

Born to Mr. and Mrs. Donald Clarence Hansford, Sr., of Hot Springs, Virginia, a son, named Donald Clarence Hansford, Jr.


George Washington Darnell, 34, of Marlinton, was killed in combat in Viet Nam Thursday, May 9, 1968. He was the son of Mrs. Carrie E. Bancroft Darnell and the late George W. Darnell. Burial in Mountain View Cemetery.

Daniel Propst, 75, of Brandywine; burial in Mountain View Cemetery in Brandywine.

Charles Austin Little, 80, of Dunmore, a member of Baxter Presbyterian Church. Burial in the Dunmore Cemetery.

Earl “Stub” McNellan, 46, of Wilmington, Delaware, formerly of Marlinton, a son of the late Jack and Ocie McNellan. He was hit by a car two weeks prior to his death. Burial in the Mountain View Cemetery.

William Ward (Bill) McCloud, 85, a retired farmer of Valley Head. Born in Pocahontas County. Burial in Valley Head Cemetery.

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