Today in Johnson City History: July 4

July 4, 1857: Train service began at Johnson’s Depot.

July 4, 1889: Tennessee Gov. Bob Taylor spoke at Sycamore Shoals in Elizabethton for Independence Day.

July 4, 1891: Charley Hankal, from Elizabethton, was fined $2.50. Mr. Hankal was fined for “disorderly cursing, drawing pistol, and threatening to release a prisoner from the town office.”

July 4, 1910: The Charlotte Daily Observer reported that Congressman Walter P. Brownlow, who represented Tennessee is First Congressional District, was critically ill. “….shows symptoms of uraemic poisoning, indicating that he is nearing death. He was semi-conscious early this evening, and was able to take nourishment. His attending physicians gave out a statement tonight in which they state that the symptoms of uraemic poisoning are becoming so pronounced that he now lies in a semi-conscious state, being still rational when aroused.”

July 4, 1925: The Johnson City Chronicle reported, “Mr. W.M. Fox, who was injured in a fall at Miller Brothers Lumber Co plant June 12, is critically ill at his home….with fears entertained for his recovery.”

July 4, 1956: The Johnson City Press-Chronicle published a photo of Jimmy Pressnell, Susan and Becky Hillenbrand operating a lemonade stand on East Unaka Avenue.

July 4, 1962: Johnson City was recovering from overnight flooding, the worst seen in years. Several people had to be rescued.

July 4, 1968: The Press-Chronicle reported the appointment of Johnson City’s new police chief, Tom Helton.

Sources: Johnson City Postcard History Series; Mark Pierson/‎Johnson City, Tennessee Memories; Johnson City Court Records; The Charlotte Daily Observer; Johnson City Chronicle; Johnson City Press-Chronicle; Ted Bowers.

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