Today in Johnson City History: November 19

Nov. 19, 1885: Some unknown person had circulated the news at and around Elk Park, North Carolina, that Capt. Gus Darden, ET&WNC Railroad’s superintendent, was a married man, according to a letter published in The Comet. “The captain is silent on the subject, but I step forward to deny the allegations and defy the aligator (sic). Supper promptly at six Capt.” — Respectfully, Ed Hodge.

Nov. 19, 1919: General Shale began operations. It began as the Johnson City Brick Corporation, and was located on Millard and Elm streets.

Nov. 19, 1954: The Training School Buccaneers whipped Sullivan County’s Ketron High School in the basketball season opener, 67-54.

Nov. 19, 1989: The Johnson City Press reported the recollections of a group of “PKs” — preachers’ kids — who grew up having to worry about how their behavior would reflect on their fathers. More than 30 PKs attended Johnson City’s Heritage Baptist Church at the time. They included Denny Bowman, who recalled raising his father’s ire by cutting up a tent revival. His father excused himself from the pulpit to take care of a “domestic problem.” “Then he took me around behind … and I was quiet the rest of the time.”

Nov. 19, 1996: The Tennessee Board of Regents selected Dr. Paul Stanton as East Tennessee State University’s next president. Stanton had been the university’s vice president for health affairs and dean of the Quillen College of Medicine.

Nov. 19, 2010: A homemade bottle bomb similar to four other devices found around Johnson City that week was discovered at East Tennessee State University. The device was found by a custodian near Lucille Clement Hall, a dormitory. The bomb did not explode, and no one was injured.

Sources: The Comet; History of Washington County, Tennessee; Johnson City Press-Chronicle; Johnson City Press

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