Today in Johnson City History: November 30

Nov. 30, 1888: The State of Tennessee chartered John T. Wilder’s “Watauga Improvement Company.” This provided for building houses, grading streets, making sidewalks, libraries and schools, as well as other like-infrastructure.

Nov. 30, 1899: Since the East Tennessee Telephone Company put in a toll station here, Johnson City was connected with the outside world. Earlier that week, W.E. Uptegrove called up Little Rock, Arkansas, and talked 19 minutes. The distance was more than 1,300 miles, but the conversation was carried on distinctly. The toll charges were $27, the equivalent of about $837 in 2019.

Nov. 30, 1911: Dr. R.L. Patton, of Telford, had been in Johnson City as one of the commissioners appointed to locate the Memphis to Bristol highway through the county.

Nov. 30, 1956: The Science Hill Hilltoppers defeated the Washington College Eagles 52-49. Jerry Vance led scoring 17 points.

Nov. 30, 1979: More than 7,100 fans enjoyed the performance of the Statler Brothers and Barbara Mandrell at Freedom Hall Civic Center.

Nov. 30, 1986: The Royal Lipizzaner Stallions appeared at Freedom Hall.

Nov. 30, 1996: East Tennessee State University and Lees-McRae College played basketball at Freedom Hall. The Bucs won 73-56. It was one of only seven wins in a dismal season with 20 losses.

Sources: Johnson’s Depot; The Comet; Johnson City Press-Chronicle; Bobbie H. Shirley, Freedom Hall.

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