The Mountain Advocate received a surprise visit Thursday from Milburne (Chan) Sharpe, 79, the grandson of Henry H. Chandler. Sharpe remembers his grandfather publishing the Mountain Advocate throughout the late 1930s and on into the 1950s. According to Sharp, Henry Chandler began first printing the Advocate in 1905.
Sharp’s father was a career Navy aviator stationed at Pearl Harbor; however, in January 1942, all of the dependents were evacuated from the island because the government thought the Japanese were going to invade. So, Sharpe’s family (without their father) came back to the main land and settled in Barbourville in an apartment directly above the Mountain Advocate.
“I was 10 when the war ended,” he said, “I can still remember the celebration around the courthouse square. When the announcement was made that the Japanese surrendered, people, mostly in convertibles, circled the courthouse shooting off guns. I don’t suppose they’d be able to do that today.”
As a young child, Sharpe remembers the printing presses downstairs as being extremely loud. Even so, the young man would sit fascinated beside his grandfather as he set the type on the trays to print the paper.
“I never got into the actual printing of the paper,” Sharpe remembered, “but I helped him sweep up and even helped deliver the paper.”
Sharpe would begin walking west from the newspaper toward Union College.
“It was strictly houses, then there was the college, then there was more houses. It was just like you plopped a school right down in the middle of the houses,” he said.
One of Sharp’s favorite memories is of the little restaurant down at the corner of the block, just before you got to the courthouse — now known as the Old Way Café.
“I can’t remember the name of the restaurant, but the name of the owner was Bill Jones,” said Sharp, “and we must have ate a zillion meals at that place.”
There was a soda fountain with lots of homestyle meals. It was nowhere near the fast food of today.
According to his grandson, Henry Chandler stayed associated with the newspaper business until he died in the late 1960s.
His family’s roots have been driven deep into the Barbourville community.
Elizabeth, Chandler’s first daughter, married local man Huston Fuller, who was with the 101st Airborne. They ended up settling in Hopkinsville right after World War II. Pauline, his second daughter, married into the Hopper family, the same family who now, Sharpe believes, still owns Hopper Funeral Home.
Sharpe’s own mother, Minnie Mae, was the third of Chandler’s five children. She was raised here in Barbourville and married Milburne O. Sharpe. After retiring from the military in the 1950s, Sharpe moved his family to Houston, Texas, after which the family never returned to Barbourville, except to visit family.
The fourth daughter, Nancy, married Barbourville auto mechanic Beverly Bender. Nancy is the only Chandler daughter who would remain in Barbourville until her death in the early 1970s.
The youngest son, William T. Chandler, came back to Barbourville after the war to work on the paper, and sometime in the early 50s, he left to settle in a small town in California, where he continued to work in the printing industry until his death sometime in the late 1980s.
So what is Chan Sharpe doing in Barbourville today?
He simply wanted to see if the paper still existed, and wanted just to reminisce with the editor on his years of growing up with this newspaper.
“I had hoped that the name H.R. Chandler might still be remembered by the current publisher, however, it seems everyone that might have known him has long since gone.
But, it felt great sitting here talking with the new editor. I just wish I could have remembered more details, but when you’re 10 years old, how much are you really expected to remember?”
Bug thinks she’s the next big thing as she rides around her yard on the front of a moped with her best friends Mallory, Mikyla, and Maegan Stamper.
A Corbin resident’s service has been recognized by Kentucky’s highest official. Governor Steve Beshear has directed that flags at all state office buildings be lowered to half-staff today, Thursday, July 24, 2014 in honor of a Kentucky airman who recently died as a result of non-combat related injuries.
Staff Sgt. Dirk Shelton, 29, of Corbin, died July 16 in Washington D.C., and his funeral services are today, at Grace on the Hill United Methodist Church in Knox County.
The state today released figures documenting a 10.4% unemployment rate for Knox County.
Below is a comparison of the Knox rate with that of other nearby counties:
All five Knox County magistrates; Carson Gilbert, 1st district, Keith Abner, 2nd district, Jerry (Rabbit) Cox, 3rd district, Pat McDonald, 4th district, and Julio Cima, 5th district, joined Judge Executive J.M. Hall at Wednesday’s Knox County Fiscal Court meeting.
After officially opening the meeting, Judge Hall opened the floor to the general public. Boone Heights resident Sharon Lounder addressed 3rd District Magistrate Jerry Cox. Apparently, the county had come in and cleaned out dirt at the edge of her yard in order to establish drainage. Lounder’s complaint was that the dirt left behind during the county’s work had never been cleaned up, and she spent a total of $1,050 to clean up her hard. She is now requesting an exception to paying penalties on her property tax.