Friday, April 27, 2018

Fifty Years Ago This Week in West Rome - 4/29/1968 to 5/5/1968

West Rome didn’t just win their four-way track meet against Cherokee, Pepperell, & Coosa on April 30th, they demolished their competition, taking ten first place wins in the course of the meet. Ultimately, the Chieftains won with 113 points (the next highest point total went to Cherokee with 56). Two Chieftains were double winners; Mike Johnson in the hundred-yard dash and the 22-yard dash, and Xavier Smith in the high hurdles and the high jump. Single winners included Jimmy Trotter (low hurdles) Charles Smith (triple jump), Wayne Worsham (pole vault), and Johny Rimes (broad jump). In addition, West Rome won both relays. 

Anita Smith and Robert Watson, both seniors at West Rome, were named recipients of National Merit Scholarships; all winners (more than 1500 from 14,000 finalists) scored in the top half of one percent of graduating hig school seniors in the state on the Merit test and met other grade and activity requirements.

West Rome’s physical fitness team (comprised of Wayne Worsham, Jeff Rogers, Billy Bray, Mike Westbrook, Sam Tucker, and Ronnie Holbrooks) headed to Macon on Friday to compete in the state physical fitness meet. The test was set up according to US Marine Corps standards, featuring two minute situps, pushups, squat thrusts, pullups, and a 300-yard shuttle run. Scoring was set according to the performance of each individual, and then combined to create the team standing. (And I’m sure I’m not the only Chieftain who remembered the days when we all had to participate in this test to determine just how physically fit--or unfit--we were.)

Galloway’s Gulf Service Center opened at 2221 Shorter Avenue (at the corner of Redmond Circle across from West Rome High School) this week in 1968. The service station celebrated with free lollipops, Cokes, and balloons; a free set of four antique auto glasses with the purchase of ten gallons or more of gasoline; and a free five-day vacation for two in Maggie Valley, North Carolina for one lucky winner. 

A statewide sales tax increase from 3% to 4% became a topic of conversation this week in 1966, with many county commissioners (including those from Floyd County) urging that the sales tax be raised and the funds be used to reduce property taxes. Oh, how little foresight these commissioners had: the tax would indeed be raised a few years later, without any accompanying property tax reduction. Seems like someone forgot to insert the last part of that tax change into the final bill, huh?...)

Piggly Wiggly had beef liver for 39¢ a pound, Blue Plate mayonnaise for 39¢ a quart, and cucumbers for a dime each. Big Apple had chuck roast for 39¢ a pound, pole beans for 23¢ a pound, and JFG coffee for 55¢ a  pound. A&P had sirloin steak for 99¢ a pound, yellow squash for 12¢ a pound, and Pet Ritz frozen cream pies for 25¢ each. Kroger had fresh whole fryers for 25¢ a pound, strawberries for 25¢ a pint, and Irvindale ice milk for 39¢ a half-gallon. Couch’s had pork chops for 49¢ a pound, large eggs for 39¢ a dozen, and green onions for a dime a bunch. 

The cinematic week began with Stay Away Joe (starring Elvis Presley) at the DeSoto Theatre, The Graduate (starring Dustin Hoffman & Ann Bancroft) at the First Avenue, and Attack on the Iron Coast (starring Lloyd Bridges) at the West Rome Drive-In. The midweek switchout brought The Secret War of Harry Frigg (starring Paul Newman) to the DeSoto, Walt Disney’s The Jungle Book to the First Avenue, and Psychout (with Susan Strasberg) to the West Rome Drive-In.

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