Looking back

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A look at some of the headlines gracing the pages of the Observer-Reporter and Waynesburg Republican this week in Greene County history:


5 years ago: April 27-May 3, 2008

Residents challenge TrAIL


project rights-of-way


WAYNESBURG – A lawsuit was filed in Greene County Court Thursday on behalf of 40 county residents living in the path of a proposed Allegheny Energy high-voltage power line.


The suit questions the legality of rights-of-way in the proposed Allegheny Power/Trans-Allegheny Interstate Line project. Allegheny Power’s TrAILCo has asked the Pennsylvania Public Utility Commission for permission to build a massive, 500-kilovolt transmission line and three, 138-kilovolt transmission lines across 37 miles of southwestern Pennsylvania.


The lawsuit addresses concerns about the scope, location and validity of these rights-of-way. It raises the issue of the rights-of-way being decades old and contends that they were abandoned by Allegheny Power years ago.


The plaintiffs have homes or property in the path of or near the transmission line, with its 12-to-20 story towers. The company also is proposing to build two enormous substations to service this line.


The property owners have many additional concerns, some of which include aerial herbicide spraying, potential property damage, decreased property values, contamination of springs and wells from chemicals used in routine maintenance, and clear cutting of hundreds of acres of trees from their properties, the suit claims.


10 years ago: April 27-May 3, 2003

Rices Landing resident


is man of many vocations


WAYNESBURG – Brad Davis stood on the Greene County Courthouse steps on a chilly Saturday in March and told a crowd to express support for troops fighting in Iraq.


“Throughout the history of this great nation there have been men and women who have regarded the tenets set forth in our Constitution to be more important than personal gain. These are the men and women who sacrificed on behalf of certain inalienable truths: life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness for all,” Davis said.


Davis is quite used to offering uplifting messages in times of uncertainty. The 43-year-old Ohio native, who has made his home in Greene County the last 13 years, earns his living by giving support, not only to members of his congregations as a minister of both Jefferson and Hewitt Presbyterian churches, but to reservists from all branches of the military as the chaplain of the Air Force Reserves 911th Air Wing in Coraopolis.


Davis’ vocational duties do not stop there. He also serves as a lecturer of religion and speech at Waynesburg College, a job that recently ended for the next few months as the students prepare for summer vacation.


Despite his tireless involvement in these enterprises, Davis remains modest when it comes to talking about his life and accomplishments. “I’m not really that exciting,” he said diffidently.



105-year-old attributes


longevity to ‘clean life’


ROGERSVILLE – Nineteen presidents, two world wars, three centuries and as of today, 105 years. And that’s just what Margaret Cooper has lived through so far.


The Rogersville woman, who is likely Greene County’s oldest citizen, will celebrate her 105th birthday today with a family dinner at the home she shares with her son, Jack Cooper, and his wife, Sherry.


Age might have dampened the centenarian’s hearing and mobility, but the years only have served to enrich her memory.


“Her mind’s as sharp as a tack,” noted George Cooper, another of Mrs. Cooper’s four sons.


“If the rest of her body was the same as what’s up here,” he added, pointing to his head, “then she’d be like a 30-year-old.”


Cooper, a lifelong Greene County resident, was born in 1898, before the inventions of radio, television and the airplane. The automobile was devised a few years earlier, but it would be some time before that mode of transportation would become commonplace on county roads.


William McKinley was the U.S. president. The Spanish-American War was just beginning to take shape, and the National Guardsmen of Company K in Waynesburg were called up to fight in the Philippines.


So much has changed over the past 105 years, “I can’t begin to tell you,” Cooper said.


While she is amazed and happy with the technological advances and financial stability of today, if she had it her way, she said she would much rather be living as a young woman in the 1920s.


25 years ago: April 28-May 4, 1988

Striking a balance


The design of Enlow Fork Dam struck a balance between conflicting interests of those needing protection from the damaging floodwaters of Wheeling Creek and those wishing to preserve a valley’s natural beauty.


Several of the speakers at the ceremonies April 22 to dedicate the new structure spoke of the cooperation that brought forth the solution – a dry dam designed to contain water only during periods of flooding. The dam was built on the border of Greene and Washington counties.


It will protect residents of Wheeling W.Va., from flooding and by its unique design allow the quiet Enlow Valley to remain as an untouched natural habitat.


45 years ago: April 28-May 4, 1968

County increases salaries


for Curry Home employees


Salary increases for 58 employees at the Curry Memorial Home, most of them in the amount of $25 a month, were approved by the Greene County commissioners.


At the same time, the commissioners indicated that possible salary adjustments for other county employees will be considered after the 1968 financial picture becomes clearer.


The Curry Home package, which does not include the administrator or members of the clerical staff, is expected to cost the county some $20,000 a year. And while it was not included in the 1968 budget, the commissioners indicated there is a sufficient unappropriated balance to absorb it.


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