History of the Tomato Industry in Drew County – Part 1
Seark Sod Farm
Pines Broadcasting Company
Re-Elect Sheilla Lampkin
Secure Storage 2
Head of the Class
NorthSide Baptist Church
Johnson’s Showroom Furniture
South Arkansas Business Solutions
Superior Home Inspection Services LLC
Atlas Foundation Repair
Immanuel Baptist Church
Advertise With Monticello Live
Union Bank 1
Southern Quality Construction
Lucky’s Of Monticello
Corner Express (O&M Oil Co.)
LifeShare No Date
War Eagle Boats
History of the Tomato Industry in Drew County – Part 1
It has been another hot week at the Capitol – weather-wise and otherwise. First, we learned that a “group” is making a renewed effort to cap non economic damages for health care providers and limit attorneys’ contingency fees and has raised more than $313,000, including $250,000 from the Arkansas Health Care Association. (more…)
Greetings! So what is an MOU? An MOU (pronounced as the three separate letters, m-o-u) is an acronym for Memorandum of Understanding. (Government bureaucracy is filled with acronyms; I sometimes think it should count as a foreign language.) Anyway Governor Hutchison has signed an MOU with the Arkansas Health Care Association that they will devise a plan to save $250 million over the next 5 years in the costs for meeting the medical needs of our seniors whether it is in nursing homes, home health care and\or managed care. The “trick” will be to maintain quality of care and still make cuts. It will be interesting to watch unfold. (more…)
I have to share that I have a soft spot in my heart that grieves for the historic Jewish temple in McGehee, Arkansas. Several newspapers have carried stories about the history of the building. I just want to add the story of my personal relationship with the temple.
I’ve had some interesting conversations the past couple of weeks about “rolling stores” and all of the favorite treats found therein – many of which survive today. I thought you might be interested in some lists of “how far back” some of our favorite treats existed.
From The 1900s t0 the 1920s Baby Ruth, BB Bat Suckers, Beeman’s Gum, Bit-O-Honey, Butterfinger, Candy Cigarettes, Candy Corn, Caramel Creams, Charms, Charleston Chews, Cherry Mash, Chiclets, Clark bars, Cracker Jacks, Goo Goo Clusters, Heath bars, Dubble Bubble gum, Goobers, Lifesavers, Milk Duds, Milky Way, Mounds, Moon Pies, Mr. Goodbar, O. Henry, Reese Cups, Tootsie Rolls, PEZ, Zero, Hershey’s chocolate bars and many others. Whew! I’d imagine we thought in the ‘20s they only had candy canes and licorice like in the old westerns! (more…)
Greetings!! I hope everyone had a wonderful Memorial Day! We did! Mine started in Monticello at the annual celebration/ceremony held by the VFW chapter at the courthouse. The weather was accommodating and the program was excellent!
A couple of weeks ago, I wrote an essay about my memories of the rolling store of my youth along the Mississippi River levee in Desha County. I asked for other remembrances and received a reply from Mary Lasiter about her memories of the rolling store in the Green Hill area of Drew County. Our memories were so similar I thought you might like to read Mary’s story, so it is reprinted here with Mary’s permission.
At long last the second Special Session of the 99th General Assembly was over when Gov. Asa Hutchinson signed a five-year highway bill into law last Monday hours after it passed the Senate. He said the next step for more highway funding should come as a result of a voter-initiated act. (more…)
Our second Extraordinary Session of the 99th General Assembly began this week and it actually began with a surprise to most of us. We’d thought this a highway funding session, but it turned out to be much more (about 14 items more) and some more contentious.
Before noon the first day, the House Rules Committee had advanced legislation, HB 1009 that could help bring $1 billion into the state over the next 5 years for highway improvements. (more…)
A little acclaimed story from Drew County history was brought to mind last week while I was attending a recent meeting of the Public Health Committee of the Arkansas House of Representatives in Little Rock. A most interesting and kind gentleman whom I had just met asked about the state of the “Bottoms Baptist Orphanage”.
I recall hearing this term when we first moved to Drew County and wondering if it meant that some person from “the bottoms”, a local term referring to the Delta, might have founded the Baptist home. However, research proved this to be untrue.
Today I want to share briefly the story about the Bottoms Baptist Orphanage, more familiarly known in these times as the Arkansas Baptist Home for Children. (more…)
While scanning some of my magazines waiting to be inspired, or transpired, by a subject for this column, I came upon a picture of a 1940-50s “rolling store” that brought back a flood of pleasant memories of a young child being reared alongside the levees of southeast Arkansas between Cook’s Ramp and Big Island in Desha County. (Likely they had rolling stores in Drew County too.) (more…)
Last Monday began back at the Capitol where we officially gaveled out (sine die) the official adjournment of the 4th Fiscal Session. Shortly thereafter we re-elected Speaker Jeremy Gillam to serve as the next Speaker for the 91st General Assembly. He will be the 5th representative in state history to serve two terms as Speaker of the House. (more…)
At last the 4th Fiscal Session is over! (It will officially end Monday, May 9, 2016.) Like most things in life, there have been degrees of good, bad and ugly in it, but hopefully the good will outweigh the bad. Let me share with you the bigger issues and let you be the judge.
Nearly every city has allegedly experienced a brush with a famous person whether he/she is “good or bad”. Bonnie and Clyde reportedly once visited Monticello. Tillar, a small farming community in eastern Drew County, also had a visit from legendary outlaws – the notorious James boys.
I would be remiss lest I honor Arkansas Boys State this year with a column. Like its sister organization, Boys State is open to high school students who have completed their junior year in high school. It takes place in the summer before the senior year and is a week-long adventure in civic education. Boys State offers a practical, hands-on look at politics and government as students seek election at the state, county, and city levels and then engage in the governing process. Participants learn about the responsibilities of a wide range of offices, as well as the interaction between the various offices and the various levels of government. (more…)
The Fiscal Session rolls on and may be accelerating (or slowing) to its final conclusion. It should (or could) finish this week or the next. After Arkansas Works passed last week, there was a half-hearted effort from the Senate to override the Governor’s line item veto of a section of a law that would have ended his Arkansas Works program this year, but the motion from Sen. Bart Hester failed on a voice vote. So, SB121 will fund the $8.4 billion Department of Human Services Division of Medical Services appropriation, which includes $1.7 billion for Arkansas Works and also funds other programs. (more…)
What a week! You have heard of cutting the tension with a knife? Well, we’ve experienced it this week!
As the end of the traditional school year, and the beginning of summer nears, my thoughts always go back to my visit to Girls’ State in the summer before my senior year in high school.
Last Tuesday I had an unusual experience for this day and age. The president of Union Pacific RR, Lance Fritz, and his “team” were making a tour of Union Pacific’s major locations in Arkansas.
Welcome back to our look at early cooking techniques, preparation tips and storage ideas to avoid spoilage and recipes. (more…)
After nearly a year of studying issues to develop an acceptable health care plan in order to have a consensus on an exceptional replacement for the private option that will expire on December 31, 2016, and after spending boocoodles on private, out-of-state consultants, the governor has announced the healthcare plan he favors. A Special Session assumedly will be called and will likely convene at the Capitol for an Extraordinary Session, often times referred to as special session, to address changes to our state’s healthcare system on Wednesday, April 6th.
There will be two issues before us to consider. One piece of legislation will create the healthcare program that the Governor favors and is being called Arkansas Works. (more…)
While scanning copies of our older museum journals looking for information, I came upon an article about cooking and food preservation in the 1840s and thought it would be fun and educational to share some techniques and tidbits with you for your awe and amusement over the next few weeks!
Since this Sunday, March 27, is the day we celebrate Easter this year, I thought I’d share some more unknown traditions of the holiday around the world. Easter, which celebrates Jesus Christ’s life, death and resurrection, is one of the two most important holidays in Christianity today. It has been called a move able feast because it doesn’t fall on a set date every year, as most holidays do. Instead, Christian churches in the West celebrate Easter on the first Sunday following the full moon after the vernal equinox on March 21.
We’ve completed another busy week inside the Legislature and are still dealing primarily with preparations for the upcoming special session and the fiscal session. However, some of our major committees did hold their regularly scheduled monthly meetings last week because much is still to be done before the special session – and before the 91st General Assembly meets in January, 2017.
What a week! We’re all lucky in southeast Arkansas (and Louisiana) if our toes aren’t webbed. We have certainly had more than our fair share of rain this week! I wish we could save it for those coming hot days of summer!
As stated last week Monday was a big D-Day (Decision Day) at the Legislature. After months of study, discussion and debate, the Health Reform Legislative Task Force voted 10-2, with 4 members abstaining, to endorse Gov. Asa Hutchinson’s version of the private option, known as “Arkansas Works.” (more…)
Greetings! I hope it did not rain the first of March (Tuesday) for two reasons. !. We need our gardens to dry so we can get our potatoes planted (March 3, 4, or 7th by the signs); and 2. Yesterday was Primary Election Day and rain may affect turnout to vote. I hope you made it to vote and I hope you voted for the best, most knowledgeable and capable candidate.
Let’s look briefly at the history of Valentine’s Day. It is shrouded in mystery. We know that February has long been celebrated as a month of romance, and that St. Valentine’s Day, as we know it today, contains examples of both Christian and ancient Roman traditions, but who was Saint Valentine and how did he become associated with this holiday?
Greetings! Recently Congress passed, and the president signed a Federal spending bill for 2016. Along with the many other programs funded, including the highway funding program, Congress agreed to increase funding in many educational areas affecting children. Highlights include: (more…)
Greetings! I apologize to readers of the Ashley County Ledger in Hamburg because we are still having some sort of technical difficulties and they are not receiving my reports. We hope to have the problem solved by this week.
Meanwhile I hope you are keeping an eye on this highway funding situation. A special session will likely be called soon and I’d like your input before the fact.
According to the highway department, there are three things you need to know about highway funding in Arkansas:
1. Arkansas highways are in trouble, and major decisions about how to finance our failing highways are approaching. (For now).
2. Some “revenue neutral” funding options being proposed are treacherous, and will pay for highways by cheating us all out things like quality pre-K, social workers for abused and neglected kids, and textbooks for students.
3. Modernizing the gas tax is a responsible, common sense way to raise revenue that has been vetted in other states. Any increase to fuel tax should be paired with a measure to help working families keep more of what they earn. (more…)
This week also began in celebration of Martin Luther King’s birthday as the Legislature and most government offices at all levels were closed Monday, along with select businesses and schools. Monday evening a special celebration occurred in Monticello at Trinity Full Gospel Church. The event drew a large crowd of enthused attendees who heard an inspiring, emotional sermon from young Edward Suber of the Selma area. Mr. Suber has a great career ahead of him should he choose to become a minister. Pastor Lorenzo Simmons’ congregation and all involved were most gracious hosts for the evening. (more…)
Greetings! This is actually the report for the week of the 13th because it failed to make it to the newspaper office on time – computer email problems – for last week’s paper. I’ll try to catch up next week!
Last week was a busy week in southeast Arkansas as Governor Hutchison made several stops in the area. (more…)
Greetings! Happy New Year! In this first legislative report of 2016, several new laws took effect on January 1st so I thought I should make you aware of some of the more far-reaching of them. They involve some aspects of everything from minimum wages to restaurant menus to tax brackets. Here follows some of the many that took effect at the beginning of the year.
Greetings!! We’ve finished our work for 2015 this week and I’ll share some of it with you in the next couple of weeks. During the Regular Session earlier this year we passed legislation known as the Arkansas Health Reform Act of 2015. This established the Arkansas Health Reform Legislative Task Force.
Holiday Inn Express
Cash Saver Food Outlet
Ray Ryburn Real Estate
Monticello Animal Clinic
The Guest House
Reggie’s Lock & Key
Drew Farm / Drew Outdoor & Casual Wear
Cass Martin Realty
Union Bank 2
Custom Truck / Spee-D-Lube
Ashley County Medical Center
The Computer Guys
Gibson & Keith
Monticello Tire (Goodyear)
Razorback Body Shop