Its rather odd to find three school districts who border each other have a school by the same name in all three. That was the case in Clay, Leslie and Perry County Kentucky until several years ago. I have already covered the closed Big Creek Elementary School in Leslie County in this blog. That school closed several years ago. The school covered in this entry is the Big Creek Elementary that was located in Perry County. The school is located near the intersection of Kentucky 80 and Kentucky 1096 in the community of Avawam about 8 miles west of Hazard near the Perry/Leslie County line.
Big Creek Elementary was closed in 2014 due to declining enrollment and a planned consolidation of schools in Perry County. At the end of the 2013-14 school year Big Creek was home to 136 students in grades K-8.
The US Post Office for the community of Partridge, Kentucky is located about a mile and a half from the Letcher / Harlan County line on an old alignment of US 119. Partridge is about 5 miles north of Cumberland on US 119 and about 18 miles south of Whitesburg in Letcher County.
If you havent caught on yet I have a fascination with many things. If Im “into something” Im in it for the longhaul and almost obsess over it for long periods of time. One of my obsessions is Kmart, another is my home town of Harlan, Kentucky.
I come from a generation of Harlanites (yes its a word) whose primary retail destination as a child was Kmart and the other stores located at the Village Center Mall. Walmart didnt arrive in Harlan until 1991. Until then Kmart and Magic Mart had the corner on the mass merchandiser market in town.
Sadly, the Kmart store in Harlan closed in the spring of 1995. The memories of this store still stay with me today. Naturally with the advent of the internet I have always thought that a photo would pop up of the actual store. Those wishes had not came true until last weekend when I stumbled upon a website known as Vintage Aerial. I immediately searched for Harlan County and discovered that there were sets from the early to mid 1980s on dozens of sets of photos. It took me the better part of an evening, but I finally found it.
I can close my eyes and almost taste the superman ice cream from the deli. The future isnt bright for Kmart as a chain. As Ive stated in this blog before, if (when) they finally go, I am probably going to be very dramatic, over react and travel a ton documenting the stores before they are gone. Someone has to do all three of those things right?
One of the most important specs I look for when I buy a phone is a good camera. The ZTE Max was one of the best over all android phones as far as cameras that I could find at 8MP. I have been using the HDR editing with the standard android lollipop editing software and the effects have been very easy to achieve with very little work. Enjoy.
Ive passed the school many times. I can remember when MC Napier High School and Dilce Combs High School merged to form Perry County Central. I was in my early years of high school then and I can remember watching the news on channel 57 detailing all of the new amenities the students would have at the new high school. I was envious.
Before I dive into the specifics of MC Napier, Im going to speak a bit about it’s counterpart, Dilce Combs High School located on the other side of the county is basically a twin structure to MC Napier, but unlike the 3 story MC Napier High School Dilce Combs was two stories. That building is currently occupied by local offices. MC Napier High School opened in 1953 and was named for local educator Mitchell Campbell Napier who was instrumental in securing WPA funds for the school district building plan during his tenure as the county Superintendent.
The MC Napier High School was closed alongside Dilce Combs High School in 1995 when they were merged to form the newly opened Perry County Central High School. After the MC Napier grounds ceased operation as a high school the county district continued to utilize it as an Alternative School until 2005. The school was sold in 2007 at auction to a private entity.
Today the school stands gutted, fallen victim to vandalism and the elements.
The Betty Howard Coal Miner’s Memorial Theater is located in the town of Benham, Kentucky in northern Harlan County. Benham is a former company town built by Wisconsin Steel subsidiary International Harvester in the 1910s and 1920s. //embedr.flickr.com/assets/client-code.js
The theater was built by the coal company in 1921. Over the years as with many coal company towns, the theater and other buildings fell into disrepair. Benham, however is a great success story of preservation and rejuvenation. On July 21, 1983 the theater along with most of the other buildings surviving in Benham were placed on the National Register of Historic Places. //embedr.flickr.com/assets/client-code.js
That includes the theater. The town sought for private funding to restore the theater. In December of 2006 the theater was re-dedicated.
When I was growing up watching WYMT and I would hear Martin or Martin County, I always thought it was like Harlan and Harlan County. I had no idea that Martin wasn’t even in Martin County.
Martin is about seven miles south of Prestonsburg on Beaver Creek at the mouth of Bucks Branch. It was an early twentieth century coal mining town originally known as Bucks Branch, but the name Martin was in use by about 1915, for Martin Van Allen, the local postmaster. The Bucks Branch post office opened in 1910, was renamed Smalley in 1913 for Smalley Crisp, a landowner in the area, and finally named Martin in 1926. Martin was incorporated in 1920.