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July 2, 2009     Clinch Valley Times
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Page 2 CLINCH VALLEY TIMES , St. P_aul, VA, Thursday, July 2, 2009 Of shoes.. and ships..and sealing wax..by rou00g G00ego00 The Stars and Stripes Within a three week span, this nation observes two holidays which are symbolized by the American Flag. Flag Day, celebrated for only a 24 hour period since it was founded, this year became Flag Week, as President Obama announced on Flag Day that all federal buildings would observe the June 14 flag- flying protocol for the entire week. Most of us are aware of Flag Day, but in most areas, there aren't a lot of formal observations of the day which isn't, inciden- tally, a federal holiday. The big holiday which features the flag is, of course, the Fourth of July, which we'll observe on Saturday of this week. The American  Flag, through all its changes and different looks, has maintained its status as an en- during symbol of the great experiment created by the Founding Fathers through the Declaration of Indepen- dence and, subsequently, the Constitution of the United States. But in disctising the flag, we should begin at the begitming. The initial critical event included the writing by Thomas Jefferson and subsequent signing by mem- bers of the Continental Congress of the Declaration of Independence Jul)( 4, 1776. This, of course, was the origin of our most popular patriotic holiday, Indepen- dence Day, usually called more simply "The Fourth of July." A look at the flag seems to call for more than just a mention of a specific person. Betsy Ross was born Elizabeth Griscom m Philadelphia on January 1, 1752. She was the eighth of 17 children born to Sam- uel and Rebecca Griscom, a strict Society of Friends (Quaker) family. Eollowing her education at a Quaker public school (which seems to be a contradiction in terms as far as today's educational practices are con- cerned), her father apprenticed her to an upholsterer. There she met and fell in love with fellow apprentice John Ross, who Was the son of an assistant rector of Christ (Episcopal) Church. They eloped in 1773, resulting in a split in her family, and her expulsion tom the Quaker congregation. Betsy and John Ross started their own upholstery business, and joined Christ Church. The couple had two children. John was killed in 1776 when ammunition in a storehouse he was guarding exploded. Of course, we remember Betsy Ross as the maker of the very first American flag in the late 18th cen- tury, although documentation of that fact is dependent upon 19th century affidavits which outline a meeting the widowed Betsy Ross had with George Washing- ton, George Ross and Robert Mo_rris at her upholstery business. By folding a piece of paper and making a single cut with scissors, she showed the three men that the proposed five-pointed stars, which they had felt would be too difficult to sew, could easily be made. At that point, she, according to family legend, was authorized to make the first U.S. "stars and stripes" flag. A folded star pattern with her name has been found in a Philadelphia Quake Society safe, but there is no solid evidence that she actually made the tirst flag, but the legend endures. (The original flag contained 13 stripes and 13 stars, one stripe and one star fbr each of the colonies. As states were added, the flag changed, but it soon became apparent that there Letters to the editor: Readers are inited to write letters on matters of general interest to.the public. Letters do not necessarily reflect the philosophy or editorial policy of this newspaper, which reserves the right to edit letters. The Clinch Valley Times will" not pri.,.t unsigned letters were going to be too many stripes, so the design reverted to the flag's original 13 stripes--seven red and six white--representing the original colonies, and each state was then represented by a star.) We do know that Betsy Ross made at least some flags for the government, as a receipt showing that she made "ships colours" for the Pennsylvania Navy in May; 1777, has also been preserved. On 1777, Betsy Ross married sea captain Joseph Ashbum, who died in a British prison. She married John Claypoole in 1783. He was an old friend who had actually been in prison with Joseph Ashburn. He died in 1817 following a long illness. Betsy Ross/Ashbum/Clay- poole continued her upholstery business, which in- cluded making flags for the U.S. government, until 1827, when she retired and lived with her daugh-ter, Susannah Satterthwaite, who continued in the uphols- tery business. Betsy Ross died in 1836 at age 84. In any event, whoever made the very first "stars and stripes" flag, the design for which Francis Hop- kinson took credit, the Stars and Stripes was adopted as the official flag of the new country by the Second Continental Congress on June 14, 1777. The Revolutionary War, complete with the flag that represented the new country, came on the heels of the signing of the Declaration of Independence, of course, and the Constitutional Convention was con- vened May 25, 1787. Thirty-nine of the 55 delegates signed the Constitution on September 17, 1787. Sixteen failed to sign. The document, which we now recognize as being amazing, was then ratified by the legislatures of the states. (Delaware ratified it first, which led to its official, nickname, "The First State.") To find the origin of the second patriotic holiday, fast forward to 1885 and a young man named Bernard J. Cigrand. Cigrand, at age 19, was a teacher at Stony Hi!l School in Waubeca, Wisconsin. In order to impress upon his students the importance of the flag's origin and adoption by Congress, he placed a ten-inch, 38- star flag on his desk. The assignment was to write aft essay on the flag and its significance. Actually, the first person to suggest an observance of the day the flag was adopted was George Morris, Hartford, Connecticut, who evidently first thought of it in 1861. Morris is credited with suggesting the establishment of a "Flag Day" on June 14 in a volume called Kansas: A Cyclopedia of State History, pub- lished by Standard Publishing Company of Chicago in 1912. The day was actually observed in Hartford in 1861, but the tradition was not maintained. Cigrand's effort began 24 years later. The assign- ment he gave his students was the beginning of his many years of devoted effort to establish a day for a national Flag Day, which finally succeeded. We've just observed Flag Day; and are looking forward to the BIG patriotic holiday. We're fortunate here in St. Paul that the town sponsors a full scale Fourth of July celebration every year, providing an opportunity for the area's citizens to get together, enjoy fellowship, good food, great music, fun and games, and a fantastic fireworks display. What a wonderful way to celebrate and honor the Stars and Stripes! See you on the Fourth! 1"o the Editor: Power to the People, this is to advise of another Tea Party Tax Protest event in Bristol, VA at Sugar ttollow Park from 4 p.m.- 8 p.m. Bring your own picnic dinner 4 p.m.-6 p.m. and the Tea Party is from 6 p.m.-8 p.m. If you, like me and millions of Americans are fed up with the bailouts and the ever increasing spending and overreaching by our Federal Government that has been going on for years, but now the Obama administration has taken this to a level most Americans never dreamed possi- ble, with the taking over of car companies, banks, Insurance companies and now going after Healthcare and the Cap and Trade bill which threatens the Coal Industry. You have to ask yourself what is next?? It is time the Silent Majority be silent no more and to stand up for ourselves. Again I say--Power to the People! Bob Gibson Castlewood Lays Hardware Center for the Arts activities announced Activities at the Lays Hard- ware Center for the Arts through mid-July have been announced. .-The Lays Hardware "Center is located at 409 Front Street in downtown Coeburn. " - A special concerf, 'eaturing Jesse McReynolds and Coal- " 1own. will be presented at 5 p.m. " qaturday, July 4. Tickets are " $10 in advance, $12 at the door, " md ;5 tbr children. More infor- - rnation is available by calling 276-395-5160. The regular Friday night live " bluegrass presentations will lea- . ture Gary Edwards and Basic Grass on June 26. The July 3 " program will be provided by " White Top Mountain Band. Rick & the Po Folk are featured July 10, and on F'riday, July 17, music will be by Cody, Norris and the Watauga Mountain : Boys, with a performance by the - Center stage Cloggers. The Fri- day night programs begin at " 7:30 and conclude at 10:30, , with doors opening aft6 p.m. . Admission is $5 for adults, $1 ,' br children 6-12, and children under 6 are admitted free. " Jam Sessions are featured Thursday nights from 6;36" 0- 10:30 (doors open at 6.) There is no charge for admission, and the events are open to musicians and spectators. Classes which are held at the Center include Stained Glass to be taught Thursdays at 6 p.m. Call Rim Porter, 276-395-6103. A class in Pottery/Ceramics is planned for Tuesday evenings. Call Loretta Mays, 276-395- 3323 to express your interest in the class. Bob Ross Painting classes are suspended for the summer, but will resume Mon- day, September 28. For infor- mation, call Jay Holdway, 423- 612-7027. Lays Hardware Center for the Arts is a nonprofit organization dedicated to the preservation of Appalachian culture. It features great entertainment in a smoke- free, alcohol free family atmos- phere. For information about the Center or its programs, all Lo- retta Mays, 276-395-5160 or 276-395-3323; email info@lays hardware.com; or visit www. layshardware.com. Many local small businesses may soon be eligible for interest- free loans under a new program created by the economic recov- ery plan approved by Congress with my strong support. The Economic Recovery Act was approved by Congress and signed into law by President Obama to stimulate the economy in the short term and create a long term foundation for economic growth in the region. Creating a climate that is fav- orable to small businesses is critical to accomplishing these goals. Small businesses are at the core of our national economy. Two-thirds of the new jobs created nationwide are in com- panies employing 50 or fewer individaals. These companies are a wellspring of innovation, and they give strength and diversity to the economic found- ation of communities throughout our region and the nation. My top priority is to en- courage economic development and the creation of new jobs for Southwest Virginians. We are achieving that goal in various ways, including a broad effort to realize our full potential to create and foster the growth of locally owned small businesses. Creat- ing a climate that is favorable to small business startups and providing resources and other assistance to those who aspire to be small business owners is an important part of our strategy for promoting economic growth throughout our region and an important part of the work of my Congressional office. One way in which the Eco- nomic Recovery Act will help accomplish these goals is to provide assistance to small busi- nesses experiencing hardship due to the economic downturn. As a result, on Monday, June 22, the America's Recovery Capital Program was launched by the U.S. Small Business Admini- stration. The program allows small businesses to take out loans of $35,000 to pay down existing business debts. Bor- rowers pay no interest on the ECONOMIC RECOVERY ACT INTEREST-FREE LOAN PROGRAM AVAILABLE FOR SMALL BUSINESSES America's Recovery Capital loans and repayment does not begin for one year. The loan program Was created because many businesses throughout the nation and Southwest Virginia would be viable in the long term if some short term assistance was avail- able. The America's Recovery- Capital program gives entre- preneurs the breathing room they need, so they can pay their bills, retain employees and play thek traditional role as job creators in our economic recovery. To qualify for the America's Recovery Capital loans, small firms must demonstrate they are experiencing immediate finan- cial hardship due to the eco- nomic downturn, but are other- wise deemed by the Small Business Administration (SBA) to be viable. The loans will be made by commercial lenders and can be used for payments of principal and interest for exist- ing, qualifying small business debts like credit card obligations, mortgages, lines of credit, and balances due to suppliers, vend- ors, and utilities. In addition to his loan program, the Economic Recovery Act contained other measures aimed at helping small firms access credit. The new taw increases the percentage of a loan that the SBA can guarantee, makes SBA-backed loans more affordable and provides tools to unfreeze the small business cre- dit markets, helping small com- panies access capital at afford- able rates. To apply for America's Recovery Capital loans, busi- nesses should visit their local SBA-approved small business lenders. The loans will be available through September 30, 2010, or until appropriated funding runs out. Additional information about the ARC loan program is available at http://www.sba.gov/recovery/arc loanprogram/index.html. For further information, please contact my office in Abingdon at 276-628-1145, Big Stone Gap at 276-523-5450 or Pulaski at 540- 980-4310. SPHS All-Year Reunion is Friday & Saturday, July 24-25 The St. Paul High School Oxbow Center in St. Paul. Alumni Association has spent All interested persons who several months planning a haven't received registration spectacular All-Year Reunion ini'ormation and/or who haven't which will be held Friday and yet registered are urged to call Saturday, July 24 and 25, at the Benny Greer Crowder, 276-762- 9657, Suzy Pate Harrison, 276- 762-5544. All SPHS graduates or those. who attended St. Paul High" School-and their spouses-will be welcome. MORE REPAIRS."The manhoiein the area of Russell reet-that was damaged /by a torrential downpour several weeks ago was being repaired by the Virginia Department of Transportation on Tuesday morning. When that repair is completed, the damaged area of Russell Street will receive a fresh coat of asphalt, and will be as good as new! Boucher announces Economic Recovery Act grant for St. ...... Paul & St. Clmrles Clinics U.S. Representative Rich clinic in St. [aul, including the in Lee, Russell and Wise coun- ties regardless of their ability to pay on a sliding fee scale basis. "One of my highest priorities is expanding access to high qua- lity health care service for re- sidents of the Ninth District, regardless of their ability to pay. The federal funding from the Economic Recovery Act will improve the health care services available to residents of Lee, Russell and Wise counties," Boucher said. American Heart Association'llF Boucher has announced that as a result of the Economic Recove- ry Act approved by Congress, the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services has awarded a grant of $956,715 to the St. Charles Health Council for improvements to its clinics in St. Charles and St. Paul. "The federal funding announ- ced June 30 as a result of the Economic Recovery Act will assist the St. Charles Health Council in renovating its clinics in St. Paul and St. Charles, pur- chasing new equipment for the clinics and updating the electro- nic medical records system cur- rently in use by the clinics," Boucher said. With. the benefit of the fede- ral funds, the St. Charles Health Council will use $91,000 to renovate the William A. Davis installation of a new heating and cooling system. Additionally, $170,000 will be used for reno- vations at the St. Charles clinic. Additionally, $80,000 will be used to purchase new medical and dental equipment for the clinics. The remaining funds will be used to update and im- prove the electronic medical records system for the clinics. The clinics provide afforda- ble medical services to residents Fighting. Heart Disease and Stroke Deadline for classifieds is Tuesday noon! Clinch Valley Times MEMBER VIRGINIA PRESS ASSOCIATION Published weekly in St. Paul, VA 24283, by the CLINCH VALLEY PUBLISHING CO., INC. The Clinch Valley Times serves the four-county area of Wise, Russell, Dickenson and- Scott, with offices and plant located in the CLINCH VALLEY TIMES building, 16541 Russell Street. Perio- dicals postage is paid at the Post Office in St. Paul, VA 24283. Ann Young Gregory Editor Allen Gregory Advertising Susan Trent Adv./Graphics ANNUAL SUBSCRIPTIONS: In advance: $28.50 in Wise and Russell counties; $30.00 in other 24- zip codes; elsewhere, $32.50. POSTMASTER: send address changes to: Clinch Valley Times, 'P.O. Box 817, St. Paul, VA 24283 SINGLE COPY - 50e Classified Advertising: Minimum charge, $6.00 for up to 20 words, in advance; 25c per word after 20 words. Display Advertising rates on application. Periodicals publication Postal ISSN: 767600