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The Hoke County News - Established 1928 The Hoke County Journal - Established 1905
VOLUME LXVII NO. 44 RAEFORD, HOKE COUNTY, NORTH CAROLINA S5 PER YEAR THURSDAY, MARCH 6, 1975
BY SAM C. MORRIS
Spring comes in March, but old man
winter is showing off before bowing
out. This week the weather has been
extremely cold. The nights in the 20's
and the days in the 40's.
Snow was reported in some parts of
the state Sunday morning, but I don't
believe any fell in Hoke County. Maybe
a good snow would cause the weather to
break and we could have an early spring.
The Jefferson-Jackson Day Dinner
was held last Saturday night in Raleigh
and was well attended, it was held at
the Royal Villa Motel between Raleigh
and Durham and brought together
Democrats for the first time since the
1974 General Election.
The crowd was larger than the
planning committee had expected and
some late arrivers for the dinner didn't
get seats and had to eat elsewhere at the
motel. Of course this caused some
grumbling from SSO ticket holders, but
1 expect they got a better meal than the
900 to a 1000 that got seats in the
convention hall. Of course the party was
the winner, as it turned out, as more
money was added to the-coffer. The old
saying still goes, "The early bird gets the
worm (or seat)."
Senator Robert C. Byrd of West
Virginia gave a typical Democratic
speech and added humor along the way
to keep the audience listening all the
way. He also compared the programs of
the -President and the Congress and sold
his package to the listening Democrats. I
don't believe it was too hard to sell.
Three men were around the lobby all
afternoon shaking hands and, to me,
seemed to be running hard for governor
now. They were Skipper Bowles, Jim
Hunt and Ed O'Hercom. The first two
named are well known to most
Democrats across the state, but the
third is not as well known. The time for
election is a long way off, so with his
early start, he will be known by voting
The ACC basketball tournament gets
underway in Greensboro this week and
it seems that the title is up for grabs.
Maryland, conference winner, is
considered the favorite but has been
defeated by Clemson and North
Carolina during the regular season play.
State, Clemson and Carolina tied for
second, but each have been defeated by
a team lower in the standings. So, it
could be any team's title.
The tournament has been a sellout
for months and many fans are
complaining because they can't get
tickets. This makes an easy job for the
promoters and more money in the
Anyway, the semi-finals and finals
will be televised and usually you can see
better than being at the game. Of
course, most of us like to say, "We were
at the tournament."
The baseball season at Hoke High got
off to a cold start Tuesday,
Firemen Seek Aid
To Purchase Truck
Firemen from the organizing West
Hoke district met with county
commissioners Monday morning, hoping
for a solution to equipment problems
that have caused a setback in plans for
The truck the department is buying
and has converted into a tanker-pumper
will not meet the requirements for state
certification. Fire chief Dannie
McCollum told the board.
The West Hoke truck will only pump
95 to 120 gallons of water per minute,
he said, and the state requires a flow of
750 gallons(per minute for a 15-minute
The financial condition of the
department is weak, he told the
commissioners. West Hoke district
derives slightly more than $2,400 in fire
taxes per year, county manager T.B.
Lester reported. The $5,000 in revenue
sharing money has been spent already
this year on tire building and equipment
and the department owes $3,900 on
A new truck costs about $32,000,
Borrowing from Farmers Home
Administration and buying a used truck
were discussed and the board urged the
group to seek to expand their district to
a four-mile radius to increase the tax
base. The commissioners told the
firemen that they could not promise
The executive director of Lumber
River Council of Governments, John
Highfill. appeared briefly at the regular
commissioners meeting to deliver a
proposal to expand the family planning
program at Hoke County Health
Susan McKenzie. acting
The eighty ninth World Day of Prayer
will be observed in Raeford Friday,
March 7, Mrs. Robert Gatlin of Raeford
Presbyterian Church announced.
The international celebration is
observed by Protestants, Orthodox, and
Catholic Christians in 169 lands, she
The theme this year is "Become
Perfectly One", a search for the
meaning of Christian unity in the
broader context of a pluralistic society,
The international committee has
designated Church Women United as
official sponsors, but since the county
lias no chapter of Church Women, the
First Baptist, United Methodist, and
Raeford Presbyterian churches will be
the county sponsors.
The service will be held at the
Raeford United Methodist Church. The
church will be open from 10 A.M. to 4
P.M., for individual meditation and
service, Mrs. Gatlin said.
Shortly after 4 P.M., the women of
the First Baptist Church will present a
Attic Shows A Profit
The Attic, a thrift shop operated by
two county womens' clubs, will no
longer accept consignments or provide a
The decisions were reached at a
meeting last week of the executive
board composed of members from
Raeford Woman's Gub and Raeford
Junior Woman's Gub. Bookkeeping
expenses were listed as the course tor
discontinuing the services.
A $1800 profit was declared for the
last six months. The RWC will use their
portion for the civic center while the
RJWC will contribute theirs to a
scholarship and to the cancer fund.
Winter garments that had not been
sold were donated to the county
department of social services.
administrator, said the proposal, in
which the county would have a health
nurse practitioner for family planning
clinics two days a week, would expand
the services now offered at the
Highftll asked for the commissioners'
comments on the proposal by March 10.
He also brought copies of the
proposed ordinance to create a planning
board. The commissioners will meet to
study the ordinance on March 11 at 8
Commissioner Jantes A. Hunt was
appointed to the board of the Sandhills
Mental Health Center. He is replacing
former chairman of the board of county
commissioners, T.C. Jones.
The board approved the purcltase of
two adding machines, two typewriters
and two stenographers chairs to be used
in the courthouse annex.
The equipment, which will amount to
See FIREMEN. Page 13
A public meeting on low-income
housing will be held Tuesday at
7:30 p.m. in the courtroom.
Scheduled to present
information on public housing are
Aubrey Jones, housing specialist for
the N.C. Department of Economic
and Natural Resources, Thurman
Burnett from the state office of
Farmers Home Administration and
William E. Clark, county supervisor
Also expected are private
developers interested in providing
low income public housing.
Mayor John K. McNeill urged
that anyone interested in public
housing, such as builders,
landowners, church, community or
senior citizen groups, to attend the
City Council Agenda Includes
Bids, Court Summons, Airport
Raeford's city council Monday night
received a summons from the clerk of
court to reply to a suit against the city
being brought by an irate resident,
heard a report that a problem at the
sewage disposal plant may cost
$100,000 to fix, and referred a request
back to the airport commission in
another round of the continuing
dissension at Raeford airport.
The city was given 30 days to reply
to a civil suit being brought by Mrs.
Agnes Campbell, who contends that the
city is denying water service to her.
Richard Moore, consulting engineer
from the city, reported that a problem
in drying the sludge at the city waste
treatment plant may cost $100,000 to
He recommended that the city wait
for the completion of a federal waste
facility study and then investigate
applying for possible grants.
Paul Rose, who operates a flying
school al the city-owned airport,
appeared with his attorney, Philip Diehl
to ask that the city council allow Rose
to continue operating a radio at the
Diehl, in a letter to the council, said
that Rose had gone to considerable
expense and difficulty to obtain the
radio and FCC license, only to have the
city in six months terminate his
privilege to operate.
Rose told the council that he'had not
objected when city manager John
Caddy had first asked him about the
city taking over the radio operation.
The council referred the matter back
to the airport commission.
Bids ranging from $5,000to SI5,000
were opened on roof repairs to city hall
Cumberland Roofing bid $5,021. Other
bids were Roscoe Snipes, $9,812.20:
Snead and Hatcher, $13,460 and T.R.
Ralph Barnhart, chairman of the
county commissioners, met with the
board to discuss the county's proposed
heating and electrical inspection
program. The council suggested that the
county also include housing inspections.
The application for a grant from the
Lumber River Criminal Justice Planning
Region was approved by the council. If
awarded, the city will hire a juvenile
corrections officer to work with cases
involving children under the age of 16.
The federal grant ? would be for $8,294
with the city supplying $459 in
The council agreed to request from
the state Department of Transportation
the slate-maintained street leading to
Knit-Away. They also adopted a
resolution calling for the formation of a
health region to include planning
regions H, M. and N.
Danny Hales, owner of the recreation
center on West Hlwood, appeared before
the board to request permission to open
his amusement business on Sundays.
The board took no action on the
request and pointed out that it was legal
to open on Sunday as long as the pool
tables were kepi covered.
Zoning Snags Library Plans
Plans for the county's Bicentennial
library have hit a snag on the city's
To comply with the law, one space of
off-street parking must be provided for
every four seats for patrons in the
Only a few spaces for the bookmobile
and staff are now included in the
building plans and the proposed
building site on Main Street is not large
enough to add a parking area.
"The problem with parking just never
came up," Ralph Bamhart, chairman of
the library building committee, said. "I
frgured we had both sides of Main Street
and all down Donaldson.
"But of course the city has a zoning
law, and it's good that they have one."
Barnhart said his main concern was to
do whatever was necessary to assure
lhat they could get a building permit
when the time came to let the contract.
According to city zoning
administrator Bill Sellars, the most
probable course to resolve the difficulty
will be for the library to apply to the
zoning board of adjustment for a'
variance. This will require a public
hearing before the board headed by
Jimmy Conoly can rule on whether to
waive the parking requirements.
The problem surfaced several weeks
ago when city manager John Caddy
received a letter from the library
architect, Darryl Wally, saying he
understood that Raeford had no zoning
ordinance. Sellars said a copy of the
ordinance was sent to him immediately.
Gifts Asked For Auction
Do you have an old wicker chair
shoved in a tool shed? A sewing
machine cabinet rusting behind the
pump house? Some old bottles or
What is junk to one may be a treasure
to another, is the theory behind the
Raeford Woman's Club auction to be
held April 12 at Devanc's auction barn
See GIFTS. Page 13
Dropped In '74
$ One Million
Set April 9-11
Registration for kindergarten and
first grade will be held April 9-11 from
8:30 A.M. - 4:00 P.M. at West Hoke.
Scurlock and J.W. McLauchlin
A child registering for kindergarten
must be 5 years old on or before Oct.
A child registering for first grade
must be 6 years old bv Oct. 16.
A child enrolled in public
kindergarten need not reregister for
Estimated farm income in the county
last year dropped by about a million
Lower cotton prices accounted for
most of the loss, according to county
farm agent Wendell Young.
Estimated value of cotton grown here
last year was $2.4 million. Young said,
compared to $3.5 million the year
before. The estimate was based on a
market price this year of 38 cents a
pound, even though very little of this
year's crop has yet been sold.
Total farm income for 1974 was
estimated at $17,669,150. Young
estimated 1973 income at $18,632,452.
Unless Congress intervenes with
increased price supports. Young
predicted that cotton acreage will drop
this year to half that planted in 1974.
"Last year we had some 11,000 acres
in cotton," Young said. "If we end up
this year with 5,000 it'll fool me."
Also showing a drop last year was
forestry income which fell from $1.3
million in 1973 to $826,000 last year.
Young said the decrease had no
"Some winters it's just easier to get
the wood out," he said.
Payments through federal programs
also dropped last year, reflecting a shift
in policy toward a supply and demand
program, Young said. In 1973, Hoke
farmers were paid $929,271 by the
federal government. Last year, federal
payments amounted to $55,72659.
Tobacco income was up considerably,
due mostly to higher prices. Young said.
Last year's estimated income was $4.1
million, compared to $3.5 the year
Other areas of farm income changed
little. Income from soybeans was $3.9
million, compared to $3.2 million in
1973. Vegetables brought $282,313
compared to $266,505 the previous
Young said he expected more
empliasis on pickling cucumbers this
"It's a way to pick up a little cash
early in the season."he said.
Income from livestock last year
amounted to $2.9 million, compared to
$2.8 million in 1973 and poultry
income was estimated at $1.6 million,
up somewhat from $1.1 million the year
Luckie Returned To Jail,
Murder Trial Next Month
Jesse L. Luckie. indicted for the
double murder of his girlfriend's parents
last October here, Iras been returned to
the Hoke County jail.
l.uckie, 25, of Rt. I, Raeford, was
brought back from Dorothea Dix
hospital in Raleigh where he underwent
a court-ordered pre-trial study to
determine if he is competent to stand
Luckie is charged in the killings of
W.T. McAllister and his wife, Mary Lee.
at their home near Blue Springs in the
early morning hours of October 19. At
the time of his arrest, Luckie was
described as the boyfriend of the
McAllister's daughter, Ava.
The bodies of the victims were found
sprawled on the tloor ol the dining
room with numerous gunshot wounds
from a .22 caliber automatic rifle.
Public Defender James Little,
representing l.uckie, declined to
confirm or deny a change in venue will
be sought in the case.
"It would be improper for me to
comment at this time", he said. "No
motions have been made".
Little was asked about the recent
speculation of Luckie getting a fair trial
from a Raeford jury.
"Really, I don't have an opinion.
We're still studying that".
The murder trial has been calendered
for the next term of Superior Court
which begins April 28.
Jury Awards $1,000 Damages To Propst In Long Time Feud
A Superior Court jury awarded
SI .000 damages to a Hoke County man
after ruling he was wilfully and
maliciously assaulted and injured by his
After deliberating about an hour and
fifteen minutes, the jurors found the
plaintiff, David Props!, 58, of Rt. I,
Rieford. entitled to reoover $500 in
actual damages as a result of an assault
last June 25, made on Props! by Arol H.
Smith, Sr., also of Rt. I.
Punitive damages were set at $500.
Smith's wife, Magdalene N. Smith, a
co-defendant ^in the suit, received a
favorable ruling from the jury and they
found she was not a party to the assault
and was not liable.
The lawsuit, involving a long-time
feud among the two families, was
Interrupted Tuesday when Smith
became angered and threatened to "take
ipart" the plaintiff!attorney.
Judge Hamilton Hobgood
immediately excused the jurors from
the courtroom and sternly warned
Smith he would be jailed for contempt
of court if he made any more
Smith made the remark, from the
witneis stand while under cross
examination from Raeford attorney
Diehl asked Smith what crimes he
had been arrested aid convicted of.
Smith glared at the lawyer and said.
"I'm fixing to be convicted of taking
The trial entered the second day of
testimony Tuesday after a jury was
The Smiths, who acted as their own
attorneys, were respondents in a suit
brought by Propst who sought damages
totaling $150,000 arising out of the
June 25 incident.
A counter suit filed by the Smiths
requested $175,000 in damages, alleging
Propst caused Smith to be falsely
arrested and jailed for forty-one days.
The Superior Court suit was the latest
in a series of criminal and civil cases
involving the two families over several
The disagreements have arisen out of
the lack of a public roadway to the
Propst home. The only access to the
Propst home was via a roadway on the
Smith property, and numerous disputes
over the use of the road resulted in
charges and countercharges brought to
court since 1969.
A civil suit brought by the Propsts,
and heard In Superior Court last March,
granted the Propsts the right to a
roadway and access for purposes of
construction Propst and his wife,
Ethel, testified they were working on
the road June 25 when Propst was
attacked and beaten by Smith.
Sheriff D.M. BarTington testified he
transported Propst to the office of Dr.
Robert Townsend for treatment.
Barrington told the court Propst's
face was "badly swollen, bruised, one
eye was completely closed, and he was
bleeding from the nose".
Barrington, under cross examination
by Smith, testified he did not provide
transportation for medical treatment for
Smith because Smith insisted he would
go only to Womack Hospital at Ft.
"I didn't see a mark on you,"
Barrington told Smith.
The Smiths each testified they did
not provoke the assault Mn. Smith
testified Propst attacked her husband
with a shovel and he attempted to ward
Propst off. Mrs. Smith continued she
came to her husband's aid, fearing for
Mrs. Smith, cross examining
Barrtngloo, asked why no deputy was
sent in response to her call June 25, and
Barrington stated the only call he was
aware of was made by the Propsts after
"I've received so many calls from you
and the Propsts in the past seven or
eight years, it's hard for me to sort them
out," he said.
"We were under a court order to send
a deputy, at Mr. Propst's request, every
time he went out to repair the road. On
this date, no request was received,"
The Smiths' son, Aral (Buster) Smith,
Jr., testified he witnessed Props! using a
shovel to attack his father, and his
father was only attempting to defend
The Smiths called Harold Boyles,
who sold the Smiths their property, and
also county agent Wendell Young, to
the witness stand to describe the land in
detai to the Jurors.
Various restraining orders, dating
from 1972, were admitted into evidence
for the plaintiffs. The orders enjoined
both parties from interfering with each
other, under penalty of civil arrest for a
violation of the order.
Smith's counterclaim for false arrest
damages was based on his civil arrest,
shortly after the June 25 fracas, for
allegedly violating a March 4, 1974,
At the conclusion of the defense
presentation, Hobgood sent Ibr jurors
out of the courtroom and dismissed the
counterclaim because the Smiths did
not present any evidence of a wrongful
After the proceedings, Judge
Hobgood warned the litigants "not to
start anything as you're going down the
stairs" and told both families he didn't
want to have to "take any action".