Jack Dempsey’s Mother (1927)


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On September 27, 1927, the Logan Banner of Logan, WV, profiled Jack Dempsey’s mother:


Mrs. Cecelia Dempsey, mother of Jack, concluded her visit here yesterday and left that afternoon with her traveling companions, Mr. and Mrs. J. Kenneth Stoltz, for Charleston, thence to points east. They had motored here from their home in Salt Lake City and were quartered at the Aracoma during their six days’ stay in the city. Mrs. Dempsey called on many relatives and old friends and had originally planned to spend several days in Mingo county.

By the time they reached Sharples Mrs. Dempsey missed a hatbox containing a $3500 watch, a gift from her famous son, and two valuable rings. They returned at once to Logan and after an anxious search found the missing box with contents undisturbed alongside the Washington apartments. Evidently it had fallen into the street and some passerby had placed it against the building, presumably without knowledge or curiousity as to the nature of its contents.

“As far as I am concerned,” Mrs. Dempsey told a Charleston reporter last night, “I am satisfied with the way the fight went, but as long as the people feel the way they do, I hope there will be another fight arranged. Mr. Tunney is a fine man, and I suppose the judges did what they thought was right in awarding him the decision, but the people who have talked to me think it should at least have been a draw. It was, perhaps, Jack’s fault that he lost, because he did not know the Illinois rules, or forgot them if he lost his head in the excitement, and forgot what he should have done when he knocked Tunney down in the seventh round.

“I believe the people should cheer the champion,” she went on to say, “and yet I would like to see them better satisfied. I hope if Jack and Tunney fight again that they will not have to stop at ten rounds but will keep on until one or the other is knocked out. I want to see Jack either lick his man or get a good licking himself, and quit. But I want him to quit the game clean and with a good name.”

While Mrs. Dempsey seemed to have enjoyed her visit in West Virginia and expressed a hope that she could come back next year for a longer stay, she said she wouldn’t want to live back here again because of the difference in climate. However, the people are more sociable here, she added, and are much more friendly upon first acquaintance.

Mrs. Dempsey indicated she and companions would leave today for their home in Salt Lake City instead of going farther east. She has had to cut her visit in West Virginia a little short for fear of being unable to get through the snow in the passes of Utah, since the first storms often begin early in October, she said, and keep the roads blocked until spring. She expects Jack and his wife, the screen actress Estelle Taylor, to meet her in Salt Lake City, about October 10, and she is hurrying back to see her son.

Battle of Blair Mountain (1921)


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From the Logan Banner of Logan, WV, comes this item dated September 9, 1921 about the “armed march” on Logan County by union miners:



The war is over!

With the arrival of federal troops Saturday and the relieving of the boys along the battle sector Sunday morning Logan citizens started to regain rest which has been denied for two weeks. All Sunday afternoon special trains were speedily filled up and started on their way with tired but happy men, for their homes up and down the county and to our neighboring counties who so willingly came to our help at a time when days looked very black for the future of our beautiful county.

Every man a volunteer and every one ready for action as soon as he arrived in Logan. Logan will never forget the sacrifice made.

Monday evening in answer to a call issued, the circuit court room filled with citizens of Logan to give thanks and offer resolutions to those helping us and to the counties who so nobly responded to our calls for help.

The meeting was opened by Clarence McD. England and Naaman Jackson, president of the First National Bank was elected chairman. Committees were immediately appointed to draw up the resolutions. During the time the committees were preparing the resolutions several impromptu speeches were made. The speakers included Attorney Lilly and Chafin. Mr. Chafin emphasized the fact that it was due to Kanawha county’s failure to properly cope with the situation at the time when it could have been handled without bloodshed that it become necessary for Logan to mobilize an army under arms to protect its rights as a county. He brought forth rousing cheers when he stated that Logan county has a sheriff who had made the statement that “they shall not pass” and now they could say “THEY DID NOT PASS!” The fighting parsons were called for. They were the Reverends Coffey and Dodge.

Rev. Dodge said we had taught the rednecks the meaning of “Love” as it had been taught to him when a child–that of the application of a slipper to a part of his anatomy. He said it was in this manner he preached the meaning of the word and felt in this way Logan had showed her love for those who were fighting under the red flag through ignorance but who have now laid down their arms to resume the more peaceful pursuit of “live and let live.”

Justice of the Peace Fulton Mitchell was called on for a speech relative to the treatment received at the hands of the enemy when he and his three companions were captured and held for more than a week. His remarks were of the same content as will be found in another column of this issue.

In due time the resolutions had been prepared and read to those present and were speedily adopted and have been sent to the counties specified.

They are as follows:

Logan, Logan County, West Va.,

September 5, 1921

To the Officials and Citizens of our Neighboring West Virginia Counties, and the Western Counties of Virginia, whose Aid and Counsel was so Freely and Generously given to us at the time of the threatened invasion of our boundaries:


The representative citizenship of Logan county, West Virginia, in mass meeting on this day assembled, do hereby earnestly and publicly express to you and each of you, our sincere and hearty thanks and appreciation for the substantial, timely and very valuable aid and assistance rendered to our county and our citizenship during the recent attempted invasion of our boundaries by a misguided and hostile mob, imbued with the spirit of anarchy and fighting under the red flag.

The value of the help brought by the men who came to us from your counties cannot be overestimated. The organization was soon perfected and proved effective in holding back the invaders.

While your men were with us they showed fine courage and devotion to duty; their bearing was always that of courteous gentlemen, and the citizens of Logan county most heartily thank you and your gallant men for the splendid help given.

We hope the occasion will never arise when you will need similar assistance, but, if such a crisis should occur, our men will be found ready to respond.







Resolutions Committee.

The foregoing resolution was unanimously adopted at a mass meeting held in the City of Logan, September 5, 1921.



In mass meeting assembled at County Court House in Logan, September 5th, 1921:

The citizens of Logan county–

RESOLVED: That the actions and efforts of the Logan county officials as well as those of the loyal men and women, are most heartily commended and approved, and it is further

RESOLVED: That the final results of such are most gratefully acknowledged and appreciated, and be it

RESOLVED: That a copy of these resolutions be printed in our local newspapers.





Armed March: More Union Miners Arrested (1922)


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From the Logan Banner of Logan, WV, comes this item dated April 7, 1922 about the arrest of more union miners relating to the “armed march” on Logan County:

State Police Bring in Five More Miners

State policemen arrived in Logan Sunday evening with five more men whom they had arrested on Coal River and other points in that section of the state who were charged with being “red necks” or members of the armed body of miners who marched on Logan last August.

Jim and Watt Aldeman, Mote Thompson, George Hensley and Sam Mullins constituted the party under arrest. These men escaped the officers for many months, but the ferreting out process of the state officers goes merrily on and it is understood they are still valiantly seeking others for whom they have warrants and the number now charged with participation in the march and now in jail or under bond will be constantly augmented until the entire number have been rounded up and their names registered with the keeper of the Logan jail.

Jack Dempsey Goes South (1924)


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From the Logan Banner of Logan, WV, comes this story dated January 4, 1924 about boxing champion Jack Dempsey:

Dempsey Goes South For Early Training

Jack Dempsey, heavyweight champion of the world, who used to call Logan home, boarded a ship at New York Wednesday bound for Florida, where he will indulge in light training this winter, preparing for a battle in defense of his title in the spring. His opponent will most likely be Tommy Gibbons, the only battler to stay the limit with him since he became champion. Gibbons stepped fifteen rounds with Dempsey at Shelby, Montana, July 4, 1923, and is itching for another crack at the champion.

Dempsey’s first port of call will be Jacksonville, where the steamer Comanche is to end its voyage. Just what will happen after that is a matter of vagrant chance. It is probable that the champion will remain in Jacksonville for several days to await the pleasure of Jerry Luvadis his trainer, and Jack Kearns, his man of business. Once complete, the party will head south with Palm Beach and Miami in the immediate foreground.

After that it may be a case of join the navy and see the world from a port hole. The champion may go in Cuba for a quick look.

Meantime, he will indulge in light exercise under the direction of Kearns and his trainer in a conference with Tex Rickard just before sailing. Dempsey expressed a desire to frolic with three opponents during the coming outdoor session. The other two are Luis Firpo and Hary Wills.

Rickard is alleged to have said that he was none too keen on the Gibbons enterprise but indicated a willingness to receive customers at the gate with dignity and politeness, in the event that a so-called public demand for the bout could be created. Rickard has no definite objection to Gibbons as an attraction, the promoter merely having other plans in mind.

He has been quoted as saying that two championship starts will be sufficient for Dempsey next summer. One of them, of a certainty, will be against Luis Firpo. The latter is a sure starter against Dempsey in spite of the fact that everyone knows he will fail to finish.

Micco in Logan County, WV (1916)


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Micco Belt Line and Tipple, Logan County, WV. Photo date and credit unknown.


Mico is growing and Mico is going to be one of West Virginia’s best and most up-to-date mining towns. There are now one hundred houses here, and another hundred are under construction. There are also two pool rooms and a motion picture theatre in which to secure entertainment and while the hours away pleasantly.

The Main Island Creek Coal company conducts in this section one of the best stores, pool rooms and barber shops on the creek; they are well lighted, sanitary, bright and new. The pool room contains three fine tables and the barber shop is equipped with two chairs and all modern appliances and conveniences. There is also a reading room where the public may go and look over the newspapers and periodicals free of charge.

J.A. Roberts, formerly of Barnabus, is now installed as manager of the poolroom and barbershop and is working diligently to provide satisfactory service for his large and growing trade.

It is true that there are no sidewalks or hard roads here at this time, but such improvements are contemplated and may be expected soon. The people of Mico are looking forward to the time when the locality will be one of the model mining camps of the entire state, and they are confident and we will enjoy having you here.

It is a pleasure to come up to the pool room and play in a nice, clean, well-managed place, get a slick shave and hair cut, and then go home and greet the family with a smile and a kiss and not go in drunk, ragged and with hair long and unkempt, growl at the little ones and the wife. Nothing like that goes here. We are trying to live happily and make the other fellow happy by smiles. Come and see us. You will enjoy your visit and we will enjoy having you here.

Source: Logan (WV) Banner, 4 May 1916.

The Wanderer: A Poem (1928)


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From the Logan Banner of Logan, WV, comes this poem written by Harry Durham of Taplin titled “The Wanderer,” published November 20, 1928:


I have been in sunny Italy.

I have been in flowery France.

I have seen the silvery moonbeams

On the Alpine mountains dance.

I have been in quaint old China.

I have trod Great Britain’s land.

I have seen the heat elfs dancing

On Sahara’s burning sand.

I have rode the rattling rikas

Thru far Yokohama’s street.

I’ve eaten in snow-clad Igloos

Strips of frozen walrus meat.

I have sailed the broad Atlantic.

I have whaled in Arctic ice.

Steered a bastard thru Magellan.

Rounded bleak Cape Horn twice.

And the wanderlust keepings calling,

Mocking, just around the bend,

Leering me by empty promise

To a homeless, friendless end.

But its call is fainter growing

And its beck no longer thrills

For I’ve found a golden milestone

In the West Virginia hills.

For no matter where I’ve wandered

On a vain and empty quest,

I have left my heart behind me

In the land I love the best.

And when I sign articles

On that last and endless trip,

Let me sail thru-out the ages

On this rugged square rigged ship.

For I ask no sweeter nectar

Than to quaff its crystal rills.

For I’ve known a golden milestone

In the West Virginia hills.