Susan Moore gymnasium named in honor of Coach McAfee

On Friday, the stands were full for a dedication ceremony renaming Susan Moore’s gymnasium the Bruce McAfee Gymnasium in honor of one of the school’s most prominent teachers and coaches. McAfee served Susan Moore High School as a teacher, assistant football coach, baseball coach, head basketball coach, head football coach, and principal during his 33 years at the school. During […]

Merit board delays ruling on fired Oneonta employee

In a special called meeting to consider an appeal of Geneva Wall’s dismissal by the city of Oneonta, Blount County Merit System Board members decided to delay action awaiting further word from Wall or her attorney. Oneonta contends that Wall does not have standing to appeal to the board. City attorney Alex Smith filed documents so arguing with the board. […]

Here we go again…

Judge Roy Moore exhumes same-sex marriage issue

Alabama Supreme Court Chief Justice Roy Moore issued an administrative ruling last week ordering the state’s probate judges not to issue marriage licenses contrary to the Alabama law and constitutional amendment barring same-sex marriage. The ruling once again places probate judges in a double bind of conflicting allegiances: follow the U.S. Supreme Court ruling of June 26, 2015 sanctioning same-sex […]

County, FEMA hold flood damage verification meeting

Blount County commissioners and the county engineer met with state and federal emergency management representatives Tuesday to go over preliminary estimates for flood damage sustained during the holiday storms. The meeting room session was followed by a tour of selected sites around the county to survey actual damage sustained by county infrastructure and the extent of work required to restore […]

Monday wreck claims two lives

A head-on collision Monday evening on Ala 75 resulted in the deaths of two men. The accident occurred approximately two miles south of Oneonta at Allgood near mile marker 23. Robert Eugene Marsh, 52, of Oneonta, was driving a 2000 Ford Mustang that crossed the median and collided with a 2006 Chrysler van driven by Nelson Dehaven Byess, 68, of […]

Special work session set to discuss unit system, 1-cent sales tax proposal


In the closing moments of the Monday commission business meeting, District 4 Commissioner Gary Stricklin asked that the agenda be amended to include an important item not originally scheduled for action. He asked that a special work session be called to address constituent requests he has received. The general tenor of the requests has been for the county to convert […]


ROBERT E. LEE BIRTHDAY OBSERVANCE The 17th annual event will be Monday, Jan. 18, at 11 a.m., in front of the Blount County Courthouse. Guest speaker will be Jimmy Hill, there will be a 21-gun salute, and Glenna Boyd Caldwell will sing “How Firm a Foundation.” Afterwards, the group plans to eat at the Busy Bee Restaurant in Allgood. Phone […]

Is Jeb the GOP’s only hope?


Last week we discussed the presidential race. The GOP race for the nomination has been one of the most illuminating in history and never before have political novices been the frontrunners. It is obvious that voters prefer an outsider with no governmental experience. Donald Trump and Ben Carson would both be considered outsiders, both lacking in political experience and skills […]

Some good ole’ sweet tea

What began as a start-up business venture in his parent’s basement, is now looking like an entrepreneurial success. And, for a 21-year-old Hayden man, he’s living his childhood dream. The idea began when Darien Craig was 14 years old. Two of his friends’ moms made great sweet tea. After playing sports or adventuring outside during the summer, he and his […]

From the Archives

The Southern Democrat, January 13, 1944

Kimbrell Residence Damaged By Fire Considerable damage was done the residence of Rev. and Mrs. H.C. Kimbrell last Saturday afternoon when fire broke out from an oil heater in the bath room. The bath room was completely burned out, but the quick action of the Fire Department confined the flames to the one section of the house. A quantity of […]