County Archives bring local history
State budget focal point of School Board meeting
Cow struck by lightning during Friday storm
Archives bring local history to life
By KEVIN BURMEISTER, OCN staff
County Archivist Reda Bilbrey looks at one of the
thousands of documents held in the county archives, located in Overton
County Courthouse Annex.
Winston Churchill once said, "If you have knowledge,
let others light their candles with it.”
According to Churchill, then, Overton County Archivist
Reda Bilbrey and the several other volunteers who assist her preservation
efforts are caretakers of a veritable information inferno. By volunteering
to improve the archives, they have accepted the formidable task
of unlocking and organizing Overton County's past.
With storage room bookshelves overflowing with documents
whose ages range from pre-Civil War to the late 1990s, the Overton
County Archives contain a wealth of knowledge just waiting to be
received by the public. Anything from wedding licenses to 1930s
court minutes to "dog tax” forms to store receipts from the
disco era to Civil War atlases can be found in the archives.
Many of the oldest reference books and documents on
the archives' record were rescued from the Courthouse Annex garbage
While the majority of the archives' documents are
currently stored loosely on shelves, an effort is being made to
create a better, and more convenient system. Bilbrey wishes to make
that plan a reality by converting every permanent document onto
microfilm where it can be easily accessed by anyone in search of
"It's just to help preserve the records,” Bilbrey
said, "and to have them where people can access them."
This attempt at an archival database is in its infant
stages, and the ultimate goal is still very distant.
Bilbrey is confident that this goal can be reached,
but only when more volunteers contribute their time and energy to
"It's going to take years," she said, "I'm
talking about years, if we don't get any more help than what we've
got, and if we can't work on it every day. One day a week just doesn't
While direct access to the archives is restricted,
Bilbrey does allow appointments for anyone interested in discovering
their family's past.
"We don't let anybody just come in and look at
the records on their own," she said, "because a lot of
records have been stolen out of here.”
Overton County Archives are located in the Overton
County Courthouse Annex on University Street, in Livingston.
budget focal point of School Board meeting
With school registration set for Friday, Aug. 2 and
the first full day of classes on Tuesday, Aug. 6, concerns about
the state budget crisis were the focal point of the Tuesday, July
2 Overton County Board of Education meeting, held at the Central
Director of Schools Bill Needham informed Board members
that the Central Office had not yet been affected by the state government
shutdown, but he had received notification that the Adult Education
and Families First programs should be suspended until the budget
crisis is resolved.
"Mr. Dial (Randall) had already scheduled this
to be the week they were closed," Director Needham said.
"That was good preplanning whether they knew
it or not," he further stated.
"So, we didn't have to send anybody home."
He went on to tell board members, "We've been
advised that we might want to just operate with a skeleton crew.
We can do pretty much business as usual for several more days I
think without any problems."
He informed board members that school principals have
been asked, "Take a good hard look at what would happen to
their instructional programs in their schools if we see the kind
of cuts the state has predicted in their worst scenario type budget."
The worst scenario Needham referred to was the proposed
$1.75 million cut in Overton County's educational funds state legislators
predicted if a compromise was not reached in Nashville.
"There's a lot of things we hope to be able to
do, making more improvements next year. The only way we'll do it
is if we can maintain the budget from the state.
"The $1.75 million decrease in our funds they
have projected is more than we can absorb even with all the planning
Needham said. Needham also advised the board that
between the combined efforts of the Overton County Fair Board, Extension
Office, and the school system plans are being put into place to
include a "school day" during this year's county fair.
Each school will have the opportunity to take students
to the fair on Thursday, Aug. 8 from 10 a.m. until 2 p.m. to participate
in various activities, including a greased pig and watermelon seed
spitting contest, as well as a creative writing poster contest entitled
"The Lazy Days of Summer".
Students interested in participating in the poster
contest will need to bring their entry to the fair on the day of
the field trip where it will be judged and ribbons awarded for 1st,
2nd and 3rd place in age appropriate categories.
In addition to these activities, the midway will be
open during this time allowing students to purchase tickets for
20 cents each for the rides.
Needham said, "Hopefully, this will be able to
grow, with the calendars overlapping, increasing student participation
in the fair and help the fair grow."
In executive action, the board approved low bids for
products and services as follows:
Copy paper from American Paper and Twine at $2.02
Mita toner from N & L Business Systems at $44 per
Moving of portable classrooms by James Gore at $2,450
Cooling tower from Johnson & Scott,Inc. at $30,995.
Bus tires and tubes from Mark White Tire & Service
as follows: 10/22.5 radial, $180.61 each; 1100/22.5 radial, $194.21
each; 10/22.5 radial tube, $17.80 each; and 100/22.5 radial tube,
Garage supplies from Coleman Oil Company as follows:
antifreeze, 6 gallon case, $20.40 each; 20w50 oil, 12 quart case,
$16.85 each; 15w40 diesel oil, 6 gallon case, $32.90 each; 15w40
diesel oil, 12 quart case, $16.45 each; brake fluid, 6 gallon case,
$8.95 each, L-427 Super Blu grease, 35 pounds, $35.60 each; Motorcraft
FLIA and AC35 oil filters, $2.75 each; AC932 oil filter, $7.95 each;
PH42 oil filter, $5.50 each; power steering fluid, 12 quarts, $15
each; 930CCA batteries for gas buses, $61.90 each; and 1250CCA batteries
for diesel buses, $68.90 each.
Bus tire recapping from Coleman Oil Company at $87.90
for 10/22.5 radial carcass and $92.90 for 1100/22.5 radial carcass.
Yearly contract for pest control at all schools and
the Central Office from Universal Pest Control at $8,080.
Needham indicated the pest control service schedule
would be the same as the 2001-2002 school year and the cost remained
With all voting for, Board members approved IDEA 2002-2003
Federal Special Education Project, Local Amendment #24 Title I 2002-01,
and School Court Community original budget for 2002-2003 school
Director Needham issued the Director's Report to the
School Board. Actions taken by the director were as follows:
Hired Kirby Boles as custodian at Livingston Middle
Hired the following for Extended Contract Program:
Bonnie Stapp, Pat Swallows, Robin Gaw, Pat Austin, Vickie Eldridge,
Melinda Beaty, Gwen Smith, Teresa Johnson, Joe Gore, Terry Webb,
Janie Carter, Bridgett Carwile, Kevin Rhoten, Marcia Johnson, Donnie
Holman, Billie Akers, and Roger Smith.
Hired Tabitha Smith at Wilson Elementary.
Hired Howard Miller as transportation supervisor.
Approved medical leave for Dawn Neely from May 29
until June 25.
Hired Terry Melton for physical education position
at Hilham Elementary.
Hired Lora Franklin at A.H. Roberts.
Hired Christie Neely eight hours per day for three
days to help in book room.
Hired Rebekah Sims at Rickman Elementary.
Hired Rick Moles at Livingston Academy as transition
and curriculum administrator.
Approved leave of absence for school year 2002-2003
for Rick Sells and Scott Trevathan.
Approved maternity leave for Melissa Savage from August
6 until September 3.
The meeting adjourned.
2002-2003 Overton County School Calendar (Revised)
July 25 Teacher In-Service
July 26 Teacher In-Service
July 29 Teacher In-Service
July 30 Teacher In-Service
July 31 Stock-Piled Staff Development #1 (no students)
August 1 Teacher In-Service (County-wide Mandated)
August 2 Students Register (Abbreviated #1)
August 5 Discretionary Administrative #1 (no students)
August 6 First Full Day for Students
Sept. 2 Labor Day Holiday (no school)
Oct. 7-18 Fall Break Nov. 5 Stock-Piled Staff Development #2 (no
Nov. 27 Discretionary Administrative #2 (no students)
Nov. 28-29 Thanksgiving Holidays (no school)
Dec. 20 Abbreviated Day #2
Dec. 23 - Jan. 2 Christmas Break
Jan. 3 Discretionary Administrative #3 (no students)
Jan. 20 Discretionary Administrative #4 (no students)
March 17-28 Spring Break April 18 Good Friday (no school)
May 26 Discretionary Administrative #5 (no students)
May 30 Stock-Piled Staff Development #3 (no students)
May 31 Last Day of School (Abbreviated Day #3)
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by lightning during Friday storm
Dewain E. Peek/OCN staff
A cow was killed by a lightning strike during a storm
that rolled through the Monroe community around 3 p.m. Friday, July
5. The cow reportedly belonged to R&R Farms.
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Overton County News
415 West Main Street
P.O. Box 479
Livingston, Tennessee 38570