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Wayne County News
October 27, 1927


Few people know the interesting story connected with the Tug Fork of Big Sandy River, which borders Wayne County for half the entire length of the county's western boundary, says The Big Sandy News.

There are a few persons now living who have seen the gas burning on the waters of Tug as it came out of the bowels of the earth and up through the bed of the river near Kermit. The blaze was extinguished many years ago after it had burned for no one knows how long. But, few are the people, very few, who know that this "burning spring" played a prominent part in naming of the river which now separates the states of West Virginia and Kentucky.

Few have heard of the little band of soldiers sent out in the fall of 1757 to establish a fort at the mouth of the "Great Sandy," how they camped one night at these "burning springs," killed two buffaloes and hung their skins on a beech tree near the blazes from the water; how they were overtaken two days later by a messenger as they were within a few miles of their destination and ordered to return to Virginia; how they killed their pack horses in the middle of winter and ate them after their provisions had become exhausted and the proximity of Indians prevented their firing a gun or kindling a fire; how many of them perished from cold and hunger, and how, when they retraced their steps to return to Fort Dinwiddle, 300 miles away, and arriving again at the "burning springs," the officers took down from the beech tree the two buffalo skins, now warmed by the gas flames, and cutting them into tugs gave each soldier a tug to last him as food until they arrived home. All this is condensed into the name of the north fork of Big Sandy--and perhaps more. Yet, it has all but been forgotten. A leatherbound book dimmed and faded by age, found in a group of discarded possessions, is perhaps all that has preserved this interesting history for the future generations which will inhabit the valley and flourish.


The covered bridge at the mouth of White's Creek, at the Hence Johnson farm, was broken Saturday when a truck heavily loaded from Huntington with lumber strained the woodwork beneath the floor of the bridge to the breaking point. Fortunately, the bridge did not totally collapse. New timbers have been ordered and repairs will have to be made promptly, according to announcement by County Road Engineer, H. O. Wiles. This is one of the few remaining covered bridges in the whole country. There are only two in Wayne County. This bridge was built at a total cost of eight hundred dollars in the days when lumber and construction costs were only a fraction of what they are now. The lumber was towed up Big Sandy in a barge as there was no railroad there when the old bridge was built in 1881.


Notice is hereby given that the undersigned on the 18th day of October, 1927, filed his petition and application with the Recorder of the Village of Wayne, a municipal corporation of the State of West Virginia, praying for the granting to him of a franchise for the period of fifty years from day of entry of a proper ordinance therefore to use all of the streets, alleys, avenues, public ways, roads, parks and grounds, or such of them as may be necessary or convenient, for the purpose of planting and placing poles, towers and structures for the holding and the use of operating maintaining, removing and replacing of wires and cables and other wires or material necessary or convenient in the operation of a telephone system and telephone exchange, and of the placing in and under the surface of any such streets, alleys, avenues and public ways, roads, parks and grounds conduits or other means or methods of placing and planting any such wires, cables or other materials useful or necessary as aforesaid, and also for the placing, maintaining, operating and removing of such material, antenna or other station or stations, structure or structures for the transmission or reception of sound or voice by means of wireless band and the dissemination thereof, as may be found convenient, necessary or useful in the said business; and that on the evening of 18th day of November 1927 at the Town Hall of the said Village of Wayne, and at the hour of 8:00 such matter will be called up for hearing at which time and place any person may attend and show cause against the same if any he can.

Given under my hand on this the 18th day of October, 1927.

C. J. McMahon,
Trading and doing business as
Wayne Telephone Company


Violet and Helen Marie Keller motored to Huntington last Sunday.***Mr. and Mrs. Robert Ellis and daughter and Bruce Congor spent last Saturday with Aubry Hunter.***Mr. and Mrs. Steve Bench spent Sunday with Mr. and Mrs. Fenton Adkins.


Mrs. Wetzel Lester is visiting her parents, Mr. and Mrs. Garland Mills of Upper Beech Fork.***Mr. and Mrs. Scot Berry of Huntington were Sunday guests of Mr. and Mrs. C. E. Osburn.***Mrs. Olive Smith, who has been confined to her home with a very badly infected leg, is feeling better.***Mr. and Mrs. J. C. Smith of Walnut Hills were Sunday guests of Mr. and Mrs. M. H. Smith.***Mr. and Mrs. Ralph Morrison of Huntington were Sunday visitors here.***Edward Smith of Huntington was the week end guest of Mr. and Mrs. Fonso Adkins.***Bertie Bowen is visiting friends in Huntington.


William Spurlock has purchased the grocery store of J. B. Crum and the restaurant owned by Jessie Prince.***Mrs. James Camel and Tom Self, who have been visiting in Virginia, have returned here.*** Orison Parsley of Breeding was the week end guest of friends here.***Dewey Parsley has moved to the residence of Frank Marcum.***Aunt Betty Queen, who has been ill, is improving.***Prayer meeting was held at the home of Charley Doss last Thursday night.***A Bible Class will be held at the Crum Baptist Church every Friday night.***Rev. and Mrs. Lawrence Sammons of Logan County were visiting here last week.***Wm. Sammons has purchased the Ford touring car owned by Leon Valley of Jennie's Creek.***Lelia and Fannie Molette are attending high school at Inez, Ky.***G. L. Adkins attended lodge at Portsmouth recently.***O. F. James was in White House and Paintsville, Ky., last week end.***J. B. Crum, Sr., is erecting a new building here.***The hard surfacing of the state highway began here last week with Sammons as contractor.***Mr. and Mrs. Lon Wiley of Williamson and Mrs. J. H. Marcum of Stonecoal were Sunday guests of Mrs. Nannie Corns.***Mr. and Mrs. G. W. Mead attended church at Warfield, KY., last Sunday.***Ruth Stepp is ill as of this writing.***Albert Crum, who is employed by the N & W Railroad, is visiting home folks.***Sherman Salmons of Kermit is visiting relatives here.

Transcription by June White

Wayne County News