Friday, April 16, 2010

My Home is Kingsport, TN

I was born in Knoxville, TN, and moved to Kingsport with my wife, Beverly, and my son, Gregory, in 1963. We’ve been here ever since except for almost 3 years in Mexico.
We had two more children, Kevin and Bethany, who were born in Kingsport.

Ever wonder how Kingsport got its name? It is called a port but it is located many miles inland. The way I understand it, there was a man name King who owned or operated a a barge station on the Holston River. Hence, over time “King’s port” became Kingsport.

Is Kingsport famous? Not so much. It is the home of Eastman Chemical Company. And Elvis came here once to play in our little civic auditorium. It is supposedly the last time he was not the top bill for the show.

Perhaps the most unusual history of Kingsport involves a circus that came to town in September 1916 (before my time). A local man was hired by the circus as an assistant elephant trainer. On September 11 he was killed by Mary, a 5 ton Asian elephant. What happened is uncertain, but the story says she picked him up and threw him into a drink stand, then stepped on his head deliberately.

Mary_thumb2There was a public outcry of wild proportions that called for the elephant to be killed. The elephant was dubbed Murderous Mary by the newspapers. As a result of the ordeal, the Circus owner reluctantly decided that the elephant needed to be put down.

On September 13, 1911 the elephant was transported to Erwin, TN where a crowd of over 2.500 people watched the elephant killed by hanging in the Clinchfield Railroad yard. Poor Mary was hung by the neck from a railcar fitted with an industrial crane. The life of Mary the elephant had come to an horrible end.

Since then we’ve had nothing so horrible to happen. Kingsport is a good place to live.

Tennessee Granddaddy Says:
Someone said, you should learn something new every day.   Unfortunately, many of us are at that age where what we learn today, we forget tomorrow.
But, friend, give it a shot anyway.

Quote of the Day
Whoever is in a hurry shows that the thing
he is about is too big for him. 
~Lord Chesterfield

Joke of the Day

Did the audience like your speech? Yes, they did. When I sat down, they said it's the best thing I've ever done.


During a boring and especially long-winded speech, one of the members of the audience became so upset he threw a wine bottle at the speaker. Unfortunately, the flask struck someone else near the podium, knocking him unconscious. As the poor man was being revived, he was heard to say 'Please, hit me again - I can still hear him talking.

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1 comment:

madcobug said...

Poor Mary coming to that bad end. Maybe the man did something to her to cause her to do that. Helen