Changes in Morristown


Security camera footage at Blue River Memorial Park showed a cross country skier this week. “You don’t see that often in Shelbyville,” parks board president Gary Nolley said.

Library Employee Retires After 45 Years

Judy Cheatham (right) pages through a memory book assembled by co-workers while her sister, Peggy Haltom, looks on. | Anna Tungate

A surprise retirement party was held in honor of long-time Shelby County Public Library employee Judy Cheatham yesterday. Family, friends, and co-workers gathered to commemorate Cheatham’s 45 years of service. “We’re definitely going to miss her,” library director Janet Wallace told The Addison Times. “We really appreciate all that she’s done for us.” Cheatham started at the library in a position funded by CETA (Comprehensive Employment and Training Act) and eventually transferred to full-time. She served as adult services director and head of the genealogy department for many years. Cheatham’s final day of employment is tomorrow.


  • Under new ownership for the past six weeks, Fountaintown Gas manager Jerry Klinker told the Morristown Town Council last night not to expect major changes. “The Beynon family that owns these companies believes in rural America. They own thousands of acres of farmland in Nebraska and some other things, and so they keep (the companies) in small towns… and that’s just going to continue,” Klinker said, adding that the company name will remain the same. “We’re investing and moving forward and the Wortman family is looking to relax and not do that,” he said. Shelby County communities serviced by Fountaintown Gas include Morristown and Marietta.

  • The Morristown Town Council approved on first and second readings an ordinance calling for the installation of at least four “no parking” signs on both the east and west sides of Industrial Drive between the railroad tracks and the curve. Town Marshal Henry Albrecht said that trucks have been parking in the area. Violations can be enforced with a $10 fine or by towing the vehicle. A council member asked town attorney Mark McNeely if the council could raise the fine amount. “You can, but not tonight,” McNeely said to laughs.

  • The Morristown Redevelopment Commission last night approved a resolution granting commission attorney Mark McNeely to draft a letter opposing HB 1187, which is under consideration by the current state legislature. Authored by State Rep. Robert Cherry (R-53), the bill addresses tax increment financing, known as TIFs. One provision in the bill would require certain “percentages of incremental revenue collected in an allocation area to be distributed among taxing units wholly or partly located within the allocation area and provides a schedule for the percentage that must be distributed each year.” That concerns McNeely. “We would have to give up, worst-case scenario, 30 percent of our revenue, which would affect our bond payments,” he said. Council member Larry Tracy said the change would be “crippling.” Another provision in the bill calls for adding a voting member of the local school board on the commission. The bill has been referred to a legislative committee on local government.

  • The Morristown Town Council approved a contract with Mader Design allocating $19,500 for downtown planning. Council members said that while a wish list exists, the next step is formalizing a plan, which will allow for grant-seeking opportunities. Public input will be sought, landscape architect Jeff Mader said.

  • Sheriff’s deputies responded to seven vehicle slide-offs on Tuesday.

  • As of yesterday, the state reported 4,490 positive coronavirus cases in Shelby County, an increase of 15 from the previous day, out of 17,839 tests, an increase of 250 from the day before. The number of deaths for Shelby County remained the same, at 87.

  • EDITOR’S NOTE: Thank you for all of the subscriptions and Founding Members contributions yesterday. It is so much appreciated; we’re off to a strong start. If you wish to keep your subscription with the same payment on file as before, just respond to this email and I’ll take care of it. Otherwise, the subscription link is here. Thank you again for making it all possible!

  • HOOSIER NEWS: The Big Ten Conference announced Tuesday that its men's basketball tournament will move from Chicago to Lucas Oil Stadium in Indianapolis, the site of this year's Final Four. The tournament will be played March 10-14 just a few blocks away from Bankers Life Fieldhouse where the women's tourney will take place the same week. Big Ten officials see the advantages of Indianapolis as a tournament site, especially amid the COVID-19 pandemic. The walkable hotels and restaurants, nearby venues and city’s web of skywalks provide a better opportunity of keeping players, coaches and staff members healthy. (Indiana Public Media)


News around Shelbyville and the surrounding area as reported on or about this date in history. Selections are curated from the Shelby County Public Library Genealogy Department.

20 YEARS AGO: 2001
Retired St. Joseph Catholic School teacher Helen Evans received a Sagamore of the Wabash Award from Gov. Frank O’Bannon. The award was presented by attorney J.D. Lux, a former student of the elementary teacher, at a special mass.

30 YEARS AGO: 1991
Triton Central High School wrestler Doug Young advanced to state finals. Eric Heppner was the squad’s coach.

40 YEARS AGO: 1981
Judge George Tolen and Prosecutor Jeff Linder told the county council that there hadn’t been any “squabbling” with other judicial officials, as had been rumored in the news. “Have you ever heard me make a complaint about another judge?” Tolen asked the council. “I didn’t hurl any charges. It’s unprofessional to get involved in public bickering with another judge.” Linder concurred. “There’s no need for a continuing public display but to sell newspapers,” he said. “Let’s get out of the newspaper and get back to work.”

Shelby County Youth Shelter Care Inc. was deeded a home at 218 N. Harrison St. The home would be used to house children ages 10 to 17 who had run-ins with the law as well as children who had been abused by their parents.

50 YEARS AGO: 1971
Paul’s Shoes, a store established in 1947 by Paul Sirkus, was sold to a new corporation formed and headed by his son, Sanford Sirkus. Paul Sirkus would remain with the store in a part-time advisory capacity. He had been in the retail shoe business since coming to Shelbyville from St. Louis in 1935. He was first with the old Wolf’s Store and in 1938 moved to the former Goodman Department Store. He established Paul’s Shoes in 1947 in the southeast segment of Public Square, moving the store to the northeast segment in October 1960.

Shelby County’s official population in the 1970 Census was announced at 37,797, up 10.9 percent from the 1960 figure.

60 YEARS AGO: 1961

The SHS “S” Club met with Arthur Barnett during home room period to discuss plans for a pre-sectional pep session and sock hop, to be held in Paul Cross gym on Feb. 18. Members of an organizing committee were Anne Brant, Mary Ellen Hall, Jane McCabe, Marty Mitchell, Pat Murphy, Dianne Rukes, Ann Schoelch, Margaret Soller, Lynn Solomon, and Anne Woodmansee. The Boys’ Booster Block would spin the records for the sock hop. Student Council would be in charge of the shoe check at the dance. Boys in charge of the Hi-Y check rooms at the upcoming Seymour game were Bill King, Bob Knight, Dave Mardis, Gerald Mohr, Dave Moore, Terry Kohler, Jim Kremer, Joe Riemenschneider, Ross Rowland, and Steve Scharlach.

”Lights on for SCUFFY” was held as city residential solicitors went house-to-house to collect donations. Local residents were asked to turn on their porch lights during the two-hour drive period to indicate a willingness to give.

70 YEARS AGO: 1951
Waldron’s newest business venture, the Concrete Tile and Products Co., began operations, turning out 2,000 units of concrete drain tile per day, operator Lawrence Reece said. Reece also headed the Reece Canning Co. in Waldron.

Bernard Coers won The Shelbyville Camera Club’s annual award for best picture of the year with a submission depicting his son, John Scott, 6, in a “reverent” pose.

80 YEARS AGO: 1941
”Wild automobile chases are getting to be the order of the day in the lives of Shelbyville police,” The Republican reported. After Patrolman Richey approached a LaSalle coupe and inquired as to why the vehicle had no license plate, the driver, “slamming the machine into gear, answered with a pointed question: ‘How’d you like to go to h—l?’” the paper said. Richey gave chase, but the man’s “superior speed enabled him to make a clean get-away.”

Employees of Sandman Bros. were entertained with a turkey dinner at the Golden Glow by the Maytag company. The local company had been the winner in the Maytag December sales contest. Those present were Chester Sandman, E.H. Carter, Wilbur Sanders, Noble Wasson, Raymond Stuart, Edward McGrew, Thomas McCollough, and Charles Williams.

90 YEARS AGO: 1931
Stolen electrical equipment was found by two local boys “at the side of the road leading through the old show grounds from Harrison Ave., below Muchmore Hill,” the Republican said. The teenage boys, listed as “Lockridge and Brown” immediately reported the find to the police.

100 YEARS AGO: 1921
Shelbyville High School’s basketball team, with a record of 23-0, accompanied by a crowd of 200 fans, left Shelbyville on a special Big Four train for Franklin for an upcoming game at the Franklin College gymnasium. Kaufman, Hord, Richeson, Bass and Booher were the starting five for SHS.

Margaret Pritchard was voted “most popular young girl in the London neighborhood”, winning a box of candy.


None today