- Man shot by police ID'd; witness shares his side of story (2/17/17)31
- Settlement reached in accidental shooting case at Kelly High (2/15/17)10
- Jackson board votes to demolish high school building if bond issue passes (2/15/17)24
- MSHP: McLendon shot in side; autopsy refutes witness account (2/19/17)23
- Cape officer shoots man inside a home (2/16/17)7
- Panda Express restaurant coming to Cape's Siemers Drive (2/14/17)2
- Business notebook: Owners ready to roll out the Barrel 131 (2/20/17)3
- Former Cape cop indicted on possessing child porn (2/17/17)
- Man dies after being shot by officer; said to have come at cop with knife (2/16/17)29
- Ray's of Kelso to close, then reopen under new ownership (2/16/17)6
The Southern Illinois town of Thebes has financial problems. Last spring, an energy company threatened to cut off the town's gas service because of a $57,000 debt. More recently, the IRS seized the village's assets. Thebes was four years behind in paying payroll taxes on its employees.
That debt is being worked out with the IRS, but Thebes' problems go deeper. The village is home to an estimated 450 people but not one business.
The town's new mayor, Anthony Scott Bomar, is trying to do something about Thebes' dilemma. Last weekend the village brought people to town and raised money by holding mud races. It's a start. Bomar's attempts to get something going in Thebes ought to be encouraged.
Thebes has some of the region's most dramatic history. Dred Scott, the slave whose suit for freedom helped bring about the Civil War, is believed to have stayed in the courthouse's dungeon when he was a fugitive. The courthouse was part of the circuit lawyer Abraham Lincoln rode.
Though the 157-year-old courthouse is on the National Register of Historic Places, it seldom is open to the public. Bomar claims the historical society, which leases the building for $1 a year, is in violation of its lease and he wants control of the building returned to the town.
Thebes probably has the region's best view of and access to the Mississippi River. Instead of broke and dilapidated, it could be a showplace.