Out of the Past: July 9


The 1999 Cape Girardeau Regional Air Festival, which will be held this week, got an early start yesterday with a memorial service at Cape County Park North, attended by about 80 people; in keeping with the theme of the show — “Heroes and Legends” — Specialist Burt Lehman, a Vietnam veteran, declared “Every soldier is entitled to one certainty, that they will always be remembered. On the whole, the country has failed to honor that certainty.”

At a meeting yesterday with officials of the Missouri Conservation Department, fisherman Doug Flannery of Whitewater said the water in Lake Girardeau is too alkaline for fish to survive; Flannery had the water tested by a local business; he and his fellow fishermen say the department has ruined the lake by fertilizing it and stocking it with predatory muskies.


The possibility of adding track to the girls’ interscholastic sports program at Cape Girardeau Central High School is being studied by the school board; a tentative budget showing total estimated cost at $3,339.50 for the proposed girls’ track program has been taken under advisement by board

William L. Long of Cape Girardeau, the pilot of a single-engine plane that crashed and burned north of Sikeston on May 30, dies in the evening at St. John’s Mercy Hospital in St. Louis; Long, 47, suffered second- and third-degree burns over 85% of his body in the crash and had been in critical condition since being admitted to the hospital.


An additional $64,682 in the final days of June brought reconstruction in the tornado area to $505,421 and, with $13,000 in city permits outside the section, boosted the six-month total of building in the city to just shy of the million dollar mark at $999,071; it is the largest amount of permits ever issued in a six-month period in Cape Girardeau’s history; the rush to rebuild and repair storm-damaged structures all but shut out efforts of residents outside the tornado zone to do any construction work during June; material firms and construction workers of all kind concentrated their efforts on rehabilitating those in the storm areas.

Police Capt. F.L. Schneider leaves Cape Girardeau in the morning for Washington, D.C., where he will attend the 12-week FBI national police academy; a telegram from FBI head J. Edgar Hoover was received two weeks ago by Mayor Walter H. Ford, inviting Schneider to attend; Schneider, who has been a member of the police force here 12 years, is head of the identification and records section.


Cape Girardeau is threatened with a water famine as the intake pipe in the Mississippi River that supplies water to the entire city is clogged by a shifting sandbar; many homes and businesses on higher locations in town are without water, and the thermometer this afternoon is steadily mounting; the Union Electric Light & Power Co. is attempting to lay a second line to the river to relieve the situation.

Sixty men of the Service Company of Cape Girardeau, the advance detail of the 140th Infantry, Missouri National Guard, are preparing to depart tomorrow by train for Nevada, Missouri, to make final arrangements for the annual encampment there; the local company will go in a special car on the regular northbound Frisco train at 2:50 p.m.; the remaining companies of the Southeast Missouri regiment, including the regimental band from Chaffee, will entrain Saturday and are expected to pass through Cape Girardeau late that afternoon on a special train of 15 coaches.

Southeast Missourian librarian Sharon Sanders compiles the information for the daily Out of the Past column. She also writes a blog called “From the Morgue” that showcases interesting historical stories from the newspaper. Check out her blog at www.semissourian.com/history.