Local man remembers Congressman Jenkins

Published 1:58 pm Saturday, October 11, 2008

Here are a couple of Harold Spears’ anecdotes about Congressman Tom Jenkins.

Harold remembers asking Congressman Jenkins in about 1949 why the USArmed Forces did not go ahead and attack the USSR — Russia — while we still had the men and equipment available. Jenkins answered that another war would bankrupt the country.

Harold remembers traveling to several political meetings with Jenkins in about 1950 and being impressed with how the congressman seemed to know everyone at each of the meetings. When he asked Jenkins how he remembered all those names, Jenkins laughed and said, “It’s my experience that there are many men named John and Bill in this area, so if I don’t know somebody’s name, I address them as John or Bill. Sometimes that is their name. Other times they’ll respond, ‘That’s my brother, or that’s my cousin, or that’s my Dad,’ and then tell me their name. The other thing I do is ask the person I’m talking to the name of the fellow in the checked shirt or the name of the guy with the red hair or some such thing about a fellow across the room. That moves me from one group to another with at least one name to start with.”

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In December, 1934, Jenkins was one of several people who signed an application to organize First Federal Savings and Loan Association.

Other signees were Steven E. Klein, H.E. Ullman, Laura Boll Jones, Lula Boll North, Brook Capper, Don Hopkins and William A. Spears. Jenkins chaired the By–Laws Adoption Meeting on May 13, 1835. Early subscribers to shares included those above plus S.A. Bowman, Junior Boll, Juanita Capper Seall, Joseph Klein, Charles Rist, William L. Patterson, Rosemary Capper Roach, Catherine J. Jones, Don C. Jones, Lucille Capper Truby, Edith Capper Walton and Joe, Frank, Clara and Victoria Weber. Harry Eckhart was the Managing Officer of First Federal from 1937 to 1962. The starting capital was $5111; the 1989 assets were $42.6 million.

This Brook Capper was the president of First National Bank from 1940 — 1959. He was a shrewd investor and owned property all over the county. He and wife Elizabeth owned an acre of land adjoining the property of Mt. Pleasant (Old Baptist) Church at the north end of Greasy Ridge Road. They deeded it for $1 to the church trustees: Thomas Bostic, Jack Robinson and Ezra Massie, and their successors.

In regard to Cyrus H. Moore, he was the sole owner of the Ironton Register when he died in 1916, so his wife and daughters inherited the newspaper and daughter Felonise became publisher and manager in 1916. On Jan. 1, 1928 the Ironton Tribune was first published, a merger of the Register and the Morning Irontonian. Some of the Moore family and relatives continued to work for the Tribune.