Letters to the Editor – June 6, 2018

Thank you for contributing to food drive

Dear Postal patrons of Darlington and Lamar,
Rural Letter Carriers of Darlington
And The News and Press,

The letter carriers and The Lord Cares volunteers of Darlington would like to say thanks for your generous support of the May 12th Letter Carriers Food Drive. This is a national project of the NALC (National Association of Letter Carriers) of which we are small part. All the donations (10,557 pounds) go to The Lord Cares to assist people of our area.

With Grateful hearts of thanks,

Ed O’Neal
Food Drive Coordinator
Branch 1666 NALC

Dwight Giles
Branch 1666 NALC

Brian Sherwood
The Lord Cares

Library Branch Manager will be missed

Dear Editor:
When I first moved to Darlington from Greenville ten years ago, people kept saying “You left Greenville for Darlington ???” and shaking their heads. At first I tried to explain why I love it here, but eventually decided that if I had to explain it to them they wouldn’t understand it anyway.

Although I had many reasons for moving here, one thing I wasn’t expecting to find was a fine library–and one I could walk to! The library is relatively small, but being part of a county-wide system allows access to a wide selection of materials. And it takes only a day or two for the goods to arrive. What is not available in the county system can usually be requested on interlibrary loan. And the library is open to ordering new books if you explain why they are needed.

In the short time I’ve been here, the physical aspect of the library has become lighter and more open. The number and variety of adult programs have increased, while outreach to children and young people has continued to expand. Last year they even started a children’s garden in a formerly neglected parcel of land outside the Children’s Room. Once when I happened to be there, I was delighted to see a companion dog had been brought in to teach children that important concept.

Most important, of course, is the very competent staff. Not only friendly and energetic, the staff serves everyone with the same pleasant and respectful manner. I believe that it is the Darlington branch manager, Gwen Robinson, who sets this tone–at least, she did while she was still on the staff.

Because I always look forward to visiting the library, it was a shock to go by last weekend and find that Gwen was no longer there. When I asked what had happened, the silence was deafening. Apparently citizens (tax payers) are not privileged to know what’s going on.

I thought the Star Chamber was abolished in 1641. But that was in England, wasn’t it?

It seems to be alive and well in Darlington today.

Sarah H Fallaw

Fond Memories of Darlington

I was born in Darlington. I was raised in a house at 113 e. Broad street. Most of my family during the 50’s and early 60’s worked at Dixie Cup across the track from our house. I was told there is a hardware store at that location now. There use to be a laundry matt that was built atop a cemetery two houses down from us on same side as our house.

I was told by my dad (Shafter Thomas) that millers tobacco warehouse was also built atop much of that cemetery possibly in the late 30’s. I do remember when a bulldozer back in the mid 50’s was clearing that cemetery of what few remaining head stones were left, 3 pine boxes came to the surface. Near the road by millers warehouse the driver stopped, lit a cigarette and walked away. There was an ice house nearby and he went to call someone.

About an hour later the police, fire department and Kistler himself showed up. I guess I was about 8. The pine boxes were put on back of a truck and departed. Where, don’t know. It was my understanding that it may have been a cemetery for local African Americans as far back as the 1800’s. My oldest sister Merzelee Kirvin told my mom that next day the cemetery near their house had some burials. Her son Horace Kirvin Jr. said it was one big wide hole and the boxes look heavy because it took 6 men straining to lower them in the hole by ropes. I use to hunt, fish, camp down behind that cemetery. Walked the train tracks, Diamond Hill was a brand new company at the time. When they built the waste water plant back in my hunting & fishing area I stopped going in that area. My child hood memories of Darlington are my fondest memories of all.

Most of my family is buried in Grover Hill Cemetery. I still have some family members living there. I often think of my wonderful hometown. But, I live in a town here in Texas about the same size as Darlington. When I retired from the navy I choose Texas because my wife had a sister here and she was a first timer to the United States as a house wife. A first we lived in a town smaller that Darlington, Manchaca then Austin Texas now, Round Rock Texas. Our county seat is Georgetown. The reason I think of Darlington often is the people.They make the town. I was very fortunate to have lived and experienced that love. This is just some fond memories I have of Darlington. It’s just a heads up on what maybe you missed there.

—Larry Thomas

The League of Women Voters voter information website, VOTE411.org, is now available to all voters in South Carolina. This year, 325,000 have visited this website nationally. As a one-stop shop, it provides information on races to appear on the ballot, ballot questions, and what candidates commit to do about critical issues.

The questionnaire responses of candidates in the Congressional District 7 primary now appear on the VOTE411.org website. You will also find positions of candidates for statewide office, such as governor and attorney general on the site.

In Darlington County, races for the S.C. House of Representatives, county council and other local office will appear before the general election on November 6, but is not yet included on the site.

Area newspapers also plan to publish this Voter Guide information.

A 2012 study showed that voter participation of Black, Hispanic, and Asian voters is much lower than of White voters. It showed that voter participation of the 18-24 year-old age group is much lower than any other age group. And it showed that voting rates for all age groups has declined.

The League encourages you to be informed, so that when you vote, you can feel proud to have fulfilled your civic responsibility. Contact me personally if you have questions or concerns about our area’s races at 843-332-6468.

The League of Women Voters is a non-profit political organization, encouraging informed and active participation in government, informing about major public policy issues, and influencing public policy through education and advocacy. With 800 affiliates across the country, League is one of the nation’s most trusted organizations.

Sheila Haney, President League of Women Voters of Darlington County

Author: Rachel Howell

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