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Today in Johnson City History: October 21

Rebecca Henderson and Johnson City Press • Oct 21, 2019 at 4:15 AM

Oct. 21, 1885: The Comet in Johnson City complained that Leonidas C. Houk, the U.S. congressman from Knoxville, had applied for life insurance in 1878 and swore his health was perfect, but in 1880 he applied for a pension and swore he had been so disabled by disease contracted during the Civil War that he had been unable to perform manual labor. “Houk is evidently a bad egg.” On May 24, 1891, Houk accidentally drank a bottle of arsenic solution at DePue's drug store in Knoxville. He died the following day.

Oct. 21, 1950: The Carson-Newman Eagles crushed the turnover-prone ETSC Bucs 25-6.

Oct. 21, 1968: Correspondence from Mary Hardin McCown to Roy Meade of General Shale outlined details of a gift of bricks for the museum at the business. The bricks were from the home of early settler Davis Deaderick, built between 1800 and 1824.

Oct. 21, 1977: Kenny Rogers appeared at Freedom Hall with Stella Parton and T.G. Sheppard. Tickets were $6 and $7 — roughly $25 and $30 in today’s money.

Oct. 21, 2007: ETSU President Paul Stanton announced he would not retire the following March as he had planned. Stanton stayed on to lead the university another four years.

Sources: The Comet; Archives of Appalachia, Mary Hardin McCown Collection; Vince Staten.