Newspaper Archive of
The Malakoff News
Malakoff, Texas
March 5, 1981     The Malakoff News
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March 5, 1981

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12A--The Malakofl News, Thursday, March S, IMI By RITA BOBOWSK! 8mlthsenlan News Service It goes by many namear the begin- ning of winter, the shortest day of the year, mldwinter's night. This year, it will occur on Dec. 21 at precisely 11:56 a.m. EST. To astronomers it is known as the winter solstice, the moment when the sun steps its southern migration in the sky, In fact, the word solstice comes from the Latin "solstitium," meaning "the sun comes to a halt." Most people today are barely aware of the winter solstice. But the early In- dian people• of North America celebrated that event with elaborate Htuak. Indeed, recent archaeological evidence supports the theory that native Americans not only revered the sun but that they devoted much time and ingenuity to observing its position and movement in the sky. The sun, ltke the land, played a ten- of the most significant religious tral role in the lives of native festivals of the year." Americans. Its light and warmth "On the day of the winter solstice," brought life to the people and their Chamberlain continues, "the sun rises crops. Its movements were lncor- and sets at its lowest point in the horated into their cultures and southern sky. Early native Americans ought& Its cycles lent a structure to were afraid that the sun might continue their societies, providing a calendar on which to base their ceremonial, agricultural and hunting activities. "Early peoples saw themselves as an integral part of the natural world," says Von Del Chamberlain, an astronomer at the Smith•onian's National Air and Space Museum in Washington, D. C., who has studied astronomy in ancient cultures. "When the sun would rise, they were thankful; when it set, they were hopeful it would rise again. If they lost they sun, they knew that they would lose life it- self. Thus sun-watching was a crucial activity, and the winter solstice was one An untold We think it's time you learned about the untold story of the nursing home professional and nursing home progress. Today there is a growing army of health care professionals who, though largely unheralded, perform an increasingly important service to our community. They are the men and women who care for our aged. Doctors and nur- ses, physical therapists, dieticians, activity coordinators, nurse• aides and administrative staff. Rendering nursing home care ls not the most glamorous side of the medical profession. These professional• receive little public recognition for their work in compari•on to those who work in hospital centers. But these dedicated professionals help ease the pain and loneliness of those they serve; and help our nursing home enrich the social and physi- cal environment our residents need. Their job is difficult and often unappreciated. That's why we invite you to learn their story. Visit our nursing home and see the job we do for our community. e Valle Vista Athens 675-8,591 to sink lower and lower in the sky until it disappeared altogether. They felt they had to perform a variety of ritual• to guarantee that the sun would con- tinue to rise and set and return to the northern sky." The Hopi Indians of Arizona, for in- stance, celebrated the winter solstice for many hundreds of years with a complex, nine;day ceremony called "soyal." Chants, dances, prayer of. ferings and public rituals were held to entreat the sun god to turn hack from his southward course and begin anew a northward journey, bringing light and warmth for the coming growing season. Anthropologists have observed the Soyal festivities first hand since the late 19th century. Their reports indicate how the Hopi Indians made prayer sticks, or Palms, of assorted objects, such as feathers, string, herbs and willow sticks. The sun priest placed the offerings at a "sun alter" facing the direction of the midwinter solstice, just as the sun peeped over the horizon. During another part Of the ceremony, the priest, this time representing the sun god, held a rawhide sun symbol fastened to a stick. As he danced from east to west and hack again, he shook the stick, symbolizing the coming and going of the sun. Recent archaeological discoveries reveal that native Americans not only carried out ceremonle• .but also developed ingenious ways to observe thesun. Consider, for example, Cabokia, in what is now southwestern lllinois. Steel Belted Whitewall In the western United States, several large stone "medicine wheels" left cen- turies ago by the Plains Indians along the eastern flanks of the Rocky Motto- tains also seem to indicate various sun- watching techniques. Some of these wheels are aligned with important astronomical points, including the positions of sunrise and sunset on the day of the summer solstice in June. The summer solstice is the longest day of the year, and for many ancient cultures it was the most important astronomical date. The Bighorn Medicine Wheel built around 1760 in northern Wyoming, for instance, !s a circular structure of rocks laid out on the ground across a diameter of about gO feet. Discovered by prospectors in the late 1880s, the structure has a large cairn, or rock pile, part of everyday life, relig/on, art, mythology. It their concept of origins and their world. It calendar that regulated activities, essential the Hopi who eked out from the land. It the rituals that gave identity." at its center, with "•pokes" of rocks that radiate from the center to the rim. Five smaller cairns lie along the rim at irregular intervak, and a sixth, more prominent cairn stands several feet outside at the end of one of the spokes. This odd formation takes on new meaning when viewed from an a•tronomical standpoint. The number of spokes in the wheel is 28, about the same as the number of days in a lunar month. The positions of two of the cair- ns indicate that they might have served as horizon markers for sunrise and sun- set. Many astronomers now believe that this arrangement enabled the Plains Indians to mark the time of the summer solstice with precision. "To the ancients," Chamberlain says, "astronomy was a fundamental Cahokla was a major Indian city bet- ween the 10th and 14th centuries on the Mississippi River near present-day St. Louis. In the 19e0's, archaeologist Warren Wittry of the Cranbronk In- stitute of Science near Detroit discovered within tbe limits of the an- cient city a series of pits, arranged in a circular fashion. From the shape and dimensions of Today, some native celebrations of the son ceremonies and art -- the stance, still celebrate Soyal' the sun no longer plays crucial role in their lives a• i lives of their ancestors. But | native American only natural that the sun, ,o c life itself, County under construction. 1 expected to be completed The Comanche Peak Station ls being and Somervell Counties. The; is expected to be the second unit in 1984. percent of Comanche Peak. ~xits, Wittry surmised that they once wooden posts which could have been used to mark the directions of sunrise at the summer and winter solstices and at the equinoxes (the two times of the year when the sun crosses the equator and day. and night are everywhere of equal length). This fin- (ling and the discovery of several in. terestlng artifacts (among them a ceremonial goblet) suggest that the Caholoans might have used the site not only to observe the sun but also to stage ceremonies to mark the winter solstice. Texas Power & Light Company District Manager in Athens, Howard Watson, said last week that construc- tion on the Forest Grove lignite power plant has been rescheduled to reflect a completion date of 1989. Although previous estimates had placed the completion date at 19@7, FROM western side of Lake not built for interstate about what it is used for weekends," Reagan said. Precinct 3 McLean said the petitionerS l widen the road by three Watson says that this change does not mean Forest Grove is out of TP&L's plans. "This plant will some day be a vital part of our generating capabilities," he said. "This delay means that the company can better achieve a balance between the company's generation capacity and expected load growth in the future." Charles Hawn, a TP&L director in Athens, said that the load growth in the company's service area has not been as great as was anticipated, which means that construction schedules had to be revised. "The company is constantly evaluating the needs of the •ystem," l-lawn said, "and decisions have to be made in the best interest of more than 700,950 customers." In addition to Forest Grove, Watson said that the Martin Lake Unit #4, in Rusk County is now scheduled for completion in 1996 as opposed to 19 , and Twin Oak Unit #1 in Robertson County goes from 1965 to 1986 and Unit #2 from 1986 to 1988. All of these units, including Forest Grove, are 750-megawatt, lignite-fired units. TP&L owns 20 percent of Forest Grove and 32.5 percent of Martin Lake #4. Twin Oak is a jointly owned project between TP&L and Aluminum Com- pany of America, with TP&L owning 70 percent. TP&L also has Sandow #4 in Mllam election in the district. Bess Gray, Pauline Lackey were appointed to the Henderson County Clint W. Murchison Memorial Library board for a first term and R.E. Dwelle was re-appointed. C.C. Taylor was appointed to the Henderson County Child Welfare Board. The court accepted "with regret" Jerry Nickerson's letter of resignation. Nickerson, a county extension agent, is now the managing partner for Texas Thouroughbreds which is based in" Dallas. A petition with 804 signatures has been sent to the state highway department in Austin, Reagan said. The petitioners want FM 315 widened because of the amount of traffic it handles. "People are alarmed at the fatality rate because of the heavy flow of traffic on such a narrow, winding road," Reagan said. The road, which goes along the -~.%%%-,.%%;%-~ ~ ~,%%;%'= -~;%%%%% --. ~,% they received a reply from, until they found had enough existing the.work. The court said they letter to the petitioners, were aware of the problem try to help. The $4.2 million depository pledge with First State Bank of approved by the court as 1979 annual report by assessor-collector. The commissioners a $100 expense to Foster Funeral Home for to the foresnic lab in DallaS, Administration benefits. Work anytime. 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IOKe dehvew or oraer now through March 21.4981, and In addition ,~,~ 4-wh,,,! m.m I ~'~ or disc/drum type ! ~ PorcI will sencl you a cneck for 40% of the sticker price for the bose vehicle. If you wish, you may apply ~/ Most ˘.,1 Ind pickups I / "'"' "'°"'"'" ~ Group 24 1 ! 1 RAIm BIB lhook's the only way to gol i = unnm.a ,. ,,. ,. ,:.,,.,,, .,, I J --'"'- "----" I','ed S .nntal F0, -~ ~MM MM~IMM ~ my ,* ~,.~.~v *.* .* ='q i, ~ .,.,, m, • / ,,mmm, ~L C~k, m .~.., *.J ,,˘~ m, ,. m, m,,, • r d . . • l& " " " "= "" I I mlm,, - " " I I I Pdces Good Thru Mar. 7, 1981 ~ • ! ) • 405 E. Tyler * 675-5712 • Manager: Ted Lewis I 303 W. Royall Blvd. Athens phone 675-5566 Service Sales: O.B. Piffle I I iii i ii II illiliillii i iii The nation's 0.1 million the armed forces, the members of their familieS, million survivors of are potentially eligible a $195 bill from done on the elevator in court agreed the work covered by the warranty. They also talk to the Orlon rodent extermination courthouse and the law building. Reagan said ' had problems with rats Oct. as Recreation Vehicle derson County. J.M. Finley, of the Henderson County Club, said Evening Tool had been selected as this year's regional "We would like the we can get more vehicles to convention," Finley told said last year's convention Falls had brought in about and had left about $25 "We're working recreational vehicles to the and an awful lot of money Henderson County,