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Uncle Jack Fultz’s Memories of Carter County: Celebrating Independence Day

A look back at past celebrations

Jeremy D. Wells
Carter County Times

This year, the Carter County Thunder fireworks event at the fairgrounds in Grayson will not take place. In its place there are firework events scheduled in Willard, at Tres Hermanos restaurant in Grayson, and in Olive Hill. But in the past, there was a lot more going on than just fireworks. 

Take a look at these flyers for Fourth of July events, and events going on around the holiday, from years past. 

In 1915 they didn’t have just one day, or even one weekend of celebration, but “seven days and nights” of events, including an orchestra and vaudeville performances, “the marvel of the age,” real life motion pictures, as well as comedy shows and contests. 

This wasn’t a one-time sort of event, either. In ads from later years you would see still more carnivals, circuses, rodeo and horse shows, travelling historical exhibitis, and other travelling shows coming through town in the days leading up to and following the Fourth of July holiday. 

This was in addition to various local events like performances, ice cream socials and picnics organized by the Masonic Lodge, the International Order of Oddfellows, and other community groups. 

There really was a lot to see and do, from parades to performances, and something to suit every person in the community, no matter what their age or their tastes. Just look at the variety offered in these few selected newspaper ads from the era. 

But while it might be really fun to have a jazz orchestra come into town, we don’t lack for holiday events in the county. Between On With the Show, Homecoming, and other events, there is still a little something for everyone.

Contact the writer at editor@cartercountytimes.com

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