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Decatur Daily Newspaper Archives Mar 11 1961, Page 1

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Decatur Daily (Newspaper) - March 11, 1961, Decatur, AlabamaYhu ,k a mily my country a May she Iveree right but right or wrong my volume 50 established february 26. 112 Decatur Al Obama saturday morning March 11, 1961 member of the associated press number 14corps of engineers keeps River traffic flowing at Wheeler Wheeler dam a starting with the time when the Lithe aborigine gained sustenance from it s fish and mussels on up to the present when the throbbing sounds of big diesel engines pushing their cargoes up and Down streams Are commonplace a the Tennessee River has proven a steadfast Friend of Man. The construction of the to a dams virtually erased the Tennessee a major bad traits which were inclinations to flood severely in time of heavy Rains and become extremely shallow in the dry months. These dams replaced the old time Steamboat captains constant dilemma of too Little water with one relatively minor inconvenience. The modern Day skipper has Only to worry about a blocking through a a necessity at any dam regardless of where it might be. And he Locking through process whereby a boat or Barge is carried from one level of water to another is completely fascinating. Buford l. Mutchum k the lock Masi amp re a Here. Except for a Short spell of about eight months he a served Here since 1941, and before that he was employed on the construction of the lock and dam. He a seen a lot of River traffic come and go and he a in a position to note the real growth of modern Day barging on the Tennessee. Mit chum reports that in the first year of operation Here in the mid 1930�?Ts the average number of Lockings per month was around 100 to 125. Sometimes this average dropped below that. In contrast during 1960 there was one month at Wheeler when Well Over 650 Lockings were recorded. Under favourable conditions a weather assistance from the Craft being locked through Etc. A a Locking can be carried out Here in 30 minutes. Members of the corps of engineers who operate the Wheeler dam lock Are in addition to lock master Mitchum Felix h. Crunk head lock operator Harvey l. Crymes lock operator Walter l. Dison assistant lock master James m. Hairrell head lock operator Horace j. Hamner head lock operator James p. Herrod lock operator Felix w. Kennedy jr., lock operator Robert Waddell lock operator Roy w. Willingham head lock operator. At least two of these men Are on duty at All times at the Wheeler lock. A the accompanying pictures were made we the egg a a gulp a p % sgt a 5 4 a a v. V a. A it -ayivv.-. R last week at Wheeler. They Are top Row left to right a the tug a Leta Jane Waits to enter lock headed downstream lock has filled lock Gates swing open to permit Entrance of tug and Barge tug pushes Barge into lock. Second Row left to right a a Leta Jane moves out downstream after lock has emptied again portion of the lock at Wheeler dam. Its situated near the Lauderdale county Side of the Tennessee River. Third Row left to right a often visitors come to watch the tows pass through members of deck Crew and corps of engineers working in driving rain. Bottom Row left to right a Walter Dison at outside control panel James Herrod stands ready to use rope bumper James Hairrell using radio to Contact approaching tug Buford Mitchum at inside control Board

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