Today In Salisbury’s History: Wednesday, June 27, 1979

Wednesday, June 27, 1979 —

  • The first commercial solar energy system on the Eastern Shore has been installed on the roof of the new $1.6 million Wicomico County Free Library. Officials said with energy prices skyrocketing, the 45 solar panels will cost about $35,000 but save up to 30 percent in heating and cooling expenses for the Downtown Salisbury building. 
  • County swimming areas at Schumaker Pond and North End Lake are being eyed for closure because unusually large amounts of bacteria have been found immediately after heavy rains. County Environmental Health Director Ed Pinto said his department is keeping the swimming areas under scrutiny. The north end of Johnson Pond has been closed for a week because of poor sampling. Pinto said the bacteria results are a “very unusual situation.”
  • One of the area’s most historically significant relics, the Gen. Humphreys Cannon, is being restored on the front lawn of the County Courthouse. MacCurdy Burnet and Gordy Wilcox said they hope to have the cannon rehabbed and painted in time for the upcoming July Fourth celebration. The 1,200-pound gun was found buried in Humphreys’ back yard in 1915 and is believed to have seen action on the USS Constellation during the American Revolution. Mayor Elmer Ruark said the cannon is the only specialized monument in Salisbury.
  • The Salisbury City Council has raised the $1 fine for meter violations, blocking driveways, double-parking and parking in front of fire hydrants from the previous to $2.50. The council was recently told that meter revenues are in decline because people are finding it easier to pay the fines than continuously feed the meters.
  • Former Sheriff Jesse Morris Pollitt died Saturday of an apparent heart attack in Allen at the age of 88. Pollitt, who served as Sheriff from 1946-1958, is the father of Circuit Court Judge Richard M. Pollitt. A funeral service was held Tuesday at Asbury United Methodist Church in Salisbury.
  • The city’s welcome mat to northbound drivers on South Salisbury Boulevard has become the target of criticism from the Salisbury Chamber of Commerce. The white structure, which overlooks the busy roadway, has been defaced with graffiti within the past year, causing business leaders to become concerned with its appearance and the city’s lack of action to cover it up. The city recently approved a $25,000 contract to repaint the tower — which would include the repainting the old standpipe Downtown — but contractors haven’t begun the work.
  • Johnny & Sammy’s restaurant co-owner Ronald J. Zimmerer has been named to a seat on the Wicomico County Board of Education. State Sen. Joseph J. Long forwarded the 39-year-old former police officer’s name to the governor at the request of the Democratic Central Committee. Zimmerer will replace J. Morris Jones, who has been on the school board for more than 40 years.
  • The city will finally erect a traffic light at the intersection of South Boulevard and the newly opened Eastern Shore Drive. The intersection has been the scene of numerous accidents and council members said dangers at the intersection are among the biggest constituent complaints that they hear. The city’s engineering consultants have maintained the light is unnecessary. The city will also install a light at the Moss Hill Lane, Old Ocean City Road and Civic Avenue intersections.
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