Papers’ Plates Now Hen-House History

By: E&P Staff

Old newspaper printing plates turned up near Murfreesboro, Tenn., as siding on an old hen house.

Hired to remodel an area house, Betty Handley also was asked to raze a smaller structure behind the house. What she found was “the history of Rutherford County,” Handley told The Daily News Journal. “I want to try to salvage them.”

A plate of the Rutherford Courier’s Sept. 25, 1980 front page carried the story of Nissan’s pending location of an automotive assembly plant near Smyrna, Ga. In a UPI story on the Daily News Journal front page of May 2, 1969, the U.S. military command in Saigon reported a successful counter-offensive that left 38,000 communists dead.

Yesterday’s Daily News Journal reported that other plates included a May 1969 issue of the Vanderbilt Hustler, various issues of a Farm Bureau publication, and grocery store inserts from various Tennessee newspapers.

Handley, who was returning to school to study computer graphics, told Daily News Journal reporter Doug Davis she was saving the plates for a school project.

Nearby residents who once lived in the house dated the shed from the 1960s and thought it had been used as a hen house.

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