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Amazon starts hiring for 1,500 full time positions
Tuesday, July 3, 2012

Jobseekers in middle Tennessee are invited to begin applying at Tennessee Career Centers now for jobs at Amazon’s fulfillment centers in Lebanon and Murfreesboro. 

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MJMS special education tool coming to WWMS
Tuesday, July 3, 2012

Kenny Howell

Managing Editor

A special education tool that has helped students at Mt. Juliet Middle School, will be coming soon to West Wilson Middle School. 

Mt. Juliet Middle Special Education Teacher Lisa Haskell had to deal with an overcrowded classroom a few years ago. 

“It caused a lot of behavioral problems,” said Haskell. 

So Haskell had to look into finding a place where her students could go. She had heard of sensory rooms, and went to Harris Hillmen and Mur Ci Home, which use them. She took a lot of notes and came back to Mt. Juliet Middle to see if she could raise the money to do it. 

Her class does a lot of cooking because it is a good tool to teach them how to follow directions, and to help them to go toward the possibility of living independently. Through that, they raised $5,000, which covered nearly everything that was needed for the room. A giant swing for the room was secured in a grant. 

The room is a calm place where the kids can go when they get overstimulated. It is filled with colored lights, a light up bubble tower, the swing, and things with different textures on the wall for the kids to feel. There is also light, peaceful music playing in the room. 

From start to finish, the project took about six months to complete. In April, the kids got to go in for the first time. 

“They enjoy going in there, definitely,” said Haskell. 

Haskell said she uses the room in several ways. One is as a reward. If they are good, then they get to spend time in there. Another is if they have to go a different class to be with the other students, they can go in there before, and it helps calm them. Going to other classes can be overstimulating, and the kids can often worry about it all day. Relaxing them in the sensory room beforehand makes it easier for them. 

Haskell said she has one student that keeps one hand curled up, and rocks quite often. She doesn’t when she is in the sensory room. Another student has a problem with screaming frequently. 

“When she’s in the room, she doesn’t scream at all,” said Haskell. 

Haskell quickly saw the benefits of having the room, so she started exploring helping West Wilson Middle have one of their own. 

“When I built this one, and saw the positive aspect, I wanted to do more,” said Haskell. 

Haskell is about to begin the process of raising money for a sensory room at West Wilson she hopes to complete by October. She will need $6,000 to finish it. She is working along with West Wilson Special Education Teacher Peggy Morris and parent Alecia Talbott to finish it. 

If you would like to donate, there is a site set up on DonorsChoose.org. Just search for the project by state or topic. 

In August, Haskell and the kids will be selling pizza kits, and there will also be a family night set up once school gets back in session. For more information about donating, contact Haskell at This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it

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MJ History: Youth Well Spent
Tuesday, July 3, 2012

This week we have a work from Nealon Agee about growing up in Mt. Juliet, particularly playing sports with the neighborhood boys. 

The boys of winter were often engaged in a breath condensing game of basketball at Butler’s Gym. It was “at” Butler’s Gym instead of “in” because it was in the barnyard with a makeshift goal. The only spectators were the chickens forced under the apple trees with their clucking, picking and Bronx cheers. The four Butler brothers were always there, Joe, Jimmy, Bobby, Tommy, and other boys from the community. The game was most always two on two with two more waiting to play the winner. 

All of this took place on present day West Caldwell Street in Mt. Juliet and was then known as Jim-joe-Allie; the name is apocryphal, but allegedly taken from the names of people who lived on or near the street, i.e. Jim Sullivan, Joe Hardaway, Allie Gibson. It is said that Allie Gibson once lived in what was then the Butler house. If a car entered what is now West Caldwell from North Mt. Juliet road and made no turns, it would run into the house. Remember the basketball games, since they will come into play later. 

Winter became spring and the games changed to baseball and softball which were played in a field just across the road from the house (the lot is still vacant). In the early years, when we were not strong enough to knock a baseball into Mr. C.B. Smith’s yard, that was our game. When we grew stronger, to keep the ball in play, we switched to softball. We had big games on Sunday when the Butlers had visitors such as Ralph Denney (son-in-law), Charlie Butler and older brother, et al. 

When we could not muster a quorum for team games, there was always a one-eyed cat, and regular marbles, but the passion was still there. Should there be a full wash-out, we pulled out the checked board and monopoly set. Yes, there was always an alpha male in all these activities, and if there was a consensus winner for all activities, it would have to have been Joe Butler, the oldest of the four brothers (there were some older brothers). 

Joe was also a good baseball pitcher when Mt. Juliet was in the Wilson County League. There were teams from other counties, but it started in Wilson County. He was the only pitcher we had, but his arm endured. Joe was a self-effacing guy who never tried to make himself more than what he was. He was “good ole Joe.”

It should be mentioned that all this energy, at least a significant part of it, came from Mrs. Butler’s biscuits. She used to make big pans of biscuits, knowing there would be some poachers among her visitors. 

Like most mothers, she was flattered when all the boys would risk harm and line up liking starving hobos for her early morning servings. Yes, can you believe that, it was like it was their duty to go to the Butler’s for biscuits. Charles McCorkle still talks about his early morning biscuit raids. 

Baseball and softball continued on through the summer, and “the boys of summer” became the “boys of fall” and football. The milder form of this game was “setback.” This form of football was only passing and punting and trying to land the ball past the opponents goal without them being able to catch it. 

Then there was tackle football, played in the side yard of Butler Stadium, as we called it. The hazards were a hedge or stumbled into rock wall. It seems that I remember at least one person breaking a rib on the rock wall, and there were a number of scratches and bruises caused by crashing through the hedge. All of this, dangerous as it was sometimes, was played with a sense of fairness and good humor. 

Fall droned into winter and back to the barnyard we went. One day while there was a rare lull in the action, Sammy Jennings noticed that there was no smoke coming from Mr. William Sharp’s chimney and it was January. All the boys in Mt. Juliet loved Mr. William, as we called him. 

Mr. William lived on the highest hill in Mt. Juliet and could be seen, especially in winter, from just about any point in the village. The hill of his home was just behind the old Bradshaw place, now the home of Rufus Page. 

Boys roam and many times we would walk down “the old railroad bed,” now called West Division Street, about two hundred yards past the entrance to the Mt. Juliet Cemetery, to walk over the creek on a bridge (remnants of the bridge are still there) on the south side and up the chair leaning against a big maple tree in his yard. 

On all occasions we would gather around him and talk. On some occasions we would ask him if we could pick blackberries on his place, and his answer was always the same, “yeah, and if you don’t quit asking me, I’m not going to let you pick’ em.” That was his way of saying, “yes, you can pick ‘em anytime you want to.”

Mr. Lee Alsup, brother of Mrs. Jordan, who operated a grocery in Mt. Juliet for some years, was a frequent visitor to Mr. William. They were about the same age and just liked to share memories. 

Anyway, Mr. Alsup went to see Mr. William and found him in his bed where he had died perhaps two or three days before. Mr. Alsup hurried back and spread the word; when we heard of his death, we went hurriedly to his home. While we were there, an ambulance drove up, the driver ran into the room and fell across Mr. William and cried. Seeing all this as we were standing in the room, we were puzzled. 

This was in late January of 1949 and we were between 13 and 15 years old, so we had never even considered the history of Mr. William. It turned out that he used to married to Nannie Willis, and they had one daughter, Johnie Guill Sharp. 

Johnie, was described in a newspaper while announcing her marriage, as “one of Mt. Juliet’s most beautiful and accomplished young ladies.” That article also showed that Johnie had married Corporal Robert L. Jones of Watertown, who had come home on leave to get married. They had a son, John Thackston Jones. 

It is not known what happened to this marriage, but Johnie remarried Ralph Kidd. Ralph Kidd adopted Johnie’s son and gave him his last name, and he became John Thackston Kidd. And, it was John Thackston Kidd, Mr. William’s grandson, who drove up in an Ellis-Kidd ambulance and cried when he saw his deceased grandfather. Mr. William and Nannie were divorced. 

They are buried in the Mt. Juliet cemetery, Nannie Willis Sharp, born Feb. 4, 1867, died Dec. 25, 1930s (exact year is not known). Mr. William Sharp born Sept. 22, 1870, died Jan. 22, 1949. 

The boys of “all seasons” revere the visits and memory of Mr. William Sharp. 

His cordiality and generosity is his legacy and will be remembered. 

As you drive or walk past the Butler house on West Caldwell look at the barn, side yard, and vacant field across the road for apparitions of young boys playing. 

Mr. Riley Benjamin Butler and Mrs. Addie Granstaff Butler died while still living in that enchanting house and all the boys had moved away to make lives of their own and left that beloved place. 

As long as our memories exist, they still live. 

We are running low on Mt. Juliet History stories, so if you have someone that has a story to tell, please have them call Kenny Howell at (615)754-6111 or email at This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it

 
MJ's Crickmar wins top honors at 4-H championships
Tuesday, July 3, 2012

Lily Jean Crickmar of Mt. Juliet, competed in the 2012 Tennessee State 4-H Championships in Shelbyville, June 18-23. Competing at the show and being able to represent Wilson County was a terrific honor for the Stoner Creek upcoming fifth-grader. Some of the best youth riders in Tennessee spent months preparing for the show in hopes of improving their relationships with their horses, bringing home ribbons, or even being named Champion. 

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New blue voter registration cards coming in the mail
Tuesday, July 3, 2012

Every active registered voter in Wilson County will receive a new blue voter registration card in the mail. 

Wilson County along with the other 94 Tennessee counties has new district lines due to redistricting that takes place every 10 years. The blue voter registration card has each voter’s current polling place and district information on it. Over 63,000 cards were printed, put in envelopes and mailed the last week. 

The new cards have every voter’s individual voting information on them. The districts and poll location is determined by where the voter lives. Voters who have changed addresses should provide written notice to the Wilson County Election Commission either in person or my mail as soon as possible.

“We encourage voters to inspect their card carefully and contact the Wilson County Election Commission with questions or concerns,” said Phillip Warren, Wilson County Administrator of Elections. “Election Day is Aug. 2. We want to take time now to straighten out any registration issues and not delay any one who votes during Early Voting or on Election Day,” Warren continued.

Early voting for the Aug. 2 election begins on July 13. Early Voting in Lebanon at the Election Commission Office and in Mt Juliet at the Mt Juliet Community Center will be open July 13 through July 28. Early Voting sites in Watertown at the Watertown Community Center and, for the first time, in Gladeville at the Gladeville Community Center will be open July 23 through July 28. Warren encourages, “Wilson County voters to take advantage of one the four convenient Early Voting sites this election.” 

“Remember to bring your State or federally issued photo ID when you come to vote during Early Voting or on Election Day. You can vote without a voter registration card, but not without proper photo ID” Warren commented.

Watch your mail for your new blue voter registration card. If you have not received it by July 13 please contact the Wilson County Election Commission.

 
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