The Jackson County-Webster Historical Society commemorated Pearl Harbor’s anniversary on Dec. 7 at its first public meeting in the renovated, historic courthouse in Sylva.
“We are commemorating here an event that fundamentally transformed the history of the United States and the world,” said David Dorondo, associate professor of history and international relations at Western Carolina University, to the crowd that gathered at the Jackson County History Museum.
George Frizzell, Archivist at WCU, played several historical recordings including British Prime Minister Neville Chamberlin’s “Peace in Our Time” speech and Roosevelt’s December 8, 1941, address to Congress. Frizzell talked about the construction of the Glenville dam on the west fork of the Tuckasegee River and Fontana Dam on the Little Tennessee River in Swain and Graham counties. Both were constructed to provide electricity to Alcoa’s aluminum plant and a then ‘secret’ city called Oak Ridge, and the Y-12 nuclear reactor in Tennessee.