Rutherford County, NC, Western North Carolina, News,arrests, RC Catalyst, Judicial District 29A History Matters – ICC’s history series kicks off next month  – Foothills Catalyst

History Matters – ICC’s history series kicks off next month 

SPINDALE (Aug. 19, 2022) – A new series of local history lectures will begin in September at Isothermal Community College. 


The free events will be held in the Library Auditorium on the Spindale campus. 

The series, conceived by local historians, teachers, and ICC library staff, will be called “History Matters: Connecting the Past to the Present.” The series will feature guest speakers, interactive Q&A sessions, exhibits, children’s activities, and more that will highlight the rich history of the community. 

The kickoff event will be on Thursday, Sept. 22, at 6:30 p.m. It will cover three areas: sports, entertainment, and politics. 

The first part of the session will feature Rutherford County historian, Chivous Bradley, who will talk about local baseball legend, Forrest “Smoky” Burgess. Other speakers will be Chuck McSwain, the Chase High School and Clemson graduate who played in the NFL for the Dallas Cowboys and the New England Patriots; Todd Coffey, a Chase grad who played baseball for the Reds, Brewers, Dodgers, and Nationals; and Rick Scott, the original drummer for the country music band, Alabama. 

After a short break, the session will turn to politics with a panel including Cindy Martin, daughter of the late Speaker of the N.C. House Jack Hunt; former House Majority Leader Mike Hager; Merle Umstead Richey, the daughter of Gov. William Richey; and Walter Dalton, Isothermal’s former president who was North Carolina’s lieutenant governor and a long-serving state senator. 

The series is being planned by a steering committee, which includes Chivous Bradley, Rutherford County historian; Angel Ledbetter, a history teacher at Rutherford Early College High School (REaCH); Sally Matheny, a local author and the coordinator of Young Historians; Cathy Webb, ICC library specialist; and Alice Bradley of the Genealogical Society of Old Tryon County. 

The subsequent events will be the first Thursday of every month at 6:30 p.m. So far, these include: 


Oct. 6 — The Holocaust, WWII & Genocide / Karel Reynolds 

Nov. 3 — Revolutionary War / Chivous Bradley  

Dec.1 – no event, break for Holidays 

Jan. 5 — The Bechtler Letters / Deborah Milliken Scott 

Feb. 3 –To be determined 

March 2 – African American Women / Doris Crute 

April 6 — History of Rutherford County Textiles / Terry Hines 

May 4 — Law Enforcement of Rutherford County / Philip Bailey 


For more information on the “History Matters,” contact Cathy Webb at or 828-395-1518.