A very nice story appeared in last week's paper that chronicled the pleasant surprise JoAnn and Gary Back recently discovered in the attic of the old Garvin Diner in the Globe community.
Reporter Jeremy Wells chronicled the find at the diner — a hugely popular spot more than a half century ago, when Route 60 was a major thoroughfare. The truck stop and diner in Globe served those traveling through. JoAnn and Gary Back now own the building. They bought it in 1970, ran an antique business out of the location and now uses it for storage and a workshop while still retailing antiques through appointment.
Gary Back was working on renovations, running electricity, when he discovered a 'cubby' in the attic and found a treasure trove of black and white photographs of truck drivers and other patrons of the business glued to large sheets of plywood, with many of the drivers posing in front of their vehicles. While some of the people and businesses featured are local, others were of folks from outside the region and simply passing through.
The couple are history buffs. They shared some of the photos to a Facebook page dedicated to local Olive Hill area history and received quite a response. Some people knew who the folks in the photos were.
The Backs are now fielding inquiries from anyone who wants to check them out.
'I feel it's like a time capsule that we just opened up,' JoAnn said.
This story touched us. The photos take one back to a bygone era — a time of innocence, of two lane highways serving as major thoroughfares, diners, truck stops and also a time when rural America played a much more prominent role in the nation's affairs. It also offers an opportunity to revisit what life was like in Carter County when Route 60 was such an important part of the nation's transportation network, running through Owingsville, Morehead, Grayson, Ashland and Catlettsburg. In addition it reminds of the fact that as this area continues to change, with economic growth and prospects for the future ahead ever improving, we must always retain the perspective that our history is an important part of that future. The Backs have done a public service by securing this building, maintaining it, operating a viable business, and then stumbling across these historical records. There will come a day we believe, with the passage of time, that these photos prove even more valuable.
We had the idea as we read the story that this assemblage of photos would make for a great display at a library. In the meantime, we encourage our readers to join the Backs and take a trip back in time.