Seeking Memories of Hamilton County Sheriff Rex A. Richey

Saturday, January 25, 2014 - by Harmon Jolley
Hamilton County Sheriff Rex A. Richey
Hamilton County Sheriff Rex A. Richey

Rex A. Richey was elected Sheriff of Hamilton County in August, 1950 and served in that role for the next six years.  He was the first Republican elected to the office since 1932. 

During his years heading the Sheriff’s Department, Chattanooga’s city limits did not extend as far as they do today.  So, his jurisdiction was a very large area.  Some of the area was remote, and moonshining was a common offense.

Sheriff Richey had operated a restaurant at the corner of Eighth and Cherry streets prior to running for office.  He was a World War I veteran, serving in Europe.  His birthplace was Harrison, and in the year of his birth, 1893, Harrison was part of James County.

One might feel certain that the local library would have a lot of information on file on every sheriff of Hamilton County.  That isn’t the case for Sheriff Richey, however.  We need your help with compiling some memories of him.

Bill Dietzen,a son-in-law of Sheriff Richey, contacted The Chattanoogan.com in connection with a program that his wife, Wilma, will be presenting at First Presbyterian Church.  She is trying to locate some interesting stories about the office while he was sheriff.

If you remember Sheriff Richey, some cases which were pursued by his department, or just anything noteworthy about him, please e-mail your memories to Bill Dietzen at bdietzen@epbfi.com.  Also, please send a copy to me at jolleyh@bellsouth.net.  I’d like to learn more about Sheriff Richey, too.


3 First Edition Chattanooga Story Books By John Wilson Available

Three first edition Chattanooga's Story books by John Wilson have become available. They are $45 each, plus $6 postage and handling. Mr. Wilson, former Hamilton County Historian, has written two volumes on the early families of Hamilton County and also books on Chattanooga and on Lookout Mountain, as well as editing books on Chattanooga's railroads and the Stokes and Hiener ... (click for more)

Chester Martin Remembers Dr. Hujer, Eclipses And Comets

Dr. Karel Hujer was Associate Professor of Physics and Astronomy at the University of Tennessee at Chattanooga for many years. He had been invited to come to Chattanooga from his position at Iowa State University by University of Chattanooga President Dr. David A. Lockmiller. Dr. Hujer had earlier been employed by the University of Chicago, and had worked at their famous Yerkes ... (click for more)

Girl, 11, Missing In Cleveland After Returning To Ocoee Middle School Soccer Field To Get Keys

An 11-year-old girl is missing in Cleveland after returning to a soccer field to retrieve some keys that had been left there. Cleveland Police said on Thursday at  10:01 p.m. , Arleth Yazmin Linares Medina was reported missing by her mother, Rosa Medina.  Mrs Medina stated that she took her daughters, Arleth, and Andrea, age 3, to the Ocoee Middle Soccer Field ... (click for more)

Hamilton County Schools To Close Aug. 21 For Solar Eclipse

Due to safety concerns, Hamilton County Schools will close all schools and school age childcare on Aug. 21. This date coincides with the first total solar eclipse to occur across the entire continental United States in 99 years. A solar eclipse occurs when the moon passes directly in front of the sun, and casts its shadow on the Earth below. The eclipse will reach totality ... (click for more)

Children Should Not Get Holiday For Solar Eclipse

Re: County Schools to close for the solar eclipse: What a waste of an educational opportunity. The local folks in-charge of the Hamilton County, Tn., school system just announced that they are going to cancel school on Aug. 21 the day of the eclipse.  To protect the children from being on the school bus during the time of the eclipse.  It will be dark and other ... (click for more)

Roy Exum: Jake, A Great Man

When Bob McKamey was 18 years old, the late Hitch Grimes came home on furlough from the Marine Corps and brought a handsome, energetic friend with him, Jake Butcher. “That was 64 years ago and that’s when it started, one of the greatest friendships of my life. Talking about Jake is like picking up a book with 1,000 pages and opening it to a random page. Only you can hardly put it ... (click for more)