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.



Signal Mountain Genealogical Society To Meet Oct. 3

The Signal Mountain Genealogical Society will meet on  Tuesday, Oct. 3, at  1 p.m.  at the Walden Town Hall,  1836 Taft Highway .  The speaker for the day, Signal Mountain resident and society member LaVonne Jolley, will present a program entitled, “Research Across the Pond.”  As always, guests are welcome. (click for more)

Bisplinghoffs Practiced The Cooper, Printer Trades In Chattanooga

When the Civil War broke out, Henry Bisplinghoff volunteered as the staff bugler for Henry Ashby's Second Cavalry. He served until Sept. 15 of the following year when he was discharged as being overage. Afterwards, Bisplinghoff was a member of the Confederate Home Guards who stayed behind when younger warriors marched off to fight. His wife and mother gave valuable service as nurses ... (click for more)

School Board Approves "Partnership" With State As "Lesser Of 2 Evils"

The County School Board on Thursday night voted 7-2 to join in talks with the State Department of Education leading to a Partnership Zone for five low-performing schools. Joe Smith and David Testerman voted against the plan. Other board members said the only alternative was for the state to take over several low-performing schools under the Achievement School District in which ... (click for more)

Jury Hears About Incident Behind Food Lion That Authorities Say Led To Triple Murders In Lookout Valley; Neighbor Saw Trio With Guns

A Criminal Court jury on Thursday was told about an incident behind the Food Lion on Brown's Ferry Road that authorities say was the motive for an April 9, 2014, massacre at a Lookout Valley trailer park. Brandon Jackson said the incident five days earlier involved Derek Morse, who is standing trial on three counts of first-degree murder and one count of attempted first-degree ... (click for more)

September Is Prostate Cancer Awareness Month

The calendar fills up quickly in September as families return to a packed routine after quieter summer days. Unfortunately, your health might take a backseat to your busy schedule. So make a note on your calendar that September is Prostate Cancer Awareness Month, and remind yourself—or the men in your life—about the importance of a healthy prostate.   Prostate cancer is ... (click for more)

Roy Exum: I Am Very Privileged

A “California Kook” who teaches sociology at San Diego State told her students she would give each extra credit if they would participate in a “White Privilege Checklist” the other day. Understand, there is no pass or fail but, the more of the 20 statements you agree with, reveals you are “more guilty” of being white and therefore more “privileged” than those who are not. I had ... (click for more)