1985: The year that was

December 28, 2010|By JULIE E. GREENE |
  • In 1985, Washington County government officials was considering building and operating an 18-hole golf course off Mount Aetna Road southeast of Hagerstown.
Herald-Mail file photo

The year was 1985.

"Back to the Future" was a hit in movie theaters. Commodore computers and Atari video games were popular and so were arcades.

Former actor Ronald Reagan was president and future California governor Arnold Schwarzenegger was starring in the movie "Commando."

Other notable movies were "The Breakfast Club," "The Goonies," "Rocky IV," "The Color Purple," "Pee-wee's Big Adventure" and "Silverado," starring a young-looking Kevin Costner.

Led by quarterback Joe Montana, the San Francisco 49ers won the Super Bowl. And the Kansas City Royals won the World Series.

Billboard's top hits included REO Speedwagon's "Can't Fight This Feeling," Tears for Fears' "Shout," Starship's "We Built This City," John Parr's "St. Elmo's Fire" and Jan Hammer's "Miami Vice Theme."

Popular TV shows included "Dynasty," "Dallas," "The Cosby Show," "60 Minutes," "Family Ties," "The A-Team," "Murder, She Wrote" and "Cheers."

"Larry King Live" debuted on CNN.

Harry Hughes was governor of Maryland, and William Donald Schaefer was the mayor of Baltimore.

Steve Sager became mayor of Hagerstown — holding the post until 1997 — after defeating incumbent Donald Frush by a landslide.

During the period leading up to the election, the media discovered Frush was recovering from stress and fatigue in a psychiatric ward of The Johns Hopkins Hospital in Baltimore. The story of the "missing mayor" was widely reported in The Washington Post, The Baltimore Sun and other metropolitan-area news outlets.

Mack Trucks was the largest employer in Washington County with 3,800 employees. The company was having a rough year with about 700 people furloughed in periodic layoffs that the company blamed on skidding truck sales.

The second-largest employer was Londontown Manufacturing Corp., with plants in Hagerstown, Hancock and Boonsboro, according to the Hagerstown-Washington County Economic Development Commission. Londontown made London Fog apparel.

In January, Hagerstown Junior College officials said construction of a proposed $4.5 million athletic complex on its campus would fill a void in the community. With seating for 5,000 people, the field house would be the largest indoor arena of its type in the county.

The city of Hagerstown opened bids for its portion of an Eastern Boulevard bypass project. The first leg of the bypass would run from Frederick Street to Memorial Boulevard.

Citicorp began operations in Washington County and broke ground in August for a $35 million credit card-processing center near Interstate 81 and State Line Road, north of Hagerstown.

North Hagerstown High School Principal James Conrad made a pitch to the Washington County Commissioners for a stadium with the cost of seats, parking, press box and concession stand construction at about $350,000.

Washington County government officials were considering building and operating an 18-hole golf course off Mount Aetna Road southeast of Hagerstown.

The Hagerstown-Washington County Industrial Foundation was considering buying a huge tract of land along Interstate 81 and Hopewell Road so it could resell the property to one of two companies. The Washington County Commissioners agreed to ask the state to designate the land an "enterprise zone" so land users would be eligible for property and income tax credits.


Editor's note: This story was edited Dec. 29, 2010, to correct the name of the Super Bowl winner in the fifth paragraph.

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