The Palm Beach Post from West Palm Beach, Florida on December 9, 1976 · Page 85
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The Palm Beach Post from West Palm Beach, Florida · Page 85

West Palm Beach, Florida
Issue Date:
Thursday, December 9, 1976
Page 85
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Page 85 article text (OCR)

West Palm Beach, Florida Palm Beach Post and Times Thursday, December 9, 1976 TS1 i Architect Selection Questioned Favoritism Alleged In Delray Project if'NT VC L, -' rt -"."V W ft 5 illarcliiiig To Welcome Santa The council took no action despite Scheiflev's suggestions that the matter be investigated by the state Ethics Commission or a grand jury. Councilman David Randolph said the matter was a "set up" to question the integrity of the commission. Councilman Leon Weekes said the matter was not proper for council action. City Atty. Roger Saberson advised that any individual could ask the Ethics Commission to investigate a matter. He added that the council was not the proper agency. Taylor told the council he would ask for Banting's resignation at Friday's authority meeting because Banting had questioned the integrity of the commissioners. Meanwhile Banting said he still believes there may be local action taken on the matter. The architect selection has been in controversy from the beginning because of racial overtones. Middlebrooks, a black, was nominated and selected by two black commissioners over one white commissioner's opposition. Taylor, a black, says he abstained, but this is in question. Banting is white but was not appointed at that time. His seat was vacant when the vote was taken. After the selection, the authority held a special meeting at which Commissioners Clifford Durdin and John Thomas denied that their votes were based on race. By RAFE KLINGER IttM wrtfor DELRAY BEACH - The newest member of the Housing Authority has reopened the questions of whether the architect selected to redesign Stewart Arms is qualified and whether he was selected on the up and up. At a workshop meeting this week, authority Commissioner John Banting's criticisms of the architect selection was brought to the council by Mayor James Scheifley, who was notified by a letter from Banting. Banting, who was appointed to the authority commission after the selection of architect Joseph Middlebrooks of the Urban Planning Studio in Coconut Grove, claims the Middlebrooks selection ignored qualifications criteria and may involve wrongdoing. Banting claims he spoke to University of Miami officials who said Middlebrooks, as a full professor there, owed six days a week to the university, leaving no time for the Stewart Arms project. Additionally, Banting said he has a letter written by Middlebrooks to a local architect in which Middlebrooks said he would hire the son-in-law of authority Chairman Semmie Taylor to work on the project. Banting also said Middlebrooks has had no experience in large projects, unlike three local architects who were recommended for the $200,000 architect's contract by authority Executive iDirector Larry Birchmeyer. A patriotically dressed man sporting a replica of the American bald eagle (left) and a marching band with panaches (above) were part of the annual Holiday Dageant Parade that welcomed Santa Claus to Delray Beach Saturday. The parade included more than 100 entries, including bands, floats, marching groups and motorized units. It was sponsored by the Greater Delray Beach Chamber of Commerce. & WW ; AM l , Staff Photot by Akira Suw Rock Hound's Collection Spans 250 Million Years By NANCY POWELL Staff Writer GREENACRES CITY - Dinosaurs apparently had digestion problems just like man. But they didn't have antacids. The pre-historic monsters ate small rocks to help their digestion. That's the theory of paleontologists who dubbed the small, smooth round rocks, dinosaur gizzard bone. The 250-million-year old fossils are part of Cora Norvell's rock collection. The specimens were found in the North and West by Mrs. Norvell and her late husband Stevens T. Nor-vell, during their more than 40 years as rock enthusiasts. The collection consists mainly of fern fossils in varying shapes, sizes and colors. The centers of some display finely detailed etchings of leaves; others look like miniature sprigs of fern. Mrs. Norvell pointed to a light-colored rock, smaller and flatter than most. "This is a trilobite," she said. "It's one of the first things that crawled out of the ocean. This one was found in a limestone quarry at Lamont, 111. But there are places in Ohio and somewhere out west they are found." All of the specimens are from the Pennsylvanian period, 250 million years ago. Included in the collection are specimens of petrified wood and a Fairbourn agate from South Dakota. "That's supposed to be the most beautiful agate in the world," she said. Mrs. Norvell credits her husband for the collection. Each rock is cataloged for easy reference. "He taught and lectured when we really got into it," she said. "He knew how to tell things, to make them interesting to others." She recalled that while they were attending a show up North "a woman came up to me and said, 'Your cago. "Our 14-year-old son had been on a Boy Stout trip to strip mines at Western Springs," she recalled. "He was so excited when he came home that my husband said we should go see what it was all about, and we got hooked. "I don't even remember what kind of rock our son brought home," she said. The Norvells' collection has won numerous prizes in the Palm Beach County Gem and Mineral Society shows. "We didn't enter shows up North," she said". "And we didn't do much collecting when we came here after my husband retired. "The last rock I found was when Dad and I went to Juno Beach," she said. "I saw a strange looking one --called it a picture rock - in a bigger rock and got the mineral pick out of the car. I don't think it belonged here, though. I think it must have come in from somewhere else." husband has opened up a whole new world for me and I'm having fun.' " The couple belonged to the Marquette Geological Society and later helped form the Earth Science Club of Northern Illinois. Norvell also designed the title page for the Earth Science News in 1952 that is still being used on the publication. "We met many wonderful and interesting people and even children," she said, recalling an incident. "We were at the Chicago rocks and minerals show when a woman came up with a little boy. She said she knew I was a rock hound and her little boy wanted to know about rocks and asked me to help him." The little boy, Jay Wallen, later became an authority in the field. "When I tell people that Jim Kraft, the cheese man, was a lecturer at a meeting we attended they don't know who I'm talking about," she said and laughed. Their hobby began when the. couple lived near Chi- 'lIHn rff n If I ,s, X ''IS: ' M2 - , , - I -V f lv AH 71 V V i -f Staff Photot by Mikt Dioinor Cora Norvell stands in front of a cabinet (right) having the actual fossil and the nega-displaying some of her rock collection. On five bearing the imprint of the leaf sprig, the right is a fern fossil, with the positive

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