Monday, December 17, 2012

Early 1950s Christmas Parade

  After attending the very good 2012 Christmas parade in Baldwyn recently, I pulled out an old dusty photo of another one around 1954 plus or minus a year or so. I can remember it pretty well – I know I was there because I can be seen in the photo along with Rachel Christian, my friend and neighbor at the time. We school children had been primed and ready for this parade for quite some time. We were about to see some real reindeer from the Far North! And, by all indications, they were indeed. If the photo has been printed large enough, just look at those antlers!
   The Chevrolet sedan in front pulled the entire sleigh mechanism with the reindeer walking attached on each side to a single attaching pole. They had loudly ringing large bells everywhere and were really melodious. Santa rode standing in the sleigh and threw candy and laughed, but someone noticed the passenger in the front of the car had a microphone and was helping him by doing the chore of his greetings and laughs over a PA system. Santa was really busy with candy and children running to touch his hand.
   This parade started near Mort and Jack Jr.’s service station on the highway and proceeded to Main and then to Front, then to Clayton Street, then west on Clayton to the Dairy Bar lot on the highway. Some of you may not recall those particular points, but today it would be the Dixie station starting and end at the former Ford car dealer building. This was a weekday – I do not remember if school was dismissed for the holidays or not, but the crowd was staggering in number. In those days anything special was well attended, especially on Saturdays.
   Look around the town and notice the stores of the day; McElroy’s grocery on the west, then the GE store, Arnold Dry goods, Western Auto, McGee’s grocery, and the Bank on the end. Also notice the absence of the Tom’s Drug Store sign, which is still very much in prominence even today. I think it had to be refurbished once and maybe that is the reason it’s not in this photo.
   The following photowas taken by me of the parade on Clayton Street in front of the power and water compnaies. If you look close, you can find Ellis Christian holding up Dean Rutherford so he can see. This was probably the largest attraction I ever witnessed in Baldwyn for a long time.


Friday, October 19, 2012

Your Wate and Fate

That's what it read on the sides of the familiar old scales that stood in front of the Ritz theater on Main Street for many years. After inserting a coin, a penny I think,  into the slot your weight and a prediction for your future was shown in a little window near the coin slot. Some of us were gullible enough to be very careful if a gloomy prediction happened to be given us. The scales are in the Baldwyn City Hall these days. They are not in working order anymore...

This was the Ritz theater in its' glorious days. The
Building was a beautiful architectural structure on the outside front. The marquee and smell of freshly
popped popcorn drew you there like a magnet. It
was comfortable on the inside. Lots of times we would emerge from the show and find that a huge thunderstorm and inches of rain had occurred without us hearing it. The pointer shows where the scales sat for decades. Ritz theater image from Memories video by Claude Gentry.

Friday, October 12, 2012

First Christian Church Worshippers

   Need some assistance in naming as many of these Baldwyn First Christian Church attendees as possible. The only ones we have tentatively ID'd is Sidney Merle Duncan behind lady in black clothing and hat on right (holding baby) who may possibly be Mrs Stults. We think young boy standing on front row second from right may be John Melvin Duke (with striped shirt). If that is so, maybe his mother Evelyn Duke is directly behind Sidney Merle.
   Your help in the identification is greatly appreciated. We think this photo could be from 1948-50 and made at the old church on North Third Street, behind waters Funeral Home.

Photo courtesy of Jeanette Young Shackleford.

Another Baldwyn Aviation Story

   A  photo I obtained from Vivian Parton Kesler recently shows her father, William "Bill" Parton and Walter Greene, a postal delivery worker, at the old grass airstrip just East of town off Clayton Street, known then as the Pratts Road.
   Bill was a local pioneer in sport flying along with many others: Mr. Duke Young and his son, Duke Archer "Arch" Young, Murray and Evelyn Duke, Mr. Claude Gentry, Carl Martin, Mr. McCary,Fred Parmenter, Barry Henderson, Gerald McKibben, Walter's son, Jim "Jimmy" Greene, I believe Ralph Pennington, and  others whose names I have forgotten.
   It was a favorite Sunday afternoon pastime to go to the airstrip and watch the planes rolled out, checked over for flight readiness, prop started (manually pulling the propeller to start the engine) and taking off and landing. Cows and other livestock frequently got in the way of aircraft landing, so we boys would get on our bicycles and go kick and bump the cow with our bikes to clear the runway. We would get rewarded once in a while with a free short ride in the sky with one of the pilots.
   Claude Gentry wrote in his memoirs of trying to land one day after a fishing trip to Pickwick Lake (he would sneak off there on lots of Wednesday afternoons when the stores in town closed for a half-day) and a stubborn cow would not get out of the way so after a couple of unsucessful close buzz-bys close to her trying to scare her into moving. He finally decided he could go ahead and land and go around her after touching down, or apply the brakes in sufficient time to stop. It didn't work. He hit the cow and the propeller killed it, damaged the propeller blade,and he had to pay the owner for the cow. (From his book Fourscore and More in Dixie).
   The picture above showing Bill and Walter is a reminder of the phrase the post office uses - "neither rain, sleet, snow, or gloom of night, etc" - you know the rest - of how Bill carried the mail and Walter to outlying areas when the roads were so icy that a truck could not be used. The mail had to get through, so they flew to a spot where they were able to land and give the mail to the recipients that had been informed when and where to meet them.
   I really miss those days at the old airport. Several times some kids would get in touch with the electric fence wire and not be able to get loose until they were knocked loose. That was funny to those of us that had done it before and knew what not to touch!

Photo from Jimmy Greene

Theaters in Baldwyn Long Ago

As printed in the Baldwyn News, 11 September, 2012
By Carl Houston, Guest contributor

I think most of the Baldwynians my age and close can recall the movie theaters in town. It was a pleasurable way to spend a couple of hours of alternate reality watching great performances of musicals with the finely choreographed dance numbers, colorful costuming, and great music. We boys and most men were mesmerized by the beauty of the movie stars and the ladies really doted on the male “heart throbs” they saw on the silver screen.
   Back in those olden days, long before movie theaters, our little town always had some means of public entertainment. There were at least two stages in town at different locations that had live entertainment, and were, in their time, a nice way to be entertained. During the early years in Baldwyn many tent shows came and did live performing and movies. They consisted of Indian, but let me correct myself, native-American actors, vaudeville actors, and others. One tent show proprietor that was usually welcomed warmly was “Daddy” Crouch, a German man who made a living with his one-machine movie. He had only silent films to be shown, and according to Mr. Claude Gentry’s memoirs he narrated vocally everything that happened in his films. He would be the voice of all of the actors, and the way he did it was well worth the price of admission alone. He always sat up his tent show just across the tracks on the left where the storage rental center is now between East Main and Clayton Streets. Bandstands, like the elaborate one by the old Home Hotel around the first part of the 20th century had live musical concerts that rivaled larger towns and cities. Former mayor Lloyd Heflin, Sr. played in an orchestra.
   When movies got sound around 1927, they then became the premiere way to be entertained. Movies, news of the world happenings that could be viewed, and even some funny cartoons that moved and talked were well received by the public, thanks to an upstart cartoon artist named Walt Disney. His characters are still entertaining us even to this day.
   When money was scarce to many families in the depression era, they could find a way to get to enjoy a movie occasionally, providing a little break to the tough times they were living in.
   I am including a photo to this story that I have had quite some time waiting for the opportunity to find some more details about it. It is the old Lyric Theater that was at Front and Main in the early1940s. It was where the Azalea Court is located now, and where the original Bank of Baldwyn was located until destroyed by the fire of 1914. Mr. Gentry rented the building from Buster McElroy for about fifteen dollars a month.
   I remember just a little of this theater, being around five years old the few times I was carried into it. When you entered through the front, you passed under the screen – the projection booth was in the rear. Most often your shadow was cast onto the screen as you scouted around for a seat and people would yell for you to hurry and get seated and off the screen so they could see the action.
   The Baldwyn Theater was on West Main Street and Mr. Gentry bought it from Mr. Audie Coggins in about the mid-40s and moved up there. He renamed it the Ritz and we all remember its’ successful operation throughout the 50s and 60s. Wow-the memories those Saturday western matinees made to young cowboys with their stick horses and at least one .45 caliber toy cap pistol on their side! Once, a B-western hero named “Sunset Carson” came to town and appeared in person with an aide-de-camp who let him shoot  cigarettes out of his mouth and helped him do other rope tricks. I can recall it very well. Other Wild West “stars” of the day appeared locally infrequently and once one drew the first ticket of the Saturday money giveaway. The town was impressed.
   Later, the Lyric was back in business in a building next to the Western Auto Store across the street from the Ritz. It had a successful run only operating on Friday nights and all day on Saturday. It was located in the building currently containing Quail Ridge Engineering.
   Here is a photo (above) I was lucky enough to find some time ago and was taken in approximately 1942 or ’43. I have read that there were many other stores in the building in later years. I only recall one – a wheelchair- bound Mr. Thomas had a shop repairing radios and televisions there for a while. I would go beg tech advice and old parts such as condensers and capacitors from him to keep my ancient radios working.

Photo courtesy Buddy Spight.

Sunday, September 23, 2012

A Prather Family Record

 While looking for some other Baldwyn historical information, I ran across this marriage license for Mr. Brooks Prather. We have often wondered if he had any family - maybe some of you already know he had his own family at one time. As shown here he was married to Martha St. John in Tennessee on the 12th day of June, 1906. I really like the language of documents like this in those times - "has this day prayed and obtained License". At least no one was ashamed to invoke deity on papers back then.
  He also had a daughter born around 1909. The 1920 census lists him as head of the household, Martha as wife, and daughter Kathryn. Brooks was then 43, Martha 33, and Kathryn 11. He is listed as a retail merchant in a general store. That store was possibly owned by him and could have been located over the old bank building that was on the SW corner of main and second street where the Palmer pool room was in the 50s.
  The 1930 census shows Brooks (53) and Kathryn (21) living in Forrest Prather's home but Martha's name is not listed and her outcome is unknown at this time. I cannot find Brooks nor Kathryn listed in the 1940 census - maybe they were living somewhere else or did not get on the enumerator's roll for some reason. Brooks was a smart man, but hated to get beat playing pool and would have a hissyfit if he had to pay a dime for losing.

Saturday, September 15, 2012

FFA Members Of Baldwyn High School 1959

This photo was included in a yearbook but am not sure the year. I am estimating the year of origin. There are so many '59 seniors in the photo I guessed at the date.

FFA was a really good course. I thoroughly enjoyed it. I learned to weld in shop and that helped me through the years. 

Sunday, September 9, 2012

Prospective Football Players

An undated photo of local Baldwyn boys who might be interested in joining the Bearcat football team at that time. Coach Vandiver is at left rear, and Bro. Gene Crawford in center at rear.

This photo was made in the basement of the old Baptist church on Main Street. Most on the young men are recognizable but if you get stuck for a name, send a comment, please.

From Milton Copeland.

Tuesday, August 21, 2012

Once Proud Train Depot Reduced to Rubble

I am one of the many that regret that this had to be the disposition of the old depot. So many of us spent so many days hanging out there listening to the telegraph and watching the final waning days of passenger train service - people from far away getting off and on the passenger cars to leave going on to other parts of the world. We really didn't know then just how big the world was. We really longed to get on the train and go somewhere ourselves.

Article from the Baldwyn News, July 18 1990.

Friday, August 17, 2012

Morning Coffee Gang

The regular morning coffee group at the Git-N-Go south of town were joined recently by some of the old Baldwyn gang. L-R John Olan Cunningham, Robert Thomas, Jim Baxter, Joe Murray Davis, Billy Hamblin, Carl Houston, and David Heflin. Not shown is Henry Outlaw, who took the photo. Joe had some very old photos and objects d' art to pass around. For an hour and a half or more, many old football games were replayed, the goats were again put in the school library, and bootleggers once again got a visit late at night. It was very good time we had, guys. Thanks for the memories!

Tuesday, August 14, 2012

Caldwell Motor Company

   If any of you were treated by Dr. Mitchell Ford, you will remember he built a new office at the corner of South Second Street at Water Street which is still there and being used a medical facility even today. This building was on that same spot. This photo I would guess to be made in early 1910s. I don't see the E. A. Shellnut home across the street to the left which was built by Dr. R. B. Caldwell around 1915-16. Dr. Caldwell moved to a new home in 1927 and Ben Caldwell bought the house. He later sold it to Mr. Shellnut.
   This was the local Chevrolet dealership and garage and Second street was US highway 45 at that time. I also notice that the street appears to not be paved. The downtown streets were concreted starting in about 1926 or '28, I have read. C. G. Henderson later bought the dealership and eventually moved it to South Fourth Street (U.S. 45 at that time). This building burned and I can't remember if Henderson moved prior to the fire or not.

Friday, August 10, 2012

City Officials Mid-20th Century

Front, L-R: J. P. McWhorter who was city clerk, then-Mayor Bernard Coggins, Paul England. Rear, L-R: Mr. Duke Young, Mr. "Red" Cunningham, J. S. Weldon, Jet Ford, Fred Parmenter. They are in front of the old city hall on north Second Street.

From Claude Gentry photos.

Thursday, August 2, 2012

The old Tunnel Under the Fields

Looking North...
   This is the south entrance to the drainage tunnel under the old football and baseball field that we used to go through as a rite of passage. Scary the first time through, dark and damp, bent over so far we walked like a gorilla. The entrance has had some modifications over the years, but still brings back lots of memories. Some people would tell Mr. Baker when guys were in the tunnel, and he would try to intercept them.
   I carry a camera at all times, and went to look this up today after thinking about it over the weekend. I wonder if some kids later than 1956 ever went through?  The other end is on private property and I can't easily get a photo of it, but am still trying.
   Just thought some of you might get a kick from seeing this!

Friday, July 27, 2012

Baldwyn High School Scenes

Kids loved volleyball. Usually there was a net for boys on one side of the building and another for the girls elsewhere. Mr. B. didn't like mixed playing, but it eventually happened little by little. West side of school shown.

A look at the east side facing Second Street: Remember how hot the rooms were after recess sports? I see the windows are open here. This is the school we knew in the 40s, 50s and 60s. It burned in 1991.

Friday, July 20, 2012

Damon Williams, Local Icon

   Damon Williams was a local well-liked figure in Baldwyn in the 40s and 50s. A kind and gentle man, he always hung around uptown, mostly near Jones and Co. Dry Goods store. He would wait for traveling salesmen to visit the stores and would get a nickel or dime tip from them by carrying their sample cases in and out of the stores
   He had two nicknames that we remember - "Hot" and "Hosie". The latter, according to him, was from the "prophet Hosea" in the Bible. He was a cigarette smoker and conceived a way to get free cigarettes. He could hold a single cigarette in one hand at waist level, hit it somehow with his other hand, sending it flying in the air and catch it in his mouth just right for lighting. Then you had to light it for him as he carried no match or lighter (he may have had some matches).
   He knew many gospel songs and hymns I am told and would sing in the porch swing at his home on Cemetery Street near the ice plant across from the old cotton loading platform.

This is probably the only known photo of him and is the property of John Olan Cunningham. Sorry it couldn't be restored any better.

Saturday, July 14, 2012

Show Me The Money!

Another photo of the crowds that waited patiently for the money drawing in the center of town many years ago. The merchants gave ticket stubs to customers for the amount of money they spent up until time to roll the barrel and pick some lucky winners out.

Mayor Bernard Coggins has a winning ticket about to be called out. In the truck also is Sam Johnson, the Western Auto dealer. Around Sam you can see Robert Jobe, Charles Weatherford, and Gary Norman. By the left door of the truck stands Nora Dean Mink. ALso on the left (rear) of the barrel is Buddy Miller. In the lower left of the photo is Betty Jean Franklin.

Can you locate anyone else you remember?

Photo courtesy of Edwina Carpenter.

Wednesday, July 11, 2012

Donation to BHS Library

  Mr. Claude Gentry presents a copy of his first book, "Private John Allen" to Mrs. Clyde Bryson, librarian at Baldwyn High School, in 1951. Mrs. Bryson was a teacher also.

Saturday, July 7, 2012

More Real Southern Belles

L-R Nancy, Jackie, Barbara, Monte Jean, and Linda. Dr. R. B. seems pretty proud to be in their company...
 Evidently made in 1954 at the 90th celebration of the Battle of Brice's Cross Roads.

Photo courtesy of Edwina Carpenter.

Wednesday, July 4, 2012

Some young Basketball Players

This undated photo shows a coach and some young players, many of whom we know. I believe this may be at Wheeler, but I may be badly wrong.

I see Tommy Carpenter, Doug Waters, Larry Roberts, Hulon Cox (55), possibly James and Judy Bryant's older brother Tommy (66)??, and others I recognize but cannot name. Any help?

Sunday, July 1, 2012

1954 Battle Reenactors


    Clipping courtesy of Final Stands (Brice's Cross Roads) Museum and Interpretive Center.

Tuesday, June 26, 2012

Venison for the next Week

Undated photo of Billy McGee, Bobby Corbett, and Gideon Chisholm with a nice size deer. The man in back looks familiar, but I can't come up with his name (help).

Photo from Dr. Henry Outlaw

Friday, June 22, 2012

Sunday School Class about 1954

This apparently is Joyce Houston's Sunday School class in front of the Baptist church when it was on Main street. I guessed at the date as 1954 due to some of the guys wearing beards that were in celebration of Brice's Cross Roads reenactment that year.

Dig those crazy ties especially Fooly's! I'm not sure which Cox is behind Aaron - Billy? Can you remember all of them?

Friday, June 15, 2012

1959 BHS Beauties

Betty Ann Lytal - Dairy Queen in 1959 Homecoming game parade. She is wearing a tiara but it was cropped out before I edited the photo. Juanita Chisholm at right riding her horse with unidentified passenger.

Four of the six voted "most beautiful" in BHS '59. L-R Sandra Poole, Doris Robinson, Martha Ann Garrett, and Martha Ann Pratt. Not present at this photo op were Midge Stiles and Martha Sue Prather. Photos made at the old Dairy Bar area on US 45N. Miss Lytal is seen at top right in a '59 Chevrolet convertible.

Saturday, June 9, 2012

Sawdust Memories

An undated photo of one of the the woodworking classes at BHS. A project each year was built by the students for their keeping. They only paid a small amount for the material. This project evidently is a cedar chest. The shop in these days, if I recall correctly, was in an added-on room at the west end of the gym.

Top, from left looks like Charles "Clubfoot" Weatherford(??), Tony Barber, and Larry Roberts. Need some help with the name of the person standing (Bobby Conwill?). Seated L-R Bonnie Ray Whitehead??, Donald Wayne Robinson, Bobby McCarley, and Larry Carpenter?

Corrections/additions needed.

Monday, June 4, 2012

"Popeye" at Work

Here is an old deteriorated clipping of Paul "Popeye" Gentry at his watch repair desk. He was a jovial and jocular fellow, but plagued by a crippling disease. He made the most of it, going to ball games and on short vacation trips in his many nice convertibles with friends and girlfriends.

This photo was made in his second location under Gordon's Department Store on South Second Street.

A jokester and always appreciative of a joke being told to him, his laughter could be heard for a long way. If you ever wondered about the origin of his nickname, he wore a jeweler's loupe on his right eye for magnification and when he looked at you, he reminded everyone of the cartoon character.

Saturday, June 2, 2012

John Allen Sign

This sign is still in place on Hwy145N. This photo shows it shortly after it was erected. It is being checked out by two very attractive ladies - Mary Tom Gordon, left, and Pat McGuire.
 Does anyone know the date of this? It is March 8th of some year according to some text on the page.
 Sorry for the poor condition of the newspaper clipping.

Tuesday, May 29, 2012

More scenes from the old Shiloh Battle Movie

A scene lifted from the old movie shows a Rebel charge including 1-Henry Outlaw, 2-Jack Christian, 3-Ellis Wayne Christian, 4-Jim Agnew, 5-Wyatt Weatherford, and 6- possibly Bruce McElroy.

During the battle at the Hornet's nest, the brave Yankee rifleman, Henry Outlaw, raises up to get off a good shot. This is his worst mistake...
 he is 'cut down' with opposing deadly fire and falls headfirst over the fence and lies hanging there. His day is done, so to speak.

Near the end of the movie, the battlefield hospital accepts another wounded soldier to be attended to by the Union surgeon portrayed by Dr. R. B. Caldwell.

Monday, May 28, 2012

Happy Memorial Day 2012

Baldwyn has a military display in the Caldwell Circle area, consisting of a large Army tank and several plaques on a wall and a tiled area at that wall. The tiles have names and other data of local folks that served in the military during wartime and peacetime. I had forgotten about this but visited there yesterday after church for a few minutes. Silently, I thanked each one listed there for their service to our great country. Long live freedom!

I took a couple of pics of some of the tiles. I'm sure you may recognize names of people alive and those that have passed on.

Thursday, May 24, 2012

Old Main Fire and Death

Were any of you readers there?

On January 22, 1959, Old Main Dormitory at Mississippi State University was home to 1,100 college students. But early on Friday morning, January 23rd, the students were homeless. Old Main was ablaze and the ruins of the largest student housing facility in the United States would later produce the charred body of one of its own. Extremely cold weather, final exams, and students gone home for semester break contributed to the very difficult task and seemingly endless confusion of trying to confirm that all residents of Old Main had escaped the devastating blaze. After three days of investigation, evidence pointed to the strong possibility that the fire had been deliberately set. Searchers found a human skull in the smoldering rubble. The crushed skull was not the result of the fire, a fall or failed escape. It appeared to be murder. Had the fire been deliberately set to cover up a murder? How in the world does college life lead to murder and arson?


Clipping from Brices Crossroads Interpretive Center archives. Text from a book description, wonder what exactly happened???

Monday, May 21, 2012

Bookmobile and Patrons

The Lee County "Bookmobile" on a visit to Baldwyn, late '50s or early '60s with local kids. Some of them we have identified, but not all - if you know any of the names please comment.

Photo courtesy of Clarene Evans Houston

Sunday, May 13, 2012

The UFO Chase

One Sunday afternoon at the old Baldwyn airport located east of town in a grassy pasture, some local pilots and spectators noticed a bright object in the sky. It was very brilliant and had moved across the horizon. Claude Gentry had some binoculars and after watching it for a while, decided to go aloft for a better look. A fellow pilot, Duke Young and he chased it for a long time before deciding they could not intercept it.

They noted that it had 2 distinguishable lights on it. Their non-supercharged airplane could not get high enough to get other details.

The story was something that had the townspeople talking for several days.The story at left from the Atlanta-Journal Constitution shows how far the story got.

Also several days later, the Tupelo Daily Journal got a bit of news that a similar craft, a plastic weather balloon, was found in a field near Eupora, Mississippi. They connected the stories but it is still unknown if they are realted. Don't know why they were written up as "River Pilots" in the AJC.

This is Mr. Claude and his Stinson Voyager plane. He used it for sport flying, in his business, and for
book research for some of his novels. Notice the painting on the side of the rear fuselage that is a representation of his first published book "Private John Allen".  He could get away from his business for an afternoon of fishing and be on Pickwick Lake and in his boat very quickly.

Photo courtesy of BCR Museum, Ms Edwina Carpenter.

Friday, May 11, 2012

Henderson Chevrolet Mechanics

Pictured are employees of the old Henderson Chevrolet dealership service department in Baldwyn. Front center and right are Alfred Smith and Turner Christian.

Pete West is right rear. Can any one help with the names of the other three?

Pete was renowned to have the power to remove warts from skin. He did one for me, I recall he told me to look into his eyes and he rubbed the wart with both of  his hands. I can truthfully say it was gone in a couple of days or less.

Henderson Chevrolet was located on US145S, The City Cafe is located in that building now.
Photo courtesy of Betty Smith Massengill

Add caption

The photo above was an advertisement for Henderson Chevrolet and shows a 1949 or 50 automobile.

Photo courtesy of Agnew's Restaurant, Pratts. Carefully restored by Clarene Evans-Houston.

Saturday, May 5, 2012

Do any of you Remember these Lovelies?

These old friends met recently for lunch. They sent this photo and wondered if anyone can remember who they are and the year each graduated.

There isn't a prize for identifying them, but it should be fun.

Pretty, ain't they?

Friday, May 4, 2012

"Our Home" Hotel Register

  Pictured are two pages from the register book of Baldwyn's "Our Home" Hotel. Click on photo for larger view.
  Notice the price for a night's lodging - two dollars. I think that may have included a meal, but I'm not sure. Sunday meals were open to the public for one dollar and included tea, coffee, fruit and dessert along with the meal.
  People in those days were more careful with their handwriting, most all the entries shown here are in very legible script. The dates and other information in meticulous calligraphy were entered on the pages by "Uncle" George Pierce, porter and mainstay figure at the hotel. He was self-educated and a son of former slaves. George lived until 1949 and was revered by townsfolk and travelers alike. He was the wake up person to those who needed that service, he called everyone to dinner, and other things. Here he is shown with dinner bell in hand waiting for the precise moment to ring it for the guests.

  Uncle George met all the trains with his luggage cart in tow. There were many visitors to this area, most notably salesmen. Notice on the register they had people from as far away as St. Louis. If you look close you'll notice that George usually put the weather for that day in the book next to the day and date.
  The hotel burned several years ago. It stood at the corner of Front and Water streets. The front first faced the East and the railroad tracks, but eventually it was redesigned to face North. It also had many visitors in automobiles after train passenger service declined.
  In its' heyday, there was a large bandstand nearby and during good weather many bands played there for the public.
  Funny thing happened with this posting. I saw this book for the first time in many years just today. When it was handed to me, I opened it up without regard to where, and notice what the date is of my open pages. May 1st and additional days, 1910. Just a coincidence?

Thanks to Edwina Carpenter of the Brices' Crossroads Interpretive Center for these photos.