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Looking Back Aug. 19 2012

Each week Albany Herald researcher Mary Braswell looks for interesting events, places and people from the past. You can contact her at (229) 888-9371 or mary.braswell@albanyherald.com.

1914

The Americus Muckalees baseball team won the Georgia State League pennant.

1919

The South Georgia Products Warehouse Company of Moultrie announced plans to add two warehouses to store the ever-growing production of sweet potatoes . The curing houses, built according to government guidelines, allowed the potatoes to be kept almost indefinitely.

Armour Fertilizer Works acquired the Albany Phosphate Company just north of the city on Leesburg Road. The property transfer was believed the largest of the year at $225,000.

1920

A report from maternity hospitals across the country stated that the price of a visit from the stork had doubled in four years. In 1916, the price averaged $35.49 while in 1920, the rate averaged $70.04.

1924

Georgia Power installed a third generator at the Flint River Station to handle the rapid growth in Albany.

Governor Clifford Walker signed an act providing that persons sentenced to death no longer be hanged but rather electrocuted. The law further directed the State Prison Commission to immediately build a death chamber with an electric chair at the prison in Milledgeville.

1927

Excavation work for a new building at Albany High School to house the manual training department and a new basketball court on Third Street was under way. The new basketball court was to be modern in every way with lockers and showers for players and seating for over 500.

A female driver was sentenced in City Court for driving on a public road while intoxicated. The penalty was either a $100 fine or 30 days at the county work farm.

1932

The Albany Unemployment Relief Bureau reported that the total number of families on the relief rolls was 1,451. Relief included shoes, clothing, medical attention, medicines, groceries and firewood.

1941

The new water tower opposite Post Headquarters at Turner Field was nearing completion. It took just three days for the Corps of Engineers to complete the 120-foot-tall steel structure upon which the tank would rest. Once filled, the tank would weigh an estimated 825 tons.

The State Board of Education guaranteed the salary of teachers for nine months, assuming the schools were open that long. Previously, the state only guaranteed seven months of salary for teachers.

1944

Hugh Mills Jr., former Albany High School athletic star, was named physical director of the Albany Boys Club.

Big Star (grocery store) introduced its new 1 1/2 -pound loaf of sliced sandwich bread. The price tag was 11 cents.

1947

Thirteen people were shocked into unconsciousness by lightning on the farm of O.M. Toole in Bainbridge. A storm blew up as workers were gathering peanuts and they sheltered themselves under a tarp connected to a metal pole. All 13 were knocked out when a lightning bolt struck a tree that was touching the pole.

1955

It was reported that, as one of the largest cities in the state, Albany city government cost about $33 per person annually. This amount was comparable to other large metro areas within the state.

Blakely citizens gathered on Court Square to watch 175 gallons of moonshine be poured down the storm sewer. The illegal hooch was valued at approximately $3,000.

1956

Sherwood Baptist Church acquired more Sunday school space by renting a four-room apartment at 615 Eighth Avenue. Sunday School attendance was averaging 300, even in the summer months.

1962

Albany Police officers closed the public library and city parks after integrated groups tried to use the facilities.

1966

Thomasville began admitting patients to its new mental health facility. A total of 134 patients were scheduled to be housed in the facility, which was an old Army hospital during WWII. A staff of 87 was hired to run the daily operations including administration and direct care.

1969

A first year report showed that 197 families in Lee County received a total of $157,051 in food stamps.

1973

From The Albany Herald help wanted ads: High school math teacher for private school; Certification not necessary; $500 per month

Lee County Correctional Institute broke ground for the construction of a $152,576 classroom facility.

1978

Movies showing in Albany included: “Grease”, “Revenge of the Pink Panther” and National Lampoon’s “Animal House.”

1985

Georgia Department of Transportation representatives came to town to cut the ribbon and officially open the four-laned U.S. Highway 19 from Albany to Leesburg.

1990

The Dougherty County Commission agreed to pay $700,000 for the former JC Penney store at Midtown Shopping Centre. The building was to be used as the county’s mental health services center. Renovations were budgeted at $3.9 million.

After Iraq’s invasion of Kuwait, Albany gas customers were warned that prices could reach as high as $1.50 for a gallon of gas.

1993

Sherwood Christian Academy began the process of purchasing the former Riverview Academy campus on Old Pretoria Road. The transaction was finalized in December and in January 1994, grades 5 - 12 moved to the new campus.

1995

Shoney’s opened a new-image restaurant in Albany featuring a nostalgic indoor courtyard and soda fountain. The new 176-seat eatery planned to employ about 60 people with an annual payroll of $500,000.