Looking Back -- Aug. 18, 2013

History column

Looking Back

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.

Here is a look back at news from August 18-24 across many years.


The Victor Talking Machine Company of Camden, N.J., began to manufacture the Victrola (record player). The hand-cranked unit, with horn cabinet, sold for $200. Records sold separately.


With prohibition in place, Leesburg reported a noticeable drop in arrests for disorderly conduct. Citizens also noted how quiet the roads were and that it was even safe for a woman to drive on Saturday nights.


Georgia’s first compulsory school attendance law was passed. The legislation required children ages 8-14 to attend school at least four months each year. A long list of exemptions, however, weakened the law. For example, school attendance was not required of children living more than three miles from the nearest school, children that had to work to help support the family, children whose parents could not afford to buy books and shoes and children who had already finished the 4th grade were given waivers.


Women throughout the United States rejoiced, as the 19th Amendment to the U.S. Constitution was ratified, giving women the right to vote.


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

A female driver was sentenced in city court for driving on a public road (in Albany) while intoxicated. The penalty was either $1000 or 30 days at the county work farm.


The Georgia House passed Bill 184-1, creating a school book commission to provide uniform textbooks in all common and high schools throughout the state.


Albany’s tax rate was lowered from 14 mills to 12.5 mills. Over the course of five years, the millage rate was reduced by a total of seven mills.


In conjunction with the national registration of aliens, the Albany post office had on hand all the necessary forms and equipment to begin the task. All aliens age 14 and older were required to register. Failure to do so carried a fine, imprisonment or, in some cases, both.


One of the oldest businesses in Americus, Harrold Bros., donated all business records to Emory University. The donation weighed about four tons and covered the years 1859-1953.


In the summer convocation held at Albany State College, 50 students were awarded diplomas. Degrees were in the fields of elementary education, psychology, English and social studies.


Twenty-two of the 46 “lock-ups” in the 14-county area of Southwest Georgia were classified as deplorable, unsafe and unsanitary.


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

Plains Police Chief Bill McClung gave a crime report.The police department, established December 15, 1976, investigated one burglary and two assaults in its first 18 months. At the time, the home of President Jimmy Carter was seeing as many as 2,500 tourists daily.


According to Dorothy B. Hubbard, Director of Admissions and Records at Albany State College, more than 1,000 students were expected to complete enrollment for fall quarter.


The largest contract ever awarded to an Albany company by the Marine Corps Logistics Base went to Data Signal, Inc. The $5.74 million contract was for 66 combat field switchboards, 63 maintenance kits and about 18,000 spare parts.


Lt Gov. Pierre Howard was allowed one appointment to the Georgia State Games Commission. He chose Albany’s Dee Matthews.


Palmyra Personal Care Home held its grand opening at 1901 Palmyra Road. There was 24-hour staffing, a laundry room as well as linen service, a hair stylist and barber, private and semi-private rooms and much more.

A 24-year old Florida man carrying a pillowcase and a clothing bag drew the suspicions of an undercover agent in downtown Albany. When the officer ran the fellow’s name, freely given to the officer, it was discovered he was wanted for a probation violation. Inside the parcels the suspect was carrying was $194,802 in cash.


Jeff Sinyard was trailing by more than 700 votes with one precinct left to be counted in his race against James Bush for Dougherty County Commission chairman. When those last votes were counted, Sinyard won the race by 47 votes.


Plans were near completion for Palmyra Medical Centers new 33-bed acute care facility to be constructed within the existing facility. Expectations were for the new part of the hospital to open by February 2008.


Eight-year Dougherty County School System Superintendent Sally Whatley surprised board of education members with her retirement announcement.

Darton (State) College students moved into a new $7 million on-campus housing complex, the first in the college’s history.


To make room for the new models, Haley Motor Company on Slappey Drive held a 1968 Mustang close-out. Claiming the largest Mustang inventory in all of South Georgia, the advertised price for top of the line cars, minus Georgia sales tax, was how much?

a) $2,365

b) $2,995

c) $3,555

d) $4,015


a) The close-out price for a 1968 Mustang at Haley Motor Company, minus state sales tax, was $2,365