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Looking Back July 21 2013

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.

The first public demonstration of color TV was held with the images of a bouquet of roses and an American flag. The first Academy Awards were presented in a 15-minute ceremony. Popeye made his debut. The first car radio was made by Motorola. Sam Foster began selling sunglasses from his counter in Woolworth’s. The year was 1929, just a few months before the stock market crash. Here is a look back through the pages of the July 1929 Albany Herald.

• The Albany-Leesburg stretch of the Dixie Highway was closed to traffic for resurfacing. The unpaved stretch was laid with lime rock, then opened to traffic so as to pack the material. Afterwards, the road was again closed for asphalt surfacing. This work completed paved roads from Albany to Ellaville.

• Each week, $40,000 in “baby bills” was shipped to Albany in one-, two-, five- and 20-dollar denominations. The new bills, smaller in size, were twice the strength of the older folding money and more difficult to counterfeit. The old bills were expected to be phased out over the course of several months.

• Two arrests were made for the possession of five gallons of liquor. The men were offering to sell some of the spirits to a local man who, unbeknownst to them, was a city policeman.

• The July session of City Court lasted but one day. The court heard four cases.

• The busiest day on record for the Southern Bell Exchange in Albany came during the first Wednesday of the month, with 23,000 local calls and 430 long-distance connections.

• City Commissioners granted a permit to Thad Huckabee to erect a gasoline filling station at the corner of Broad and Jefferson streets.

• NuGrape Bottling Co. of Albany offered 16 varieties of its half-pint Nu Icy soft drinks for 5 cents per bottle.

Reader poll

A train car was on the tracks of the Atlantic Coast Line at Flint and Washington streets for a full day in order to purchase surplus what?

  • a) Cane Syrup 17%
  • b) Pine logs 17%
  • c) Watermelons 67%
  • d) Poultry 0%

6 total votes.

• A rum-runner from St. Louis made a costly visit to Albany. Joe Jacobs had his 1929 Dodge coupe confiscated, was fined $300 and left town without 40 cases of illegal Scotch.

• The first bale of cotton for the 1929-30 season sold in Thomasville for a healthy 40 cents per pound.

• Americus Air Intermediate Depot and Souther Field at Americus were sold to Sumter County by the U.S. War Department for the sum of $17,510.

• An Albany landmark, the home of Col. Nelson Tift, the city’s founder, was demolished. The home was built in the midst of a pine forest, from which many of the home’s timbers came, in 1839 on eight acres on Society Street. Shaped as the letter T, the home started as a small one, but was added to as the Tift family increased.

• The Atlanta Constitution devoted the entire front page of a Sunday section to Albany’s famous Radium Springs Resort. A story accompanied the many pictures and described the city as “the real metropolis of South Georgia. One has only to ride through its business district to know it is the heart of a prosperous and coming section.”

• A resolution urging women to wear dresses of sufficient length to cover their knees when sitting as well as standing was adopted by the Catholic Women’s Society in its national convention.

• Dougherty County Sheriff O.F. Tarver held his annual barbecue at his plantation in Baker County. Approximately 500 Dougherty County residents enjoyed barbecued lamb and pig under the many shade trees.

• The local American Legion post announced that any Gold Star mother of the World War with a son still buried in France could have a two weeks’ visit without any expense. The offer was also extended for upcoming trips, one in 1930 and the other planned for 1931, to any Gold Star widow who had not remarried and to a stepmother or grandmother if the soldier’s mother was no longer living. All expenses by way of a first-class ocean liner cabin would be paid by the U.S. War Department.

•Doll Nite Dance was held at Radium Springs Casino and billed as “the social event supreme.” The latest in European novelty dolls were given away as prizes. Dance cards cost $2 each.

• A rain dike was completed to protect Albany’s gas plant and other valuable industries in the northeastern section of the city. Ranging in height from 14 to 35 feet, a subdike was planned as extra flood protection all at the low cost of $2,000. Work was expected to begin soon on another dike to protect the cemetery and southern part of the city.

• Such was the protest of residents that a petition to allow for the building of a filling station, two houses and an apartment house on the corner of Third Avenue and North Jefferson Street was withdrawn. Those opposing the construction declared it a hazard to children at Albany High School and a noise issue for patients at Phoebe Putney Memorial Hospital.

• Rand, McNally & Company announced that Albany’s airport would be included in its new air trail maps.

• Garrett Motor Co. on North Washington Street had the new 1930 Buick models. The largest and most expensive model was the 132-inch wheelbase, seven-passenger limousine model 60-L for $1,995, before delivery and extras.

• New water sports were available at Radium Springs. There was water jousting, water polo and relay races, as well as swimming contests for girls and boys under the age of 12. Prizes were given to winners of each event.

• Produce farmers in south Georgia enjoyed a great year for tomatoes, butterbeans, cucumbers, beans and other crops. Unfortunately for the state of Florida, all crops there were quarantined because of fruit flies.

• For three days only, “Uncle Tom’s Cabin” was shown at the Liberty Theater. The film was billed as the “greatest human drama ever screened.”