Friday, February 1, 2019

Today in History for Feb. 1, 2019

U.S. Senator Charles Tait

Feb. 1, 1768 – Charles Tait was born in Hanover, Va. He served as a Circuit Court Judge in Georgia, as a U.S. Senator from Georgia and as a U.S. federal judge in Alabama. He taught French, worked as an attorney and later lived at Claiborne, where he died in 1835.

Feb. 1, 1839 - The Alabama legislature abolished imprisonment for debt, except in cases of fraud. This action continued a modification of English common law that had begun with the Mississippi and Alabama territorial governments. The constitutions of 1868, 1875 and 1901 would prohibit imprisonment of debtors even in cases of fraud.

Feb. 1, 1856 - Auburn University was chartered as the East Alabama Male College.

Feb. 1, 1863 – J.C. Johnson, who was born on March 11, 1847, enlisted as a private in the Confederate army. He served with Co. B, 3rd Alabama Cavalry and was wounded at the Battle of Kennesaw Mountain. He died in Conecuh County on April 10, 1914.

Feb. 1, 1886 – Monroe County (Ala.) Court convened on this Monday.

Feb. 1, 1886 - The Monroe County Medical Society met in Monroeville, Ala. on this Monday. There were only three physicians present at the meeting: Drs. McMillan, Packer and Russell.

Feb. 1, 1886 – Former Monroe County Sheriff Burns and Richard Nettles of Buena Vista were in Monroeville, Ala. on this Monday.

Feb. 1, 1895 – On this Friday morning, I.D. Roberts shot Sam Thames in Roberts’ oat field at Perdue Hill, Ala. Roberts had discovered an unattended mule in his oat field and when Thames arrived and attempted to bridle the mule, Roberts fired and accidentally wounded Thames in the neck and shoulder. Thames was treated for his wounds and was expected to fully recover.

Feb. 1, 1905 – The Evergreen Courant reported that George L. Madison of Oshkosh, Wisc., who came south every winter to hunt, was the guest of the family of J.E. Ellis.

Feb. 1, 1906 – The Monroe Journal reported that a Mr. Gunter, a former resident of Pine Apple, had purchased the turpentine business belonging to Mr. Baker of Drewry.

Feb. 1, 1906 – The Monroe Journal reported that Miss May Belle Davis of Manistee, Ala. had been a guest of Monroeville friends for a few days during the previous week.

Feb. 1, 1906 – The Monroe Journal reported that Miss Lucile Bizzelle had returned home from Boston where she had completed a course in a school of oratory and expression.

Feb. 1, 1906 – The Monroe Journal reported that Dr. J.T. Russell’s office was now located in the room formerly occupied by the late Dr. Wiggins.

Feb. 1, 1906 – In this day’s edition of The Monroe Journal, the correspondent from the Robinsonville community reported that residents there were expecting to get rural free delivery soon and a telephone line, which would connect with the long distance at Atmore.

Feb. 1, 1910 – The Marengo Democrat and The Linden Reporter, which were established in 1889, consolidated to form The Democrat-Reporter in Linden, Ala.

Feb. 1, 1911 – Caleb Johnston Snowden, 65, passed away at his home near Brooklyn, Ala. Born on Oct. 14, 1845, he enlisted in Co. H of the 15th Confederate Cavalry and served until the Confederacy surrender in 1865. He was buried in the Brooklyn Baptist Church Cemetery in Conecuh County, Ala. 

Feb. 1, 1917 – The Monroe Journal reported that the Monroe County Board of Education had held a stated meeting in Monroeville during the previous week with all members present. Among other business transacted at the meeting was the election of Prof. Geo. A. Harris as County Superintendent of Education to succeed Prof. J. Barnes, whose term was set to expire on Sept. 30.

Feb. 1, 1917 – The Monroe Journal reported that Judge W.G. McCorvey was a business visitor to Montgomery earlier that week.

Feb. 1, 1917 – The Monroe Journal reported that Dr. D.D. Cole of Eliska was a business visitor to Monroeville during the previous week. He was accompanied by Mrs. Cole and two children and Mrs. Stiggins who were guests of the editor Q. Salter’s family.

Feb. 1, 1918 – Wilcox County Tax Collector Vandevoort reported $1,020 collected for poll taxes at the close of the business day on Feb. 1. This augmented the school fund to that extent, and the amount was a little over what officials anticipated.

Feb. 1, 1918 - Mrs. W.C. Farish died at her home in Camden on this Sunday after an illness of several weeks. She was buried in the Camden cemetery on Mon., Feb. 2.

Feb. 1, 1919 – During World War I, Army Pvt. Raymond L. Seale of Repton, Ala. “died from disease.” He was a member of the 165th Infantry, 42nd Division. He was buried in the New Home Primitive Baptist Church Cemetery in Excel.

Feb. 1, 1920 – A disastrous fire that started around 3 a.m. occurred at the large Vredenburgh Saw Mill Co. saw mill in Vredenburgh, Ala. At the time of the fire another mill in Vredenburgh was already under construction, so construction was rushed on this second mill to get it started. In 1922, both mills were operating on double shifts. The cause of the fire was unknown.

Feb. 1, 1924 - A movie version of Alabama author T. S. Stribling's book “Birthright” was released.

Feb. 1, 1931 – Longtime railroad employee William Dorsey Goodson of Evergreen, Ala. retired after 62 years of work on the railroads. Born on Oct. 4, 1852, Goodson began his railroad career on May 17, 1869 in Ft. Deposit as a laborer and apprentice foreman. In early 1879, he was promoted to section foreman on the Western of Alabama Railroad at Lowndesboro Station. A few months later, he moved to Eufaula, where he served as a section foreman with the Central of Georgia Railroad. In 1888, he was promoted to supervisor of his division with headquarters at Union Springs. He moved to Evergreen on March 15, 1890, where he worked for the next 41 years as section foreman. (Asa Heaton, formerly of Searcy, replaced Goodson as section foreman.) Goodson passed away on May 8, 1934 at the age of 81 and he’s buried in the Old Evergreen Cemetery.

Feb. 1, 1935 - The football game played on the field in Monroeville on this Friday afternoon between former high school and college stars of Monroeville and those from Excel and Uriah resulted in a scoreless tie. “A good crowd turned out to see this game which boasted a number of players who were former outstanding athletes,” according to The Monroe Journal.

Feb. 1, 1949 – NFL offensive lineman Dave Thompson was born in Langdale, Ala. He went on to play for Valley High School in Fairfax, Ala.; Clemson University, the Detroit Lions, the New Orleans Saints and the Tampa Bay Bucs.

Feb. 1, 1952 – Conecuh County, Ala. voters had until this day to pay their poll tax if they wanted to vote in that year’s elections. H.C. Wiggins was Conecuh County Tax Collector at this time.

Feb. 1, 1955 - Maury Thames Jr. of Laurel, Miss. sailed on this Tuesday for Tokyo, Japan where he had been assigned for a three months tour of duty with the Department of Internal Revenue. Thames was to lecture to United States citizens who were residing in Japan on certain changes that had been made in the income tax laws. Thames was the son of Mr. and Mrs. Maury Thames of Evergreen, and he had been with the Department of Internal Revenue since July 1948. He graduated from the University of Alabama in June 1948. For the past several years he had resided in Laurel.

Feb. 1, 1956 - Autherine Lucy of Birmingham, Ala. became the first African American to enroll at the University of Alabama. Her stay at the school ended abruptly, however, as she was suspended and then expelled amid campus unrest. Permanent integration of the university would be delayed until 1963, when two black students enrolled the day of Gov. George Wallace's "stand in the schoolhouse door."

Feb. 1, 1963 - Evergreen High School’s varsity boys basketball team gained revenge for an earlier season defeat on this Friday night when they whipped the W.S. Neal Blue Eagles, 62-47, in Evergreen, Ala. Sid Lambert set the Aggies individual single game high point peak for the season as he ripped the cords for 31 markers, half the Aggie scoring total. Ronnie Jackson contributed 10 points to the winning cause. Ray Davis led Neal with 24 points.

Feb. 1, 1964 - Flxible Southern Company of Loudonville, Ohio began operations in Evergreen, Ala. after purchasing the assets of Southern Coach & Body Co.

Feb. 1, 1965 – B.E. Lee, who’d served seven years as principal at Monroe County High School, was named the first president of the Monroeville Junior College, which became Patrick Henry Junior College a short time later.

Feb. 1, 1968 – Marine Cpl. John Wesley Winter, 20, of Brewton, Ala. was killed in action in Vietnam. Born on Nov. 20, 1947, he was a member of Co. G 5th Marine Battalion, 1st Marine Division. He was buried in Union Cemetery in Brewton.

Feb. 1, 1972 - Monroeville’s Charlie Company of the 156th Military Police Battalion (Army) retired its colors due to a massive reorganization of the Alabama Army National Guard. Replacing C Co. at Fort Short Millsap was Det. 2, 778th Maintenance Co. (Rear-DS). The headquarters part of the company was to be located at Jackson, with the towns of Evergreen, Fairhope and Monroeville making up the remaining parts of the company. Sgt. George B. Singleton was to remain in charge of the Monroeville detachment.

Feb. 1, 1984 - Weather observer Earl Windham reported a low of 24 degrees in Evergreen, Ala.

Feb. 1, 1984 - Alvin Howard Dees, 75, of Evergreen, Ala. died on this Wednesday in a local hospital. A native of Escambia County, the son of the late Stephen and Lucy Robinson Dees, he was manager of Jay Villa Plantation for 41 years. He was born Aug. 14, 1908. He was buried in Magnolia Cemetery in Evergreen.

Feb. 1, 1985 - Weather observer Earl Windham reported 1.92 inches of rain in Evergreen on this day.

Feb. 1, 1985 - The Evergreen Chamber of Commerce held a “highly successful” promotion banquet on this Friday night at the Holiday Inn. A total of 127 business and professional people heard a dynamic talk by Don Collins, president of Collins Industries of Hutchinson, Kansas, owner of Transi-Corp. of Evergreen. Collins was introduced by Keith Holcombe, manager of Transi-Corp., who also gave a report on the local plant. Commission Chairman David Burt spoke for the county, and Mayor Pat Poole for the City of Evergreen. Mrs. Willene Whatley, president, reported on a most successful year for the Chamber of Commerce. Highlight of the year was Evergreen’s being named a Prepared City by the Alabama Development Office. Whatley was re-elected president. Also re-elected were Jimmy Bell, vice-president, and Mrs. Mamie Jo Lambert, treasurer. Mrs. Dorothy Sargeant was re-appointed secretary.

Feb. 1, 2005 - Weather observer Harry Ellis reported 1.43 inches of rain in Evergreen, Ala.

Feb. 1, 2005 – J.U. Blacksher High School’s girls basketball team lost 42-40 to Sweet Water at Uriah on this Tuesday. Top girls players at Blacksher that season included Amber Caskey, Tiffany Dale, Kayla House, Brooke Little, Arica Selzer and Parris White.

Feb. 1, 2007 - Alabama author W. L. Heath died in Guntersville, Ala.

Feb. 1, 2008 - The Aruban prosecutor's office reopened the case into the disappearance of Natalee Holloway, 18, of Mountain Brook, Ala. after receiving video footage of Joran van der Sloot, under the influence of marijuana, saying that Holloway died on the morning of May 30, 2005, and that he disposed of her body.

Feb. 1, 2010 - At their meeting on this Monday night, the Excel Planning Commission accepted an application to rezone a piece of property for the proposed site of a Dollar General store, and a public hearing was set for Feb. 18. Linda Albritton requested her two parcels of property – an open lot and a lot with a residence on it on the southwest corner of Alabama Highway 136 and Third Street – be changed from residential (R-1) to business (B-1). Planning Commission Chairman Gary Cole said all the documentation for the application, including a letter of intent naming the purpose of the rezoning, was in order, and the group agreed unanimously to take the application.

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