Memories of a Lifetime
Lois Adams loved life as a young woman growing up in Jeffersonville, Georgia. In the years before her marriage, Lois kept her memories in a scrapbook. Now, thanks to the fine folks at Adams Funeral Home and the members of her family, Lois' scrapbook, which was found neatly packed away in the funeral home started by her husband, has been donated to the Laurens County Historical Society, where visitors can catch a glimpse into the life of talented teenage girl long, long ago.
In the five-inch thick black paper scrapbook you will find everything from Leo Mullis' cigarette butts to her very own candy wrappers (she preferred Whitman's over Nunally's), filled dance cards to great football game tickets, and a real cotton boll to a real tarpon scale. Yes, I said a tarpon scale. There are also empty packets of cigarettes, Camel and Home Run, none of which she smoked. Obligatory family pictures and clippings of wedding, anniversary and funeral notices are in the book too. This child of Jack Shine Vaughn and Susie Elizabeth Johnson Vaughn, pasted all of her important memorabilia so that in a moment she could open the book and reach back in time to when life was grand. I like the menu for ice cream, 15 cents a cup, and fruity ice drinks, 10 cents a cup, which she stole and pasted in a special place in her scrapbook.
One of the first things you will see is a piece of chewing gum, Beechnut, I presume. That in of itself is not unusual since there are many gum wrappers and who gave her the gum. Written underneath this piece of gum is the phrase "You bet I wanted to chew it, but I didn't." And she was right, the gum, or what is left of it, hasn't been chewed in the last ninety years. Lois especially enjoyed a dance where she wore a red corsage and commented, "I was thrilled to a peanut." She glued a red ribbon in her scrapbook and posed the question, "Bet I had a good time, wonder who put this around my neck?"
Music and the arts were the fabric of Lois' young life. Not a recital nor a play was held at Twiggs County High School without her name listed in the program. On the 26th of May 1920, Lois performed a rousing version of Muscadine Gulp on the piano, before singing The Governor with her good friend Dorothy Jones. In addition to her talents as a singer and pianist, Lois was a dancer.
She loved going to musical events in Macon and Atlanta. Sometimes when she was lucky, there were musical artists who passed through Jeffersonville. There was this one evening when Lois and her friends Marin, Ethel and Daisy went to hear the Wesleyan Glee Club. The music was great, but the most memorable part of the evening was that the girls didn't return until to the late hour of one o'clock in the morning. When there was nothing else to do, Lois and her friends and family would go to a womanless wedding. She must have an eye for one of the all male participants whom she thought looked real good. Then there were plays and all sorts of things to do. There was no television in those days, nor was there any radio. Movies in Jeffersonville were rare. You had to go to Macon or Dublin to see the silent movies.
Lois Evelyn Vaughn walked across the graduation stage of the Twiggs County High School auditorium on May 21, 1923 with her friends Gladys and Ruth Califf, Dorothy Jones, Estelle Harris, Wilhelmina Faulk and Carrie Norris. But, three days before then, Lois and her fellow musicians had one last chance to showcase their talents in a program under the direction of Miss Elizabeth Pettus, director of the Expression and Piano Department. Lois closed the evening's thrilling show with her performance of Rachmananoff's Prelude in C Sharp Minor.
Of all of Lois's favorite pastimes, dancing and going to dances was the best. One of the best was a big dance at the Dublin Country Club on July 28, 1926. Tom Wilcox asked her to go, but for some reason, Lois didn't remember why she turned down his invitation. But, she had a good time listening to the music of the Georgians, who performed all the great tunes in the club dance hall, which was then located east of the pond in what is now Saint Andrews subdivision.
With all of her artistic talents, Lois Adams had a talent for athletics. Among her most prized possessions is a scorecard for a basketball game against the Dublin High Whirls. I have to explain here why the girls from Dublin were called "the Whirls." The boys were dubbed the "Green Hurricane." Hence the supposedly meeker girls bore a more inferior team name. What was remarkable about the game, in which Lois said she became a famous basketball player, was that she scored 12 of her teams 24 points in a 24-6 rout of the Dublin girls.
Lois liked football as well. It didn't matter if it was Georgia or Georgia Tech. A good football game in the fall was always a thrill. She went to see Georgia Tech play the Auburn Tigers and the North Carolina Tar Heels in 1928. The following year, right before her marriage, Lois was one of the lucky who went to Georgia's game against Yale, a game which inaugurated play in Sanford Stadium and a game in which the Bulldogs gained national immortality for their stunning 15-0 upset victory over the mighty Bulldogs from Yale.
In the fall of 1926, Lois took an extended trip of Lakeland, Florida. She brought back a black watch fob as a reminder of the good times she had. Before coming home with "Big Boy" Hicks and Bob Pitts, Lois took in a boxing match, actually several of them. The big fight on the card that October 13th was the bout featuring W.L. "Young" Stribling, a future contender for the world championship in the heavyweight division. The Macon boxer still holds the world record for the most fights and knockouts by a heavyweight boxer.
Of all of her dancing partners, Lois found the best one of all in Cordy Adams of Dublin. Cordy, an up and coming undertaker and a graduate of the Cincinnati College of Embalming, won her hand in marriage. Before settling down, the couple left on a short honeymoon trip to Montgomery, Alabama and New Orleans, Louisiana. While they were staying in the Jefferson Davis Hotel in Montgomery, the newly married couple decided to go to yet another football game, another Bulldog victory over the hometown favorites, the Crimson Tide. It was the next morning when an invitation was slipped under their hotel room door inviting Mr. and Mrs. Cordy Adams to a fine breakfast. "It was the first time I felt recognized as a Mrs.," Mrs. Adams recalled.
Then the newlyweds were on to New Orleans, where they enjoyed dining, dancing and theater going in "The Big Easy." Although they had a good time, Lois wrote that the three nights in the De Soto Hotel were restless. Maybe it was the bill, a whopping $5.00 a night!
Memories are priceless. Lois Adams kept some of hers. Maybe you should do so. Cherish them, preserve them and record them. Maybe some day someone will care about what was important to you. So on behalf of the Laurens County Historical Society, here's a big thank you to you, Mrs.Adams for preserving your present and keeping your fond memories alive for generations to come.