Presented by the Laurens County Historical Society, Dublin, Georgia. For questions and information, please contact Scott B. Thompson, Sr. at dublinhistory@yahoo.com.

Tuesday, September 09, 2014

STILL MORE SNIPPETS


More than Trivial Pieces of our Past


During the 1930s, more and more political and military leaders foresaw a great war being fought in Europe.  In 1919, one Dublin man, S.M. Alsup, predicted  another world war, twenty years before it happened.  S.M. Alsup was a clerk with the American Forces in Treves, Germany.  On February 2, 1919, Alsup wrote a letter to his wife.  Alsup talked with German citizens and observed what was going on around him.  Alsup predicted "that if Germany is allowed to run her manufacturing plants and other industries to the extent of making it possible for her to pay the huge debt that she is supposed to pay, she will be on top again before we know it; at which time the war of all wars will be fought."  Alsup went on to write, "I certainly hope I am wrong, but my opinion is that in 1940 there will be another great war, if not earlier."  Alsup's prediction was right on the money - twenty years before Great Britain declared war against Germany and World War II began.  Dublin Courier Herald, June 20, 1940.

When producers of "Return to Macon County Line" began looking for a town in which to film the movie, they chose Forsyth, Georgia because of its resemblance to a 1950s town.  Back in the 1960s, Dublin businessman Earl Cannon told TV star Dan Blocker, of Bonanza fame, about his 1956 pink Eldorado Cadillac.  Blocker told the producers who contracted with Cannon to rent his car for the movie.  The producers paid Cannon $40.00 per day for the use of the car and its driver, Earl Cannon, Jr.  The car appeared in a scene early in the movie when co-star Don Johnson meets a car load of cheerleaders, who are driving the classic pink car.   Although the movie's stars, Don Johnson and Nick Nolte went on to bigger and better films, the movie, like most sequels, was not a big hit and can now be found on the clearance rack in video tape stores for about the cost of one blank video tape.

The Dublin High Tip Off Club sponsored a pair of basketball games to raise funds for Dublin High basketball on January 2, 1971.   The first game was between current Irishette players and former Irishette stars, a usual type of game for fund raising.  The second game was not so usual.  The nightcap was a game between the Atlanta All-Pros and Irish coaches and alumni.  Tom Perry, one of Dublin's greatest all time players, led the Dublin team with 22 points, followed by Lawrence Davis with 21 points.  Also playing for the Dublin team were Marvin Tarpley, Ben Snipes, Bill Roberts, Tal Fuqua, Earl Farmer, Ray Toole, Jim Richardson, Roy Hammond, and Louie Blue.  The Atlanta All Pros were a ten man team composed of non-basketball players.  Although they didn't play basketball for a living, they were among the better athletes in the country.  The All Pros were a team composed mainly of players from the Atlanta Braves.  The Atlanta All Pros lead all the way.  Bob Didier, a 21-year-old catcher for the Braves, shot two long range bombs and the baseball players never looked back.  Didier's 28 points were only exceeded by his battery mate, Ron Reed, a 6' 6" tall pitcher, who pumped in 34 points.  Sonny Jackson, the Braves shortstop, scored 11 points.  Also playing for the All Pros were pitcher, Jim Nash, Earl Williams, who would become the National League Rookie of the Year in 1971, and last but not least, Bob  Uecker, who managed to score four points.  Uecker, whose exploits on the field have been eclipsed by his unique brand of humor as a television and movie star, as well as a long time Milwaukee Brewer announcer.  The Atlanta All Pros were coached by Clete Boyer, an all-star third baseman who played for the Braves and the last great Yankee teams of the 1960s.  The Atlanta All Pros led by six at half-time by the score 45 to 39.  The Pros pulled away to win by the final score of 95 to 78.  The game was played in the old Dublin High gym, now known as the Junior High gym. Dublin Courier Herald, Jan. 4, 1971.

The City of Dublin refurbished the former Hilton Hotel on the courthouse square into a city hall.   John Kelley, Dublin's premier contractor, was hired to do the work.  As a part of the renovation work, Kelley and his crew installed a one ton bell in the top of the courthouse.  The bell was dubbed "Big John."  The fire department devised a process where the number of rings of the bells indicated what quadrant of the city the fire was occurring.  Alarm boxes were placed at various locations throughout the city.  When the alarm button was pushed, a particular box rang in the fire department office.  Then the bell was sounded to reflect the location of the fire.  There is one old tale of a man who always kept his ear open for the sound of the fire bell.  Upon the ringing of the bell, the man would proceed rapidly to the fire, climb on the roof, and break open holes in the roof with his ax.  Ignorant of the draft he was causing in doing so, many houses were lost.  Some sarcastic Dubliners stated that the motto of their fire department was "we never lose a chimney."    When the City of Dublin moved to its new quarters in 1959, the old city hall was doomed to demolition.  In 1960 the building was razed.  A local scrap metal dealer, P.M. Watson, Jr., purchased the bell.  His workers had an extremely difficult time in taking the bell out of the building.

The bell remained at Watson's place of business until Alonzo Boardman of Augusta came along.  Boardman had to have the bell.  He bought it and made arrangements to have it shipped to his garden fifteen miles from Augusta at Bath, near the notorious Tobacco Road.  Boardman's garden, known as Austrian Valley, was a 47-acre tract with lakes, fountains, terraces, and a hillside lodge.  Dogwoods, azaleas, and other varieties of plants adorned the Boardman home, which was modeled on an Austrian village.    Dublin Courier Herald, Feb. 2, 1967.

It looked like a scene out of World War II.  A B-26 bomber with flames coming out of it was falling to the earth.  The plane, a part of an outfit known as the Confederate Air Force, developed trouble on a flight from Louisville, Georgia to its home base of San Marcos, Texas.  The pilots jettisoned the cockpit and crash landed the bomber into a field belonging to M.O. Darsey.  Both pilots survived.  Dublin Courier Herald, May 13, 1976

She was not your typical southern police officer.   Kathy Hogan worked in the Dublin police department as a dispatcher.  That position was normally held by a female.  There were no female cops.  Many said that they couldn't handle the demands of the job.   Kathy, a resident of Dudley,  began to train for a position as police officer.  Within twelve days, she had completed the requisite courses and was sworn in as a officer of the Dublin police department on August 27, 1979.  Hogan's training would continue during her first year of duty.   Officer Henderson later advanced her career.  She has served on the Georgia State Patrol for nearly twenty-five years.   Dublin Courier Herald, August 28. 1979.

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