1915 - A Top Twenty List

The year 1915, a century ago, was the last great year of the first golden age of Dublin and Laurens County.  The economic troubles of 1914 had not disappeared, but it was still a good year for us. Here is my list of twenty of some of the more remarkable, humorous and interesting items in no particular order of importance or relevance.

  1) Dublin's infielder, Ray (they didn't give first names in those days) accomplished a rare unassisted triple play in a 17-1 defeat of Dexter on July 28, 1915.  The play, only accomplished by 15 major leaguers since 1909, is rarer than a pitcher's perfect game.

 2) The Dublin Band performed at the United Confederate Veteran's National Reunion in
Richmond, Virginia representing the State of Georgia.  The 20-piece brass band had previously performed at reunions in Little Rock, Macon, and Chattanooga as one of the best small town bands in the country.

 3) Mrs. W.T. Garrett, wife of Dublin's school  Superintendent, entertained her brother, United States Senator William J. Harris, on his visit to a Dublin school in the spring of 1915.

 4) For the first time ever, Dublin's third busiest commercial street, Madison Street, was lighted
with its own "white way."

 5) W.W. Robinson, Dublin's king of hardware, was elected President of the Georgia Retail
Hardware Dealer's Association.

  6) Most lawyers and people of high positions generally settle their differences with their words and not their fists. But when Macon attorney Robert Berner called fellow Macon lawyer Minter Wimberly a liar, a free for all ensued.  Wimberly got the bad end of the fight with a nasty blow of
an ink well to his head.  A mistrial was declared and both lawyers were fined for their unprofessional conduct.   Ward Clark and A.B. Lamb got into a serious disagreement over the election of the Trustees of the Lowery School District.  When Frank Branch intervened to stop the fracas, he received severe cuts to this neck and back.  To make things worse, Superior Court Clerk, E.S. Baldwin was physically attacked by attorney Rowe Hicks.

 7) J.J. Brown, (left) Georgia's illustrious and populist farm leader and five-term Commissioner of Agriculture, was elected as President of the Georgia Farmers Union at their Dublin convention on January 21, 1915.  National Farmer's Union President, C.S. Barrett presided over the meeting more than one thousand persons held in Stubbs Park where President Brown spoke to the crowd.

 8) Some 700 people showed up for a meeting to encourage the state to construct the "Dixie

 9) Nationally acclaimed cartoonist, Alton Packard, and  Gov. Joseph W. Folk (left) of Missouri were presenters at the Lyceum courses in Dublin.

 10) The city of Dublin owned only 34% of the artesian water supply.  The remainder of the water was supplied by wells of Southern Cotton Oil Co., The Ice Plant and Consolidated Phosphate Company.  The total supply was about 651,000 gallons with a daily consumption is 382,000 gallons.  Per capita consumption amounted to  54.5 gallons per day among 699 customers.

 11)  Traffic posts were placed in the intersections of all streets.  The posts guided the driver to the right and helped in observance of rules of the road.

 12) The cornerstone of Masonic Lodge was removed from Old Four Seasons Building (now the Courier Herald.)  The box was found to be empty except for a dime and a penny.  It is presumed that contractor E.J. Fuller removed the contents when the building was remodeled for the Four Seasons (ca. 1903).  The building was laid on May 14, 1891.  Until then, the area served as a baseball field.  There was a livery at the corner of S. Jefferson and East Madison with cotton fields to the east.

13)  Kittrell's Jewelry moved to a new building.  Kittrell remodeled the 24'x90' store building next to First National Bank.  The Gothic front, with its splendid arch was  accented by Indiana limestone and bronzed ratine brick.  Under the front arch was a 10-foot-deep vestibule entrance which led into the main store room, which was also decorated in the Gothic style as well.   The masonry work was made of Indiana limestone and bronze ratline brick.  A balcony was built around the side and rear walls.  The optical department was located in the rear using a portion of the balcony and the main floor.

14)  W.C. Brunson, a 22- year- old lawyer, was elected Justice of the Peace, making him one of the youngest magistrates in the state.

15)  Congressman Champ Clark of Missouri, Speaker of the House of Representatives, spoke at the  Bertha Theatre on November 29, 1915.

16) Aviator A.C. Beach performed a daring air show over downtown Dublin on December 10 and 11. A.C. Beech flew loop the loops over the courthouse. He was sponsored by several merchants in the downtown area.  Capt. Huffsticker, who was performing a series of balloon ascensions and parachute jumps, landed on a live electric wire near Jordan's shop and caused a power outage.   Huffsticker balloon was leaking badly, forcing an unplanned jump into trees which contained the wires.  Huffsticker was taken to the hospital and treated by Drs. Thompson and Weddington.  On a lighter note, Chester Brown given a dollar for finding a Coca Cola bottle dropped from the balloon by parachute.

                                                                          A.C. Beech

  17) Brewton School, Dublin Packing Company and the Dublin Courier Herald were all destroyed by fire in 1915.

  18) In the winter of 1915, the final figures for Laurens County's cotton farmers came in the 59,534, up some 6,000 five-hundred pound bales from 1913.  After leading the state from 1911 to 1913, Laurens fell to second place during 1914. The 1915 cotton crop was the second largest crop in county history.  It was figured that two to three thousand bales are ginned in Adrian, Scott, Orianna, etc. which increases the actual total.

19) A permanent motorcycle policeman hired to catch speed fiends. The city and county finally agreed to light the river bridge and courthouse clock faces.

20) A buyer in town to buy old fat mules for European countries to use in the war effort.