When $2 worth of gasoline would last nearly a week?
When certain sections of Marietta had their own nicknames, such as “Lick Skillet,” “Louisville,” “Baptist Town,” “Jonesville” and “Butler Town”?
When “Candy Bill” from the Alms House on Fairground Street walked around town selling Baby Ruths, Butterfingers and other candy bars for a nickel apiece? When Billy Powers, the Sunshine Man, would sit on his front porch on Lemon Street and wave at passers-by?
When Miss Whitehead, the principal at Waterman Street School, gathered all the students around the flagpole to lower the flag to half-mast after President Franklin D. Roosevelt died?
When the kids with Marietta Daily Journal paper routes would gather in an alley off Winters Street to roll or fold their papers before delivering them?
When the Greyhound bus station was at the northeast corner of Atlanta and Anderson Streets, across from the old First Methodist Church? The lot in front of the station had enough room for about one bus and it couldn’t turn around.
When the old pool hall across from the bus station on Atlanta Street sold its entire weekly war ration of cigarettes on Monday night? At the specified time, the proprietor would tell those waiting for cigarettes to line up, shooters first (pool shooters, that is). The limit was two packs per person.
When the old Rickenbacker School on Wayland Street, across from the Clay Homes Administration Building, trained machinists for work at Bell Bomber Plant. Alton Hogan, husband of our visiting teacher, and father of Paul and G., was the school manager.
When you could buy your groceries at Wharton’s, DuPre’s, Big Star or Piggly Wiggly within a block of the Square and could get a week’s groceries for less than $10?
When the Westside mothers wouldn’t let their daughters go near the Bell Center area (around the current Cobb Civic Center) due to the roughnecks that hung out in that vicinity? When we had three public swimming pools in Marietta, open seven days a week in the summertime?
When the old bowling alley in the basement of Larry Bell Center had eight lanes, four duckpins and four tenpins, all with manual pinsetters? The main objective of the duckpin bowlers wasn’t to score high, but to bounce a pin off the back wall and then off the pinboy’s head. Needless to say, those boys, all in their early teens, became very adroit at dodging the flying pins.
When there wan an earlier bowling alley behind McClellans 5 and 10 cents store off Winters Street, but that was even before my time?
When the jailhouse was behind the courthouse on the Square and the inmates would look out the barred windows and yell at people walking on Washington Avenue?
When the big three automobile makers, Ford, Chevrolet and Chrysler, all had dealerships within two blocks of the Square.
When Miss Tib Sibley was the librarian at the Carnagie Library on the corner of Church and Lemon Streets and you could hear her talking throughout both floors of the building? She was just a little on the deaf side and had to talk loudly to hear what she was saying.
When Keeler Woods was just that and not a subdivision? All the young boys on the west side of town spent many a happy day tromping through those woods.
When most of the kids in elementary school had to attend split shifts, while new schools were being built to handle the booming population caused by the opening of the Bell Bomber Plant? If you were lucky, you attended the morning shift and didn’t have to miss any of your favorite radio programs such as “Jack Armstrong the All-American Boy,” “The Lone Ranger,” “Sky King,” “The Green Hornet,” “Dave Winslow of the Coast Guard” and others.
Bill Kinney is associate editor of The Marietta Daily Journal.