MDJ Time Capsule: The Week of August 21
by Damon Poirier
August 23, 2014 04:00 AM | 1858 views | 0 0 comments | 7 7 recommendations | email to a friend | print

This week’s Time Capsule looks at integration, Civil Rights, Lake Allatoona pollution and the Wonderbra.

100 years ago …

In the Friday, Aug. 21, 1914 edition of the Marietta Journal and Courier, the front page was taken up by an advertisement for Henry A. Ward & Co. of Marietta’s August Clean Up Sale. Some of the bargains were Turkish Bath Towels for nine cents, shoe polish for eight cents, talcum powder for seven cents, pearl buttons for five cents, writing tablets for three cents and Basting Spool Thread for two cents.

The second page of that edition showed all of the primary election returns which included a sweeping victory for Sen. Hoke Smith who was believed to have carried 135 counties and possibly had a majority of 160 votes in the convention. Gov. Joseph M. Brown, who was the 59th Governor of Georgia and the son of Georgia’s Civil War Governor Joseph E. Brown, was believed to have carried 15 counties, but lost both Cobb and Cherokee counties. It was speculated that Gov. Brown lost Cobb by over 700 votes and Cherokee by 200.

50 years ago …

In the Sunday, Aug. 16, 1964 Marietta Daily Journal it was reported that Marietta School Superintendent Henry Kemp announced that the city’s Board of Education had approved applications from the parents of two black girls for transfer to Marietta High School in September. Kemp, speaking for the board, said that both of the girls – the first blacks to ever apply for admission to the all-white school – would be in the 10th grade. Previously, the two girls had attended the Lemon Street High School.

Another story that day reported that Commissioner Herbert McCollum’s handling of the county government and Atlanta’s reported plans to annex portions of Cobb were the prime targets in a mammoth Mableton political rally two nights earlier. McCollum, who was not present, drew repeated shots as the 1,000-member crowd heard speeches from the five candidates for the chairmanship of the newly-approved multiple commission.

Russell McCall, the 13-year-old son of the Acworth mayor, was reported in the Monday, Aug. 17, 1964 paper as having rescued a three-year-old boy who tumbled into a Houston County motel swimming pool and was struggling in the water. McCall was reported as having dove in, pulled the child out and administered CPR until police arrived. The McCalls were returning from a vacation in Florida and were spending the night in Perry at the time of the incident.

A second story in that paper reported that the long spell of wet weather in Cobb County had left many roads sloppy and slick with mud. The most serious mud problems were reported in East Marietta where roads had been dug up for sewer installations. Virginia Place and Meadowbrook Drive were listed as the hardest hit.

In the Tuesday, Aug. 18, 1964 paper it was reported that the Canton Theater on Main Street in racially-disturbed Canton, which was mentioned in last week’s column ( had been closed for an indefinite length of time following violent reaction to desegregation in the theater. FBI agents and local law officers remained on the alert in Cherokee County amid talk that bands of Ku Klux Klansmen were riding the roads.

Journal Publisher Brooks P. Smith was reported in Wednesday, Aug. 19, 1964 paper that in a move to keep pace with the paper’s continuing increase in circulation, that there would now be two editions each day. First off the press at 12:30 p.m. each day would be the new Metro Edition and the final or City Edition would roll at 3 p.m.

Two Marietta black men were reported in the Friday, Aug. 21, 1964 paper as having told the Journal they were cursed and ordered out of a Dunkin Donuts on Roswell Road by the manager after having already been served by a waitress. The men said they planned to file a complaint with the Justice Department. The manager of the establishment denied that he cursed at the men, but did admit he asked them to leave until he could ascertain the company policy on the matter. The company, headquartered in Quincy, Mass., directed the manager to comply with the new Civil Rights Law.

20 years ago …

In the Thursday, Aug. 18, 1994 paper it was reported that U.S. Reps. Newt Gingrich and George “Buddy” Darden had raised the white flag in their 15-month battle to keep the 116th Fighter Wing at Dobbins Air Reserve Base in Marietta. In a joint announcement, the two congressmen representing Cobb said they would no longer oppose the relocation of the unit to Robins Air Force Base near Macon.

Also that day, it was reported that heavy residential and commercial development had been an economic blessing for Cobb and Cherokee counties, but that it could contribute to Lake Allatoona’s downfall in the next decade if the pollution wasn’t halted. The prediction was made during a meeting at Kennesaw State College of the 60-member Lake Allatoona Clean Lakes Task Force, which heard preliminary results of a four-year water-quality study that began in 1992. The 12,000-acre lake, which provided the Cobb Water System with 35-40 million gallons of drinking water per day, had an uncomfortable level of phosphorus, according to the study done by KSC’s A.L. Burruss Institute of Public Service and funded by federal, state and county grants.

The Wonderbra, the “figure-enhancing” brassiere made by a subsidiary of the Sara Lee Corp., was reported in the Friday, Aug. 19, 1994 paper as having made its debut in Cobb at the Upton Department Store on Roswell Road and stores across the metro area. The Uptons on Roswell had an initial stock of 500 to 600 of the Wonderbras, which were popular in Europe and New York over the summer, but as of 4 p.m. with five hours of sales time left they had reportedly sold 250 to 300 of the undergarments.

Damon Poirier is the Newsroom Administrator for the Marietta Daily Journal.

If you are interested in learning more about the stories that were presented in this week’s column, you can search the newspaper’s digitized microfilm archives online. NewsBank, which hosts the archives for the Marietta Daily Journal, charges a fee for retrieved articles and has various price packages available. If you have any trouble with your username, password or payment options, please contact NewsBank at


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