Thursday, December 29, 2016

Old Pictures Save History

Nothing like old pictures to preserve the history of our town.  The streets around the old court square were full of businesses, people, and automobiles.

Must be a County Court  Day, it was said that was a busy day for Marion, as everyone came to town on that day.  Much visiting and sharing of events were found going on around the Court House.

In the back ground in the old 2-story home of Robert F. Wheeler, now where the Farm Bureau Insurance modern office building sits.

Mrs. Lottie Terry's building is to the right, torn down in the 1980's and now the Christian church parking lot.

Through these wonderful old photographs we can visit the town of Marion many years ago.

Tuesday, December 20, 2016

Holiday Season In Full Swing - 1938

Christmas in Marion was very different many years ago.  As I'm sure it was in all small towns.  All the stores on Main Street were full of businesses, and at this time of year, all the windows would be full of their Christmas merchandise and beautiful decorated with colorful lights and items of Christmas.  Simple decorations but beautiful to the small child looking at them all.

From an article in Crittenden Press, Dec. 16, 1938.  The holiday season is in "full swing" in Marion with stores stocked to capacity for Christmas shoppers.  All are beautifully decorated and clerks in readiness to meet the last minute rush of shoppers.

The business section, Main St. from Crittenden Motor Co. to Runyan Chevrolet Co. is a veritable canopy of multicolored lights strung across the thoroughfare; likewise is Carlisle from Main to Crittenden Hotel.  The electrical work was done by Kentucky Utilities Co. employees without charge.

Local merchants now have on display one of the most adequate and wide selection of gifts and holiday good ever offered to the Christmas shopper.   Practically every form of gift is offered from the smallest and inexpensive article t that of the most costly and difficult to procure.  Stores are open to 9 o'clock each night.

Many windows are outlined in colored lights and the Santa Claus banner at Main and Bellville Streets is lighted by flood lights from City Drug Co. and Red Front stores.

Business has been brisk for the past four days with today, tomorrow and next week expected to bring forth the last minute rush.  All merchants urge shopping early.

One of the favorite stores to do your shopping, and not only at Christmas time.

Wednesday, December 14, 2016

Joe Clifton Drive in Paducah has Marion Connections

Joe Clifton Drive in Paducah, Ky. was named for Joseph C. Clifton who was born in Marion, Ky. on October 31, 1906.  He was the son of Thomas Clifton and Pearl Cook Clifton.  He had one brother, Robert Clifton.  Their father died May 20, 1910 while the boys were very young.  Their mother moved to Paducah with her little boys to make her home near her parents.

Some information on the internet about Joseph C. Clifton says that he was born in Paducah, Ky., but he was actually born in Marion.  An item in the Crittenden Press, dated Nov. 8, 1906, says that "A new boy arrived at the home of Thos. Clifton last Wednesday morning, which Robert Gordon, the older brothers, says is a dandy.  Another item dated, Feb. 21, 1907, says that "The two little sons of Mr. and Mrs. Thomas Clifton, were christened Sunday morning at the Methodist Church."

Here is some more information on Joe Clifton.

After graduating from Tilghman High School with honors, Joseph received an appointment to the Naval Academy at Annapolis, Maryland.

He graduated there with honors and during World War II, he was commander of the U. S. Ship Saratoga.  He was a navy pilot and was known as "Jumping Joe" during the early years of the war. 

He retired to California as an admiral USN, died there on Dec. 25, 1967 and is buried in Arlington National Cemetery.

The Clifton family had deep roots from Crittenden County, as Joseph was a grandson to James H. Clifton of Dycusburg.  The family resided in Dycusburg in the 1870's and James H. Clifton was a prominent business man in the town of Dycusburg.

Tuesday, December 6, 2016

Some Businesses in Marion in 1900.

All sorts of merchandise was for sale in the many different business stores in and around Marion in 1900.

  • The Marion Milling Company was run by Clark and D. B. Kevil.  It was located east of Marion near the railroad tracks.
  • Clark and Paris were in the lumber business.  
  • Tobacco was one of the farmers' principal money crops and there were two large tobacco factories, one run by Mr. Dupuy and the other by Cardin Bros.  During the tobacco season it as not uncommon to see 100 wagons loads of tobacco around these factories and in the various streets. 

  • There were two livery stables.  One (above) was run by Dudley Wallingford and the other by Pierce & Son.  There were around 80 horses in the two stables and a number of buggies and hacks.  Drummers and other traveling men would rent the vehicles for as long as a week at a time, taking along a driver from the stable, as they made their rounds throughout the county.  They would take their wares to all the country stores to sale.
  • James G. Gilbert had a first class blacksmith shop, as did Sandy Adams.  A number of blacksmiths worked here for both Adams and Gilbert.  The most prominent of these was Joe Hopson, who was strong enough to put his shoulder between the legs of an average horse and lift it off the ground.
  • There were two barber shops in Marion, one operated by William Morgan and William Woolridge and the other by Samp Bigham.  
  • General merchandise stores were run by Pierce-Yandell and Gugenheim and J. H. Clifton and Sons.
  • Grocers were M. Schwab, Herman Koltinsky, M. Copher, A. M. Hearin, J. M. McChesney, James Paris, Ed Haynes, McAfee and Hill.
  • The Crittenden Press was the only paper published in the county, its editor and publisher being R. C. Walker
  • Joe Stewart and Mr. Kingston were the photographers, and there are many examples of their work in the county today.
  • The Kentucky Fluorspar Company, operating the Memphis and Hodge Mines, was the largest shipper of fluorspar.  The pure white spar was very much in demand for the glass industry.  Harry A. Haynes was secretary and treasurer of this business.  The Company had it's loading facilities next the the railroad track at the Marion Depot.
  • These are only a few of the many places of business in Marion at this time.  Marion was indeed a growing and busy town.