The Week of September 27th
by Damon_Poirier
 MDJ Time Capsule
September 27, 2012 08:00 AM | 5204 views | 1 1 comments | 393 393 recommendations | email to a friend | print | permalink

For several years, I was responsible for a feature called “A Look Back.”

This feature, geared to a specific city in Cobb each day, was a few inches on events that occurred in the archives five, 10 and 25 years earlier. The editors retired the feature during a redesign of the paper.

Last week, Internet Editor Chris Bailey and this author decided to revive the feature in a weekly column on countywide events starting with 100, 50 and 20 years ago.

100 years ago…

Starting with the Friday morning, Sept. 27, 1912 edition of The Marietta Journal and Courier, which was one of two local newspapers that would later merge and become today’s MDJ, there was a letter to the community from Marietta Mayor J.J. Black. Taking up the entire right half of the front page, the letter was addressed “To The Tax Payers of the City of Marietta.” Black spoke of the need for tax payers to pay the 1912 city tax by the Oct. 20 deadline. He also drew attention to the financial statement published in the paper earlier in the year that stated the city’s $17,000 indebtedness.

It also used to be common practice to sell advertising upon the front page. Something that has come around again in the MDJ with front page stickers. Alongside Black’s letter was an ad from the L.W. Rogers Company in Marietta which stated 18 pounds of sugar for a dollar, 25 pounds of sugar for $1.41 and 10 pounds of Snowdrift Lard for $1.15.

There was also a story about W.W. Jolley, a farmer and 60-year resident of Cobb County, who came by the paper’s offices with a copy of the Daily Citizen, a Confederate newspaper published in Vicksburg, Miss., on July 2, 1863. The Daily Citizen, printed upon the blank side of wallpaper, was still good except for creases made by folding. The publication was printed during the Siege of Vicksburg and ridiculed the boast of Gen. Ulysses S. Grant that he intended to celebrate the Fourth of July by dining in Vicksburg.

Another interesting story within the Sept. 27 edition talked about how a 44-page, illustrated booklet, titled, “Cobb, the Banner County, and Marietta, the Gem City, of Georgia, The Empire State of the South,” was ready for distribution to the public. Prepared by Moultrie M. Sessions and published for the Chamber of Commerce, the booklet contained scenery and buildings within the county next to facts about the local soil, climate, industries and businesses. Some locations listed were the Belmont Poultry Farm, the Kennesaw Mountain Dairy and the J.T. Anderson farm.

50 years ago…

On Sunday, Sept. 23, 1962, the MDJ ran a story about Rev. George M. Yates, pastor of the Marietta Church of God, considering the idea of challenging the powers of Rev. Michael Whittamore, a faith healer from Louisville, Ky. The visiting healer had pitched a big circus tent on a vacant lot at Frey’s Gin Road and Wylie Drive for a month long healing campaign. Before 100 people the week before, Whittamore claimed that he had been raised from the dead by a sick bed cure after doctors had “pulled the sheet over” his head and given him up for lost.

The night watchman, who single-handedly captured three men attempting to burglarize the Mableton post office over the weekend, told his story to the MDJ on Monday, Sept. 24, 1962. The watchman said he surprised the men while they were allegedly attempting to force open a safe.

With his pistol still holstered, he managed to catch one of the men behind a desk and another behind a mail sack inside the building. The third was caught in the next room trying to unlock a window to escape. Because there wasn’t a phone in the post office, the trio was marched down Bankhead Highway at gunpoint to an all-night washateria in order to call police.

The recount of the disputed Cobb Democratic primary race between Ed Harris and Bob Flournoy for the nomination to a state House seat was short-lived. The recount was announced on Thursday, Sept. 27, 1962 and the following day’s paper reported it as being suspended indefinitely. George Harris, representing his brother, stated the re-tabulation was not proceeding according to law. Superior Court Judge Virlyn B. Moore of Atlanta, overseeing the recount at the Marietta courthouse, suspended the proceedings so the Harris brothers could research recount law.

Sounding eerily familiar to the CDC’s preparations for bird flu in recent years, there was a story on Sunday, Sept. 30, 1962 about the county bracing itself for the onslaught of Asian flu. Health officials expected a severe outbreak over the winter starting around mid-December. The last widespread epidemic in the country was in the winter of 1959-60 and Cobb was one of the hardest hit areas.

20 years ago…

From wild bears to alligators, the MDJ reported on Sunday, Sept. 27, 1992 that Cobb had some unusual visitors over the past year. Among the creatures showing themselves were bears – which migrated down from the north Georgia mountains – foxes, raccoons, a copperhead snake and a 48-inch long alligator found in a creek behind a Powder Springs house. Another wildlife oddity was discovery of tracks that animal control officials believed was a bobcat.

Cobb government began moving toward relaxing restrictions on produce being sold on county streets on Monday, Sept. 28, 1992. Roadside peddling was not a new concept, but county law restricted it to specific districts and only during normal business hours. The commission voted unanimously to have public hearings in October on whether or not produce stands would be allowed to remain overnight – rather than being dismantled and removed each evening. If approved, stands could remain open as long as the vendor had the permission of the property owner, a business license and did not erect a sign larger than allowed.

Another item up for discussion was the sale of livestock, poultry, wood products and produce within residential areas, but only next to the property on which they were grown providing it was two-acres or larger. This two-acre or larger rule has become something that the backyard chickens movement has been seeking the current commission into revising.

Cobb-based Lockheed Aeronautical Systems Co. announced Tuesday, Sept. 29, 1992 that it had been awarded a contract – with a potential value of up to $4.5 billion – to retrofit C-141 StarLifter cargo planes built at the company’s South Cobb Drive assembly plant in Marietta. The C-141 Service Life Extension Program (SLEP) project was expected to add about 85,000 flight hours to the life of each C-141 cargo hauler, which was first manufactured at Lockheed-Georgia Co. in the early 1960s. A total of 284 C-141s were built at the Cobb plant.

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 availableIf you have any trouble with your username, password or payment options, please contact NewsBank at

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

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Carol Poirier
September 27, 2012
Great blog...glad to see it and read it. Thank you - Carol
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