This week’s Time Capsule looks at a jail fight, another dynamite bomb and Vietnam casualties.
100 years ago …
The Thursday, May 8, 1919, edition of The Cobb County Times reported on the death of Marianne Gendron Brumby, wife of Marietta Mayor James Remley Brumby Jr.
Mrs. Brumby died suddenly the afternoon of the Monday before at Dr. Nolan’s sanitarium. A Marietta native, she had married Brumby on Jan. 1, 1908, and had two daughters – Marianne Porcher Brumby, 7, and Sabine Alston Brumby, who had just been born on Saturday, May 3, 1919.
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The Friday, May 9, 1919, edition of The Marietta Journal reported that Naomi Campbell, formerly the head of the Undenominational Orphans’ Home at Collins Switch, had been involved in an incident at the jail.
Campbell, who had been convicted on two charges of cruelty to children and sentenced to two years at the state prison farm, had been awaiting the decision of her case by the Court of Appeals. Sheriff W.E. Swanson had placed Campbell in the same cell with the wife of Tom Brown.
Mrs. Brown, along with her husband and another man, had been arrested for transporting a sizeable amount of whiskey via four large pieces of luggage the week before.
For several days the two women seemed to have gotten along until a fight broke out between them following an argument Mrs. Brown had with her husband, who occupied a nearby cell. Campbell was said to have assaulted Mrs. Brown so “ferociously that she was soon down and out, minus some hair and most of her clothing” before Sheriff Swanson was aware of the incident.
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F.G. Marchman was reported as selling the Strand Theatre to the Lynch Syndicate, which operated theaters in several Southern cities. A.H. Cobb Jr. was made the manager.
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Lt. Leon “Rip” Blair was reported as being named the Judge of the Inferior Provost Court in Germany on the northern border with Luxembourg.
The duty of the court was to try Germans for “infractions of the rules.” The Journal’s editors also pointed out that “Rip” had not yet learned how to speak German, but “bet he can just look at one and tell whether he is guilty or not.”
Lt. Stanton Reed was also reported as serving as mayor of a town in the military section of the occupied zone of Germany and France. Reed wrote he had been billeted with his Major, who happened to be a son of Carter Glass, the Secretary of the Treasury.
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A raiding party, composed of deputy U.S. marshals, were reported as having captured 19 moonshine stills in 48 hours in Washington County the Friday before.
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On the Editorial Page, the editors wrote the following item:
♦ “Judge Kennesaw Mountain Landis of Chicago was one of those favored with a bomb by the dynamiters, but the package was promptly located in the Chicago post office, taken out of the mails and destroyed by the officials who are now on the alert for queer stuff addressed to prominent men.”
The piece was in response to a front-page story the week before about how a dynamite bomb was mailed from New York to former Georgia Sen. Thomas W. Harwick’s Atlanta home. The device exploded and blew off the hands of Ethel Williams, one of the Senator’s black servants, and also burned and cut the face of Sen. Harwick’s wife, who was standing nearby.
Federal authorities on the case found in the New York post office the week before almost 20 more devices addressed to prominent men in various parts of the country.
According to Wikipedia, Kennesaw Mountain Landis served as a U.S. federal judge from 1905 to 1922 and as the first Commissioner of Baseball from 1920 until his death. His father, Abraham Hoch Landis, had been wounded fighting on the Union side at the Battle of Kennesaw Mountain during the Civil War. When his parents couldn’t agree on a name for their baby, his mother, Mary Kumler Landis, proposed that they call him Kennesaw Mountain.
50 years ago …
In the Sunday, May 4, 1969, Marietta Daily Journal, it was reported that Chess Abernathy Jr., 57, a former editor of the weekly newspaper – The Cobb County Times, died the day before at his Marietta home.
Abernathy had suffered a third heart attack in his sleep. He had just recently returned to work at Lockheed’s Public Relations Department after his second heart attack in late 1968.
In 1938, when he was the editor of the newspaper, The Cobb County Times won an unprecedented four national awards from the National Editorial Association, an honor that had not been achieved by any other weekly paper. Some of those awards were in competition with daily newspapers.
Under his helm, the paper was picked as one of the 10 best weeklies in America for two years straight, won the Casey All-American award in 1935 and 1936, and the Casey All-Time All-American award the next two years.
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Thirty-four Cobb County residents were reported in the Monday, May 5, 1969, paper as having been killed in the Vietnam War since the nation became involved in 1961.
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In the Thursday, May 8, 1969, paper, Marine Cpl. Glen Lewis McAllister Jr., 21, of Mableton, was reported as having been killed in a car crash in Wilmington, North Carolina, just four days before he was to be discharged from service and just 10 days before he was to be married.
Damon Poirier is the Newsroom Administrator and Historian for the Marietta Daily Journal.