1 December 1912
(Viewable online at GenealogyBank.)
MACON IN 1869
Many Recollections Are Brought Up By Glance Through The Old Directory
Only One Business House Of That Day Still Remains To Tell Story Of Old South
BY BRIDGES SMITH.
In the course of his travels about the city, looking after cases of cruelty to animals, Humane Officer Zach Rogers picked up a copy of a directory of Macon, printed in April, 1869.
Of all the business houses of that time, only one is known today, that of L. C. Ricks and for many years this was not in existence, Mr. Ricks reviving it only some few years ago.
A glance through this old directory brings up many recollections, all of intense interest to the older citizens of Macon. At the mention of the old firms and business houses the familiar forms and faces of the men then engaged in business, with the buildings occupied, pass in review as if photographed on the film of memory unrolled and projected on the screen of the present.
The first advertisement in the book is that of Seymour, Tinsley & Co., the firm composed of James Seymour and the Tinsley brothers, A. R. and T. D., with W. D. and Fleming D. Tinsley as clerks. The store was on the old "white corner," where the American National bank now rears its stately head. It was in this building that two papers were printed during the war, the Southern Confederacy and the Chattanooga Rebel, both having refugeed to Macon. It was here that Henry Watterson edited the Rebel, and where he began his career of journalist.
Diagonally across was the big grain and provision house, or "emporium," as he called it, of W. A. Huff, the largest advertiser of Macon in those days. One of his ads was a train of freight cars the full length of a column, each car marked in big letters to show its contents. This store was directly under Ralston hall, now the Fourth National bank, and occupied the ground floor with the exception of a narrow strip of the front, which was used as a cigar and tobacco store by Jasper Block, the father of Alex and Nick Block, of this day and time, and a small dry goods store kept by B. Dub, now in Savannah.
Solomon and Joseph Waxelbaum carried on an immense dry goods establishment in Triangular block, about where the old curiosity shop is now. The sons of these two well-known and highly-respected merchants are now in business.
Henry N. Ells had a place on Mulberry street, now the European hotel, and dealt in fancy groceries, wines and liquors, with a restaurant upstairs. In those days restaurants were partitioned into stalls, instead of one large room with small tables in the open, as now, and oysters were served in chafing dishes, your stew kept hot with the little spirit lamp. Henry Ells was drowned in the Ocmulgee while hunting ducks.
Little, Smith & Co. were dealers in saddlery and harness, employing a large force of harnessmakers, and their place of business was in the vicinity of the Palace theater. The firm was composed of D. S. Little, Davis Smith and Henry P. Wescott, father of Deputy Sheriff Sam Westcott.
Earnest Peschke had a jewelry store in the rear of Boardman's book store, corner Mulberry and Second. This store was later kept by Capt. Joseph E. Wells, who at the time was clerking for the big dry goods house of J. B. Ross & Son, where the P. D. Willingham furniture store is now.
W. J. and J. S. Lawton did a wholesale produce, cotton and commission business on Fourth street, now Broadway, near Cherry street.
J. H. Otto had a watchmaking and jewelry establishment on Cherry, near where R. S. Thorpe & Sons are now. He was the father of Julius Otto, and was the city timekeeper for many years, and those were days before watches were cheap enough to be numerous, consequently the town clock was of more importance than it is now.
The Dixie works made sash, blinds and doors on the corner below the Park hotel, and the mill was run by Guernsey, Wing & Bryant at that time. Later the firm was Guernsey, Bartrum & Hendrix. It was at these works that matches were made during the war.
The drug store on the corner of Third and Mulberry was kept by Dr. I. L. Harris and Harris W. Clay, they having succeeded Massenburg & Son. Originally this was the store of E. L. Strohecker, the druggist.
The book store of J. M. Boardman was where Chapman's pharmacy is now, corner Mulberry and Second. It was here that Capt. C. C. Conner was clerk so long. This store was later kept by W. M. Pendleton and Walter T. Ross.
There were four furniture stores. B. F. Ross had his store where the Atlantic and Pacific Tea Store is now; W. and E. P. Taylor, where the Majestic theater is; Thomas Wood, next to the Hotel Lanier, and Greenville Wood, near the corner of Third and Wharf, now Ocmulgee, streets. The latter was a manufacturer of furniture. In those days there was a top made for the boys by the Taylors, and as they cost more than the regular Dutch top, being slowly turned by hand, it was the proud boast of a boy that he owned a Taylor top.
Another large dry goods house was that of E. Feuchtwanger, on Triangular block. This firm dealt largely in the cloth manufactured by Southern mills, notably the Eagle and Phoenix of Columbus.
There were two banks, the City and the First National, and three private banking houses, those of Cubbedge & Hazlehurst, Georgia Mutual Fire and Life Insurance Banking company, and I. C. Plant.
The hotels at that time were the Lanier House (now Hotel Lanier) kept by B. W. Collier and Boys, of Indian Springs; Brown's Hotel by E. E. Brown and his son, William F.; Planter's Hotel, by B. F. Dense, kept where The Telegraph is now; Byington's Hotel, by George W. and Charles W. Byington, where the Planter's Hotel is now, and the Stubblefield House, now the Arcadia, and was kept by Mark Isaacs.
Macon had a business college, known as Euston's Commercial college, and it was located over where Chapman's Pharmacy is now. Later B. B. Euston, the principal, associated George R. Levison with him.
Elijah Bond, who was in charge of the city's store for supplying widows and others with provisions during the war, and who was made postmaster by Grant, had a provision store near where A. & P. tea store is now.
Crahart & Curd had one of the largest hardware stores in this section, and it was located about where the Western Union had its office. This firm did an immense business.
D. C. Hodgkins & Son dealt exclusively in firearms, fishing tackle and sporting goods. Their store building still stands on Mulberry street, near Third. During the war the Hodgkins made an arrangement with the Confederate government for the manufacture of compressed lead bullets for cartridges.
John W. O'Connor was a large dealer in whiskies, brandies and wines. He had a store on Cherry street, near Third. Perry G. Busbee was his clerk, and will be remembered as a most enthusiastic volunteer fireman.
There were five dental offices in those days: J. C. and R. E. Reynolds, T. J. Crowe, George W. Emerson, J. D. McKellar and W. P. Thompson. Dr. Emerson erected a building on Mulberry street, next to Loh's cigar store, and after a few years returned to the north. Dr. W. R. Holmes occupies the upper portion of the building, it having been built especially for dental work.
The dry goods house of J. B. Ross & Son was the largest house of its kind then in the south. It was here that many men who succeeded in becoming extensive merchants first got their training. The late Mayor S. B. Price was a clerk here at the time, with Peyton Smith, one of the founders of the present Empire store.
In those days there were what was known as fancy groceries, and the stores of Greer & Lake, George Barker and others, were as well stocked, arranged and kept as any grocery store in Macon today. In addition to the fancy groceries, they all carried a line of the purest whiskies, brandies and wines, and it was not considered amiss for ladies to trade in these stores, buying their sherry and madeira wines just as though it was so much vinegar. Jasper F. Greer moved to Glen Cove Springs, and Francis Lake moved to Atlanta, and both are now dead. Their store at the time this directory was printed was in the E. B. Harris building, corner Cherry and Third streets.
Porter and Hudgins kept a big produce and commission house on Third street, about where Blouenstein's is now. This was Samuel Porter, the father of Clint and Bee Porter of these times. He was later in the stable business. Capt. John D. Hudgins was for many years chairman of the finance committee of council. A. B. Small, the founder of the present house of the A. B. Small company, was a clerk in this house at the time this book was printed.
Matt R. Freeman was in the livery stable business, the stable being just below the postoffice. He was the first to add a hearse to the livery business. The city hearse at that time was a very plain and shabby affair. To provide something better he purchased a handsome vehicle, and this stroke of enterprise led to others adding a hearse to their stock of vehicles for hire. Judge Freeman was a fine judge of horses, keeping none but the best, with the result that his stable was very popular with the young men who wanted to take their girls out riding on afternoons.
Jones, Baxter & Day, composed of George S. Jones, Dr. J. S. Baxter and J. E. Day, had a general grocery and produce business on Cotton avenue, near Cherry street.
Cauthron & Pratt carried on an auction business near where the Lester Clark shoe store is now. L. H. Bryant & Co. had another auction house on Second street, in Triangular block.
Macon was always an extensive cotton market, and at this time there were as many cotton warehouses as now, and a greater number of cotton buyers, or merchants as they were called then. The advertisers were Jonathan Collins & Son, on Third street, near Poplar, where the Dannenberg store is now. Adams, Jones and Reynolds had their warehouse nearly opposite Steve Wright's drug store. The warehouse of Thomas Hardeman and O. G. Sparks was on the corner of Poplar and Third, where the Flourney grocery company is now.
George R. Barker's fancy grocery was on Cotton avenue, where the Office saloon is now. Every old citizen in Macon will remember George R. Barker as one of Macon's best citizens.
The only wood dealer mentioned is Capt. George A. Dure, father of Leon S. Dure, who had an extensive woodyard and lumber plant opposite the old Macon and Brunswick depot, near where the Acme brewery is now.
The saddlery and harness house of G. Bernd was then becoming well known throughout the country. Mr. Bernd had moved from Americus to Macon some few years before, and established himself in the old Floyd House building. Later his brother, Adolph, was associated with him and the business removed to Cherry street, where The Telegraph is now.
The old provision house of E. Price was then in Triangular block, about where the Cadillac auto house is now. Mr. Price was the father of the late Mayor Price. The late Willis F. Price was his clerk then. The other son, E. R. Price, and the only one now left of the family, ws then farming as he is now.
Another big hardware house was that of Wrigley & Knott, both members of the firm living outside the city. Their store was on Third street, about where Rankin & McWilliams are now.
While there were many fancy grocery houses in those days, there were also what was called family groceries, and perhaps the leading house of this kind was that of D. Daly & Bro. (Matthew), who kept where Putzel has his shop now, on Cherry street. Dennis Daly was the father of Recorder Augustin Daly. At that time there were only five Dalys living Macon, according to the directory, and all of these, Dennis, Matthew, John, Ed and H. Daly, were connected with the store and lived on the upper floor.
The leading milliner of those days was Mrs. F. Dessau, whose store was on Mulberry street, about where the Plaza hotel is now. Her store was a very fine one, and she practically designed the fashions of the belles of that time.
There were several shoe stores, one of which was that of M. S. Meyer & Co., of which Jacob Harris, father of Jesse, Max and the other Harris boys was the company. The store was on Cherry street, between Second and Third. The other advertisers were Mix & Kirtland, at the sign of the big boot, where the Idle Hour Nursery is now. This was a very old house, known throughout middle Georgia. There was another old shoe house at the time, that of L. P. Strong & Sons, with Edgar and Forest as the sons. The present Strong Shoe company occupy the old place. Jacob Schall had his shoe store on Cherry street, about where R. S. Thorpe & Son are now.
Another fancy grocery house was that of T. W. Freeman & Co., on Cherry street, where R. S. Thorpe & Sons are now. This was Tom Freeman, brother of Pope, Milo and Matt, and one of the quietest of men, beloved by everybody.
George Payne's drug store was where King & Oliphant are now, and Dr. Payne probably prescribed for more people than the physicians, for the simple ailments. Whatever Dr. Payne said was good for a headache, toothache, toeache, or any of the common everyday aches, was law and gospel. J. H. Zellin & Co. kept the little wooden drug store where the Taylor Bayne company is now, but did not advertise in the book. Henry J. Peter had a drugstore at the time on Mulberry street.
The big wholesale liquor dealer of days was L. W. Rasdal, whose store was about where the Metropolitan Cafe is now.
There were some fine restaurants in those days. The two old established places were those of H. N. Ells and E. Isaacs. The former was on Mulberry street, and the latter on Cherry street, and a part of the building used as a hotel and restaurant is still standing and used. At that time Tom H. Harris kept the Our House, finally the Kennesaw, and John McIntyre kept the Planter's hotel restaurant.
The Macon brewery was located in what was known as Collinsville, on what is now known as the Ocmulgee land, and now the property of Emory Winship. It was operated by Jacob Russell and Julius Peters, two good old German citizens, and according to the older citizens who drank it, they brewed the best beer that ever was. The brewery was a great resort on hot afternoons for the people, the very best availing themselves of the opportunity, who sat under the large shelter and drank the beer, after the manner of the Germans in the old country.
There were three foundries and machine shops. The Findlay Manufacturing company on Oglethorpe street, which has retained the name of Findlay to this day; E. Crockett's foundry and machine shop on McIntosh, later Fourth and now Broadway, street; P. Hertel's shop where the Macon public library is now.
L. C. Ricks was in the tin and sheet iron roofing business then, with his shop on Mulberry street, next to the Hotel Lanier.
There were several merchant tailors, the principle ones being Warnke & Co. in the old Floyd House; J. L. Shea, better known as Jack, whose place was on Second street, near where Virgin & Young are now, and Charles H. Baird, who kept on Cherry street, near Second.
George M. Logan was a general commission merchant, notary public, with an office on Second street. At one time he was one of the proprietors of the Lanier House.
There were several clothing houses, that of M. Hinsch & Co., on the corner now occupied by Joseph Clisby's shoe store. J. H. Hertz had a store on Cherry, near the corner of Second. Charles Wachtel, so well known now, was a clerk then and getting ready to start in business for himself.
E. J. Johnston had a jewelry store on the corner of Mulberry and Second streets, now occupied by the Georgia Loan and Trust company.
D. Good & Son (J. M.) did a produce business on Third street, where the Savoy theater was located.
There were several billiard saloons then. There was one under the Hotel Lanier and under Brown's hotel, but the most popular one was Andy Patterson's, just below the Lanier House.
Edward A. Wilcox and Charles E. Campbell were commission merchants on Third street. Mr. Campbell is still living in Macon.
The confectionaries and bakeries were those of Robert Waggenstein, afterward where Louis Merkel kept; Jacon Dinkler, father of Louis and Oscar, on Third street, the New Hotel Dempsey taking up some of the old store. A. Wannack had a confectionery store on Cherry street, near where the Wachtels have a clothing store now, and it was destroyed by fire one night by some boy across the street firing a Roman candle into it.
The painters were Christopher Burke, father of T. C. Burke; N. L. Drury, and the firm of Windham & Co.
J. B. Artope & Son (T. B.) were the marble dealers. Their place was on the corner of Third and Plum streets, opposite the Elberta hotel.
As there are many descendants of the men whose names appear in this directory of forty-three years ago, the following lists are given as a reminder of the good men who made up the male population of Macon in the old days:
Engineers: H. W. Boifeuillet, Alex Bright, J. R. Collins, John Donahue, James Flanders, John Flowers, William Boy [Goy?], Edward S. Graves, John Hancock, Joseph Harrison, Joseph Hartman, L. Huskey, George Joiner, W. R. Jones, C. Kearney, S. J. Kent, James Knight, Oscar Lagerquist, Charles A. Mathews, J. T. Mathews, John Mathis, J. D. Mendenhall, Frank Micklejohn, James Mitchell, C. W. Moran, A. Munson, Howell McAfee, Joseph McAlpin, John G. McGoldrick, J. A. Orr, John Phillips, R. G. Reddy, James Rice, W. W. Richards, E. Scoville, William Streyer.
Probably not more than two or three of the above list are living.
Machinists: Thad E. Knight, J. J. Lonegan, W. J. Mathews, G. A. Miller, F. Miller, T. J. Mitchell, M. Molander, Thomas McCall, Jack Radcliff, J. S. Richards, T. C. Richards, John Richardson, T. L. Sewell, Elias Sinclar, W. T. Streyer, John Streyer, Charles Sullivan, John Swindlehurst, Matt Thornton, John T. Wade, J. H. Boardman, T. Boatright, James Boone, F. T. Brown, John Caleston, James A. Campbell, B. F. Cawley, C. Collier, J. Coswell, Leroy E. Crockett, R. Cross, J. H. Fullen, F. Furlow, J. A. Fuss, G. M. Fuss, George Goelz, L. N. Green, Joseph Green, W. E. Groce, Dan M. Gugel, Charles Heidt, H. Herrington, O. F. Herrington, P. Hertel, W. Johnson, E. Kelhouf, James L. Kennedy, Archie McQueen, Clarence A. Williams, J. C. Wiley, J. W. Wilcox, formerly city engineer, G. S. Westcott, now deputy sheriff, C. D. Walls, William S. Wallace, George R. Wagnon.
Conductors: Jasper Andrews, J. A. R. Bennett, George F. Cherry, Carson Cox, George S. Dasher, Monroe Harris, R. G. Hollister, Eugene G. Jeffers, T. R. Jeter, George Lunsford, W. D. McCaw, Albert Mathews, Frank Shephard, John Sheridan.
Carpenters: Frank H. Alley, John W. Alley, Richard A. Alley, P. T. Bartrum, D. W. Beeland, Thomson Guernsey, John Berkner, J. W. Brinn, Thos. Brinn, John Britt, John Brown, J. M. Bryant, James Churchwell, John Collins, John Connell, W. V. Davis, William Dickinson, A. Eckleman, Robert Ellis, J. F. Freeny, T. F. Freeny, Isaac Gardner, W. P. Gelston, John Goeltz, Thomas Griffin, Thomas Hackett, T. C. Hendrix, William Higgins, Treat Hines, J. W. Hines, Albert Jeffers, R. A. Johnson, Henry Jordan, J. R. Jordan, Thomas Judge, P. Kenny, W. H. Kidd, A. D. Gilgore, J. A. Knight, G. J. Lanham, A. Landers, E. Martin, T. J. Mell, Jacob Millen, E. Millirons, Robert Mumson, P. McCarty, A. H. Nathans, J. W. Parsons, J. D. Plunkett, S. W. Poole, A. P. Rice, F. S. Schlinger, Jacob Self, James Smith, W. Snellgrove, James Teel, F. M. Thomas, R. Veal, John Ware, Thomas Welch, Henry Welch, C. C. Wilder, W. C. Wilson, William Wimberly, Miller Wrye.
Attorneys: Clifford Anderson, A. O. Bacon, Sam T. Bailey, J. F. Bass, H. W. Cowles, John P. Fort, John J. Gresham, Thomas B. Gresham, George W. Custin [Gustin?], Barnard Hill, Samuel Hunter, S. D. Irwin, James Jackson, R. S. Lanier, Richard F. Lyon, James T. Nisbet, Eugenius A. Nisbet, Robert A. Nisbet, students at law, Washington Poe, John U. Shorter, Thomas J. Simmons, R. W. Stubbs, John B. Weems, L. N. Whittle, Powhattan B. Whittle, Emory F. Best.
Physicians: J. Emmett Blackshear, J. R. Boon, F. G. Castlen, A. L. Clinkscales, Appleton P. Collins, Oscar Collins, James Mercer Green, Bose Griggs, C. H. Hall, W. F. Holt, I. L. Harris, George N. Holmes, A. L. C. Magruder, H. A. Mettaur, E. Fitzgerald, C. B. Nottingham, A. Passmore, C. J. Roosevelt, E. G. Sussdorg, A. L. Williamson, P. H. Wright, James A. Damour. Of all these Dr. Mettauer is the only one living.
County officers: C. B. Cole, judge superior court; W. S. Ballard, clerk; Albert B. Ross, deputy; James Martin, sheriff; C. T. Ward, ordinary; A. Dewberry, coroner; William Woods, county surveyor; F. M. Heath, tax collector.