Looking back: In 1971, former Atmore mayor played ‘chicken’

Published 12:03 am Wednesday, February 10, 2016

In the early days of 1971, the mayor of Atmore, Tom Byrne, and a L&N train played “chicken” with each other in downtown Atmore. Surprisingly, no one was seriously hurt by the confrontation.

Most of the time when something like this happens, the train will win the game, so I personally give way to a train any day of the week.

Thirty-five years ago, there was a dedication held at the Escambia County Hospital in Century, Fla. Raymond Mills was the administrator.

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In entertainment news, the Strand Theater was showing “Ben Hur.” You may or may not remember this one. It was a big movie for its time and the star of the show was Charleton Heston. I remember seeing the movie and if you like historical stories as I do, you would have liked it. I may be dating myself again, but 35 years is not so long ago. I don’t see many movies at theaters anymore. I wait until it shows up on television. I think the last one I went to see in a theater was “House of Wax.” It was supposed to be scary, but I actually took a nap during the show.

It was announced that the census of 1970 recorded an increase of 1,395 people in Escambia County from 1960.

Ever since I began working on my family tree I have used the census records to find out all sorts of things about my ancestors. In the year 2000, I actually got a job of working on the census. I had a really good time doing it and, the pay was not too bad either. I only protested at a place in Mobile County, where I was in the middle of nowhere. I hate to admit it, but whoever lived in those woods did not get counted, at least by me.

A new expansion was announced for Escambia Academy. The addition was expected to be completed by the end of the year.

Two suspects in a robbery in Atmore, were apprehended in Meridian, Miss. They were charged with the robbing of Western Union in Atmore. The funny thing was, they actually got very little money.

M.L. Ritchie donated a couple of antique gas lamps to First Baptist Church, Atmore in memory of his wife, Viola, who died in 1970. The lamps were bought in London and originally came from the midlands of England. They were created during the reign of Queen Victoria (1837-1901).

That caught my attention because of the history involved, which is one of my favorite subjects.

The announcement was made in The Atmore Advance of the wedding of Ruby Marie Stewart and Marvin Floyd, which took place on Dec. 19. There was also a notice of the 50th wedding anniversary of Mr. and Mrs. John A. Davis.

The PTA at A.C. Moore School planned to have a spaghetti supper and were selling tickets. An adult ticket was $1.25 and student tickets were 75 cents.

Talk about a bargain; the menu consisted of the spaghetti, green salad, bread and a dessert. Do they still do things like that these days?