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Archive By Section - Johnny Vardeman's column


Editor sent some sermons to his readers

North Georgia over the years produced a bumper crop of entertaining and sometimes controversial newspaper editors.

June 12, 2011 | Johnny Vardeman | Johnny Vardeman's column


Zipper firm transformed White County

When zipper inventor and manufacturer Talon Inc., announced it would locate in Cleveland in the summer of 1952, the normally reserved weekly Cleveland Courier shouted the news in 2-inch headlines.

June 05, 2011 | Johnny Vardeman | Johnny Vardeman's column


Chicken tags hailed, hated by motorists

Probably a few longtime Hall County residents have an old "chicken tag" lying around, having saved it from the 1950s and '60s or found it at a garage or yard sale somewhere.

May 29, 2011 | Johnny Vardeman | Johnny Vardeman's column


Lyman Hall had to settle for marker

It could have been Lyman Hall instead of Old Joe on Gainesville's downtown square. In 1901, Somebody suggested a statue of Hall, the county's namesake and one of the signers of the Declaration of Independence, be erected in the middle of the square.

May 22, 2011 | Johnny Vardeman | Johnny Vardeman's column


Pioneer's grave to be marked in Hall County

An important piece of Hall County history relating to the founding of Gainesville in 1821 will be highlighted Saturday at Air Line Baptist Church Cemetery.

May 15, 2011 | Johnny Vardeman | Johnny Vardeman's column


Much-coveted postmaster job stirred ruckus

Community postmaster jobs once were considered a valuable political plum, and therefore were much lusted over.

May 08, 2011 | Johnny Vardeman | Johnny Vardeman's column


Gainesvillians pushed hard for rail route

When the Air Line railroad began construction just after the Civil War, Gainesville had fewer than 500 residents, and no houses had been built in 12 years.

May 01, 2011 | Johnny Vardeman | Johnny Vardeman's column


Some in area voted to delay Ga. secession

As Georgia and other Southern states contemplated secession from the Union in 1860, they scheduled conventions to decide the issue.

April 24, 2011 | Johnny Vardeman | Johnny Vardeman's column


Joy reigned in early days of Civil War

A few days before the Civil War broke out with the firing on Fort Sumter in Charleston Harbor April 12, 1861, mini-civil wars erupted now and then, even in Gainesville.

April 17, 2011 | Johnny Vardeman | Johnny Vardeman's column


Before '36 tornado, Gainesville was a retail hub

Gainesville had no clue, of course, that it would be the bull's eye for a record tornado that would ravage its downtown early on a Monday morning, April 6, 1936.

April 03, 2011 | Johnny Vardeman | Johnny Vardeman's column


Lessie Smithgall still going strong at 100

One of Lessie Smithgall's favorite stories about her early newspaper days was when she was making telephone calls trying to get people to subscribe to the brand-new Gainesville Daily Times.

March 27, 2011 | Johnny Vardeman | Johnny Vardeman's column


Stolen stone returns home minus fanfare

Considerable commotion arose a few years ago when some Georgia legislators wanted to claim land north of the state's boundary with Tennessee so Georgia could get water from the Tennessee River.

March 20, 2011 | Johnny Vardeman | Johnny Vardeman's column


Canal dream didn’t make it across state

It takes big dreamers sometime to get things done, but sometimes dreams evaporate with the times.

March 13, 2011 | Johnny Vardeman | Johnny Vardeman's column


States’ rights was flag issue at courthouse

Georgia has had a series of flag controversies, mostly over changing the state flag in recent years.

March 06, 2011 | Johnny Vardeman | Johnny Vardeman's column


Midland train wasn't known for its speed

The Gainesville Midland Railroad, now part of CSX Railroad, from Gainesville to Athens, has a storied history, and it has some stories in its history.

February 27, 2011 | Johnny Vardeman | Johnny Vardeman's column


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Articles by Section - Johnny Vardeman's column


Two journalists of note began their careers in Gainesville

You never know where a bicycle ride will take you.

January 25, 2015 | Johnny Vardeman | Johnny Vardeman's column


Where some names originate in North Georgia

A new street sign went up in Gainesville the other day - Sweet Bay Drive, the entrance to Atlanta Botanical Gardens' Smithgall Woodland Gardens off Cleveland Road.

January 18, 2015 | Johnny Vardeman | Johnny Vardeman's column


You’re Old Hall County if you remember these

A version of this column ran in March 2000.

January 11, 2015 | Johnny Vardeman | Johnny Vardeman's column


First wireless message sent in 1911 from ship to Brenau

"Wireless" is a common term in today's age of modern electronics. It allows people to use their electronic devices in a variety of locations or situations.

December 28, 2014 | Johnny Vardeman | Johnny Vardeman's column


Two kin from the area died decades apart serving cause

The story of Hugh Minor Sr. has been well told. He was the Dawson County native and pioneer airplane pilot who lived much of his early life in Gainesville.

December 21, 2014 | Johnny Vardeman | Johnny Vardeman's column


How Hall County reacted after Pearl Harbor

Just as the attack by Japanese on Pearl Harbor Dec. 7, 1941, came on a Sunday, so is today's 73rd anniversary of that fateful day.

December 07, 2014 | Johnny Vardeman | Johnny Vardeman's column


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