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Archive By Section - Johnny Vardeman's column


Doug’s popular drive-in served half a century

Doug Meeks scraped together $500, pooled it with another $500 from a partner and established a Hall County restaurant that developed into an institution for more than half a century.

November 23, 2008 | Johnny Vardeman | Johnny Vardeman's column


Hall County a was reluctant backer of Lake Lanier

In these drought-driven days, we're pretty much together in North Georgia in the never-ending tug-of-war over water in the Chattahoochee River basin, which forms Lake Lanier.

Used to be we'd fuss with Atlanta about how much water it was using. But now so many consider us part of Atlanta, and therefore part of the problem, that we've ended up on the same side in Georgia's battles with Alabama and Florida over water that originates within our boundaries.

November 16, 2008 | Johnny Vardeman | Johnny Vardeman's column


Masonic apron survived trip to California gold fields

A Masonic apron on display periodically at Dahlonega's Gold Museum has a century-and-a-half story behind it.

November 16, 2008 | Johnny Vardeman | Johnny Vardeman's column


Players had to fix their 'field of dreams' before play

A "Field of Dreams" is planned at Alberta Banks Park in south Hall County for children with physical and developmental disabilities.

November 09, 2008 | Johnny Vardeman | Johnny Vardeman's column


Thick bamboo part of former Brenau garden

Bamboo, some of it more than half foot in diameter and tall as a three-story building, grows tucked away in a corner of the Brenau University campus in Gainesville.

November 02, 2008 | Johnny Vardeman | Johnny Vardeman's column


Novel retells gold history in Lumpkin County

Anne Dismukes Amerson long ago made a name for herself as an expert on North Georgia history and from her "I Remember Dahlonega" series of books, along with other books on the area's past.

October 26, 2008 | Johnny Vardeman | Johnny Vardeman's column


First Brother left friends tales to retell

Gainesville Realtor Don Carter for many years owned a farm on Corbin Creek near Hiawassee. He regularly invited friends up for fishing, tall-tale telling and assorted activities.

October 19, 2008 | Johnny Vardeman | Johnny Vardeman's column


Hall helped lead colonies’ break from England

Thank the Lord for people like the late Sybil McRay and Ruth Waters, local historians and educators, who researched our past, leaving a legacy of less to do for those who followed them.

October 12, 2008 | Johnny Vardeman | Johnny Vardeman's column


Battles over rivers, boundaries are nothing new

Georgia has a history of boundary battles with its neighbors. The most recent scrimmage was with Tennessee, which some Georgia legislators wanted to adjust its boundary to take advantage of that state's water resources.

October 05, 2008 | Johnny Vardeman | Johnny Vardeman's column


White County mountain’s past is quite infamous

Lynch Mountain isn't as well known or prominent as its more visible neighbor, Yonah Mountain, which stands guard over picturesque Nacoochee Valley in White County.

September 28, 2008 | Johnny Vardeman | Johnny Vardeman's column


Historic home and Old Joe both will stay put

Ebernezer B. Gower was the guy who developed Gower Springs, which became a popular resort off Thompson Bridge Road in Gainesville. He not only owned the property that eventually became the Green Street Circle neighborhood, but owned land from that point all the way up to the downtown square.

September 21, 2008 | Johnny Vardeman | Johnny Vardeman's column


Dairies milked all over North Georgia

Winford Elrod used to get up at 4 a.m., milk cows, bottle the milk, load the bottles on a truck, deliver them to homes all over Gainesville, then get back to the dairy in time to milk again.

September 14, 2008 | Johnny Vardeman | Johnny Vardeman's column


This year's ’maters pass the tasting test here

Reports are that some people are shying away from tomatoes in view of the federal government's report that they might have caused some to be sick, having eaten a salmonella sandwich instead of a genuine homegrown tomato sandwich.

September 06, 2008 | Johnny Vardeman | Johnny Vardeman's column


New buildings drew criticism from near, far

When Hall County built its new courthouse, there was considerable criticism when the original estimate of $8.5 million grew to $16.5 million because of increased building costs, and finally to $24.9 million because another floor was added.

August 31, 2008 | Johnny Vardeman | Johnny Vardeman's column


The first Red Elephants stampeded and stumbled

Katie B. Davis's excellent article in The Times a few days back about the origin of the Gainesville High School Red Elephants' nickname stirs some curiosity about that 1935 football team and the excitement that would attract the attention of the big-city newspapers.

August 24, 2008 | Johnny Vardeman | Johnny Vardeman's column


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Articles by Section - Johnny Vardeman's column


Film to depict Jackson pilot’s WWII escapes

Jackson Countians know why the Jefferson bypass on U.S. 129 south of Gainesville is named for Major Damon J. Gause. Many others, even in neighboring counties, might not know that he was a World War II hero, whose remarkable story about multiple escapes from the Japanese will be told in a Public Broadcasting documentary next year.

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


Ex-principal to mark 100th at old school

Frances Miller Haynes will turn 100 years old Oct. 1. Appropriately, she will celebrate in advance Saturday in the building with which she is most identified – Candler Street School just off North Green Street in Gainesville.

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


Businesses along Atlanta Highway roll with the times

Even longtime North Georgia residents are struck at how Gainesville's Atlanta Highway transformed so quickly.

September 14, 2014 | Johnny Vardeman | Johnny Vardeman's column


Who recalls the final film shown at the Royal?

Many remember the movie "The Last Picture Show," which came out in 1971 and starred Jeff Bridges and Cybill Shepherd. It was about a dying Texas town whose businesses, including the movie show, were failing.

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


Slaughterhouse Creek’s history includes mines, meat operation

Connie Propes and other neighbors where Wal-Mart is building a grocery and installing gas pumps on Thompson Bridge Road in Gainesville are researching the history of the area, in particular Slaughterhouse Creek, which might be affected by rainfall runoff from the development. The creek eventually feeds into Lake Lanier.

August 31, 2014 | Johnny Vardeman | Johnny Vardeman's column


Many memories made in Brenau sorority houses

During the recent razing of several sorority houses at Brenau University in Gainesville, students and alumni gathered in groups at times to snap photos and hopefully get a brick or other piece of memorabilia from the rubble.

August 24, 2014 | Johnny Vardeman | Johnny Vardeman's column


Sacks store was mainstay on city square

The east side of Gainesville's downtown square in the 1950s was dominated by clothing stores, most of them what you would consider discount shops today.

August 17, 2014 | Johnny Vardeman | Johnny Vardeman's column


Seeding ground with gold failed to profit crooks

At the height of the Lumpkin County gold rush, people from all over the country were coming to North Georgia to pursue their personal fortune. Locals sometimes were prone to take advantage of gullible outside prospectors.

August 10, 2014 | Johnny Vardeman | Johnny Vardeman's column


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