Community Memories

 

If you have an interesting or exciting story from Jonesboro's past, feel free to let us know.  Select stories will be published on our website!

So many of my memories are tied to stories told to me by my grandmothers - Mary Elizabeth McEwen Bridger and Sybil Sarah Hickey Berry. While most children weren't very interested in what their grandparents had to say, I was spellbound by their stories and, to this day, have notes of these events. These have proven invaluable in my genealogical efforts. Both came from pioneer families and I am still amazed at the wonderful things they did and said "way back when".

 

My grandmother Sybil would tell me about her father, Lorenzo Dow Hickey, Jr. He was the founder and first Chief of the Jonesboro Fire Department. He served in that position for nearly 30 years, I believe. They lived in the family home at 811 Huntington, which, by the way, still stands today. She would recall that the fire horses - Dewey and Prince - had learned to ring the fire bell when they were hungry. Apparently it was about the same time every day when this occurred, so she and her brother, Harvey L. Hickey, would have to "go through the woods" from 811 Huntington to the old fire station at the corner of Church and Washington to feed the horses. I never completely understood how the firefighters knew the difference between a "real" fire bell and the "horses" fire bell, but apparently both the Hickey children and the firefighters could tell the difference.

 

My great-grandmother, her mother Corinne Lane Hickey, wasn't a particularly social woman. "Gram" was very much in love with her husband and he with her, but he was the sociable one and she preferred the kitchen and sewing to being out in public. To my grandmother, being the only surviving daughter in the family, fell the responsibility of going to all the Oddfellows Lodge dances, escorted by her father. I once wrote her words to me about one of these dances. "Papa was so handsome and Mama had made me a new dress and she had sewn into the hem of the dress a loop where I could put my pinkie finger and hold my dress high as Papa would swirl me around the dance floor. We had such fun that night." I recall that she was about 10 years old then - in about 1899.

 

What wonderful memories our grandparents will leave with us, if we will only listen!

 

Submitted by: Judy Furr

 

In 1959 the city asked all citizens to dress in period costumes on the 100th Anniversary.  The gentlemen were to all grow beards and mustaches for the day.  Mrs. Tipton made dresses for herself and her 8 year old daughter Sheila.  Photos were taken of Agnes and Sheila at 511 Matthews; you can view the photos in the Photo Gallery 1859-1959 or by clicking here.

Submitted by: Sheila Tipton

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