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Memoried Glances: 1941 — LHS gym destroyed by fire

Septembers past, 75 years ago

From the LaGrange Daily News, 1941

Front Page News

LaGrange High School Gymnasium Burns — The recently remodeled LaGrange High School gymnasium was completely destroyed early this morning by a raging fire, which started around 2:15 a.m. in a switch box on the north end of the building and raced unchecked until the plant had been leveled to the ground. Damage was estimated at $22,500.

Nothing was salvaged from the blazing inferno. All football uniforms and supplies, valued at $2,500 were destroyed.

Three LaGrange firemen Raymond Holley, Ridley Ayres and Grady Taylor received severe lacerations of the face and scalp when the east wall of the brick building crashed down upon them as they were battling the flames. Holley and Ayres received the worst injuries, but their condition is not believed to be serious.

The building and its contents were covered by insurance.

Total Of 4,291 Students Register At LaGrange Schools — A total of 4,291 students said au revoir to their three months vacation this morning and began the trek back to the 10 LaGrange schools.

The registration last year was 4,317, an increase of 26 students over this year. However, approximately 200 students will register later this week.

Registrations at the white schools: LHS, 675; Harwell Avenue, 465; Unity, 320; Southwest LaGrange, 628; Hill Street, 232; Dawson Street, 412; and Dunson, 301. Registration at the African-American schools: McGregor, 485; East Depot Street, 633; and Valley, 130.

Steps Taken To Conserve Water Supply Of LaGrange — Mayor R. S. O’Neal and the City Council took steps today to conserve the depleted water supply in LaGrange by passing an ordinance making it unlawful for any person, firm or corporation to use water other than for household and sanitary purposes.

The mayor is making an urgent appeal to all residents of LaGrange to aid in the water conserving effort.

Any person violating the provisions of the ordinance shall be guilty of disorderly conduct, tried before the city recorder and punished.

LaGrange’s New $16,000 Fire Truck Receives Praise — “LaGrange fire fighting equipment is second to none now,” Chief Joe Roberts said today, glancing proudly at the new $16,000 American La France truck.

Modern and practical in every sense, the new truck is “a complete fire department on wheels.”

Forty-one feet three inches long, the truck carries 265 feet of ladders. Included is a 65 foot all steel hydraulic ladder mounted on a revolving base. Other ladder lengths are 10, 12, 16, 24, 26, 35 and 45 feet.

The huge 250 horse power motor is capable of handling a 750 gallon pump, and there is room on the body for 1,000 feet of hose. Top speed for the truck is 65 miles an hour.

Essential fire fighting accessories are mounted at convenient places on the truck.

A demonstration of what this “complete fire department” can do will be staged on Court Square soon. Watch The Daily News for the date and time.

Local Chapter Of Red Cross Sends Aid To England — The local chapter of the American Red Cross Tuesday packed a shipment of clothing to be sent to national headquarters and forwarded to England, the garments made by local volunteer workers in LaGrange.

In the shipment this week were: 20 men’s sweaters, 40 children’s sweaters, 40 cotton dresses, two shirts, 16 skirts, five shawls, five pairs of socks, 10 beanies, one afghan, one pair of overalls, one pair of hospital pajamas and 45 dresses.

Nat Slaughter Wins Title In Warm Springs Tourney — Nat Slaughter, outstanding LaGrange golfer, played a fine brand of golf to win his way to the championship finals, then defeated Marion Beavers of Newnan, in a good match that gave him the Warm Springs tournament title.

Russ Nielson, another outstanding LaGrange golfer, won consolation, which is equivalent of winning second flight.

Reward Is Posted For Hitler Here — On the bulletin board down at LaGrange Police Headquarters is a Wanted, Dead Or Alive poster that is really amusing.

It says: “Wanted, Dead Or Alive, Adolph Schnickelgrubber, alias Adolph Hitler, charged with murder, treason arson, etc.

At times this man is inclined to be fanatical.”

The Police Department for Freedom issued the lookout notice.

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Memoried Glances

Julia Dyar

Contributing columnist

Julia Dyar, a retired journalist, is active in the Troup County Historical Society.