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The NEW BERN
/' PUBLISHID WIIKLY
/fior- ■ HiART OP
NEW BERN, N. C. 28560, FRIDAY, SEPTEMBER 28,1973
Yesterday was when there
were close to twenty lumber
mills in New Bern and the
immediate section. CoUectivdy
they furnished employment,
mostly at dirt cheap wages, for
approximately five thousand
H)ese mills had a daUy
capacity of about 630,000 feet,
with an annual cut of about
175,000,000 feet* Bigger by far
than any of the others was
Roper’s miU, largest in the
Along about that time, 60
years ago with a year or two to
spare. New Bern was proudly
boasting of its nearly 25 miles of
newly paved sidewalks, with
outside granite curbing.
And that wasn’t all. A con
tract had been let for paving the
streets in the business portion of
the city with citrified brick, and
the work of excavating the
streets had begun. Bonds in the
amount of $150,000 were issued.
C. D. Bradham had added a
$30,000 annex to his Pepsi-Cola
plant. It was no small operation.
The firm could turn out 1,200
gallons of syrup an hour, served
230 bottling plants, working the
soda fountain trade in 38 states.
Yesterday was when the Elks
Temple building, with
“unquestionably” the hand
somest firnished lodge and club
rooms in tne entire South, was
erected at a cost of about
$120,000. There were 225 Elks
Next door, heading north on
Middle Street, W. B. Blades was
erecting a ^0,000, two-story
block of three stores. The brick
structure was only half com
plete, but S. H. Kress had
already rented one of the stores.
And the town was bragging
about a “very substantial’’ two-
story brick auditorium annex to
the Moses Griffin Memorial
School Building on the Academy
Green. It had to be good,
because it cost $13,000.
The auditorium had a seating
capacity of 600, but proclaimers
really stretched their blanket
when they called it the “finest
free school auditorium in the
It never was that. The seats
all on the same level, were
worse than terrible, the stage
ridiculously inadequate, and
performers had to walk
through the audience in order to
get behind the curtain.
Unbelievably, it didn’t occur
to the architect or school of
ficials that a second-floor
auditoiium, that you reached by
a single ili^t of wooden stairs,
was at best a Are trap.
Hie basement of the building
would provide a “gymnasium’’
for the boys, departments of
cooking and sewing for the
girls, and manual training for
the boys. The gym was as
much that as a mouse is an
Yesterday was when New
Bern’s leading law firms in
cluded Warren & Warren
(Thomas D. & Julien K.);
Simmons, Ward & Allen (F, M.
Simmons, A. D. Ward & M. H.
Allen); and Moore & Dunn (L. I.
Moore & William Dunn).
Yesterday (1907) was when
The Peoples Bank opened its
(Continued on page 8)
OURS IS DIFFERENT—There are thousands of
Court Houses in the United States, but where else
will you find one that doesn’t have a front door?
There are marble steps leading to where Craven
County Court House once had a front entrance, but
at the top of those steps you face a blank wall. We
believe in being practical, here in New Bern, so
when citizens used only the side door for
generations, the front door was finally bricked
iq>.—Photo by Jack Layne, Chick’s & Jack’s Studio.