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Archive By Author - Johnny Vardeman


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


Generals met off battlefield after the war

Gen. James Longstreet, the Confederate officer who lived out his life in Gainesville, met one of his old foes years after the Civil War.

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


Of schools, potholes and Gen. Sherman

When the Gainesville School System was just beginning in 1877, the city council at the time decreed that "one-fourth of 1 percent property tax" would be used to fund the schools.

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


1876 words could apply as well today

John E. Redwine was editor and publisher of the Gainesville Eagle in America's centennial year, 1876. Gainesville and Hall County were just over a half century old.

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


Hall Countian was among heroes at the Alamo

A few Georgians were involved in the Battle of the Alamo in what is now Texas in 1836, among them William Wells, who was born in what is now Hall County in 1798.

January 30, 2011 | Johnny Vardeman | Johnny Vardeman's column


Milliken had impact on Hall, many places

When textile tycoon Roger Milliken died last month, Spartanburg and the whole of South Carolina appropriately mourned him and loudly sang his praises.

January 23, 2011 | Johnny Vardeman | Johnny Vardeman's column


Similar themes in inaugurals of 2 Hall County governors

There were similar themes in the inauguration of the first governor from Hall County, A.D. Candler, and the second, Nathan Deal, who took office last week.

January 16, 2011 | Johnny Vardeman | Johnny Vardeman's column


Brenau library houses books from Watson

The library of one of Georgia's best known politicians is housed in Brenau University's trustee library in Gainesville.

January 09, 2011 | Johnny Vardeman | Johnny Vardeman's column


North Georgia grad was part of secret war

Ben Malcom had been out of North Georgia College in Dahlonega barely a year before he found himself in Korea in 1952 on an unconventional warfare assignment kept top secret for four decades after the war there concluded in n armistice.

January 02, 2011 | Johnny Vardeman | Johnny Vardeman's column


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Articles By Author - Johnny Vardeman


Johnny Vardeman: 113 years ago, another tornado took deadly toll on Gainesville

June 1 will be the 113th anniversary of the tornado that killed more than 100 people and left a swath of destruction on Gainesville's ...

May 22, 2016 | Johnny Vardeman | Columnists


Johnny Vardeman: Some historical trivia on roads, streets in area

One hundred years ago, Gainesville was bragging that it had almost 5 miles of paved streets. That was in 1916 when Hall County had few ...

May 15, 2016 | Johnny Vardeman | Columnists


Johnny Vardeman: Autos silenced familiar bells of streetcars

Imagine yourself in the early 1900s in Gainesville when rarely seen automobiles were novelties. Horses and buggies, mules and wagons mostly got people around.

May 08, 2016 | Johnny Vardeman | Columnists


Johnny Vardeman: Gainesville’s Jack of all sports was a pure natural

If a ball had anything to do with it, Jack Roberts was naturally great at it.

May 01, 2016 | Johnny Vardeman | Columnists


Johnny Vardeman: 100 years later, politics remain as divisive and bizarre as ever

Elections 100 years ago, on state, local and national levels, are not so dissimilar from this year's.

April 24, 2016 | Johnny Vardeman | Columnists


Johnny Vardeman: Some places, bits of history are missing off today’s maps

Old maps reveal a lot about the history of an area, changes that have come about, places that no longer are obvious.

April 17, 2016 | Johnny Vardeman | Columnists


Johnny Vardeman: Public housing and the legacy of a preacher

Some Gainesville homes were still without electricity and used kerosene for both heating and lighting in the late 1940s when the idea for a public ...

April 10, 2016 | Johnny Vardeman | Columnists


Johnny Vardeman: Try this quiz: What do you recollect about street changes?

Time for another history trivia quiz about Northeast Georgia. Answers at end of column.

April 03, 2016 | Johnny Vardeman | Columnists


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