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Archive By Author - Johnny Vardeman


Horses, mules almost overran ‘Joeless’ square in Gainesville

The picture is of Gainesville's downtown square probably in the early 1900s before motorized vehicles were common and before "Old Joe," the Confederate statue was erected. The view is toward the west side of the square where Saul's, Frames You Nique and other stores stand today.

May 17, 2015 | Johnny Vardeman | Johnny Vardeman's column


1920 contents of high school cornerstone unveil history

In the fall of 1920, Hall County students were studying in 21 schools.

May 10, 2015 | Johnny Vardeman | Johnny Vardeman's column


Gainesville was a brick center in early 1900s

In the early 1900s, Gainesville already was becoming known as a poultry center, but it would be another half century before it could boast about being the "World's Broiler Capital."

May 03, 2015 | Johnny Vardeman | Johnny Vardeman's column


Family finally tells its story of ’36 Gainesville tornado

Because April is high tornado season, and storms are top of mind especially in Northeast Georgia, here's a family's remarkable story about how they survived Gainesville's 1936 tornado despite being in or near the middle of it. They were indeed fortunate they were not among the more than 200 people killed.

April 19, 2015 | Johnny Vardeman | Johnny Vardeman's column


Gainesville residents fought to keep square in 1901

"Old Joe," the Confederate statue on Gainesville's downtown square, almost wasn't to be for a couple of reasons.

April 11, 2015 | Johnny Vardeman | Johnny Vardeman's column


Anniversary of a different deadly 1936 tornado

Today is the 79th anniversary of the fourth deadliest tornado in United States history.

April 05, 2015 | Johnny Vardeman | Johnny Vardeman's column


Gainesville Mill added a big jolt to Hall economy

The early 1900s were high times for Gainesville and Hall County.

March 29, 2015 | Johnny Vardeman | Johnny Vardeman's column


Gwinnett County police murders stunned state in 1964

Fifty-one years ago next month marks one of the most sensational crimes in Georgia's history: the execution murders of three Gwinnett County policemen.

March 22, 2015 | Johnny Vardeman | Johnny Vardeman's column


Mossy Creek Campground is full of history

Mossy Creek Campground lies between Ga. 254 and Skitts Mountain Road in White County.

March 15, 2015 | Johnny Vardeman | Johnny Vardeman's column


Many golfers learned to play at Mossy Creek in White County

One of the oldest golf courses in North Georgia is Mossy Creek, just over the Hall County line into White County on Ga. 254 next to Mossy Creek Campground and at the base of Skitts Mountain.

March 08, 2015 | Johnny Vardeman | Johnny Vardeman's column


Stores keep on the move these days, too

There have been so many changes among Gainesville's business districts over the years, you can't keep track of them.

March 01, 2015 | Johnny Vardeman | Johnny Vardeman's column


Hope family’s ancestors were early settlers in the region

Bob Hope once lived in Gainesville.

February 15, 2015 | Johnny Vardeman | Johnny Vardeman's column


Local radio acts launched performers on music careers

When local radio was in its pioneer stages, live acts, mostly country and gospel music, were a significant part of the programming.

February 08, 2015 | Johnny Vardeman | Johnny Vardeman's column


Gainesville’s first postmaster was pushed out of job by politics

Wiley Harben held the distinction of being Gainesville's first postmaster, appointed in 1823. He also had the distinction of being the first postmaster to lose his job for purely political reasons.

February 01, 2015 | Johnny Vardeman | Johnny Vardeman's column


Two journalists of note began their careers in Gainesville

You never know where a bicycle ride will take you.

January 25, 2015 | 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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