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Archive By Section - Johnny Vardeman's column


Thick bamboo part of former Brenau garden

Bamboo, some of it more than half foot in diameter and tall as a three-story building, grows tucked away in a corner of the Brenau University campus in Gainesville.

November 02, 2008 | Johnny Vardeman | Johnny Vardeman's column


Novel retells gold history in Lumpkin County

Anne Dismukes Amerson long ago made a name for herself as an expert on North Georgia history and from her "I Remember Dahlonega" series of books, along with other books on the area's past.

October 26, 2008 | Johnny Vardeman | Johnny Vardeman's column


First Brother left friends tales to retell

Gainesville Realtor Don Carter for many years owned a farm on Corbin Creek near Hiawassee. He regularly invited friends up for fishing, tall-tale telling and assorted activities.

October 19, 2008 | Johnny Vardeman | Johnny Vardeman's column


Hall helped lead colonies’ break from England

Thank the Lord for people like the late Sybil McRay and Ruth Waters, local historians and educators, who researched our past, leaving a legacy of less to do for those who followed them.

October 12, 2008 | Johnny Vardeman | Johnny Vardeman's column


Battles over rivers, boundaries are nothing new

Georgia has a history of boundary battles with its neighbors. The most recent scrimmage was with Tennessee, which some Georgia legislators wanted to adjust its boundary to take advantage of that state's water resources.

October 05, 2008 | Johnny Vardeman | Johnny Vardeman's column


White County mountain’s past is quite infamous

Lynch Mountain isn't as well known or prominent as its more visible neighbor, Yonah Mountain, which stands guard over picturesque Nacoochee Valley in White County.

September 28, 2008 | Johnny Vardeman | Johnny Vardeman's column


Historic home and Old Joe both will stay put

Ebernezer B. Gower was the guy who developed Gower Springs, which became a popular resort off Thompson Bridge Road in Gainesville. He not only owned the property that eventually became the Green Street Circle neighborhood, but owned land from that point all the way up to the downtown square.

September 21, 2008 | Johnny Vardeman | Johnny Vardeman's column


Dairies milked all over North Georgia

Winford Elrod used to get up at 4 a.m., milk cows, bottle the milk, load the bottles on a truck, deliver them to homes all over Gainesville, then get back to the dairy in time to milk again.

September 14, 2008 | Johnny Vardeman | Johnny Vardeman's column


This year's ’maters pass the tasting test here

Reports are that some people are shying away from tomatoes in view of the federal government's report that they might have caused some to be sick, having eaten a salmonella sandwich instead of a genuine homegrown tomato sandwich.

September 06, 2008 | Johnny Vardeman | Johnny Vardeman's column


New buildings drew criticism from near, far

When Hall County built its new courthouse, there was considerable criticism when the original estimate of $8.5 million grew to $16.5 million because of increased building costs, and finally to $24.9 million because another floor was added.

August 31, 2008 | Johnny Vardeman | Johnny Vardeman's column


The first Red Elephants stampeded and stumbled

Katie B. Davis's excellent article in The Times a few days back about the origin of the Gainesville High School Red Elephants' nickname stirs some curiosity about that 1935 football team and the excitement that would attract the attention of the big-city newspapers.

August 24, 2008 | Johnny Vardeman | Johnny Vardeman's column


How people got around without cars

Those interested in what it was like way back when are fortunate when those who lived way back when leave their recollections to their descendants.

August 17, 2008 | Johnny Vardeman | Johnny Vardeman's column


Green Street Circle recycles a bygone era

Many people driving along ultra-busy, multilaned Thompson Bridge Road in Gainesville may not be aware only a few yards away is a quiet two-lane, tree-lined street that developed early in the 1900s and today is enjoying somewhat of a renaissance.

August 10, 2008 | Johnny Vardeman | Johnny Vardeman's column


Some of county's goals from decades ago still elusive

Hall County was quite a different place 60 years ago with men and women who served in World War II just settling into a new chapter of their lives.

August 03, 2008 | Johnny Vardeman | Johnny Vardeman's column


Rural column writers won readers, if no Pulitzers

Some small weekly newspapers still carry the personal notes of country correspondents, who write faithfully of happenings in their community.

July 27, 2008 | Johnny Vardeman | Johnny Vardeman's column


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Articles by Section - Johnny Vardeman's column


Slaughterhouse Creek’s history includes mines, meat operation

Connie Propes and other neighbors where Wal-Mart is building a grocery and installing gas pumps on Thompson Bridge Road in Gainesville are researching the history of the area, in particular Slaughterhouse Creek, which might be affected by rainfall runoff from the development. The creek eventually feeds into Lake Lanier.

August 31, 2014 | Johnny Vardeman | Johnny Vardeman's column


Many memories made in Brenau sorority houses

During the recent razing of several sorority houses at Brenau University in Gainesville, students and alumni gathered in groups at times to snap photos and hopefully get a brick or other piece of memorabilia from the rubble.

August 24, 2014 | Johnny Vardeman | Johnny Vardeman's column


Sacks store was mainstay on city square

The east side of Gainesville's downtown square in the 1950s was dominated by clothing stores, most of them what you would consider discount shops today.

August 17, 2014 | Johnny Vardeman | Johnny Vardeman's column


Seeding ground with gold failed to profit crooks

At the height of the Lumpkin County gold rush, people from all over the country were coming to North Georgia to pursue their personal fortune. Locals sometimes were prone to take advantage of gullible outside prospectors.

August 10, 2014 | Johnny Vardeman | Johnny Vardeman's column


Glory, it’s ’mater sammich time again

Editor's note: For many years, Johnny Vardeman, retired editor of The Times, would write his annual "'mater sammich" column as homegrown tomatoes started coming in during the summer. "'Maters and Music" will be the theme for a tomato sandwich event from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. Aug. 23 at the Byron Herbert Reece Farm and Heritage Center one mile north of Vogel State Park, 9 miles south of Blairsville on U.S. 129.

August 03, 2014 | Johnny Vardeman | Johnny Vardeman's column


WWI casualty Bolding wrote of mud, shells and willpower

A century will have passed Monday since the beginning of World War I, which started July 28, 1914, when Austria declared war on Serbia. The United States didn't enter until three years later, declaring war on Germany.

July 27, 2014 | Johnny Vardeman | Johnny Vardeman's column


Antioch UMC celebrates its 200th year at camp meeting

One of the oldest camp meetings in North Georgia begins Monday at the historic Antioch Campground on Antioch Campground Road in west Hall County.

July 20, 2014 | Johnny Vardeman | Johnny Vardeman's column


County agents play key role in community

"County agents," as we call them, date back in Georgia 100 years. They are part of the University of Georgia Cooperative Extension Service, celebrating its centennial this year helping residents with home, garden and farm advice.

July 13, 2014 | Johnny Vardeman | Johnny Vardeman's column


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