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Archive By Section - Johnny Vardeman's column


‘Miracle man’ earned renown as horticulturist

Gainesville native Iverson D. Hudgins was characterized "a miracle man" because he survived the 1936 tornado despite being caught in the vortex of the twister, thrown high above his house, landing midst all manner of debris and leaving him with 17 fractures and nails in one eye and his jaw.

April 12, 2014 | Johnny Vardeman | Johnny Vardeman's column


1936 tornado victim fought for life after storm struck

There are so many stories that have been told and retold about the 1936 tornado that caused more than 200 deaths in the heart of Gainesville.

April 05, 2014 | Johnny Vardeman | Johnny Vardeman's column


Small church, full-size faith, enrich history

Mildred Martin, 86, a member of Chestatee Baptist Church since a baby, remembers when the building was heated by a pot-bellied stove.

March 16, 2014 | Johnny Vardeman | Johnny Vardeman's column


Chicopee looked at Lula for its model village

Iris Thompson Fry of Lula is somewhat of a hoarder - not the kind you see on television, but a hoarder of memories and stories.

February 23, 2014 | Johnny Vardeman | Johnny Vardeman's column


Frigid winter conjures talk of ‘back when’

When a winter like Northeast Georgia is having this year, when electricity and gas bills soar, when firewood runs low, and school schedules are slammed, people begin to reminisce about winters past, those that stand out.

February 16, 2014 | Johnny Vardeman | Johnny Vardeman's column


WWI aviator from Hall had some close calls

One of the first military aviators from Hall County who fought in World War I had some narrow escapes in the air, but luckily returned with hardly a scratch.

February 09, 2014 | Johnny Vardeman | Johnny Vardeman's column


Longstreets told whole world why they wed

Even in this more tolerant time, eyebrows are raised when a much older guy or gal marries a much younger gal or guy.

February 02, 2014 | Johnny Vardeman | Johnny Vardeman's column


The day fire destroyed Longstreet’s home in Gainesville

Picture Gainesville in the late 1800s. It was billed as one of the South's great health resorts because of its numerous nearby mineral springs. It had a dozen lodging places, including the Piedmont Hotel operated by famed Confederate Gen. James Longstreet.

January 26, 2014 | Johnny Vardeman | Johnny Vardeman's column


Norwegian son follows mom’s path to Georgia

Liv Reinhardt Myklebust, a Norwegian, traveled to the United States in 1980 to attend Brenau University in Gainesville on a Georgia Rotary Student scholarship.

January 19, 2014 | Johnny Vardeman | Johnny Vardeman's column


Col. Candler defied mob to protect Union officer

An incident during the Civil War tells much about the character of A.D. Candler of Gainesville, who later served as mayor, U.S. representative and as Georgia's governor.

January 12, 2014 | Johnny Vardeman | Johnny Vardeman's column


‘Bloody 9th’ was slow to report election night returns

This election year, voting results from the various precincts around the 9th Congressional District will show up on computer screens and other electronic devices not long after the polls close.

January 05, 2014 | Johnny Vardeman | Johnny Vardeman's column


Gen. Sherman gave Atlanta some water advice

It'd be a stretch, but kind of fun, to blame Atlanta's water troubles on Gen. William T. Sherman, whose Union troops burned the city and anything else that got in his way on his March to the Sea during the Civil War.

December 29, 2013 | Johnny Vardeman | Johnny Vardeman's column


Why there’s nothing better than Christmas in North Ga.

(A version of this column originally ran in The Times Dec. 25, 1991.)

December 22, 2013 | Johnny Vardeman | Johnny Vardeman's column


Bolding Bridge owner lost standoff with revenuer

Bolding Bridge over the Chestatee River arm of Lake Lanier on Ga. 53 at the Hall-Forsyth counties line has been in the news lately because peregrine falcons find it convenient to build their nests atop it.

December 15, 2013 | Johnny Vardeman | Johnny Vardeman's column


Book explains how Gainesville spread its wings

In his book, "Mule and Wagon to Automobile," Prof. Thomas H. Rasmussen of Gainesville explores how a Gainesville of 472 people in 1870 grew into a sprawling metropolitan area of 180,000 today.

December 08, 2013 | Johnny Vardeman | Johnny Vardeman's column


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Articles by Section - Johnny Vardeman's column


Moonshiner making legal white lightnin’ now

Dwight Bearden was 6 or 7 years old when he first started helping his father on their liquor still north of Dawsonville.

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


River ford bandits’ lair is gone, but legends live

Woolley's Ford was one of those places on rivers in Northeast Georgia where people would cross either wading across shallows or riding a ferry. Bridges weren't all that common on such streams as the Chattahoochee or Chestatee until the late 1800s.

March 30, 2014 | Johnny Vardeman | Johnny Vardeman's column


Pioneer Hall pastor, store merchant forgave debts

The first minister of Chestatee Baptist Church, John Edward "Jackie" Rives, was a successful farmer and merchant who turned preacher in 1833 after hearing a stirring sermon on swearing, a sin he admitted he was guilty of.

March 23, 2014 | Johnny Vardeman | Johnny Vardeman's column


Drawn into history: Gainesville cartoonist to continue legacy of ‘Mark Trail’ comic

Jack Elrod spent much of his childhood roaming the rivers and woods around Gainesville and North Georgia.

March 09, 2014 | Johnny Vardeman | Johnny Vardeman's column


Helen’s Helen was a Missouri social butterfly

If it weren't for the preference of Southern cooks for white flour in the early 1900s, there might not be a Helen, Ga., as it is today.

March 02, 2014 | Johnny Vardeman | Johnny Vardeman's column


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