With no television, limited transportation and very little money, children growing up in the Gainesville Mill village in the 1940s, '50s and beyond "made do."
A century and a half ago this month, the Civil War began officially with the shelling of Fort Sumter, but as embroiled as the nation was in the turmoil of the times, Hall Countians had diamonds on their minds and in their mines.
One of the little known, but most controversial figures in Hall County history was a lawyer named William H. Underwood.
Georgia had its "two governors" controversy back in 1947 after the governor-elect, Eugene Talmadge, died just weeks before his inauguration.
The late Talmadge Pless, who served as Lula's mayor, missed seeing his fellow Norfolk-Southern Railway workers after he retired.
Several players on the undefeated 1923-25 Gainesville High School football teams went on to greater things, including athletics.
The 1923 Gainesville High School football team, in the school's first undefeated season, had scored 306 points to its opponents' 19, shutting out seven of those teams.
As storied as Gainesville High School football is, it took 99 years for its first state championship, remarkably winning it in 2012, the first year the school jumped two classifications into AAAAA.
It's no wonder residents along Friendship Road in southern Hall County are so passionate in resisting a change in the road's name to Lanier Islands Parkway.
There's a television commercial in which a woman says something to the effect that it has to be true if you see it on the Internet because you can't put anything on the Internet unless it's true. When asked where she learned that, she replies, "On the Internet," then walks away with her blind date, alleged "French model" that she met on the Internet.
"We lived for the lights to come on in the gym," Vic Wilson said as he drove through the New Holland mill village where he grew up.
In just about every community, there is somebody who is the "go-to" guy or gal. In Chicopee Village for many years that was Joe Holcomb.
Larry Morris, the great Georgia Tech and National Football League linebacker who died last month, was the father of Kayanne Staub, wife of Eagle Ranch director Eddie Staub.
Every few years, an annexation controversy featuring the city of Gainesville and outlying properties seems to pop up.
In Hall County's pioneer days, alcoholic spirits were pretty much unregulated. Saloons and bars were common in Gainesville as it developed from a back-country crossroads into somewhat of a village.
There have been so many changes among Gainesville's business districts over the years, you can't keep track of them.
Bob Hope once lived in Gainesville.
When local radio was in its pioneer stages, live acts, mostly country and gospel music, were a significant part of the programming.
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.
You never know where a bicycle ride will take you.
A new street sign went up in Gainesville the other day - Sweet Bay Drive, the entrance to Atlanta Botanical Gardens' Smithgall Woodland Gardens off Cleveland Road.
A version of this column ran in March 2000.
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