The Vagabond: Edward (Ed) L. Gamblin, his story in World War II, Part II

February 15, 2019 chris
By Danny Crownover Last week the Vagabond wrote part one of Gadsden native, Edward (Ed) L. Gamblin leaving for Germany as an American soldier in the  317th U.S Army Infantry Regiment April 11, 1945 was the day that Ed Gamblin was injured. It is not known exactly how. It is possible he fell or jumped
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The Vagabond: Ed Lee Gamblin in World War II, Part I

February 8, 2019 chris
By Danny Crownover America entered France in World War II with the D-Day landings at Normandy on June 6, 1944. Two months later on August 25, the Allies liberated Paris. In the skies over the Third Reich and the occupied countries, Allied air power wreaked havoc on the Wehrmacht, German industry and all lines of
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The Vagabond - Murder in Greasy Cove, near Gallant

February 1, 2019 chris
By Danny Crownover Jacob C. Lutes was born on Feb. 19, 1836 in Lafayette, Ga. He was the son of George Lutes (born 1793) and Mary Steele. Lutes later moved with his father to Cherokee Count just prior to 1850, where the younger Lutes met his first cousin, Sarah Elizabeth Steele, the daughter of Toliver
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The Vagabond Blind tigers in Etowah County - Part II

January 25, 2019 chris
By Danny Crownover A blind tiger was an important source of revenue for some boats. An organization would reserve the vessel, hire a string band, pack food and drink if the steamer could not supply it and set off. Dancing was enjoyed in the saloon, while courting couples walked around the upper deck while being
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The Vagabond: Blind tigers and gambling houses in Etowah County - Part I

January 18, 2019 chris
By Danny Crownover Back in 1882, the first prohibition law was forced upon Gadsden and Etowah County by a legislative act without vote of the people. Some of the events that followed included the advent of the blind tiger and its fellow traveler, the gambling house. Although Gadsden had 21 volunteer policemen who carried badges
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The Vagabond - Charles K. Crossfield

December 28, 2018 chris
By Danny Crownover The Vagabond remembers getting ice cream at Crossfield’s during his youth.  At that time, the ice cream was known all over town and continued to be known for many years. Here is the story of the Crossfields in Gadsden: One of the most useful citizens Gadsden ever had was Charles K. Crossfield,
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The Vagabond - An 1895 Christmas tale from Lovejoy’s Crossroads

December 21, 2018 chris
By Danny Crownover The Vagabond came across a true Christmas article originally written by local historian Marvin B. Small. It reads: “Back in the year 1895, there was a spot in West Gadsden that was known by old timers as Lovejoy’s Cross Roads. In those days, Tuscaloosa Road (now Tuscaloosa Avenue), as it was then
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The Vagabond - New Deal projects in Gadsden

December 17, 2018 chris
New Deal projects were the domestic programs of U.S. President Franklin D. Roosevelt between 1933 and 1939. The projects took action to bring about immediate economic relief, as well as reforms in industry, agriculture, finance, waterpower, labor and housing and vastly increasing the scope of the federal government’s activities. The program’s first objective was to
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The Vagabond - Readers respond to Temple Beth Israel article

November 9, 2018 chris
By Danny Crownover Last week The Vagabond wrote about America’s worst Jewish shooting or bombing (until recently in Pittsburg, Penn.) that happened here in Gadsden. It was also posted on Facebook on the “Welcome to Gadsden” group page. The response about the incident that happened at Temple Beth Israel in 1960 was unbelievable with over
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The Vagabond - Temple Beth Israel and the Jewish community

November 2, 2018 chris
By Danny Crownover Jewish folks were living in Gadsden as early as 1900. Among these locals were Jacob and Bertha Nadler, Hugo Hecht, David Reich and Albert Hagedorn. By 1903, the entirety of the Gadsden Jewish population – roughly 10 families – decided to meet communally on Sunday mornings in order to provide a Jewish
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The Vagabond: Mary Elizabeth Counselman Vinyard and The Leota steamboat

October 23, 2018 chris
By Danny Crownover The Vagabond recently was standing on the Coosa River boardwalk by where the Alabama Princess riverboat was once moored. The boat is no longer owned locally or docked at the location. But The Vagabond’s thoughts were about all the old riverboats that once plied the river. One of these original paddle-wheel boats,
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The Vagabond: The Gadsden Fault - an earthquake waiting to hit Gadsden?

October 12, 2018 chris
By Danny Crownover This week, The Vagabond will discuss the Gadsden Fault, which follows part of the High Town Path around Gadsden. Over the years, The Vagabond often has admired the local stone formations that tell an exciting geological story. There are strange examples of wind and water erosion that have been carved during the
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The Vagabond: The 1823 journal of Lucius Verus Bierce through Etowah County

September 28, 2018 chris
By Danny Crownover Many people have asked The Vagabond about the combined Creek Path and High Town Path that went up Penitentiary Hollow (up Fisher Creek from Cox’s Gap). This is the route Andrew Jackson used before he created a new route called the Jackson Military Trace through Highway 179 and today’s Ivalee community. Years
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The Vagabond: Few know about three tribes in Etowah County

September 21, 2018 chris
By Danny Crownover Many folks over the years have asked The Vagabond about what Indian tribes lived in å County. The most commonly known tribes are the Cherokees and Creeks. Yet few people realize that there was a third tribe, the Chickasaws. The Cherokee tribe was located in northern Etowah County. The Creeks were located
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Infamous outlaw came through Etowah County

September 7, 2018 chris
By Danny Crownover – The Vagabond Reuben Houston Burrow was an infamous train robber and outlaw in the southern and southwestern regions of the United States. During the final years of the American frontier, he became one of the most hunted men in the Old West since Jesse James. From 1886 to 1890, Burrow and
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How the Phoenix Hotel became a house of disrepute - Part II

August 31, 2018 chris
By Danny Crownover Last week The Vagabond wrote that back on Feb 16, 1909, Gadsden was to have another hotel at a neat new place on the southeast corner of Chestnut and 5th streets. The new place became known as the Phoenix Hotel and was run by Miss Theo Barry. She was related to the
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Local Revolutionary War sergeant had Civil War connections

August 31, 2018 chris
By Danny Crownover The Vagabond recently received an e-mail from Sonny Stowers, a former resident of this area. He wrote: “Hello! I thought I’d send you a picture that was created for me, dealing with some of my Civil War relatives. I think it’s kind of interesting.  I thought you might like a story about
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The Vagabond: The Phoenix Hotel in Gadsden became a house of ill repute

August 24, 2018 chris
By Danny Crownover Back on Feb 16, 1909, it was announced that Gadsden was to have another hotel at a neat new place on the southeast corner of Chestnut and 5th streets. It was to be known as the Phoenix Hotel and operated by Miss Theo Barry. Miss Barry was related to Police Captain W.L.
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The Vagabond - Mysterious & legendary caves at Lookout Mountain

March 30, 2018 chris
By Danny Crownover Editor’s note: This article was originally published in the August 15, 2014 edition of The Messenger. During a recent presentation about Noccalula Falls, The Vagabond mentioned a cave that once was located there. The following is the story about that cave: Located throughout Lookout Mountain are many caves in which many legends
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The Vagabond - Attalla played important role in region’s history

March 2, 2018 chris
By Danny Crownover Editor’s note: this article was originally published in the August 17, 2012 edition of The Messenger Incorporated as a town on February 5, 1872, by the 44th General Assembly of the Alabama Legislature. However, the city’s history actually predates its incorporation as a town. The City of Attalla occupies the site of
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The Vagabond - Place names in Etowah County

February 16, 2018 chris
By Danny Crownover This article was originally published in the May 4, 2012 edition of The Messenger Most of us that travel about in Etowah County see names of places and wonder how the name was chosen and for whom or what it was named. This article covers only a few of these sites, since
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The Vagabond - History of Camp Sumatanga

February 2, 2018 chris
By Danny Crownover A couple of weeks ago, The Vagabond talked about how the Gallant community in Etowah County got its name from John A. Gallant. Located nearby is a large camp that many people have visited and enjoyed for a number of years. Back in May of 1951, the late local historian Will I.
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The Vagabond - Stephen Reed Hood, early Etowah County resident

January 26, 2018 chris
By Danny Crownover A local historical landmark burned to the ground last Monday (Jan. 22). The structure was the old Stephen Reed Hood house located several miles north of Turkeytown in what once was the little community of Murrycross. The post office was once located next door on the north side. The house burned under
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The Vagabond - Document found at Coats house

January 15, 2018 chris
By Danny Crownover The Vagabond recently came across a document at the Jerry B. Jones Historical Research Library about a place called Coates Bend. Originally known as Coats Bend, the area was named after Gideon E. Coats. It appears that Gideon, his brother Sion and their mother Sarah left Kershaw County in South Carolina shortly
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The Vagabond - Early history on Duck Springs

January 5, 2018 chris
By Danny Crownover The Duck Springs story begins with The Duck, a Cherokee Chieftain who some say was the brother of Chief Turkey, namesake of Turkeytown in Etowah County. Duck is buried above the springs named for him. Topping the list of Indian celebrities native to the Duck Springs area was Sequoyah, reputed to have
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The Vagabond - Margaret Hand’s Haunted Organ

December 22, 2017 chris
By Danny Crownover The supernatural is defined as things which defy scientific explanation, such as ghosts, ghouls, goblins, wizards or druids. What we can touch and feel is much more real to us as humans, but what of the physical apparitions? Are they any less a reality? As physically unimpaired humans, so many of us
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The Vagabond - History of 514 Broad Street, Part II

December 15, 2017 chris
By Danny Crownover A couple of weeks back, The Vagabond wrote on 414 Broad Street, the new home of the J.P. King Auction Company, and the building’s historical connections. Craig King and other King families had restored and preserved the old historical building with great results. The Etowah Historical Society is able to go back
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The Vagabond - A history of 514 Broad Street

December 11, 2017 chris
By Danny Crownover A couple of weeks back, The Vagabond wrote on 414 Broad Street, the new home of the J.P. King Auction Company and all the building’s historical connections. Craig King and other King families restored and preserved the old historical building with great results. The Etowah Historical Society is able to locate old
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The Vagabond : History of the King family and 414 Broad Street

November 22, 2017 chris
By Danny Crownover Back during his younger days, The Vagabond remembered a tall booming figure at Rainbow Church of Christ by the name of Leslie Cooper King. This towering man would grab the young Vagabond and put him on his knee and talk to him. There are memories of when Mr. King and his wife,
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The Vagabond: Historic tax credits available for area businesses

November 17, 2017 chris
By Danny Crownover The Vagabond recently did some historical research on some downtown Gadsden buildings and noted that many businesses in that area have not taken advantage of available tax credits for our designated historic downtowns of Gadsden, Alabama City and Attalla. Are you taking full tax advantage of your historic location? It is unbelievable
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