Sunday, March 1, 2009

As Town Historian trying to collect almost 200 years to history for the town files, you need to be able to fit pieces of a puzzle together and to be able to find clues as in a mystery. Such is the case of this picture taken about 1912 at the corner of Morgan Creek Road and Lindley Road (old U.S. Rt.15).

A newspaper clippings of January 4th, 1912 stated the following: “ A.W. Orr the general merchant has sold his residence and store to Lettie C. Wagner and Miss Pearl Dillon possession to be given April 1st.
Charles Harrison has sold his store property to the same parties, possession Jan.15th. The new firm will run under the name of Wagner and Dillon. H.R. Wagner will head the firm. Lettie C. Wagner, Miss Pearl Dillon and F.G. Wagner will be the other members. They will take possession of the Harrison store about January 15th.
Feb.13th Wagner & Dillon opened the Harrison store .It will be merged with the Orr store in April and will pay the top-notched price for eggs. The new firm will make no active bid for business until it takes over the Orr store, but after that date, they will meet all competition of outside firms as well as home.”

Many older residents were familiar with the location of the Orr store whose history is as follows:
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Archealogical research for the new 2- lane- bridge on County Route 73 at Lindley had revealed that the Orr store stood on corner of Morgan Creek Road and old US. Rt.15 (Lindley Road.)(Picture is shown on Lindleytown blog.) The first owners (1847) were Middlebrook, Moore and Morgan. Elizabeth Hill bought the property in 1867. In 1883, Charles Hill bought the store from his mother. In 1906, Charles and William Hill –sons of Elizabeth sold to Gertrude Orr. As mentioned in the clipping, the Wagners, etc obtain the store from Orr in 1912. In 1915, a William Cook becomes owner through a foreclosure deed and sells it to Maude Cook. in 1917. She then sells the property to Amos and Gertrude Orr in 1922. The Orrs sell the store to Merton Manley in 1926. Many of our senior citizens remember it as the” Manley Store.” In 1945, Doug and Bernice Whitaker purchased the business. To many that corner is still referred to as Whitaker’s store. In the 1972 flood, the building was heavily damaged and demolished. Two mobile homes were placed on the lot.

Still a mystery is a fact mentioned in Burr’s history of Lindley -1951, which states” the Hill store burned.” The question remains when was it rebuilt and by whom. Pictures from the Whitaker store show it on about the same foundation.

The above told us where the Orr store was located but where was the Harrison Store? When Lucia (Loughridge) Huels brought the photo to the Lindley-Presho Historical Society meeting, she, also, brought a narrative from her 90 plus years cousin Dick Riffle who lives in the State of Washington. He named the narrative, People in Lindley as I knew them 1922-1940. In his story, he describes the old Town Hall, the Harrison store and a blacksmith shop as shown in the picture. He also stated that the store became a residence; then a tavern that burned in the 1930’s. The Tavern called the Green Shingle was rebuilt. His story doesn’t finish the story of the Green Shingle however. In 1953, U.S. Rt. 15 was relocated to its present location. This meant that the Green Shingles Tavern would be by-passed by Rt. 15 traffic- So Mike and Kay Jusick - owners of the tavern negotiated with Clarence Brant who owned property on the corner of Watson Creek Road and the new highway. The Green Shingle building raised from its foundation, placed on some type of movable vehicle and transported across the fields to its present location.

There are more stories and questions about Lindley stores and businesses, but they will wait for another time.

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