I just found your site. Thank you. I've had a nice time browsing. I live in York but my family, from my mother's side, has a long Gastonia history. My Grandparents on my Mother's side were Floyd Vollie Brimer and Jessie Edna Eddleman Brimer. My Great Grandparents from my mother's mother's side were P. C.(Peter 'Cash') Eddleman and Daisy Belle 'Nan' Ewing Eddleman. You may recognize the Ewing name. I've got a 5 generation picture of them.
My Great Grandparents from my mother's father's side is only partly documented. Floyd's Mother was Rebecca Brimer, daughter of Coats Brimer, full blooded Cherokee Indians. Floyd's Father was never named but it has always been thought that it was Richard Wooten. Rebecca was a hired worker/servant in the Wooten home.
Anyway, Cash and Nan originally lived out in an area off what is now New Hope. I've got some newspaper clippings where he was once selling a cow and another when he sold a car. The New Hope house still stands. They later moved to Gastonia on West Airline. Their Daughter, Jessie Edna, later married Floyd, and Floyd and Jessie moved to York to work at the Cannon Mill. They raised 10 kids including my Mother. In 1946 Floyd and Jessie moved back to Gastonia at 1136 West Airline, next to Cash and Nan. Four of their married children's families also moved back to Gastonia. They occupied five houses in a row on West Airline. On the east end was son Floyd 'Toyd' Vollie Brimer, Jr. and his wife Aileen and on the West end was Jessie Brimer Huffstettler and her husband Coit 'Frog' Huffstettler. If you know much about the area, this is directly behind, and across the tracks, from what people called Greasy Corner. And if you recognized the names 'Frog' and 'Toyd', it's because they opened 'Frog's Lunch' in 1950. In the 50's.
'Frog's' was in a small place about 9' or 10' wide and about 25' deep. In the morning they would make sandwiches for the onslaught of Firestone Mill workers at lunch. Typically the had egg salad, baloney, banana, and cheese sandwiches. I remember watching one morning as they made 72 baloney sandwiches, but they said egg salad was the best seller.
I think it was the ‘70's when 'Frog's' moved a few doors east to a larger place. Frog closed its doors for the last time in 2004. Frog passed on a couple of years later and his wife Jessie died shortly after. 'Toyd' fell a few years ago while crossing the railroad tracks and hit his head. Toyd now lives with his daughter in Dallas. All five houses still stand.
I notice that you mention the Loray Baptist Church on your site. You might recognize some of the names from there.BTW, Cash and Nan loved to fish. If you ever go to the Gastonia Gazette, you'll see lots of pictures of fish they caught. Another thing, Cash owned a taxi service in the late 20's and 30's. I'm going to attach a scan of his business card You can post it on you site if you wish.
A previous memory mentions the two Blacks' Barbecue establishments and another mentioned Tom's. I liked them all but frankly I think Tom's had the best minced barbecue sandwich. Then again, maybe it was because I was usually on the way to the Bessemer City Drive-In on a Saturday night when I stopped there ;)
Someone also mentioned Frog's Lunch at Greasy Corner. I'm very proud to say that the business was opened by two of my uncles, Coit 'Frog' Huffstetler and Floyd 'Toyd' Brimer, Jr. in 1950. Although it moved a few doors east in the 70's, it remained open for over 50 years. Someone mentioned trading comics there. You didn't have to trade. In the 50's for 10¢ you could get a 'dope'(soda) and a pack of 'nabs'(crackers) and sit on one of the stools at the back of the place and read comics for as long as you wanted.
A few things no one has mentioned, 1) In the 50's the favorite drink was Double Cola because it was 16 oz. but most people didn't think economically when they bought a candy bar. Most people bought a Bit O' Honey, Black Cow, Bonomo Taffy, Hershey, Mr. Goodbar, Mars, Sugar Daddy, Three Musketeers or Zero. I preferred to load my bag with penny candy. Silver Bells (2 for1¢), Bikes (2 for 1¢), Cherry balls from the jar (3 for 1¢), Kits, BB Bats, Chiclets ... etc. But when I wanted a candy bar I wasn't going to pay 5¢ for one of those listed above. They had a candy bar called 'Lunch Bar'. It was initially 2¢ and later went to 3¢. Instead of whole peanuts like the Mr. Goodbar, the Lunch Bar had a bunch of tiny crushed peanut bits. It was in a dark green wrapper with dull silver print.
Does anyone remember these? 2) In the 50's there was an amusement park on the right side of #74 heading toward Charlotte, before you get to the river. Our family couldn't afford to go there often but when we did I had a good time. They had a small train that covered about two acres. I've got some pictures from there.
3) Does anyone remember chewing tar balls? As I said, my kin owned Frog's and my Grandparents lived on West Airline. If I remember correctly, there were eight sections of tracks across the street, between their house and Frog's Lunch. We'd wait until the rail workers got done and then grab us some tar.