Friday, October 3, 2014

Lula Bransford Swiggart, Union City TN, 1900

Lula Bransford Swiggart was the first born of Judge William Harris Swiggart and his wife Mary Ware Fields.    Lula was born in Union City, Tennessee, on August 5, 1877.   I'm not sure if the Swiggarts are related to the Morans but I do know that Judge Swiggart and Charles Henry Cobb had a law practice together in Union City and that Charles Cobb married Marion Moran.  In addition to this picture of Lula we also have an advertising fob from the Bransford Lumber Co which you can see here.

Lula married James D. Porter April 25 1906 in Obion County TN. According to the 1920 Census for Davidson County Tennessee, James was a Jeweler. Lula and James had a son, William S. Porter. James died December 30 1921 in Union City but was interred in his family plot at Elmwood Cemetery in Springfield Tennessee.

Lula and her son William appear in the 1940 Census for Belle Meade, Davidson County Tennessee. William is a bookkeeper at a bag and burlap company and is 30 years old, single.  Lula is 60.  The 1959 Nashville City Directory lists Lula as the widow of J.D. Porter and she lived at 3810 Whitland Ave., Apt. 2.

Lula Bransford Swiggart Porter died on January 8, 1961 in Nashville Tennessee.  Her place of burial is unknown at this time.

Monday, September 29, 2014

Nathan Moran, The 1940's - Evenings at The Aragon and The Peabody Hotel

Since I've been scanning pictures I found in Bub's military folder I decided to go ahead and post a few more today.  Both are souvenirs from evenings out but only one is annotated and dated.

The Aragon was located at Lick Pier, in Ocean Park California.  The ballroom and pier were built in 1922 and opened in March 1942.  In 1942, the ballroom was renamed The Aragon and held Swing Shift Dances.  In 1951, Lawrence Welk and his band was booked for a four week engagement at The Aragon. Welk and his orchestra were so popular it turned into a ten-year engagement leading to a weekly show which was broadcast Saturday nights on ABC.  Soon after The Aragon declined in popularity.  In 1967 it became known as the Cheetah Club and hosted bands like The Doors and Pink Floyd.  In 1970 the building was destroyed by fire.

This picture was taken May 6, 1945.  Bub Moran is seated on the left.  The two ladies are:

Sgt Melba Hamilton 
C.W.A.C., (Canadian Women's Army Corps) 
R.C.C.S (Royal Canadian Corps of Signals) 

S-1 Sergeant Jeannie McLean, 
Signal Corps, 
both of Vancouver Birks, British Columbia, Canada.

The fellow on the right is unknown.

The second picture is undated and the occasion isn't documented but was taken in the early - mid 1940's.   
The only person we can identify is Bub Moran, first person on the left. 

The location was The Peabody Hotel in Memphis, the Skyway and Plantation Roof.   The original Peabody Hotel was built in 1869 at the corner of Main and Monroe.  It operated until 1923.  In 1925 a new Peabody Hotel was built on Union Avenue. The Skyway and Plantation Roof were added in 1939 and immediately became a hit with big band dances. The likes of Tommy Dorsey, Glenn Miller, Guy Lombardo and Lawrence Welk (again) played at the Skyway.  The Peabody closed again in the 1970's due to economic and social factors of the area.  The Belz Corporation purchased the hotel and after a renovation that took six years to complete The Peabody reopened September 1, 1981.  It is still known as "The South's Grand Hotel."