Southampton, Franklin football teams rated

Published 9:28 am Friday, August 26, 2011

by Clyde Parker

EDITOR’S NOTE: Looking Back features past articles from The Tidewater News with commentary by local history buff Clyde Parker. The series commemorates the 50th anniversary of Franklin becoming an independent city.


I have to hand it to Southampton High School Coach Lewis Davis and Franklin High School Coach Perry Pearson.

Softball and baseball isn’t even over yet and already they are thinking about getting their boys in shape for the grid campaign.

My informers tell me that the coaches will get their boys started running and conditioning next week.

It won’t be long now until I start bringing my behind-the-scenes dope on what is really going on. Rest assured, I will be predicting games again this fall. I hear Norris Bly is going to predict games too. Hah! We’ll see who has the best percentage. Those Byerly boys (Hanes and Ken) have enough sense not to get mixed up in this predicting business.

My informers tell me that Southampton may have a good backfield man in the son of a new arrival in the community. They also say that Franklin quarterback Dwight Blythe could be a passer to watch this season. More on this later.

Southampton is going to miss the Stainback twins, Bobby and Billy, who will be playing for Emporia this fall. But, Lewis Davis has turned out a lot of winning teams in the past when it looked like the odds were against the Indians.

Perry Pearson picked up a lot of football savvy in high school and at East Carolina College, I hear. The Broncos could be tough.

(In 1961, Amos Fuddle was a prominent sports contributor to The Tidewater News. He along with Norris Bly and others predicted outcomes of area high school football games.)


A petition requesting that flashing signals and a warning bell not be erected at the Main Street crossing of the Seaboard Airline Railroad was presented to the Town Council at Monday night’s meeting.

The petition was signed by 28 people including some Main Street merchants. The petitioners feel that the present system, including warning gates and a watchman who is on duty 40 hours a week, is adequate. They object to the noise and confusion of a warning signal.

Town Manager Harold Atkinson told petitioners and Council that he and Chief of Police Willie Burrow will recommend to the railroad that they leave the crossing as it is.

(Seaboard Airline Railroad is now CSX.)


R.C. Councill, owner of the West View Tea Room on West Clay Street in Franklin, announced the establishment is open under new management.

H.B. “Plug” Carr is now operating the business. Hours will be from 7 a.m. to 11 p.m., Monday through Saturday. An advertisement indicated the following products: soft drinks, groceries, Texaco gasoline and associated products. The phone number is LO-2-9906.

(In 1961, the West View Tea Room, located in an otherwise residential neighborhood, was a country store/service station and was a favorite gathering place — especially for Franklin-area farmers. It was an early day convenience store that sold what some people considered some of life’s essentials, including pickled and boiled eggs, Penrose sausages, cheddar cheese, Vienna sausages, sardines and pickled pigs feet. You could even buy a beer there.

The main service station building dated to the early 1900s. A later addition was used as a lunchroom with tables and chairs and, in 1961, a color television set was added. Many people in the area would go there on Saturday afternoons to watch major league baseball and have snacks and beverages.)


The Tidewater News last Wednesday hosted a luncheon at The Town House for its community correspondents. Following lunch, the ladies toured the newspaper’s offices and production plant and saw the new press and picture reproduction machine in operation.

The correspondents are Mrs. Wilroy Stephenson, Corinth; Mrs. Edward M. Kinney, Carrsville; Mrs. E.T. Johnson, Handsom; Mrs. L.O. Tyler, Branchville; Miss Bessie Dickens, Blackhead Signpost; Mrs. L.O. Drake, Sedley; Miss Helen Dickens, Blackhead Signpost; Mrs. T.B. Bell, Courtland; Mrs. O.L. Joyner, Burdette; Mrs. Stanley Williams, Sebrell; Mrs. Betty Darden, Statesville; Miss Ann Belle Lee, Drewryville; Mrs. J.S. Bryant, Ivor; Mrs. Roy Stephenson, Berlin; Mrs. Guy Pope Rountree, Newsoms; Mrs. A.B. Wade, Joyner; Mrs. A.E. Drewry, Black Creek, Miss Rebecca Thompson, Capron; and members of the Boykins Woman’s Club.

CLYDE PARKER is the retired human resource manager for the former Franklin Equipment Co. and a member of Southampton Historical Society. He can be reached at 757-647-8212 or