History: Remember these early businesses?

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In a regular feature of the Planters’ Press, the June 22, 1944 issue told some rather gossipy news about several Bossier businesses.  The feature was written by Jimmy Linn and was called “At the Cross Roads.”

“War is declared at the Cross Roads.  Any way I received an ultimatum to do something or else.  I might have known when I started to mention those pretty girls at the Southern Kitchen and Harry’s Barbecue I couldn’t get away with it.  Pretty Pauline Nucholls and Alma Hamiter the pleasant cashiers at the Kickapoo Café defy me to select a finer bunch of happy waitresses than Mildred, Doris, Lucy, Maralyn, Juanita, Bessie or Ellen who are doing their bit for the home front.  They are willing to enter a popularity contest in which all eating places from the Cross Roads to the new bridge are invited.  What say you?  Shall we start something?  The next move is up to you.  Tell ‘em.”

“One of the nicest offices I visit now and then is ‘Shorty’ G. H. Neighbors Oil Field Equipment plant. ‘Shorty’s son and daughter-in-law are holding down the office.  The daughter-in-law is Mrs. E. H. Neighbors whose husband in with the fighting forces.  While G. R., the son has done his bit and is back home to keep on going on the home front.  The Neighbors are very neighborly.  Yes, old Kelly is on the job keeping his weather eye peeled at all times.”

“Campbell’s Service Station is going to town with their new service.  You ought to try them as so many Shreveporters are coming across the bridge to take advantage of this special steam cleaning process.  Bossier service stations are giving much better servicing of cars than most service stations in these parts.”

“’Bo’ Speaks has spoke his last speech for Fashion Cleaners for the duration.  Yep, he is going in the Navy where he will learn to be a ‘swab jockey’ in record time.  Good luck ‘Bo’, you are going in a fine service.”

“J. Winston Bradley has moved his office for Curtis Park Homes around the corner on the Benton Road.  Hear Winston is going to move his family to Bossier.  We welcome families like the Bradleys, a credit to any community.”

“Fred Daniel is adding space to his Drug Store and bar at the Cross Roads.  It’s a popular place to meet your friends.  Fred’s a good host, too.”

“Do you know we have a prize-winning life insurance salesman living at the Cross Roads?  Yes, Gordon McGee can really sell insurance.  It’s not so hard to sell when you represent as fine a company as Gordon does.  We think a lot about the McGees in these parts.”

“Have you visited Shirley’s Temple Café since P. O. Adley took it over?  P. O. is an old restaurant man, so there’s no guess work in getting good food and nice service at this new spot.”

“I am really goofy over ice cold watermelon.  Since the new watermelon garden has opened at Canagio’s old stand I am a constant visitor there.  Paul knows how to serve it right.  You must try some.”

“Surprising how good service can build up a business. Jack Curtis and his community grocery is going places not only in service but in their splendid delivery service.”

The Bossier Parish Library Historical Center has information and photographs about many Bossier businesses.  Visit us to find out more, or check out our collections database online at www.bossierlibrary.org.

Ann Middleton is Director of the Bossier Parish Library Historical Center. She can be reached at (318) 746-7717 or by e-mail at amiddlet@state.lib.la.us