“In 1872 James M. Cherry arrived as a young clerk for L. M. Davis’s store….” (Information from: The City Without Cobwebs – Douglas S. Brown, 1953)
City Directories and History: 1946 – Carolina Theatre, Dora E. Jordan (Confectioner), 1963 – NA
Also see #126 North Trade Street…….
The Herald contained an ad on Jan. 11, 1883 for L. M. Davis’s store selling fruits and candies.
The Yorkville Enquirer reported on Jan. 4, 1893 – “The wedding of Mr. P.C. Poag to Ms. Gertie Davis was held at the residence of the brides parents, Mr. and Mrs. L. M. Davis. Mr. Poag will board at Mrs. Allen’s until his new cottage on Main Street is completed.”
The Herald reported on Oct. 24, 1896 – “J. L. Johnston is now with Mr. L. M. Davis at the White Front Grocery on Railroad Street.”
The Herald reported on Feb. 1, 1896 – “An ad for J. R. Fairey, Attorney at Law – office at the Wilson Building.” On March 7, 1896 – Mr. J. R. Fairey has moved his office to the Library Building (East Main Street). (J.R. Fairey is Jacob Risher Fairey of Calhoun Co., S.C.) The Herald later reported on May 13, 1896 – “We regret to announce that Mr. J.R. Fairey, who located in this city several months ago, has decided to move to Cameron, S.C. for the practice of his law profession. Mr. Fairey is a man of sterling qualities and rare ability, and his many friends who he leaves behind hope for him much success in his chosen field. May 16, it states, Mr. J.R. Fairey left for Cameron Wednesday, he will spend a few days there before leaving for Aiken, where he will locate for the practice of law.”
The Rock Hill Herald reported on Jan. 6, 1900 – “Mr. J.A. Robbins, Mr. J.A. Wilson and Mr. R.S. Hanna have formed a partnership under the name of Robbins, Wilson and Hanna and invite business in their store on Depot Street.”
The Herald reported on April 17, 1901 – “Considerable improvement will be made to the storeroom occupied by Mr. L.M. Davis, until the work is completed, Capt. Davis will be found in the storeroom of the Hand Brothers.”
The Herald reported on June 1, 1901 – “Capt. L.M. Davis has been busy moving back into his old store, the White Front. Improvement are very evident, and the interior is one of the best of grocery stores in town.”
(The RH Record reported on July 15, 1907 – “Mr. Fairey, a prominent young attorney at Kingstree, and his bride, the former Ms. Kelly are the guest of Mr. Fairey’s mother, Mrs. Heape at her home on Ebenezer Avenue.”) *** Not the same individual as J.R. Fairey but a distant relative.
The Rock Hill Record contained an ad on Feb. 2, 1904 for Black and Holler, grocers, located at 125 Railroad Ave., (later N. Trade St.). The numbering system often changed along North Trade Street.
The Rock Hill Record of Feb. 19, 1904 reported / contained an ad for J. Edgar Poag,
realtor, concerning the sale of the White Estate property on Railroad (later Trade Street), and composed of four adjoining lots. Lot #1 – Facing Depot Street 21- 122 feet., on which is located L.M. Davis’s store. Lot #2 – Lot with Robbins and Wilson Store, 29 – 122 feet., Lot #3 – Black and Holler’s store 21 – 123 feet, and Lot #4 – vacant, measuring 20 – 123 feet. and Lot #5 – vacant adjoining lot #4, and the W.B. Wilson property on the N.E., measured 25 – 123 feet. The sale of these lots will be held on March 8th.”
The Rock Hill Record reported on April 4, 1904 – “Robbins and Wilson have had their
store, one of the leading grocery houses of the city, fitted up with a cash railway system and elevated cashiers balcony, the same as the large dry goods store have in Rock Hill.”
The Rock Hill Record of Feb. 14, 1907 – “The Robbins and Wilson Grocery has closed. They had extended credit of $3,500. that they could not collect.” (On March 4, 1907 – J. P. Giles has opened a meat market in the building formerly occupied by Robbins and Wilson.)
The Rock Hill Record reported on March 25, 1907 – “Mr. M.B. Massey has purchased from H. M. Dunlap, Trustee, the stock of groceries and fixtures of the Robbins and Wilson Grocery and will continue the business at that stand. He will move his business on Main Street to the Robbins and Wilson store.”
The Rock Hill Record reported on April 15, 1907 – “A. T. Neely, Jr. and John L. Davis have purchased the White Front Grocery from L.M. Davis and Sons. Capt. L.M. Davis has run a grocery for 37 years.”
The Record reported on April 25, 1907 – “Work is underway on the White Front Grocery Building. The front has been in very bad condition and is now being torn away and replace.”
The Record reported on July 18, 1907 – “Capt. L.M. Davis has opened a commission house at 232 West Black Street and is prepared to serve the trade with provisions and produce.”
The Record reported on Aug. 10, 1908 – “Mr. J.L. Davis who has been running the White Front Grocery on Railroad Ave., has sold the business to Gunter and Weeks. They will continue the grocery and add a wholesale and brokerage business.”
The Herald reported on July 8, 1920 – “Plans are being completed for a new business building on South Trade Street (?), on the Wilson Property. It will have four store rooms and have a depth of 75 ft., The building will be on a portion of the lot adjoining the Hutchison Building and will extend to the new filling station. The cost will be about $30,000. The owner, Mr. York Wilson will also erect a warehouse to the rear alongside the spur track of the Southern Railway. N.G. Walker is the architect.”
The City of Rock Hill began their urban renewal project to transform the city in the late 1960s and it continued into the early 1970s. It involved the demolition of hundreds of homes and private businesses in the African American area as well as the East Black, West Black, Johnston, Hampton, and Trade Street corridors were all affected. Within a short span, nearly 40% of Rock Hill’s older downtown buildings were destroyed to provide economic opportunities, benefiting a few businessman. As part of this action, the railroad lines were moved and a new bridge crossing over Black Street was built to also alleviate traffic jams created by trains but in doing so, the old Rock Hill Depot building was also razed.
Also see the Urban Renewal image for a 1950’s look at the area.
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