October 18, 1889
He spends a night with an Alliance man – takes in the town and has a chat with some our business men.
Mr. Editor — I never did write any for a journal before and may not succeed now, but I am in town again and to occupy my mind I will write you a short letter.
I was out in that rain on Sunday night last, was coming up the second road in a cloud of dust when night sod and the rain came on. I stopped all night at a man’s house don’t remember his name, but this I do remember, that he was an Alliance man – gave me ‘liance for supper and for breakfast so I left next morning determined to be an alliance man myself. I came into town by Mr. B. F. Owens house, which I notice is one of the handsome residences to be seen on the road between Plymouth and Columbia. I noticed many other fine and comfortably situated residents on this street among which are J. M. Reid’s, A.O. Gaylord’s, E. A. Carter’s, J. F. Norman’s, E. R. Latham’s and others.
While driving in I was wondering where to stop my horse, and remembering that I saw the name of B.F. Owens in the Beacon, I drove up to that large stable of his, and just as you said, he keeps polite grooms and everything in order. Why Mr. Editor them darkies were so dog gone polite one of the fall down over the other to get to my horse first. Mr. Owens waled out of his office, whip in one hand, cigar in the other and was so courteous that I accepted his invitation to look at his fine stock, and bless my life that man talked so fast that before the boy got the harness off of my horse I had traded for a fine black and we were on our way down to D.O. Brinkley & Co.’s to get a, no not a drink, but one of the best cigars you ever puffed away at. Mr. Brinkley told me that his partner, Col. Fitchett, was up in the mountains and would be home in a few days, but if we wished anything in the way of accommodation just call on him. I tell you he is one of the finest men that ever mixed a cocktail, he gave us a knock down to his clerk, Mr. Louis Landing, who Mr. Owens says is the best boy that ever slung red liquor over a bar counter. Just here let me say that I never visited a bar that was kept in a more orderly manner, everything is quiet and every one has to behave when in this bar so “Dave” says.
Here I left Mr. Owens to go back to his stables and I walked across the street to see S. Adler. I was surprised to find such a large and well assorted stock of general merchandise, the old man was standing in the door and said as I came up, “py tam its wet come in,” we went in and were glad to see behind the counter the handsome face of Mr. E. S. Chesson, he seems to be quite proficient in the manipulation of the yard stick. Behind the other counter Master Tommie Rogerson was just appearing out of a barrel of flour. We walked back to the office where, upon a high school at his desk, found Mr. T. J. Lewis he seemed sorter glad to see us but brushing the hair back from his brow, asked us to excuse him as he was quite busy, we did so and walked out of the store.
[...] Murray the medical man and E. E. Murray the dentist, both busy, they are doing a big business. We did not get chance to talk to them as the medical man was called out and some man came in with about three yards of red flanel on his jaw and told the dentist that the tooth ache, they [..] his office and in a few seconds reappeared leaving the red flanel and aching tooth behind, the patients face was about ten inches shorter, and with a smile of satisfaction he said, “Dat air doctor gits there.”
After leaving the Murray Drug Store I loafed down to Reid & Duke’s and after pushing and shoving for several minutes I succeeded in getting through the immense crowd of customers and into the office, here I met Mr. E. F. Duke and Mr. J. E. Reid the junior members of the firm, they told that Mr. J. M. Reid, the senior member, was out at the time attending to some business around their shingle yard. Taking a look down behind the long counters I saw Mess. R.H Brown, Joe Norman, C A Walker, E R Marriner and two other salesmen moving with lightening speed from one customer to another. Turning to Mr. Duke I asked if those men were kept as busy as that all the time and he said “almost and said “almost and sometimes we have to leave the office to help them.” From the office I made a visit to the meat department where barrel after barrel of pork and fish was roled out. From here I went to the second story where I found the furniture and clothing clerks busy. From there I made my way to the street, satisfied in my own mind that Reid and Duke were getting their share of the public patronage.
Weary with my days adventure, I wended my way home, hoping to find a good supper waiting for me, but instead, that wife of mine had been down to Mrs. S. A Blount’s Millinery store and bought one of those new winter hats, which she had to take around and show to all the neighbors, and asked their opinion iof it and tell them how cheap it was, hence I found no supper, but as she seemed to be so happy over the hat I said nothing and went to bed. Thus ended the day. — “Flipp”