A Landing a Day

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Posts Tagged ‘Phenix Virginia’

Phenix, Virginia

Posted by graywacke on March 21, 2010

First timer?  In this formerly once-a-day blog (now pretty much an every-other-day blog), I have my computer select a random latitude and longitude that puts me somewhere in the continental United States (the lower 48).  I call this “landing.”  I keep track of the watersheds I land in, as well as the town I land near.  I do some internet research to hopefully find something of interest about my landing location.  To find out more about A Landing A Day (like who “Dan” is and what the various numbers and abbreviations mean), please see “About Landing,” (and “Abbreviations” and “Cryptic Numbers”) above.

Dan –  On a bit of a roll (and down into the 151s) with today’s landing in . . . VA; 14/26; 5/10; 2; 151.5.  My last three landings (TX, NM and VA) were in three of the top five USers (the other two being California & Florida).  Here’s my landing map:

And a broader view:

For the fourth time, I landed in the Roanoke R watershed.  The Roanoke dumps into the Atlantic  (320th hit for the big AO).

Here’s my GE shot, showing that I landed on the edge of a what appears to be a very well maintained farm:

Note the intersection of the two roads located just south-southeast of my landing (just past the little building at the bottom of the picture).  Here’s a Street View shot, looking north from that intersection past the building.  My landing would be out of sight, about 0.2 mi away.

The largest town in the vicinity of my landing is Phenix (pop about 200).  As one might expect, there’s not too much that could be found about Phenix, although they do have their own website:  WelcomeToPhenixVirginia.com.

There’s a kind of stream-of-consciousness write-up of the town’s history, which I think is great.  Here’s the intro:

The following is a brief history of the Town of Phenix that was written by long time resident Sara Gilliam with contributions from her well-known husband Ned Gilliam.  The history runs from the founding of Phenix until around the mid-1980s.

This is from the beginning part of Sara’s write-up:

Phenix was first a hog lot owned by Mr. S.C. Daniel in 1905.

[First town I’ve run across that started as a hog lot!]

In 1906, the Virginian railroad was being built, beginning in West Virginia and terminating at Norfolk, Virginia.  The rails were laid by Italians.

[No doubt about who built the railroad!]

Anticipating the railroad going through this section of Charlotte County, the land was bought by the Home Development Company.  This land contained a total of twenty-two hundred acres.

The post goes on to include discussions about the history of many homes & businesses.  The following caught my eye:

T.R. Ramsey, better known as Tommy, had a barber shop located first in the Charlotte Gazette building.  He later moved his shop by Canada’s store and was a barber there for many years.  His slogan said:

“To Phenix, to Phenix

To get a neat trim

Home again, home again

Wearing a pleased grin.”

Here’s another interesting paragraph:

One of the greatest enterprises of Phenix was a moving picture run by Mr. Alfred Fears.  This was at the time when all factories were operating and tobacco was selling at its best.  The picture was shown in the warehouse and, unfortunately, it was upside down.  People were sitting patiently waiting while Mr. Fears explained to them that he would soon have it fixed.

I’m a little confused as to exactly what it was that Mr. Fears was doing . . .

Here’s another:

Sleigh riding was a great sport in 1934 when snow and ice stayed on the ground for about two weeks and large crowds, young and old, enjoyed this recreation.  Records were played on the Victrola.  This was before radio days.  Possum hunting was a great sport; also young people would get together and go serenading.  Royal Harper played his guitar.

As Sara mentioned in the above history, tobacco was king around Phenix.  Here’s a picture of some old tobacco drying sheds taken nearby:

I wonder if the building in my earlier Street View picture is an old tobacco drying shed?  I think so.

That’ll do it. . .



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