On July 18, 1968 The Transylvania Times
published a special Centennial Issue of the newspaper commemorating Brevard’s
first 100 years. It was the largest
newspaper published by the Times up to that date, with 74 pages in nine
sections including numerous old photographs, stories from the past and news of
the day. Now as the Town of Brevard
celebrates 150 years Picturing the Past
will take a look back at some of the stories from that issue and where we are
The history of several civic, fraternal and
veteran organizations were featured. While
their missions differed local clubs shared a commitment of service to the
community. They also played a significant role in the social lives of their
|The Masonic Temple on East Main St. as it looked in 1964.|
The oldest of these organizations was the Dunn’s Rock Masonic
Lodge, first established in 1865 by local soldiers who had joined Military
Masonic groups during the Civil War. In
the early 1900s they began raising funds to build a temple in Brevard, however
due to the Depression and then WWII constructed was not undertaken until 1950.
|Woodmen of the World at a flag raising at Rosman High School.|
Woodmen of the World, another fraternal organization, was formed
in September 1907. They promoted fraternal, civic and patriotic service through
programs to groups such as the Boy Scouts and in the schools. In 1968 there were approximately 400 members
in the local chapter.
Following WWI the first local veteran’s organization, the Monroe
Wilson Post of the American Legion, was created. They met at the City Hall, Courthouse, or
other locations until they were able to acquire a piece of property from the
City. The American Legion building on
Jordan St. was dedicated on July 10, 1948.
The American Legion routinely sponsored and supported youth activities,
such as a Boy Scout Troup and sports teams.
In 1945 the Veterans of Foreign Wars of the United States (VFW)
also organized a post in Brevard. Named
for Lewis E. Jackson, the first Transylvania soldier killed in WWII, they met
in various locations until constructing their current building on Nicholson Creek
Rd. in the mid-1960s. In 1968 they had
310 members and like several other groups sponsored youth events and sports
Civic organizations included the Kiwanis Club, Lions Club and
Rotary Club. The Kiwanis, an
international organization whose motto is, “Serving the Children of the World”
support human service projects. The
local chapter was established in 1926.
They sponsored Boy Scout Troop 701 for 80 years before the Brevard
Kiwanis Club was disband in 2006.
The Lions Club was created by businessmen to use their skills
not only for themselves but to serve their communities. The Lions, whose slogan
“Liberty, Intelligence, Our Nation’s Safety” gives them their name, are dedicated to assisting the
visually impaired. For several years the
Brevard Club, which was organized in 1937, operated a mattress factory managed
by Clarence Owen and a News Stand run by Phillip Price. Both Owen and Price were blind.
The Brevard Rotary Club’s first president,
Transylvania Times editor, John Anderson pledged that each member would
practice the motto of “Service Above Self” in accepting its charter in 1947.
Since the late 1900s the popularity and
membership of service clubs has dwindled significantly. Today the local
chapters of most of these organizations are much smaller.
Next week Picturing the Past will look at the
major industries featured in the 1968 Centennial Issue. A copy is available in the Local History room
at the Transylvania County Library to browse.
Photographs and information for this column
are provided by the Rowell Bosse North Carolina Room, Transylvania County
Library. Visit the NC Room during regular library hours (Monday-Friday)
to learn more about our history and see additional photographs. For more
information, comments, or suggestions contact Marcy at [email protected]