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Sunday, January 29, 2023
24 Hours in Addison Township: 9:30 a.m.
Brenda Covington takes care of a client at Reflections Full Service Salon, 333 W. Hendricks St. Covington was my first and only barber throughout childhood. Her East Franklin St. shop, with a paneled front-room parlor, featured magazines showing the latest perms and “90210” news and a framed photo of Indiana University’s Keith Smart shooting the 1987 championship winning basket. Brenda and I regularly discussed all things sports and politics. - Kristiaan Rawlings | photo by KRISTIAAN RAWLINGS
Good, Tale from a Little Black Bag
Editor’s note: Since columnist Kris Meltzer moved over to The Shelby County Post, we are republishing one of his historical articles here each Sunday until our closure at the end of February. The following article was originally published in September 1998.
Last week my friend, Bob Good, died. This week is the first edition of what I call "Tales from the Little Black Bag." When I was born in Shelbyville, Indiana, in 1955, Bob Good was already practicing law here. Growing up in Shelbyville, Bob Good was a name heard often. He would usually be one of the attorneys in any local case of great magnitude or importance.
I graduated from Shelbyville High School in 1973 and spent the next 7 years away at college. I woke up one morning and discovered to my horror that I had graduated and would have to go to work.
I was a lawyer. I bought a blue suit, a white shirt, a red tie and a pair of wingtips. The suit looked like it still had the hanger in it when I wore it. The tie was a clip-on. At least my wingtips looked like real leather even if they weren't. I think they were made out of a material called pleather. Somewhere in South America an evil scientist used gene splicing to enable steroid fed cattle to grow a durable plastic hide. This material is called pleather and is used to cover cheap recliners and wingtips. With a yellow legal pad and a No. 2 pencil, I headed to the courthouse.
My first case was a divorce case. There were plenty of those to go around in 1980, so there was nothing special about my case. When I arrived at the courthouse for the Preliminary Hearing, I discovered that Attorney Bob Good had entered his appearance on the other side.
I had considered myself lucky that I was able to find the courthouse since the ink on my law degree was still a bit damp. When I discovered that Bob Good was on the other side, I believed that, like the gambler in "The Outcasts of Poker Flats," my luck had run out. It looked like a very short career.
I nervously awaited Good's entrance into the courtroom. Flamboyant didn't even begin to describe Bob Good. He was a lawyer whose shoes matched his suits. He was swank. His wrist watch had a value several times greater than my car. I was about to shake hands with the only lawyer in the State of Indiana with the nerve to order a vanity plate from the Bureau of Motor Vehicles that said “Shystr.”
A friendship that would last the next 18 years began with a firm handshake and the famous Bob Good smile. Bob had a manner about him that not only conveyed the sense that he was very comfortable being Bob Good, but also that he was just as accepting of you being you. Several years later I would sit in that same courtroom at Bob's request as his lawyer.
Bob had a great sense of humor and was the inspiration for one of the best pranks ever played on a member of the local bar. One afternoon, I attended a real estate closing at Good's office. After our clients left we engaged in the usual small talk mostly about other lawyers. I commented on the dramatic change the addition of awnings had made in the appearance of Phil Brown's office. Good, who incidentally had the outside of his office building painted pink, claimed that Brown's office now looked like a pizza parlor.
Every time I walked past Brown's law office the following week, I was reminded of Good's comment. The new awnings did kind of give it a pizza parlor look. I decided that with just a little help it could really look like a pizza parlor. I recruited Bob's son Warren Good and Bob Stroup of Stroup's Kitchens to help make a pizza sign for Brown's office. The sign was huge, and early one Sunday morning we attached it above the entrance to Brown's office. We thought it was very funny. Enough years have now passed that even Phil Brown thinks it was funny.
Christmas was always a wonderful time at Bob Good's office. The last work day before the courthouse closed for the holidays Bob always had a Christmas party at his office. A steady stream of friends stopped by. Bob had a knack for always finding the perfect gifts. The year after I began my newspaper column, Bob gave me a Mont Blanc ink pen. By that time I had developed a reputation for being as cheap as Bob was extravagant. He thought a better writing instrument might help me write better stories. Bob will be missed by me.
HOOSIER NEWS: IU students at the Kelley School of Business have raised over $4 million to make investments in real estate developments. The fund, known as Sample Gates Management Inc., is directed by 16 students in the real estate private equity program, the largest undergrad-managed real estate private equity fund in the nation. “It's an operating real estate private equity company really,” said Doug McCoy, professor and director of the Center for Real Estate Studies. “It's allowing our students to graduate and be experienced professionals in that industry.” (Indiana Public Media)
NATIONAL NEWS: The typical American household is rent-burdened — meaning that 30 percent of the median U.S. income is required to pay the average rent, according to a new report from Moody’s Analytics. “This 30 percent is a symbolic threshold, a milestone,” said Thomas LaSalvia, the director of economic research at Moody’s. Reaching this threshold puts the typical American household — one that earns the median income and pays the average rent — where it has never been before, Mr. LaSalvia said. Moody’s first started tracking the metric in 1999, when the typical rent-to-income ratio was 22.5 percent. (New York Times)
SHELBY COUNTY PEOPLE: Miss Cecilia Bogeman
Editor’s note: In the mid- to late 1940s, The Shelbyville Republican published a series of articles by Ave Lewis and Hortense Montgomery covering community people and places. Below is one of those 35 features.
Back in the days when Miss Cecilia Bogeman began her career in millinery, women and girls who wanted to learn the trade first were required to serve at least two seasons as apprentices. They were paid nothing for their efforts but did receive two new hats a year: one in the spring and one in the fall when the apprentice season ended.
But Miss Bogeman, who muses, "Wonder how many girls would do that now days?" was somewhat luckier than most. She was paid 50 cents a week when, at the age of 14 years, she began learning the trade at the Flora Carson store, which was located on the Public Square where the Firestone establishment now stands and at the Schaffer store which was on the site of the present Bryant-Roth store.
Hats were handmade in those days and each millinery shop had its work room with a "maker," as designers were termed, trimmer and the apprentices who learned to mould hats on frames, drape materials and arrange the much pinned and flowered chapeaux of other years. Bogeman, or "Celia," as she is known to hundreds of Shelbyville and Shelby county women, recalls that although styles have changed dozens of times through the years, materials are much the same: straw, ribbon and flowers for spring and summer and felt, velvet, velour and beaver felt for fall and winter. Incidentally, velour and beaver are imported and just now are making their appearance after being missing from the scene during the war years.
After working at the two local stores, she served two seasons in Union City and another two in Detroit. After this she "came home" to establish her own shop, and for a year was located in a room on East Broadway, which formerly had been occupied by the late Dr. Sammons. She moved to her present location in 1912 where many of her customers have returned year after year.
Hats in 1912 averaged around $3.50 in price with a really "good" one costing about $7. Of course, there were more expensive numbers since plumes were much in vogue and customers paid as much as $20 for a feathery furbelow, which no doubt had graced an ostrich. It wasn't until World War I that women began demanding less expensive hats - wonder what those women would think of today's inflated prices! - in order to have more of them, and mass production was begun. There wasn't much individuality to the models, however, and milliners did a healthy business in trimming. Now, although there are numerous styles from which to choose, the trend again seems to lean toward having hats made to order, and Miss Bogeman and her two helpers, Miss Hazel Lee and Mrs. Carried Reinbold, are busy a great part of the time making or retrimming hats.
Pictures in trade magazines "Celia" has saved show some startling numbers which we women have worn from time to time, but closer scrutiny reveals that, fundamentally, the hats aren't so much different, but that the manner in which they're worn is! For example, some of the head coverings worn in 1923, although deeper in crown, might be donned today, only far back on the head instead of hugging the eyebrows almost to the point of covering the nose. Miss Bogeman laughs that women probably had to wear them far down then in order to keep them on, since hair bobbing was just getting into full swing.
One line that has passed from the scene in millinery shops is that of mourning veils. In her shop Celia used to carry a full stock of those to drape on the hats of bereaved women, but the custom has been almost dropped with the years.
Many women year after year say, when the urge to buy a hat strikes them, "Guess I'll go down and see what Celia has!" That's probably because "Celia" believes in the "right hat for the right woman" and selling models which are individually becoming. The problem of selling duplications in a town the size of Shelbyville isn't as great as you'd expect,but she says not long ago she did utter to a customer, "Oh, you shouldn't buy THAT hat, I sold one like it to a friend of yours who sits near you in church!" The people with whom she gets a little irked are the ones who rush in and ask her to make or retrim a hat within a few hours. "They don't realize the time and work it takes to make a hat frame, fit it and do the trimming," she says.
Miss Bogeman was born in this county and went to the McFall school before her parents, the late John and Anna Bogeman, moved to Shelbyville in 1896. She then attended the St. Joseph school. Before her brother-in-law and sister, Mr. and Mrs. John Ford, moved from the family home at 324 East Washington Street, she often used to stay downtown for lunch and work at the shop at nights. (“You don't consider it work if you like your job," she says). But now that full responsibility of the household is hers she finds her time pretty much occupied - and then too, there is a little pet dog that demands to be fed. So now she goes home for lunch and dinner.
This Week in Shelby County" works by George L. Stubbs Sr. are owned by the Shelby County Historical Society (Grover Center) and used with permission.
THIS DAY IN SHELBY COUNTY HISTORY
News around Shelbyville and the surrounding area as reported on or about this date in history. Selections are curated from the Shelby County Public Library Genealogy Department.
20 YEARS AGO: 2003
The Shelbyville Plan Commission approved Major Affiliates to annex and rezone 161 acres at 2201 N. Riley Highway. Plans for the property were still under development, attorney Peter G. DePrez said. But the draft plans included an expansion for Major Hospital and other potential uses. “There won’t be any (buildings) that are considered any less than Class A,” Tim Barrick, of Ratio Architects, said.
30 YEARS AGO: 1993
Plans were in the works for Christian missionaries Dan and Kathy Blackburn and their 28 adopted Haitian children to move into the abandoned Hendricks Township Elementary School. The school, located on State Road 44 between Shelbyville and Franklin and owned by the Mormon Church, had been vacant for nearly three years. Some neighbors, however, had discussed circulating a petition opposing the plan. The family previously lived in Jennings County but their lease had expired. The family hoped to purchase the Hendricks school with help of a Columbus church.
40 YEARS AGO: 1983
Wellman Thermal Systems Corp. fired two former strikers who had been convicted of criminal recklessness for using their pickup truck to ram two nonstrikers’ pickup on the open road.
Shelbyville realtor John Grigsby, one of the area’s leading golfers, and other members of his pro-amateur team placed second in the Joe Garagiola Tucson (Ariz.) Open golf tournament. Grigsby had scheduled part of his vacation time around the Tucson Open for several years. “We were so excited to get second place that we never found out who won,” Grigsby said.
50 YEARS AGO: 1973
A newspaper photo showed Shelbyville Police Lt. Jim Pruett giving one of his “Officer Bill” talks to first graders at William F. Loper school. Lt. Pruett assured his audience that law officers were their friends and that children should not be afraid to go to an officer for help.
Two local teenagers were taken back to jail after they dismantled a lock assembly at the renovated “escape-proof” Shelby County Jail with a Monopoly game token. The teens had used a wheel barrow token used to mark a player’s progress in Monopoly to dismantle the lock of the juvenile cellblock door. They were found four hours later and returned directly to jail. Sheriff Norman Murnan said Monopoly would not be banned from the jail. “But needless to say, they’ll use match sticks from now on instead of the tokens,” he said.
60 YEARS AGO: 1963
Michael Suiter, 11, a student at Charles Major School, died after he slid and fell and was run over by the rear wheels of a semi-trailer at the intersection of E. Franklin and N. Hamilton Streets. Michael was the son of Harry and Sarah (Whipple) Suiter of Indiana Ave. Michael had been on his way home from school for lunch when the accident occurred.
70 YEARS AGO: 1953
Shelbyville Elks Lodge members burned the mortgage on their new lodge home. Kenneth Graham, Major J.E. Haywood, L.R. “Dick” Bryant and Nate Kaufman headed the ceremony. The stag dinner was attended by 225. Wilbur Pell Jr. was the program speaker and George Tolen Jr. was master of ceremonies.
80 YEARS AGO: 1943
School enrollment numbers were released for the semester. They were: Colescott, 245; Major, 269; Hendricks, 320; Washington, 44; Walkerville, 30; Junior High, 358; and High School, 661.
90 YEARS AGO: 1933
Leander Billman, 88, died at the home of his daughter and son-in-law, 116 North Tompkins Street. Billman was born in 1845, the son of a pioneer family. He had been a member of the old Marion M.E. Church, but transferred his membership to the West Street Church here when the former congregation disbanded.
100 YEARS AGO: 1923
Electric lights would be installed by the Porter Electric Company in Hope and Flat Rock in the spring, company officials announced.
O.L. Means sold his general store, located in the Knights of Pythias building in the southwest corner of the Public Square, to the Index Notion Company. The Index store, located on South Harrison Street, would be moved to Public Square. The K of P building had been completed in the winter of 1900, and Mr. Means opened his store February 1901. He worked almost every day in the store for over 20 years. The Index Notion store had been established on East Broadway by Charles Foutch 18 years prior. George Young had been placed in charge of the store.