Rison-Dallas Community

Rison-Dallas History, Page 2

The following images are from the 1922~1923 Rison Year Book.

Kindergarten and Fraternal Hall of Dallas Mill Village
This is the Kindergarten and Fraternal Hall of Dallas Mill Village.

Churches were the center of social and spiritual life in small communities during the early part of the twentieth century. The photographs below are of Epworth Methodist Church, Fifth Street Baptist Church, and East Huntsville Church of Christ. After the name of Fifth Street was changed to Andrew Jackson Way, Fifth Sreet Baptist Church was renamed Jackson Way Baptist Church. You may be interested in reading the histories of Epworth UMC, Jackson Way Baptist, and East Huntsville Church of Christ; just click the names of the churches in this paragraph.

Here is a drawing of Epworth Methodist Church, 1926-1963, by Jerry Brewer
Epworth Methodist 1926 - 1963
Epworth Methodist Church, 1922
Epworth UMC 1922
Epworth United Methodist Church, 2004
Epworth UMC 2006
Fifth Street Baptist Church, 1922
Fifth Street Baptist, 1909
Jackson Way Baptist Church, 2004
Jackson Way Baptist Church, 2006
Dallas Church of Christ 1907
Dallas Church of Christ, 1907
East Huntsville Church of Christ 2006
East Huntsville Church of Christ, 2006

Rev. R.R. Brasher
R.R. Brasher
Pastor, 5th Street Baptist Church
Dallas Village
(written on back of photo is this information)
This photo is from the personal photographs of Leoma and William Edward Johnson, who lived in Dallas Village in 1910. They moved to Merrimack sometime between 1910 and 1920. Please note the minister's hat lying on the ground beside the tree.

Another center of activity in the life of the village was the Y.M.C.A.
YMCA Building, circa 1922
The Dallas Mill Village YMCA Building, 1922

Carl S. Fudge, Physical Director, 1922 YMCA Viola Miller, Music and Art Instructor, 1922 YMCA William P. Fanning, YMCA Secretary, 1922

Here is a photo of a group of young ladies who were in the Dallas Y Community Club and/or the Dallas Y Ladies Club, from the Early 1920s
A group of Young Ladies in front of the YMCA Building, Early 1920s
Front row, left to right: ??, ??, ??, ??, ??, ??, ??
Middle row, left to right: ??, ??, ??, ??, Birdie Hymer
Back row, left to right: ??, ??, ??, ??, ??, ??, ??, ??

The largest fraternal benefit society with open membership in the United States, Woodmen of the World was founded in Omaha, Neb., by Joseph Cullen Root on June 6, 1890. It was reported that Root's idea for "Woodmen" came from a speech he heard about woodsmen clearing away forests to provide shelter for their families. Others speculated that Root visualized himself as the root that would grow into a shelter, protecting members from financial disaster.
Woodmen of the World 1958, click for larger version
(click on the image for a large version)
Front row, left to right: ??, ??, ??, ??, ??, ??, Woodrow(?)
Center row, left to right: ??, ??, ??, ??, ??, Ben C. Clark, ??
Back row, left to right: Collins Eugene Wynn, Sr., ??, ??, ??, ??
Do you know the missing names?
Collins Wynn, Jr., said that the group is most likely from our neighborhoods and met at the older building on the northeast corner of Humes Avenue and Dement Street. This building was originally the Dallas Church of Christ and, over time, was used by other church denominations. The meanings/significance of the uniforms and robes are unknown. Looking closely, one can see the letters WOW on the men's collars. Collins thinks that the photo was taken inside the building and that the two large posters in the photo are the White House of the Confederacy in Montgomery and a Boeing C-97 Stratocrusier cargo plane, also made in the KC-97 tanker version.


Gathering with friends and family was a central part of Mill Village life. Below is a ladies social event (probably a shower) at Jennie Mae Routt's Home at 310 Halsey Avenue, Circa 1950:

Halsey Avenue Ladies
Foreground, left: Mary Ealy
Foreground, right: Mrs. Ealy
Back row, left to right: Bessie Burkett, Jennie Mae Routt, young girl - ?, infant - ?, Mrs. Hickson(?), ??, ??
(Mrs. Routt was Bill Starr's maternal grandmother.)
Do you know the missing names?

Below is a series of photos made at Rison School

A ceremony on the stage at Rison School. The gentleman holding the box is H.C. Kennamer and the lady seated is his wife, Violet, both of whom were teachers at Rison in the early 50s. The other gentleman is Mr. A.S. Simms who was the Principal at Rison in the late 50s and early 60s. It's possible that the box was an end-of-year gift for Mr. Simms marking the end of the school year. It is also possible that the gift could have been for either Mr. or Mrs. Kennamer.

(Editor’s note: From a former student who knew Mr. Simms, we learned the correct spelling of his name as well as his initials.)

A Rison School Retirement Ceremony?

Here is a photograph of Violet I. (Mrs. H.C.) Kennamer and Mike Archer in a picture made in the school's side parking lot in 1959.
Violet Kennamer and Mike Archer, 1959.

Students on school grounds (North Dallas Avenue in background); date unknown.
Rison School Outdoor Scene
(click for a larger version)
Do you remember when the picture was made and do you recognize anyone in this picture?

This headless picture at the entrance to Rison School is special because it's the only picture we have of a patrol boy. The headless Patrol Boy has been identified as Don Wynn. The young man standing in front of him on the steps is Melvin Ward who was the captain of the patrol. Melvin attended the 2005 Rison-Dallas Association reunion.
A Rison Patrol Boy and Other Students

The following photos show the inside of classrooms at Rison School. The first photo appears to have been made in the home economics room as evidenced by the food stored in the bookcase in the background. We have learned that this picture was taken in Mrs. Lee's 6th grade class during the class Christmas party in about 1960. The room mothers are standing. The girl seated with her head turned to the rear is Carole Rousseau who lived on Stevens Avenue.
Rison Home Economics Class?

This is a photograph of a first grade class Christmas party in 1960.
A Rison Class Christmas Party

This is Mrs. Lee's class in 1960.
Another Rison Christmas Party
In two of these photos one can clearly see the entrance to the cloak rooms.

A group of children on the grounds of Rison School at a birthday party in about 1954. Collins Wynn is in the rear in the middle just peeking over another child's head. His brother, Don, is in the swing on the right of the photo wearing the striped shirt.
A Rison School Playground Scene

Do you know the missing names?

Below you will find some quite interesting photographs concerning Dallas Mill, which provided the livelihood and certainly touched the lives of everyone living in the Rison community in those days.

1913 - Some of the Dallas Mill Spinners & Doffers
1913 Dallas Mills Spinners and Doffers
From "Eden of the South," A Chronology of Huntsville, Alabama, 1805-2005
Courtesy Huntsville-Madison County Public Library

The Dallas Mill Office Staff, 1922
Dallas Mill Office Staff, 1922

The Dallas Mill Spinning Room, 1922
(The man on the left is Emmett Schrimsher; the other man is unidentified.)
The Dallas Mill Spinning Room, 1922

The Dallas Mill Card Room, 1922
The Dallas Mill Card Room, 1922

The Dallas Mill Leading Store, 1922, C. E. Barnes, Prop.
The Dallas Mill Leading Store, 1922
Left to right: John Lee Wilkerson, Will Primm, and Mr. C.E. and Mrs. (Myrtle Fears) Barnes
Both signs on either side of the meat case in this photograph say "Better Meats, Cleaner Meats, Quicker Service," presumably owing to the expenditure of $1,000 "for an icebox to keep your meats wholesome," as seen in the ad below!

Another picture of the inside of Claude E. Barnes' store - 1925
at Fifth Street and Halsey Avenue
Another Picture of the Barnes Store
Left to right: Claude E. Barnes, John Lee Wilkinson, R.C. Carter

Mr Barnes was a Candidate for Sheriff of Madison County in an election that was probably held around 1924 or 1925. Below is a copy of his Campaign Card, along with the text of his platform found on the back of the card. Mr. Barnes did not win the race for Sheriff.

Claude E. Barnes for Sheriff

Prompt service on all papers, civil and criminal.

To investigate and answer all calls, regardless of time or weather.

Old Age Pension, Unemployment Insurance, Social Security.

Cooperate with our best citizens for advancement and betterment of our county.

Giving the deserving man or woman the right to make bond, without throwing them in jail.

To put the sheriff and his deputies on salary basis and abolish the fee-grabbing system.

All deputies to be men or women with good recommendations, as well as bonded.

Elect me your sheriff, and I won't carry a gun.


Larkin Hartwell Barnes, father of Claude E. Barnes
Larkin Hartwell Barnes

Mr. L. H. Barnes was one of the founders of the Jackson Way Baptist Church (formerly Fifth Street Baptist Church) and served as its first Chairman of the Board of Deacons from about 1910 until he died in 1941. He lived on Halsey Avenue in the two-story house that he built when he moved to Dallas Village. (The house is located behind Hill's Lawn Mower Shop.) The house is presently owned by Mr. Barnes' descendant, Larry Pridmore.

Here are a few advertisements found in the 1922~1923 Rison Year book, and provide an interesting historical perspective on the times - how much things have changed, and how much things have remained the same!

Advertisement for the Dallas Leading Store, 1922
Advertisement for the Dallas Leading Store, 1922

Advertisement for the Huntsville Times, 1922
Advertisement for the Huntsville Times Newspaper, 1922

Advertisement for the W. R. Rison Banking Company, 1922
Advertisement for the W. R. Rison Banking Company, 1922
NOTE:While at Rison School, Coach Fred Knight said, “I not only teach and coach at Rison School, but I also live on Rison Avenue and bank at the Rison Bank!”

The following images are from the 1932 Rison Year Book.

Community Workers of Dallas Village, 1932

And here are two advertisements from the 1932 Rison Year Book:
Rison Bank Advertisement, 1932

Dallas Manufacturing Ad, 1932 Rison Year Book

You may go on to Page 3 of the History of Rison and Dallas Mill by clicking here.

You can skip to Page 4 of the History of Rison and Dallas Mill by clicking here.

You may return to Page 1 of the History of Rison and Dallas Mill by clicking here.

Rison-Dallas Community