Bob-n-Along: Another walk down memory lane in downtown Clarksburg

By Bob Stealey | April 07, 2017
It has been a while since we last took a trip down memory lane in downtown Clarksburg. A few months ago, I wrote about the stores and businesses that lined West Pike Street, but today, I'd like to list some of the places that were situated on South 3rd Street and South 4th Street--between West Main and West Pike streets.
There are folks who'll be reading this column who were in Clarksburg back in 1955 and who may have a fond look-back to the "good ol' days," and there are others who are much younger and may recognize only a few of the business names that are listed. My information comes from Polk's City Directory of 1955, to which I referred previously when I mentioned old businesses.
You may recall that the line-up of businesses indicated a great number of markets and offices that were on West Pike, in fact, so many that a reader today might not recognize them as being in the same city. Since the street address numerals are probably only of concern to the postman, I'll dispense with mention of those, yet I will list the businesses in consecutive order, hopefully to aid in your recollection.
To familiarize you with my starting point, I'll list from north to south, first on the east side of 3rd Street and then on the west side, and after those, I'll do the same with South 4th Street. That is, I'll begin from Pike Street and head toward Main, starting on the side of the street where City Hall is located. It should be noted that all references and their spellings are not my own, but those of the City Directory.
First was a small news stand operated by Troy Morrison, and next to it was Hall Office Equipment. Next in line was the Lowndes Building, which included the following offices and shops:  Charles C. Scott, lawyer; Midland Finance Co., Crosby's Jewelers (storage space), Clarence M. Rogers, lawyer; David A. Jones, lawyer; The Trane Co., Loar & White (storage room), Commercial Coal & Coke Co. coal lands, Tablar Fuel Inc. coal lands, Bricklayers Union of W.Va. Local No. 8, Edward J. Wood & Son, architects; Credit Bureau of Clarksburg, Inc.; barber Vance E. Randolph,Crosby's Jewelers, Loar & White Men's Clothing store, Parsons-Souders Co. (side entrance), Crown Opticians and Lowndes Savings Bank & Trust Co. Building, which contained the Personal Credit Department).
On the west side of South 3rd Street, we begin listing with Shopman's Union Local 723, a building which also housed the Martin Detective Agency. Next was Mercer's Drug Store, which stood at that location for many years. This was followed by Carnegie Park Sportswear, OPO Men's Clothing store, Will H. Melet Co. Men's Clothing store, the Professional Building, which included: Dr. John P. Rohrbough, dentist; Dr. John D. Martin, dentist; accountant Edward H. Driggers, Ace Adjustment Service Collections, accountant Mrs. Opal A. Campbell, inv. (sic) Robert Morris, Burke C. Morris, gas producer; Dr. Harold M. Chapman, optometrist; Equitable Life Insurance Co. of Washington, D.C., Dr. John C. Kerr, physician; Dr. James R. McClung, physician; Dr. Birchie E. Talkington, dentist; Dr. N. Fred Raeder Jr., dentist; Dr. Laco W. Gochenour, dentist; Melvin G. Sperry Est. (sic), Dr. Durward J. Dennison, optometrist; People's Life Insurance Co. of Washington, D.C., and Shenandoah Life Insurance Co.
Next along 3rd Street were: Charles F. Livingstone Men's Clothing store, Warfield Studio photographers, Pettrey Brothers Inc. Shoes, Stanard (cq) Supply Co. office, Barnett Jewelry Store & Watch Repair, Broida's Women's Clothing store, Merchant's National Bank Building, which also included Hornor Brothers Engineers and Trail-Craft Corp. boats.
Taking a walk down West Pike Street, let's begin on the "Candyland side" of South 4th Street, proceeding next to Rand's Cut-Rate Store, Cook's Restaurant, Mays Cut-Rate Store, Chicago Dairy & Baking Company, the Greaney Building, which included Sayre Studio Inc., photographers, Dr. Robert H. Hurst, dentist; Rosenberg's Fur Repr. (sic) Shop, Sayre Studio, Inc. (storage); then on South 4th, Berman's Jewelry Store, Friedlander's women's furnishings, Fountain Cut-Rate, The Style Shop women's furnishings, Vanes Inc. Jewelers, Fourth Street Market grocers and Liberty Lunch.
Retreating to West Pike Street, we begin with Monongahela Power Company, Moore's Opera House, Chery's Women's Clothing store, Star Shoe Shop reprs. (sic), the Peggy Shoppe Women's Clothing store, Moore Building, The Sanitary Market, Dudley's Florist, which also contained upstairs the America Fire Insurance Company; Rosenberg's Inc. Women's Clothing store, Ormond Hosiery Shops, Harbert's Drug Store, Wun-Der Shoe Store, Robey-Walleck Women's Clothing store and finally The Empire National Bank Building.
So with apologies to any who feel they may have been inadvertently omitted, I'll just say that we'll "go exploring" again sometime. And thank you for shopping beautiful downtown Clarksburg!
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Here's just a very brief note to do a little boasting--that I was the winner of the particular NCAA Basketball Championship bracket that I was playing. I had heard that I was out in front prior to my preceding column, but I didn't want to jinx myself by mentioning it.
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This Week's Bible Verses:  "But you have come right up into Mount Zion, to the city of the living God, the heavenly Jerusalem, and to the gathering of countless happy angels; and to the church, composed of all those registered in heaven; and to God who is Judge of all; and to the spirits of the redeemed in heaven, already made perfect; and to Jesus himself, who has brought us his wonderful new agreement; and to the sprinkled blood which graciously forgives instead of crying out for vengeance as the blood of Abel did." -- Hebrews 12:22-24

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