D.C. Cooper, Oxford’s mayor, asked the city’s schools to close, and they did. J.L. Wikle, Anniston’s mayor, shut down everything he could: schools, churches, saloons, pool halls, vaudeville theaters, movie shows and restaurants. When the churches considered reopening, the local pastors’ union said no. That’s how bad it was.
Oxanna, that short-lived town between Anniston and Oxford, had one church; it closed. Out in the valley, Alexandria shuttered its school and churches. Camp McClellan, barely a year old, was locked down.