Dec. 18, 1942, in The Star: Anniston City Hall was a shattered hulk today, regarded as a total loss after a fire early this morning which began in the air shaft behind the furnace in the basement burst upward into the second floor and seared or burned the almost the entire space. Flames that ate their way through supports between the second floor and the ceiling of the first floor office so weakened the structure that it has been deemed not worth repairing. Fortunately, many invaluable city records remained locked up in the City Hall vault. It's noted that the furnace that heats the building hasn’t operated correctly for several weeks. The red brick City Hall was built in 1887-88, old enough that redecoration and repairs had become an annual ritual. The City Commission was looking forward to possibly taking over the USO Center across the street at the end of the war, but what the city’s business offices will do until that time posed a big problem today. Also this date: Capt. W. Frank Edwards, son of Mrs. Laura Edwards of Anniston, is an ear, nose and throat specialist of New Albany, Ind., who recently handled the unique challenge of a patient he was operating on in New Guinea being wounded by machine gun fire while the operation was in progress. Capt. Edwards has practiced his profession in New Albany for a number of years and entered the Army last summer. He also has four siblings who reside in Anniston; they are John Edwards of Scarbrough Drug Co., Leslie Edwards of Edwards Tobacco Co., Mrs. Willis Wilkerson and Miss Mae Edwards.

Dec. 18, 1992, in The Star: Auburn’s new head football coach is Terry Bowden, 36, son of Bobby Bowden of Florida State and since 1987 coach of the Division 1-AA Samford Bulldogs. Curiously, though, when Pat Dye resigned the day before Thanksgiving, Auburn plainly indicated it preferred to find a coach with 1-A experience. Bowden, who emerged as the top candidate for the job only recently, was introduced to Tiger fans at a press conference yesterday afternoon. Also this date: Weaver native Michael G. Harper was recently elected to the Baldwin County Commission. Harper, 37, is married to Susan T. Harper, an Anniston native, and they have a child.