Look Back ... to fire claiming a Piedmont landmark, 1995

Feb. 13, 1945, in The Star: Anniston Motor Company Inc. announces it’s been designated as the new Dodge-Dodge Trucks-Plymouth dealership in the city. Although there aren’t any new cars to sell right now, of course, the public is invited to visit the new business and see how many of its employees were retained from the previous Dodge dealership. Officers of the new company include G. Clyde Brittain, president and general manager; J. E. (Buddy) Pearce, vice president in charge of parts and service; and N. S. (Newnan) Cryer, secretary and treasurer and sales manager. The street address is 101 East 10th Street [about where the drive-through lanes across from the library are located today].

Also this date: Tornadoes swirling across Mississippi and Alabama late yesterday killed at least 43 people, injured 200 and caused hundreds of thousands of dollars in property damage. Worst hit was a crescent-shaped area on the southern and western outskirts of Montgomery, where 26 died and at least 75 were injured.

Feb. 13, 1995, in The Star: Fire claimed a landmark store in downtown Piedmont yesterday morning around 1:15. That’s when flames crawled up the old heart pine timbers inside the Otasco Auto Parts store at 116 North Center Ave. The fire spread to the attic and then to the tar roof. By 3:30 a.m., when the Piedmont Fire Department was able to get the blaze under control, Joe Wallace’s store was gone. Wallace, known as “Woody,” had opened it in 1948 and says he’s not going to reopen. The fire also destroyed the building at 114 North Center, where Billy Lindsey of Anniston had been planning to open a flea market-type operation.

Also this date: In live entertainment treats scheduled for this coming week, actor Dudley Moore will be the guest pianist with the Nashville Symphony Orchestra at a Knox Concert Series presentation in Anniston, and Hootie and the Blowfish will perform at Pete Mathews Coliseum in Jacksonville.

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