Dec. 31, 1942, in The Star: Berman’s department store, Hudson’s department store, Electrik Maid bake shop and George Cater Furniture Co. are some of the Anniston businesses offering special gifts to the first baby born at Garner Hospital in 1943, according to a full-page advertisement. As another prize, the maternal hospitalization will be free, too. Parents who think they might have a chance should make a photostatic duplicate of the birth certificate, or else obtain a notarized doctor’s letter, and submit the documentation to The Star’s “Baby Derby Editor.” Same as last year, “Only White babies will be eligible for prizes,” according to contest rules. Also this date: Today is the final date for draft registration of those young men who turned 18 years old in November and December this year. In the event there are some 18-year-olds who failed to register, they should do so immediately to avoid complications, draft board officials warn. From here on out, on the day they turn 18 males are to register for the draft.
Dec. 31, 1992, in The Star: Anniston Star editor-in-chief Cody Hall is giving up the daily grind at “the word factory” for the ease of retirement, but his newspaper home of 43 years won’t completely lose his voice: With the title of editor/consultant, Hall, 69, will continue to edit the Sunday book page and write his popular Saturday column. “Generations of journalists all over the country who began their careers here remember The Star not as an institution but as a person, Cody Hall — a teacher, a friend and elder brother,” said H. Brandt Ayers, editor and publisher. Hall has seen the paper grow — from nine newsroom staffers in 1949 to 45 now and from 15,300 circulation to today’s 34,000. Hall’s retirement means executive editor Joe Distelheim will become the chief operating editor over all news departments, with the exception of the editorial page. Also this date: What are some possible party spots where a couple might ring in 1993? According to a Star-compiled list, they include the Carriage House Inn at 300 Quintard; The Victoria at 16th and Quintard; Big Ray’s Cantina at Noble Street and Blue Mountain Road; City Limit at 1214 Noble; Mary Lou’s at 1111 Wilmer; O’Creighon’s, 1009 Noble; The Peerless, on West 10th; Whistlestop, 1805 Quintard; and in Oxford, Day’s Inn, Holiday Inn and Cheers in the Executive Inn.