Saturday, October 11, 2014

Fifty Years Ago This Week in West Rome - 10/12/1964 to 10/18/1964

The West Rome Chieftain Club sponsored Back to School Night beginning at 7:30 Monday evening, October 12th, to acquaint parents with the faculty, curriculum, and school activities. Students could breathe easy, though--individual grades and behavior were not on the schedule for discussion this night!

West Rome began experiments with a "cycle" program that offered seventh graders a chance to take nine week courses in art (taught by Mrs. Melvin Hill), music (taught by Miss Kitty Alford), drama (taught by Mrs. Sandra Allan), or guidance (taught by Mrs. Betty Deadwyler). The purpose of the mini-course program was to orient students toward high school while assisting them in discovering their interests and abilities.

For the first time in West Rome history, the Chiefs defeated the Cedartown Bulldogs 14-7, ending a lengthy losing streak for West Rome. The tide turned late in the third quarter when quarterback Ronnie Kennedy's pass to end Gerry Law led to the first touchdown. Soon after that, Dickie Sapp ran the ball into the end zone for a second touchdown, locking in the win.

Savage TV and Electronics rolled out the new line of Zenith color televisions this week in 1964. The line included a 21" color console TV for $529.95, a Zenith 23" black-and-white console TV for $339.95, and a Zenith 23" table model television for $229.95. For the music aficionado, they had the new Zenith hi-fi console stereo system, a 12-watt-per-channel system with turntable and AM/FM radio, for only $368.00.

To combat McDonald's, Hardee's introduced  their new big burger, the Hardee Huskee. For 35¢, you got a "giant charco-broiled hamburger" with cheese (and by "giant," they meant 3 ounces of meat), a sesame seed bun, shredded lettuce, and a special Hardee-Huskee sauce (probably the usual blend of catsup, mayonnaise, and thousand island dressing...).

Kroger had chuck roast for 49¢ a pound, bananas for a dime a pound, and salmon for 49¢ a tall can. Big Apple had whole fryers for a quarter a pound, five pounds of Dixie Crystals sugar for 39¢, and Campbell's tomato soup for a dime a can. A&P had boneless stew meat for 59¢ a pound, tomatoes for 19¢ a pound, and a one-pound box of Zesta saltines for 29¢. Couch's had smoked hams for 33¢ a pound, 8 ounces of White House applesauce for a dime, and Jay-Bird vienna sausages for a dime a can. Piggly Wiggly had Delmonico steaks for 99¢ a pound, collards for 19¢ a buch, and Coca Cola or Tab for 19¢ plus deposit per six-bottle carton.

And for the reader who asked what "plus deposit" means, here's the explanation: since bottlers preferred to sterilize and re-use the glass bottles rather than making new ones, they charged a deposit of 2¢ or 3¢ per bottle; the deposit was returned when you brought the empty bottles back to the store. If you didn't want to pay deposit, you could just bring in six empty bottles with you when you picked up your carton of drinks. Many of us who were kids at the time would make extra cash by looking for empty bottles in trash cans, along roadsides, etc., and gathering them up for the deposit. I recall making almost a dollar in two days doing this, in fact--it was good for the environment and good for my budget!

If you wanted to catch a movie during the first half of the week, your choices were pretty limited: Of Human Bondage (with Kim Novak & Laurence Harvey) at the DeSoto or Honeymoon Hotel (with Robert Goulet, Nancy Kwan, Robert Morse, & Jill St. John) at the First Avenue. The midweek change up included The Bridge On the River Kwai (with William Holden & Alec Guinness) at the DeSoto and Quo Vadis (with Robert Taylor, Deborah Kerr, & Peter Ustinov) at the First Avenue. The weekend brought a double feature of The Man Who Shot Liberty Valance (with James Stewart & John Wayne) and Savage Innocents (with Anthony Quinn) to the West Rome Drive-In.

The number one song this week in 1964, for the second week in a row, was "Do Wah Diddy Diddy" by Manfred Mann. Other top ten hits included "Dancing in the Street" by Martha & the Vandellas (#2); "Last Kiss" by J. Frank Wilson & the Cavaliers (#3); "We'll Sing in the Sunshine" by Gale Garnett (#4); "Pretty Woman" by Roy Orbison (#5); "Baby Love" by the Supremes (#6); "A Summer Song" by Chad & Jeremy (#7); "Let It Be Me" by Betty Everett & Jerry Butler (#8); "When I Grow Up to Be a Man" by the Beach Boys (#9); and "Have I the Right?" by the Honeycombs (#10).

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