In 2003 I interviewed Mrs. Sue Barber about the 1940’s and 1950’s in downtown Jackson. Mrs Barber’s late husband James Barber worked for Hub City Taxi (located on West Main).
He left Hub City Taxi to open City Taxi Co. which was located at the corner of Chester and S. Highland . Mrs. Sue moved to Jackson in 1943 to attend My Lady Beauty School (located above Moore’s Studio on North Liberty) At that time there were several taxi services.
“You could ride from Highland Park to Bemis for .25. and yes that is how I met my husband.”
“Jackson was exciting town for a girl moving from from Medina to attend My Lady beauty School.The owner of the school,Mattie Pearl Jones, assured me I would have a job as soon as I graduated” Mrs Barber said. Sure enough as soon as she finished her course work she got a job . That first job was at Snow White Beauty Salon at 112 W. Main.
She told me about some of the businesses she remembered on
West Main in the late 1940’s.
At the corner at Main and Highland was Nathan Ladies Apparel. As you walked down S. Main there was Felsenthal, wholesale tobacco in the basement of 110 W Main,the building was known as the Williamson Building. On the upper floors were the offices of cotton buyers with there ticker tape machines. Next was Snow White Beauty Salon at 112 W. Main at 114 was T.J. White Cotton Co. Next customers would find White Way Barber Shop at 116 then the destination for many a child 118 Jimmy’s Big Dip. Across Shannon St on W. Main was Baker’s Drug Store.
Going down the North Side of W. Main was Robertson Clothing Store at 103 was Thurman’s Quick Lunch, 105 Robert’s Eat Shop, upstairs was the Jackson office of the famous Anderson-Clayton Cotton Buyers.( FYI M.D. ANDERSON left Jackson in 1907.) Hub City Taxi was at 107-109 W. Main, first floor of 111
West Main was Umsted Café and Pool hall upstairs was Melba
Hotel with sleeping rooms for the young men working as taxi drivers. At the end of the block was James Shoe Hospital and across Shannon was Tinker’s ESSO service station.
“Now mind you I am not saying I did it but some of the girls at( Snow White) would wave and flirt with the men going in Umsted Pool Hall and the taxi drivers of course we I mean the girls where not with clients at the time.” She laughed
While working at the beauty salon she met her husband they married in 1946 and moved to their home at 423 E. Chester.
By this time James owned his own company(City Cab Co.)at
Chester and S. Highland.
Mrs. Barber stop work to raise their daughters. When she went back to work it was at Vogue Beauty Salon located between the movie theaters on Baltimore . After 40 years as a beautician she retired.
Mrs. Sue Barber passed away at the age of 90. (1925-2016).