The Struggle Increases, 1923-1931
- Sheriff Pal M. Daniel is reelected.
- Evangelist A.A. Haggard visits Girard and stirs up the prohibitionists.
- Mayor C.M. Knowles, afraid for his personal safety, refuses
to take action against the liquor runners.
- Deputy. W.T. Miller, attempting to close a place in violation
of the Prohibition Law, is shot four times (he lived) by the
owner, Charlie Jinnet. Officer Will Hill doesn't try to stop
him. George Davis beats on Miller. Miller and Jinnet are taken
to jail... Miller’s wounds not attended to.
- Evangelist A.A. Haggard draws a crowd of 8,000 people to
his tent as he preaches against alcohol and other vices.
- Governor of Alabama, William W. Brandon, comes to speak at
Haggard's tent and suggests that Girard consolidate with the
Eagle and Phenix Mill village next to them in Lee County. The
result is Phenix City. (The "o" is dropped to end
post office confusion with Phoenix, Arizona).
- Gov. Brandon sends Walter K. McAldory to clean up.
- A morphine ring joins the liquor runners.
- The Great Depression is in full force.
- The boll weevil eats its way across Mexico, through Texas
and into the Deep South, desecrating the south’s main
source of income, the cotton crop.
- Like most places across the country, jobs are largely unavailable.
Residents of Phenix City are able to earn money through the
illegal activities already taking place or jobs at the Columbus
- Jimmie Matthews arrives in Phenix City looking for work.
He meets gambler Clyde Yarborough who teaches him how to gamble.
Jimmie finds a job in the laundry at Camp Benning and soon manages
to gamble $11,000 from soldiers. (25 times more than a mill
worker makes in a year).
- Jimmie meets Hoyt Shepherd, a gambler from LaGrange, Georgia.
They form the S&M gambling syndicate which produces slot
machines, crooked dice, marked cards, and a lottery called “the
- Their main competition is another new arrival, C.O. (Head)
Revel from Florida, who joins up with long time resident and
liquor manufacturer Godwin Davis, Sr.
- Slot machines are prolific. Children have open access to
work slot machines and buy lottery tickets. (Children do not
go into the back rooms where heavier gambling takes place or
- Hoyt Shepherd begins using his wealth from gambling to support
political candidates. Favors are expected in return.
- Ballot boxes are stuffed and votes purchased to ensure the
selected candidates would win.