There are very few Vernon, Alabama residents still remembering HAYNES CURB MARKET. My Grandpa George Perry Haynes (on mom’s side) owned the little grocery store from the late 1940’s until the early 1970’s.
Local folks knew my Grandpa as G.P. We called him Papa Haynes. When Papa Haynes became physically unable to run the store it closed. My records show this around 1973.
The business was located north on HWY 17 on the outskirts of town. Vernon has since expanded beyond that location. The last time I was in Vernon the wood and concrete building was weathered but intact. That was millennium year 2000.
As a child I use to ride to the store with Papa Haynes in his old Chevrolet Apache pickup truck. This was the same truck he drove to Birmingham weekly to pick up fresh produce.
During one of his buying trips another vehicle hit Papa head-on. He was lucky to survive. A photo in the newspaper showed the engine totally out of his pickup lying in the middle of the road.
A couple of products I remember him peddling were freshly-sliced bologna and lard. One hardly hears the lard word anymore.
On one occasion a flatbed truck with wooden sides stopped by to sell Papa Haynes freshly picked watermelons. It was one of those hot muggy Alabama days. The man unloading the melons ‘accidentally’ dropped one with it breaking in half. He gave my brother Jim and me the sweet remnants. I truly believe the ‘drop’ was not by accident!
Papa & Mama Haynes lived on what was called Haynes’ Hill. This property is located on Old HWY 18. Albert Drive now leads to their old house.
My grandparents had a small farm on Haynes Hill which Jim and I looked forward to visiting. Papa & Mama Haynes lived there for many years raising 4 daughters, Katrulia, Cazaree, Flavius Gaye, Opal Claydean, and my mother Tallulah.
The property has since been sliced and diced, several homes now disturbing the dense woods we loved to roam. The old house Grandpa built still stands.
Papa Haynes died October 18, 1979. Mama Haynes died almost 12 years before him on August 15, 1967. I’m not sure when Papa Haynes second wife Doris passed but believe it was 1981.
I have one photo of HAYNES CURB MARKET in my box of family mementoes. The faded picture shows Papa and second wife Doris standing in front of the sign. The snapshot was taken around the time the store closed. I have a glass TOM’S peanut canister from the store. It sits safely on a top shelf.
Papa & Mama Haynes and their little grocery store are gone, but the town they loved is alive and well. I know both would be pleased!