Dixie Cups - Social Norms - and the Grandfather of AutoZone
Dixie cups, social norms, and the grandfather of AutoZone

Historical photos contain many clues leading to fascinating discoveries and forgotten stories.

The same 14 young men are featured in four different 123 year-old glass plate negatives. Through reference and research, each individual has been identified.

SOURCE:  B.B. Wilson

A tin 'water dipper' seems prominently displayed in the first photo. The shared drinking vessel’s days were numbed. In 1907, Bostonian Lawrence Luellen invented a disposable paper cup. At first named the Health Kup - promoted as a life-saving drinking technology that could help prevent the transmission of communicable disease.

The cup was renamed in 1919 when Luellen gained permission to use the name ‘Dixie Cup’ from Dixie Doll Company’s Alfred Schindler, a New York doll maker Luellen shared manufacturing space with.
Source: Smithsonian Magazine

Changing Social Norms

In 1900, it was commonplace for male friends or work companions to demonstrate their comradery by holding hands in photos.

"These photos showcase an evolution in the way men relate to one another — and the way in which certain forms and expressions of male intimacy have disappeared over the last century. We cannot view these photographs through the prism of our modern culture."
SOURCE: Artofmanliness.com

SOURCE:  B.B. Wilson

SOURCE:  Charles G. Walline

Two negatives were owned by Ben B. Wilson (1889-1972). It is unknown who the original photographer was. Ben lived at 301 Forest Ave. In retirement, he collected photos and jotted notes about people in his collection. We’re grateful for his invaluable habit.

One photo was likely taken by Charles G. Walline (1874-1943), who lived at 107 Payne Street. (now 607 Battery Place).

Walline captured several views at Chattanooga High School’s 1897-1904 location; the D. C. McMillian House on Gilmer (now 8th) Street. It’s likely all of these photos were taken at or near the school. See more photos here.

A fourth view, amongst grape vines, was part of a collection purchased at a North Georgia estate sale by Charlie Coulter in the 1970s.

Was the photographer the same person, or perhaps friends practicing their photography hobby? We’ll never know.

SOURCE:  Charlie Coulter Donation

1900 Graduates of Chattanooga High School

Ard Kaderly Shoff


m. Ella G. Werner

Charles Wathman Hogan



m. Eunice Price

Charles Milton Newcomb


Professor of Oratory UTC

m. Bertha Harrison

Frank Crossland Davies


Steel industry - Texas

m. Thankful Johnson

Hal Fairfield Wiltse


Secretary of Chamber of Commerce and Social Service Bureau

m. Ruth Campe

John Hooper Erwin


Insurance & Real Estate

m. Beulah Sleeth

John Austin

John Cotter

Warren Lester Lawton

1884-1911 (Tuberculosis)

Traveled in India as an engineer

Oliver Ladew Lockwood


Robert Youngblood Wert Sr.


Civil Engineer

m. Leila Grant

Joseph Thomas Beall


Bookeeper/Auditor - Southern Express Co.

m. Ida Mayer

Joseph Reeves Hyde Sr.


m. Ruth Hasten Sherman

Within short time after graduation, Joe Hyde moved to Memphis in search of a career, and ended up writing one of the city's most notable chapters on entrepreneurship*.

In 1907, Hyde would revolutionize the wholesale grocery industry with the creation of the wholesale food distributor Malone & Hyde.

In 1961, at the age of 77, Mr. Hyde founded the J.R. Hyde Sr. Family Foundation to continue his philanthropy.

*Source: Hyde Family Foundation.

Joe Hyde's grandson, Joseph Reeves “Pitt” Hyde III, joined the family business in 1965, transforming it into the third largest wholesale food distributor in the US. In 1979 he founded AutoShack (later AutoZone) as an offshoot of his grandfather’s business, establishing it as a national auto parts giant within a matter of a few years.

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