Shirley Crawford Thompson
Shirley Crawford Thompson, daughter of Augustus M. and Georgie Fike Crawford, lived in Cliffside from 1932 until World War II ended in 1945. Shirley had two sisters, Elise, deceased, and Christine, who lives in Lumberton, N. C.
The Crawford family lived in the old Cliffside Hotel on Main Street, across from the Baptist Church.
She went to Cliffside High and remembers her teachers, John Tinkler (her favorite), Letha Bame, Corene Bookout, Fred Barkley, Miss McLaughlin, Mr. White, Sarah Rikard, Harley C. Beatty, Miss Dora Dover and Mrs. Ruth Robinson. She took music lessons and a Gardner Webb Business Correspondence Course.
Shirley worked fulltime in the Cliffside Mills office from 1936 to 1942, then worked part time until 1945.
Shirley and Sam Thompson were married in Cliffside by Rev. Stimson in 1937. Then she and Sam lived in the “George Kelly Moore house” next door to the Hotel.
Her favorite friend was Lib Hendrick. Others were Hannah Lou Pruette, Lois Davidson, Lily Belle Blanton and Geraldine McCurry.
“My Grandmother, Ella Fike, would sit on the porch and if someone who she didn’t know came down the street by the house, she would ask them to come in and tell her who they were and who their parents were. Thereby became my 50-year love of genealogy.
“A group of girls, consisting of Beth Caldwell, Lib Hendrick, Rachel Fortune, Hannah Lou Pruette, my sister Elise and I met in Beth’s clubhouse out back of her house. We had a lively and lovely time playing games, Hearts, Monopoly etc. We swapped books and had reports and debates and spent weekends occasionally at the Caldwell’s mountain house.”
Special about my life there:
“My church life was very special to me. I enjoyed the fine sermons by the Rev. Stimpson and I was able to participate in the Sunday School, the choir and playing the organ while Glen McKinney was in service. Our family belonged to the Cliffside Methodist Church.”
What I Miss about Cliffside:
“The whole community friendliness and the sense of being appreciated and appreciating the whole town.”
“I lived at Rainbow Lake for 30 years, then moved to my present address in Boiling Springs, S.C. After the children were in school, I worked eight years as a private secretary at Fairforest Finishing Co. and Reeves Brothers. After this, I began work at the National Beta Club (High School Honor Club) for 16 years until retirement. Most of my spare time has been spent helping friends and family (not professionally) with their family histories.”
“Although we had moved to Rainbow Lake after the war, I preferred that Dr. G. O. Moss deliver my children, so we went back to Cliffside for the events. Our daughter, Georgie Suzanne was born in 1943 and my other daughter, Judith Melinda was born in 1947. Both have married and given us wonderful grandchildren, and two great grandchildren.
“I am now 90 years old and have wonderful memories of Cliffside. I will join Sam at Cliffside Cemetery one day and be at home.”
Then and Now photos courtesy Suzanne Clement.