David Hamilton Shares His
Memories


Hi Joel,

I'm David Hamilton, RSHS Class of 1974.  (
hamidoo@sbcglobal.net)

Great website!   My Dad was Frank Hamilton of Hamilton Auto Sales, Mom was Dorothy (Dot)
McNair Hamilton of McNair's Furniture store.  Greg McNair is my cousin.  That McNair's
building was originally built to be a restaurant... there is a big hole in the ceiling where the "dumb
waiter" moved food etc. between upstairs and downstairs.

We spent nearly 50 years on Wheat St. near Tanner's Food Center.  I remember Archie's Red
and White Food Store, the Oasis Bar was next to it, and Flukey's Shell Station was across the
street.  Before Tanners, there was an old general store which I believe was called Crouch's there.  
We would go there after playing ball in the neighborhood, get a Mountain Dew or RC Cola and
candy bar (Zagnut!), and sit on a sack of potatoes and enjoy.  Hated to see that place go, but the
Tanners were / are great, too.

One thing I haven't seen yet is that wonderful old wooden baseball park over by the National
Guard Armory.  I only have vague memories, but that was the greatest building ever... going way up
top the top of the covered wooden bleachers, or down the stairs to where I believe the locker
rooms were.  There was a payphone on the wall there... don't know why I remember that.  The
Rockets played football there too as you know, but temporary bleachers were used for those games.

My Uncle was Ross Harmon who owned the Burger Ranch and Orange Bowl.  His wife Katherine
(my Mom Dorothy's sister) managed the Orange Bowl forever, she was a great lady.  My uncle
Charlie Smith owned Smith's grocery on U.S. 1 / Fayetteville Road, a small stand alone building
not far from Tarheel Court motel.  We used to play ball in a large open field in the cemetery
nearby, I think it's Eastside Cemetery.

I graduated with Mayor Gene McLaurin, but before that played Church League basketball on his
team.  We had a great game plan, Joey Mitchell would rebound the ball, throw it to Gene, and he
would score.  I have the video tape of Gene's television interview the week after Dale Earnhardt
died at Daytona.  The Rock was next on the NASCAR schedule.  I thought Gene did a great job.  I
can burn him a copy if needed.  Speaking of racing, I have a copy of that VHS tape that was made
about Rockingham Speedway (the dirt track).

Remember Great Shakes powdered Milkshakes that came with a shaker?  Banana Flips?  They
were a "Little Debbie" kind of deal.  P.F. Fliers to me were so much cooler than Keds.  How much
would our Beatles "Flip Your Wig" game be worth now? I had totally forgotten pee shooters.

Remember during the Christmas Parade, the kids that came from some school I never heard of,
that would do some serious dancing / stomping and hand clapping?  Might have been a junior
military school or something.  They were show stoppers.

Does the Daily Journal make their archives available?  I think I have a program from the mid
sixties when our local baseball Little League All Stars went to the Little League World Series.  
They played some team from Chesapeake or somewhere in VA., and their players were all twice
as big as ours, and the results were as expected.  Kids that played on that team would be about 54
or 55 years old now.  My only claim to fame was pitching the final few innings of a Little League
Championship game that went 12 innings.  I played for Richmond Savings and Loan, and I think
we were playing the Civitans.  We couldn't hit, but we had great pitching.  We finally put two hits
together and won by something like three to two.  We played at Bynum Park.

I'm in Hawthorne, CA now, birth place of the Beach Boys.  If I can find the program or other
items of interest, I'll send them along.  Thank you for having this website that gives us a place to
re-visit such wonderful times.