J. H. Spight celebrated his fifty-fourth year in business in Demopolis this month. His is one of the oldest grocery firms in this section of Alabama.
Mr. Spight came to Demopolis from Uniontown in 1901 to join his uncle, the late W. H. Welch, and the late J. A. Hudson in the business known as Hudson & Welch. He later bought the interest of Mr. Welch and the firm name was changed to Hudson & Spight. Several Years later Mr. Spight bought the grocery and dry goods store of J.C. Kelly and established the J. H. Spight Grocery. The Hudson store became J. A. Hudson & Son.
The J. H. Spight Grocery was located for eight years on Strawberry Street, where the TV-Radio Service and Southern Finance are now located. More than 30 years ago the business was moved to its present location on Washington Street where it has operated continuously since that time.
Two years ago the store was changed to a cash and carry business and Mr. Spight sold his market department to T. H. Barnes, who had been connected with him for 27 years. The store is now operated as Spight's Superette.
Mr. Spight has seen grocery stores come and go in Demopolis for more than 50 years. Through his fine character, good service, quality merchandise and a general interest in the people whom he has served, plus hard and conscientious work. Mr. Spight has always been one of the most popular grocers in Demopolis.
The Demopolis Times
Addendum - Anne Spight Davis sent us the history of the Spight family and we are happy to share it.
John Henry Spight, son of Simon Reynolds Spight and Julia Ann Welch, was born in Pontotoc, MS on December 31, 1871, and died in Demopolis, AL on May 16, 1962, at age 90. Asd a young man John Spight lived in Tennessee and then moved to Uniontown, AL to work in his Uncle John Welch's jewelry store. He later moved to Demopolis, AL. He met and married Louisa Jane Bailey of Demopolis, AL in September 1910.
Louisa Jane, better known as Janie, was born in Demopolis, AL on September 27, 1878, the daughter of James Lawrence Bailey and Annie Edna Cornish. She died September 12, 1954, in Demopolis at 75 years of age. She was a lovely lady and was loved by all who knew her. She enjoyed being with her friends and family and was active in the Methodist Church and the Colonial Book Club. Janie was an artist, painting for her pleasure, family and friends.
John Spright opened his grocery store in Demopolis in 1901 and remained in business for 61 years. Until his death in 1962, Spight's Grocery was the oldest continuous business under one management in Demopolis. During the depression and hard times, John Spight was known for his trading with the local farmers and giving them a fair price for their produce. He wsa admired and respected by young and old. When his grandchildren came along they had fun going to see their "Pop" at his grocery store. They all remember him with fond memories and enjoyed spending thim with both their grandparents.
In 1911 he was one of the original organizers of the Commercial National Bank, serving as vice presigent, and was on the Board of Directors until his death. He served for many years as a member of the Board of Stewards of the First Methodist Church and served on the City Council.
John and Janie had two children, John Henry Spight, Jr. (b. May 9, 1915) and Annie Bailey Spight (b. March 23, 1918).
John, Jr. married Lillian Elizabeth Wilcox (b. July 31, 1922) on May 22, 1944, the day Lillian graduated from Huntingdon College. After the wedding they left for Edmonton, Canada where John was serving in the United States Air Force during World War II.
John followed in his father's footsteps. He owned and operated a ladies and men's clothing store for 59 years (March, 1938 to February, 1977). John was very active in the community serving as presidient of the Chamber of Commerce, member of the City Council, served on the School Board, member of the Board of Stewards of the First Methodist Church. He was a supporter of youth athletics and activites. Like his father, John owas on the Board of Directors of the Commercial National Bank. John died January 10, 1999.
John and Lillian had three children - Lillian Elizabeth (Lynn) Spight Johnson, Barbara Anne Spight Kidd, and John H. Spight, III and six grandchildren.
Ann Baley Spight was born in Demopolis, AL, March 23, 1918. She married George Powers Davis on December 8, 1947. George was born in Stewart, AL, July 24, 1915, and came to Demopolis when he was nine years old. He was a public accountant. George and Annie are still living in Annie's mother's family home which was built by her great grandfather, T.G. Cornish about 1854. They have two children - Jane Bailey Davis Coker and George Powers Davis, Jr. George, Jr. lives in Demopolis with his family. Annie and George have eight grandchildren.