Jax Beach golf course sold, JBA endorses two candidates
Have you ever wondered what life was like in Jacksonville half a century ago? It may have been a different era of history, culture and politics but there are often parallels between the kind of stories that made headlines then and today. As interesting as the differences may be, so are the similarities. These are some of the top stories from the week of April 19-25, 1960. The items were compiled from the Jacksonville Public Library’s periodical archives by Staff Writer Max Marbut.
• The Jacksonville Beach City Council approved the sale of the municipal golf course property to the Beach Holiday Country Club for $175,000. It was noted the club planned to operate the links in connection with a proposed $5 million commercial development to include a 250-room oceanfront Holiday Inn Motel.
The Council voted unanimously to accept the bid submitted by the club at a public auction on April 8. It was the only offer received for the completed nine-hole course and 112 acres of land.
Terms of the sale provided that the buyer had to complete the back nine holes within 120 days and the City would finish the pro shop and install additional water mains.
The club made a $10,000 down payment and agreed to pay the balance in equal annual installments plus 6 percent interest over a period of 40 years.
Officers of the club were R.C. Dix, president; Joe Adeeb Sr., vice president; and Joe Adeeb Jr., secretary and treasurer.
Dix said preferential club membership and greens fees would be given to Beaches residents. He also said the development project would consist of the oceanfront resort and convention motel plus a separate 60-room motel, a 19-store shopping center and a gasoline service station. Beach Holiday Inn, Inc. had acquired about 15 acres of land between South 23rd and 25th avenues running from the oceanfront to Third Street for the structures.
• Jacksonville Bar Association President George C. Young announced that two candidates of six seeking contested judicial offices in Duval County had received the endorsement of Jacksonville attorneys in a poll conducted by the association.
Civil Court of Record Judge Roger J. Waybright, running for the Group 8 seat on the Fourth Judicial Circuit Court, and Tyrie A. Boyer, an attorney seeking the Civil Court post being relinquished by Waybright, were endorsed.
Approximately 400 practicing attorneys in the area were polled and about half that number responded to the questionnaire. The secret straw ballot was conducted by the association and tabulated by a private firm of certified public accountants.
• A wealthy sales executive, Joseph Morrison Clark, 57, was stabbed to death with a butcher knife in the bedroom of a home he was renting at Empire Point. He was the Southeast sales manager for The Grolier Society, Inc., publishers of encyclopedias and other books.
Chief County Criminal Investigator J.C. Patrick said he arrested Carol Nadine Rogers Clark, 27, who claimed she married the victim in Arkansas in 1958, on a technical charge of vagrancy.
While police were conducting the investigation into the murder Roselle Frances Clark, 48, of Daytona Beach arrived at the Sheriff’s Office and announced she was the real wife of the victim, Patrick said.
Clark’s body was found sprawled in a bedroom of the $70,000 split-level home he rented at 4836 River Point Road for Carol Nadine Rogers Clark and her sister Nancy Rudolph, 19, the wife of a Marine, deputies reported.
The victim had telephoned Roselle Clark at their Daytona Beach home Sunday and asked her to meet him in Jacksonville, she told police. Clark said she was waiting in the lobby of a Downtown hotel at about noon when she read of her husband’s death in a newspaper.
The woman held in connection with the investigation pleaded the Fifth Amendment and refused to answer investigators’ questions, Patrick said. He also said when she was being taken into custody for questioning she lashed out and hit a television cameraman.
Two days later, Carol Rogers Clark was charged with murder after, Patrick said, she gave conflicting statements regarding Clark’s death. Circuit Court Judge Charles A. Luckie set bail at $10,000 on the request of Assistant State Attorney Nathan Schevitz based on the woman’s previous police record, the fact that she was transient and, Schevitz said, because “she has been living on such a scale that $1,000 would not mean anything to her.” The investigation into the murder determined that the woman had been living with the deceased man for two years and that her police record included a vice conviction.
• Candidates in the May 3 Duval County Democratic primary election appealed for votes in front of one of the largest crowds of the campaign at a rally in the National Guard Armory.
Several hundred City and County employees heard some candidates remind them what had been done for them in the past and others promised to protect their interests if elected. While most of the office-seekers stuck to listing qualifications and making promises, some personal charges were made.
J.K. (Jim) Ryan, running against incumbent Dale Carson for sheriff, charged Carson’s department with writing off as suicides “12 probable murders.” He specifically attacked one of the most recent fatalities and also said the county’s stolen car and break-in cases were “exceptionally high.”
Ryan also declared that Carson put County patrolmen on a five-day week only after he (Ryan) warned the sheriff that he would make the long work week an issue in the campaign. Ryan said the reduction in the work week would be temporary – only until the campaign was over.
Carson reviewed his accomplishments in office and said that for the first time the civil service system was working for Sheriff’s Office employees and, “a County patrolman can stay on the job no matter who is sheriff.”
Carson also stated, “As for vice in the county, of course we have not wiped out bolita and other gambling completely but we are working hard on it and we are making progress.”
Rex Sweat, the third candidate in the sheriff’s race, did not speak.
• Eight youths between 10 and 15 years of age were rounded up in what County investigators called a “giant hot bicycle racket.”
Duval County Patrolmen B.A. Moore and J.L. Pfeiffer said about 40 bicycles in various stages of disassembly were recovered from a wooded area near 1762 Helena St.
The juveniles told investigators they switched parts in stolen bicycles to lessen the possibility of detection and then sold them for whatever the traffic would bear from 10 cents to $15.
Moore and Pfeiffer said the case was broken when Ernest Dixon of 7635 Tallahassee Ave. stopped a 13-year-old boy riding his son’s bicycle. Questioning of the youth involved seven others who eventually led officers to the “bicycle graveyard” on Helena Street.
Many relatively new bicycles were found minus wheels and other parts and older bikes were decorated with new accessories, said Deputy Robert Stringer, head of the Crime Prevention Bureau.
“There’s no telling how many bikes these boys stole and sold which we have not recovered,” he added.
The suspects were placed in Juvenile Shelter pending further investigation by deputies and a juvenile counselor.
• Mayor Haydon Burns said he “bubbled with excitement” in New York City as he signed $2.5 million worth of revenue certificates that would finance construction of Jacksonville’s new municipal auditorium.
Burns made the remark in the offices of The Signature Company which provided a special machine which duplicated his signature 24 times with each signing.
“It’s hard to explain how a person feels when he is doing a thing as I was doing today in signing these bonds,” said Burns. “This finalizes the program for the auditorium which is the last item in our $200 million development project of the last five years. We have completed all the projects in the program except the auditorium and we did it all without raising taxes one penny and without one penny of federal aid.”
The revenue certificates had been purchased by Goldman Sachs and Company at an interest rate of 3.719 percent and would mature in 1974.