Downtown Dublin Walking Tour
Downtown Dublin Walking Tour
102-106 E. Jackson Street, Dublin, GA 31021
Dublin’s oldest building, Charles, Henry, and Thomas Hicks built the Hick’s Building in 1893. With the courthouse across the street, the upstairs of this building was a preferred site for law offices while the lower floor saw varied uses as a drug store, a millinery, a music store, and the first Chamber of Commerce. Notice the rope-shaped bricks around the windows and the vine pattern on the pressed metal cornice near the roof. Confederate President Jefferson Davis’ party stopped here during their flight from capture in May, 1865. Minute Grill has served up fresh sliders and hand cut fries for over 50 years.
Strickland’s Boots offers over 6,000 styles of boots in the Hick's Building. Family owned and operated, they size every foot that walks through the door and keep handwritten records of every purchase for each customer on an index card. They know which styles you like, what you’ve bought in the past, and even keep a wishlist of pairs you like in case your special someone is gift shopping.
Site of the Old City Hall
115-177 E. Jackson Street, Dublin, GA 31021
At one time
This area marks the site of Dublin City hall from 1904 to the early 1950s. The city’s fire department was also located here. Prior to being used for city government, it was a hotel known at different times as the Hooks House, the Hilton Hotel, and the Central Hotel.
Dublin Buggy Company
125 E. Jackson Street, Dublin, GA 31021
This large brick building, circa 1908, housed the Dublin Buggy Company and also included blacksmithing and woodworking.
Southern Printing Company
128 E. Jackson Street, Dublin, GA 31021
One of Dublin’s oldest businesses is located on the site of Dublin’s main livery shops in the late 1800s and early 1900s. Although Southern Printing Company utilizes modern equipment, it also has historic Linotype and letter presses where visitors can experience the unique creativity of an old-time print shop.
Site of the Bertha Theatre
130 E. Jackson Street, Dublin, GA 31021
A storied past
From 1913 to 1918, this building symbolized the cultural activities of Dublin society. Stephen Lord adapted the building to meet the town’s need for a theatre and named it in honor of his wife. The theatre staged the first talking motion picture show in Dublin in 1914 with the aid of an Edison Gramophone. The manager promoted numerous wrestling matches here with touring pros, who sometimes sparred with local men.
Thigpen Auto Sales
222 E. Jackson Street, Dublin, GA 31021
Dublin’s oldest existing stable, Thigpen Stables, was built in the mid 1910s by R. A. Johnson. Later operated by J.A. Attaway, it is better known as the livery stable of I. E. Thigpen. Today, it still appropriately houses horsepower – in the form of automobiles.
503 E. Jackson Street, Dublin, GA 31021
Civil Rights stay
Before 1925, this was the site of C.D. Dudley & Son Grist Mill & Wood Shop. In September 1936, the Dudley Motel, Cafe, and Amoco #2 service station were established to provide lodging and provisions to African Americans traveling US Highway 80. It was listed in the African American travel guides, Go and Green Book. The Dudleys developed “Dudley’s Retreat” at the rear of the service station as a restaurant and gathering place for the community on Truxton Street. For most of his adult life, “Hub” Dudley was known as a healer, a mediator, and a man of impeccable honesty and trustworthiness. Before passing in 2014, niece Thomaseanor Pearson remembers her “Duddy” convinced Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. against staging a massive demonstration in Dublin over unfair labor practices. King, along with other Civil Rights leaders, often stayed at Dudley’s Motel on East Jackson Street, then the major east-west traffic artery through Georgia. Thomasenor, and Alfred Pearson, along with their infant daughter, Ojetta, were present the night King stayed at the Dudley Motel.
A visit with Dr. King
Pearson, who was initially scared that King might be tracked to the motel, met the American icon and fondly recalled how she stayed up “all night” talking to the civil rights champion. Other memorable Civil Rights advocates who stayed and dined at Dudley Motel were former Atlanta Mayor and U.N. Ambassador, Andrew Young, Rev. Hosea Williams, Rev. Ralph David Abernathy, and former Atlanta Mayor Maynard Jackson and Irene Dobbs Jackson. Dudley's Motel and Cafe closed in the 1980’s.
Dudley Funeral Home
617 E. Jackson Street, Dublin, GA 31021
Originally a Cordele native, Clayton Dudley brought his family to Dublin determined to build a business empire to meet the needs of the African-American community. Clayton's son “Hub” Dudley adopted that same philosophy, opening a meat market and grocery store in 1922 in the building now occupied by Dudley Funeral Home. Dudley went on to found the Laurens County Casket Company and the Laurens County Benevolent Association providing burial benefits for it's members. Over the next two decades, the father and son team, Clayton and Herbert Horatio “Hub” Dudley built an empire along East Jackson Street and the Five Points area of Downtown Dublin, and worked during World War II to establish a USO for black servicemen on South Lawrence Street. Dudley Funeral Home is still in operation today.
Hubert "Hub" Horatio Dudley
A thriving hub of African American business, the Dudley family built and operated numerous enterprises along this stretch including a meat market & dry goods store, the Laurens County casket company, the Laborers-Mechanics Realty and Investment Company (a savings and loan association), and Laurens Bereavement . On Madison Street in the Cummings building, Dudley operated a shoe shop, a hat shop, and opened a beauty & barber shop in 1934, naming it for his foster daughter, Thomaseanor. In other areas of Dublin, Dudley also operated a saw mill.
701 E. Jackson Street, Dublin, GA 31021
Cool eats & history
Originally, this was the site of a skating rink operated by Hub Dudley. This site has been the home of Dairy Queen since March 1953. The original building with its clockwise drive-through on the passenger side of vehicles, was demolished in November 2016. It was the longest standing fast food restaurant building in Dublin with over 60 years of dishing up cool treats and hot eats.