In the spring of 1912, two gentlemen from differing professions united to develop an apartment building that is still with us today. The March 14, 1912 Chattanooga Times reported that physician Dr. James McChesney Hogshead and banker F.T. Hardwick would build a $200,000 structure at the corner of Vine Street and Georgia Avenue.
The backers of the project had already accomplished much in their professional careers.
F.T. Hardwick was the head of the banking house of C.L. Hardwick and Company of Dalton, Georgia. He also served as an executive in the emerging Dalton textile business at such firms as Crown Cotton Mills and Elk Cotton Mills. Mr. Hardwick was on the board of the Chattanooga National Bank.
Dr. Hogshead, a native of Staunton, Virginia, graduated from the Medical College of Virginia in 1906. He served as an intern in London and Vienna prior to establishing a practice in Chattanooga in 1909. Dr. Hogshead was a specialist with the Chattanooga Eye, Nose, and Throat Infirmary, and his office was in the Times Building (now called the Dome Building).
Forty-four apartments were planned for the new yellow brick building, which was designed to be fireproof. A pagoda roof garden was included as a site for summer gatherings. Two elevators and a first floor central mail room served the tenants.
The new apartments would not only providing housing for a growing number of downtown business workers, but also contain offices on the first floor. Dr. Hogshead relocated his practice upon completion of construction. The apartments fronted Fountain Square. A new Hamilton County Courthouse was being built on the site of the previous structure that had been destroyed by a lightning-spawned fire in 1910.
The 1914 Chattanooga city directory included listings for these persons who occupied the lowest-numbered apartment on each floor:
1 – J.S.B. Woolford, surgeon, and German P. Haymore, physician
2 – Harry C. Davis, passenger agent with the Nashville, Chattanooga and St. Louise Railroad
3 – Emmett S. Newton, Realty Trust Company
4 – Gus F. Meehan, president, Ross-Meehan Foundry
5 – Lewis G. Gillespie, owner of a buggy company on Market Street
6 – Warren A. Dewees, owner of a grocery on Market Street
Today, the Hogshead-Hardwick (or Hardwick-Hogshead, in some listings) Apartments are part of a well-preserved block of Georgia Avenue.
If you have memories or additional information about this apartment building, please send me an e-mail at firstname.lastname@example.org.