Lawson's Grocery
2400 Oak Avenue
Newport News, VA 23607

 1958 Anchor, p. 148  

This is where I worked in high school, and my brother Lloyd (class of '61) before me. It was owned and run by Mr. (Robert, if I remember correctly) Coates, a very nice man who worked very hard at trying to keep his business "above water". Others who worked there were Roger ('61) and Bobby ('64) Callis. Their father was the Roger of Roger's mentioned in Richard's posting.
- Doug Nelson ('64) of VA - 01/13/06
Thanks, Doug!
Lawson's Grocery was owned by Frances Lawson's (NNHS-58) dad when I was growing up.  Frances was in my class.  Their house was across the street from the store....a big brick house..  Her older brother was known as "Babe Lawson" and was a sports hero in his time.  He was hurt in some kind of accident (I think) and left physically handicapped - all that was before my time and I don't know the details, and in those days people didn't ask questions or talk about family matters as they do now.  But the family had a nurse who took care of him and I use to see the nurse taking him for walks......I lived near there.  But I remember feeling sad when I would see the nurse walking him around.  His life had been literally taken away from him.  Frances never talked about it and I never asked.  I supposed that the family was suffering enough about their beautiful son and brother being stricken down like that. 
- Joan Ownby Mathieson ('58) of VA - 01/20/06
Thanks, Joan!
Hi Carol,
Gus Harrell (Suffolk HS - '51 - of VA) today, and
Joan Ownby Mathieson ('58 - of VA) previously contributed the tragic story about "Babe" Lawson. A few newsletters back I responded to Richard Dawes' (NNHS/HHS - '62 - of VA) contribution where he mentioned Lawson's Grocery and I expanded on it. Mr. Lawson sold the grocery to Mr. Coates in the '50's. The Lawson's lived in a big, fine house - one that took up most, if not all, of the end of the (1200) block on Oak Avenue between 24th and 23rd streets across from the grocery store. I used to know the son's (and the parents') first name, but never heard him referred to as "Babe" before. I always thought he was injured playing football at NNHS. I often saw him being walked by his nurse when I was working at the store.
- Doug Nelson ('64) of VA - 01/22/06
Thanks, Doug!


East Side, West Side

Words and Music by Lawlor and Blake - 1928

Down in front of Casey's
Old brown wooden stoop,
On a summer's evening,
We formed a merry group;
Boys and girls together,
We would sing and waltz,
While Tony played the organ on
The Sidewalks Of New York.

East side, West side,
All around the town,
The tots sang "ring a rosie,"
"London Bridge is falling down."
Boys and girls together,
Me and Mamie O' Rourke,
Tripped the light fantastic
On The Sidewalks Of New York.



(This page was created on 01/20/06.)

Fruits and Vegetables clip art and Grapevine divider lines courtesy of - 06/09/04

"East Side, West Side" midi courtesy of - 06/09/04

"East Side, West Side" midi courtesy of
at the suggestion of Dave Spriggs ('64) of VA - 11/12/03
Thanks, Dave!

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