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Florence Ice & Coal Company: The Stolen Night Watchman

Florence Ice and Coal Company

Florence Ice & Coal Company opened in early 1903 and was located on Aetna Street in East Florence near Sweetwater Creek and Huntsville Road. In 1922, an unusual thing happened: their night watchman was stolen!

Let me break the story down for you: Jones Boston, the guy responsible for keeping an eye on things at the Florence Ice & Coal Company after dark, stumbled upon a thief named Ingram Fuqua. Fuqua was caught red-handed trying to steal bales of hay from the company's property. Instead of just letting him get away with it, Boston did what any responsible person would do – he confronted Fuqua. 

But here's where things took a wild turn. Fuqua, seizing a moment of darkness, jumped Boston, knocked him down, and even managed to get hold of Boston's own pistol. Next thing you know, Fuqua loaded Boston onto his wagon and started driving towards Huntsville Road, all the while threatening to do something drastic.

Luckily, Boston's luck turned around. Somehow, maybe through sheer luck or some quick thinking, he managed to talk Fuqua out of doing anything terrible. He convinced him to let him go, and Boston made his way back to town, shaken but unharmed.

This whole incident might sound like something out of a movie, but it really happened right here in Florence over a century ago. It's a reminder that even in small towns like ours, there can be some pretty crazy stuff going on.