Wednesday, January 17, 2018

Frank Chatham - Barber

Usually in a small town that attracts traveling salesmen there are four things that are usually present; a hotel, a saloon or bar, a cigar shop and a barber shop.  In about 1860 the first hotel was built in Delmar (MD) by Miss Margaret Trifford and when the great fire came thru in 1892,  a new hotel was build that was managed by Mr. Veasey.  Some called the hotel the Veasey hotel.  At that point Delmar had all four requirements of hotel, bar, barber shop and cigar store under one roof.  Later Wicomico County decided to go “dry” and closed down the liquor sales.  When Walter Whayland would buy the hotel and put his meat market in it he did away with the bar.   Frank Chatham in 1900 was one of the first barbers to work in the old Veasey Hotel.  Mr. Chatham (Francis Marion Chatham) was a self trained barber and taught himself while in the Army.  He would marry Lillian Mae Ranklin while he was stationed in Florida.  He had enlisted in 1892 and served in the Spanish American war being stationed in both the Hawaiian and Philippine islands.  After leaving the Army in 1900 he came to Delmar.  He worked here for five years until moving to Salisbury.  His parents (Josephus and Drucilla Chatham)  originally came from Worcester County, Maryland They had moved out west to Kansas to farm and Frank was born in Kansas in 1874.  When Mr. Chatham was about two years old the family moved back to Worcester County because of the Locust plague that devastated the west.  Mr and Mrs Frank Chatham would have Francis M. Chatham, Herbert Gerome Chatham and Laura M. Chatham as children.  Mr Frank Chatham would die in 1960 continuing to cut hair until a couple years of his death.

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