Neighbors Helping Neighbors (1938)

Poverty was a way of life for many people in Liberty County by the beginning of 1938. They barely managed to survive as the economic depression continued. A few families became destitute and no longer able to care for themselves. Pride and a hope that things would get better sustained them in their misery until even those foundations crumbled.


A man and his wife and their five children were left homeless in the autumn of 1937 when the farm they share-cropped was sold for taxes. They camped out and the man searched in vain for employment. He sold his mule and wagon for a few dollars. When it was gone they very nearly starved to death during the bitter winter of 1937-1938.


T.W. Welborn, a Hinesville physician, heard about the family, investigated, and was appalled at what he found. All members of the family were suffering from malnutrition, exposure, and illness. They desperately needed a house to live in, food, and medical attention. He gave them food and medicine and took steps to find them a dwelling.


Welborn appeared before the Liberty County Chamber of Commerce in March 1938, and told members of the organiza­tion about the destitute family. D.S. Owen was president of the organization. He immediately appointed a committee to find food and shelter for the family.


Mary Rogers, director of the county welfare office, took food and clothing to the family. John McCallar donated land on which a home for the family could be built. Joseph B. Fraser Jr., B.T. Slade, and J.H. Salter donated lumber to build the house. The county commissioners donated a truck and labor to haul the lumber to the property donated by McCallar. Volunteer carpenters built the house.