Culver Kidd's Drugstore
Edwards Culver Kidd Jr. served Milledgeville and the State of Georgia as a representative for 12 years and senator for 30 years, after which he retired. His influence resulted in many improvements, including highway and bridge construction, reforms at Central State Hospital (which includes the establishment of the Culver Kidd Medical facility on the grounds), and the creation of thousands of jobs for middle Georgians. His office was located at the corner of Hancock and Wayne Street, where his father and grandfather owned and operated the Culver Kidd Drug Company.
One morning in 1926, at around 2 AM, Senator Kidd’s father received a phone call that the drugstore was on fire. When they arrived at the scene, it was actually the building next door that was up in flames. A waiter who was ironing tablecloths in the basement had left the iron on before he went home. The iron overheated and caused the fire to break out. The Kidds, afraid that the building would collapse on top of their store, went in and carried out as much merchandise as they could carry. A woman who was helping them was hit with a falling beam and was thought to be seriously injured, but come to find out the “wounds” were only mercurochrome that splashed on her when the beam broke the bottles. The woman still fainted out of pure shock from the experience. Another man was trapped on the second floor while the fire raged, standing at the window when the back wall of the building collapsed. The force from the wind of the crashing wall sent him flying from the window, but his fall was broken by an awning on the first floor. Mr. J.R. Smith, who rented the space above the drugstore for his tailoring business from the Kidds, also suffered because of the fire. He was badly shaken after some of his rooms were damaged. Even after the Kidds painted and the walls and repaired the damaged roof, he still never recovered. Not too long after the fire, he was found dead, supposedly the victim of a heart attack.
Before Senator Kidd passed away in 1995, he reported that the spirit of Mr. Smith haunts his old rooms. His footsteps can be heard often, walking back and forth to relax in a big, overstuffed chair. No one is ever present in the building when the footsteps are heard. It is said that many people have heard Mr. Smith mumbling as well as bumps and scraping sounds as if furniture is being moved. If you go and move the furniture to a different location in the building, apparently Mr. Smith doesn’t like that either. As soon as you leave the room, sounds of the furniture moving can be heard and it will end up right back in the place where it began. One time, a maid went up to clean the space that was once occupied by Mr. Smith. She was so startled by all the noise the spirit was making that she jumped the 14 steps back down just to get away from him. After all these years, the second floor has been left to Mr. Smith and his “activities.”