- Published: Thursday, 18 February 2016 18:59
Thompson Berry settled in this area in the 1840s. Berry devoted most of his time raising cattle and farming. As time passed, he became the owner of a gin and gristmill and several thousand acres of land in Fayette County. In 1882-1883, the section of the Georgia-Pacific Railroad which connected Birmingham, Alabama and Columbus, Mississippi was built. Arrangements were made with Mrs. Ben Jefferies and Mrs. Eliza Harvey to locate a depot approximately midway between the two cities. The depot was named Berry for Thompson Berry, the first settler in the area and father of Mrs. Jefferies and Mrs. Harvey.
In November 1883, the town of Berry was incorporated; the town limits being set by measuring one mile in all directions from a public well dug a short distance from the depot. The first store and post office was operated from a boxcar by Ab. Seay even before the track of the railroad was completely laid.
In 1899, the town held its first municipal election-the first mayor being Birks Bagwell.
Records give the following names as past mayors of the town of Berry (some dates may be approximate or missing, but falling within the date range):
|W. M. Davis|
|Samuel L. Dobbs||1906|
|Dr. W. O. Collins||1916-1919|
|J. T. McCracken||1919-1924|
|J.C. (Coger) Shepherd||1926-1930|
|Fred W. Johnson||1932-1936|
|L. C. Christian||1944-1946|
|Fred J. (Sox) Johnson||1946-1950|
|Fred W. Johnson||1950-1955 (May)|
|D. C. Studdard||1955 (May-June)|
|J. V. Walker||1955-1956 (April)|
|D.C. Studdard||1956 (April – October)|
|Roy H. Dobbs||1992-2012|