C. G. MORRISON
Photo by Meador, Alpine Avalanche
From The Archives of the Big Bend
History of C. G. Morrison Co.
September 13, 2008, C. G. Morrison Company, True Value of Alpine, Texas, celebrated its 80th year of business in Alpine, and it was 120 years, 4 months and 20 days since Charles Glenn Morrison, founder of C. G. Morrison Company was born in Pulaski, Tennessee on April 24, 1888. He married Gladys E. Sawyer in Nacogdoches, Texas on August 28, 1918. Gladys was born on September 9, 1892, in Livingston, Texas. When they married, Charles was 30 years old and Gladys was 25.
An October 14, 1927, news report states that C. G. Morrison was residing in Midland, Texas, and had just visited Alpine looking for a location for a new variety store. On February 24, 1928, the Alpine Avalanche reported that C. G. Morrison would be opening a new store in Alpine. The article also mentioned Morrison had stores in "Midland, Big Spring, and other places," and that he had leased the south side of the Turner building in Alpine. The Turner building is a small group of buildings on north Sixth Street behind a larger building on the north east corner of Sixth and Holland. Today the larger building is occupied by "Mis Jen's Closet", and was the location of Watson Jewelers for many years. At the time C. G. Morrison moved to town it was a drug store.
Morrison had looked at other locations around the country and chose Alpine for the prospects of future business "but also by reason of the obvious civic pride of the citizenship which makes Alpine a good place in which to live..."
March 2, 1928, it was reported that Otis Turner was adding two more 18 x 36 foot buildings adjacent to the existing building which was leased to Morrison. That would have been on the north side, up to the alley between Holland Ave. and Avenue E.
March 16, 1928, The Avalanche reported "Novelty Store to Open Tomorrow." according to an announcement by C. G. Morrison. "The new store is one of the Ben Franklin chain of stores operated in West Texas cities." The World Wide Web based "Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia" site, states about the Ben Franklin dime stores, "It was perhaps the first retail franchise, starting in 1927." And so Alpine was the location of one of the earlier Ben Franklin 5 and 10 cent stores with the opening of the C. G. Morrison, Ben Franklin 5 and 10 Cent Variety Store on St. Patrick's Day, March 17th, 1928.
Within two months C. G. Morrison was expanding the store. According to the Alpine Avalanche, May 18, 1928, Morrison was quoted as saying, "Business of the Ben Franklin Store established here a short time ago, has grown to the extent that it is necessary for this institution to expand." So Morrison leased the adjacent space in the Turner building to more than double their floor space to 42 x 70 feet.