Sparta: Facts and Important Details
Sparta, is the county seat of Alleghany County, it was founded in 1866 when the land that had been given for the town was laid off in lots for the public use. The first buildings in Sparta was the Court House, built in 1867 and the jail was built in 1870.
In 1880, Hillary F. Jones opened the first livery stable. Hotels and lodging in Sparta in the past were: Gentry House, Sparta Hotel, Williams Hotel, Four Oaks Tavern,Wayside Inn, Blue Ridge Tourist Hoe, Kelly’s Motor Court later was known as Andrews Motel & Restaurant and Alleghany Motel.
The first newspaper was published in Sparta in 1889 it was the Alleghany Star by A. S. Carson. The name later changed to Alleghany Times and is now known as the Alleghany News. Two other papers where published in Sparta the Western Carolina News in the early 1900′s.
The Blue Ridge Sun first edition was June 22,1979 and the last edition was September 24, 1997.
The only hanging to occur in Alleghany County since the Civil War was in 1891.
When the Old Court House in Sparta was condemned and was tore down the Spring and Fall terms of Court was held in the Methodist Church. February 13, 1910 Smith Construction Company began renovation on the court house and it was completed in December of 1910.
In 1926, a fire broke out in a Egg Hatchery in the basement of the building where B & T Drug Store and Gilliam Clothing Store was located almost every thing was destroyed.
On January 5, 1933, “the big fire” stared in Ray Phipps Lunch Room and spread quickly to the adjoining building. With high winds and no water except a hand pump well there was no chance of saving the businesses on the block. Twelve businesses was destroyed. The fire spread to the opposite side of the street and destroyed the Court House as well as Joines & Nicholes Service Station. Mr. Rufus Doughton and others made plans to rebuild the court house and businesses. In 1939, the town installed a water and sewer system.
On February 1, 1940, fire destroyed Alleghany Motor Company. The fire also destroyed Sparta Baptist Church. The church was later rebuilt about one block south of the previous church.
In 1920, Richardson Manufacturing Company was established to sell and repair automobiles, deal in gasoline,lumber, own and operate wood working machinery, grist mills, blacksmith shop. The stockholders was C.M. Richardson,T.G. Richardson, F.O. Fields, and F.P. Fields the company was dissolved in 1929.
Sparta was incorporated in 1925 the first Mayor was R. Floyd Crouse. The first town councilmen was Dr. C. A. Thompson, D.C. Duncan, and Edd Williams. Add C. McMillian was appointed in 1925 as the first town policeman.