At the end of Jones and along 14th Street in Old Hickory, lies a peaceful little park known as Rachel's Walk (named after Andrew Jackson's wife).  Once upon a time, this park was not so peaceful and the quiet was disrupted in the summer by the throngs of children playing in a swimming pool who's remains lie under the current parking lot.   In talking with people who grew up in Old Hickory Village, two topics are always mentioned:  the swimming pool and Roy Roger's visit to DuPont Elementary school to celebrate its safety record.   The cost to swim is not definite, but ranged from 10 cents to 15 cents.   The June Rayon Yarns in 1939 announced the hours as 9 am to 10 pm Monday through Saturday and 1 pm to 10 pm on Sundays. 


There is a birdbath located in Rachel's Walk.  This birdbath originally sat in front of the Powder Plant Fire Hall.  Thanks to Aubrey Meece for sharing this information.  

The Needs of Our Children  - DuPont Engineering Study 1929

A Census taken in June 1929 showed there were 2441 children between the ages of one and sixteen years living in the village of Old Hickory.  In addition to these there are several hundred more living in the adjacent communities, which communities are largely if not entirely supported by the Plant activities.  Many of the parents have no concept of the proper care or rearing of children in a congested community, they themselves having been reared in isolated country homes.  Since these "children of today are the workers of tomorrow" and the Company has an obligation to see that they have opportunities for proper physical and mental development. 

The Swimming Pool - Old Hickory News - July 20, 1939

Excuses for not being able to swim are just about unknown in Old Hickory.  The local swimming pool, though it may be, is within everybody's pocket book and reach.  Throughout the summer it is crowded to capacity and carefully looked after by competent guards who also serve as teachers during special periods.

The pool was built soon after the war by volunteer labor for the pleasure of the small community.  When du Pont came back in 1924 it was improved a bit and today is a might popular place.  The water is kept chemically pure by constant checks, there is a diving board for those who crave gymnastics along with their swimming, and a confectionery stand alongside for refreshment.

Old Hickory 1939 Swim Team - Old Hickory News, July 29, 1939

Old Hickory swimming team for the 1939 season is an aggregation able to take care of itself in competition with out-of-town divers and swimmers.  Instruction and practice has made a big difference over the first attempts here several years ago. 

Some of the boys and girls on the squad are shown in the picture above.  They are, reading from left to right front row:  James Reed, Charles Locke, William Lewis and Bill Harris.

Second row:  Anita Williamson, Marjory Kuykendall, Mary Haney, Martha Walker, Jean McCrone and Pattie Allen.

Back row:  Rufus Long, Ray Pogue, Robert Lee Williams, David Travis, Dick Burris, Harry Detrick, life guard and C.B. Beaty, coach.

Missing from the picture are Nancy Burch, Christine North, Betsy Foster, Betty Harris, John Burch, Kenneth Harris, Bill Furlong, Raymond Foster, John McQuiston and John North.

Chuck Stanley

Opening Day - June 1942 - Rayon Yarns, June 1942

Yes, the hot days are here and nothing is so inviting as the cool, refreshing waters of a clean pool.  Proof of this statement was evidenced strongly on May 30, when an overflow crowd turned out to take advantage of the opening of the local swimming pool.

Many improvements have been made in the facilities since last year.  The sides and bottom have been painted white, new flood lights have been installed, a new diving board and ladders have been added for the convenience of the swimmers, and two stalwart life guards are on hand for protection.

Lifeguards: Watson MaGee and Arial Warrick

This photo is not very clear, but perhaps you can see how crowded the pool was on this particular day.  Those are people, three rows deep, sitting on bleachers surrounding the pool.   The house in the background is on the corner of 14th and Jones.
This is the Rayon Yarn's "pin up girl", June Reed for July 1946.   During WWII , Rayon Yarn's began including a "pin up girl", a photo of someone chosen out of DuPont employment in each issue.  It was considered to be a tremendous honor to be chosen.   During the war, these magazines were sent to those fighting for our country. 

June Reed worked for the Methods and Standards Section.  At the time of this photo, she had worked at the plant for her third summer between terms of college at Peabody.  Her father, J.R. Reed worked in Rayon Maintenance.