Wednesday, November 16, 2011

Nov. 1945 - L.S. Corbins Residing Here

EEE!! I found another newspaper article relevant to the Coffee Shop & Travelers Inn!!

See, I like to take Joseph to our town library because they have a great kid's area with puzzles and big foam blocks for building towers. Sometimes, when Joseph is feeling cooperative, I have time to browse the Shenandoah Heritage Room and go through the many, many scrapbooks filled with newspaper clippings about our town. The scrapbooks don't give me a headache the way microfiche does and I absolutely love skimming through the World War II articles. It makes me happy.

Of course, I'm always on the lookout for advertisements, pictures, or articles about my house... and what do you know?? I ACTUALLY FOUND ONE!!! It was like Christmas! I started jumping up and down excitedly in the middle of the library. Fortunately, they know me there... so it was all good.

Remember the town calendar picture of our house?

The caption at the bottom of the picture reads, "Traveler's Inn & Coffee Shop - L.S. Corbin owned and operated the Traveler's Inn & Coffee Shop from 1946 to 1953."

This was the first picture I ever added to my house history file and it was crucial to my research because it gave me the owner's name, official business name, and the dates of operation. In other words, I finally had some very helpful search parameters. So while skimming one of the scrapbooks, "L.S. Corbins" just JUMPED OUT AT ME. Here's the article:


Oh, small towns... How I love your need to announce the presence of new neighbors to everyone!

This article is full of interesting information:
  1. The Corbin's were originally from this area, but lived in D.C. for 10 years.
  2. Mr. Corbin was a plumber. I already knew that, but still neat to read about setting up his business.
  3. Mrs. L.S. Corbin's maiden name is Ruby White. Those scrapbooks are filled with wedding announcements. Maybe I can find hers?
  4. My house was once referred to as the "Beasley House" and was later owned by a Mr. Bushong. Who are they? Must find out.
  5. Mr. Corbin remodeled the first floor and is probably responsible for the updated wood floors and 40s era pink bathroom addition and red vinyl kitchen.
  6. The second floor was a separate apartment. I'm thinking that Lemuel and Ruby used the downstairs bedroom (now our dining room) for themselves and that the 5 upstairs rooms were used for boarding guests at the Traveler's Inn.
  7. If Mr. Corbin had to install a furnace, is he responsible for the radiators in the house? I was thinking they were older, but maybe not.

So, the Corbins moved into the house in November of 1945. Less than a year later, Ruby announced the grand opening of the Coffee Shop and Travelers Inn in the newspaper.

From what I've collected, I gather that Mr. Corbin ran a plumbing business while Mrs. Corbin was mostly responsible for the running of the Coffee Shoppe and Travelers Inn. Here's a picture of Ruby Corbin.

She's making biscuits. Go here for the corresponding article and recipe. And here's the menu that Ruby served up in the Coffee Shop (sometimes called the Tea Room by town residents).

Ruby's Traveler's Inn and Coffee Shop even made it onto a postcard thanks to a local photographer. I like to picture Ruby driving around in the snazzy car by the tree in fabulous Sunday 50s getup. I don't actually know that it belonged to the Corbins, but it's possible.

Apparently the research gods were looking out for me the day I found that newspaper article because I decided to walk through the cemetery on my way home and look what I found...

I think I started laughing like a crazy person at this point...

My thoughts at the time:
  1. Aww! They are buried next to each other. *sigh*
  2. Wow! Ruby outlived Lemuel by 47 years.
  3. Darn it! I missed interviewing Ruby by a little less than 2 years.
And that concludes my house history obsessing for the day. Have a lovely Wednesday!


  1. Wow! That is a wealth of information! I'm also amazed that she was alive until 2007. There's gotta be someone around who knew her well.

  2. THAT'S SO COOL!!! :) What a fabulous find! I love that all your research leads to more research. You're a regular Nancy Drew. ;)


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