Hattie’s View: The perfect hobo camp site II

By Ellen Coffey

If you’re a West Columbia native you may recall in 1950’s an old red barn and riding stables at the corner of Dreher Road and US Highway 1 – where fire house Subs and Great Clips strip is today.

On the opposite side of the road was a white two story Art Deco Amoco gas station – site of today’s Chic-Fil-A.

A few horses roamed around a small pasture near Hite’s pond which was a tad further down Dreher Road.

Soon there will be 126 new town houses up from Hites pond and Hite’s Bar B Que.

My high school friends and I spent many hot summer evenings swimming in Hites pond. We often headed across Dreher Road at the invitation of sister Connie and Coy Derrick – faithful members of nearby Green Hill Baptist Church)

With hearts of gold, the Derrick family served us snacks and as the evening slid into darkness we were sometimes extended sleep over invitations.

After joining the Derrick’s family night time prayers we were ready for sleep. Sleep assisted by the huge attic fan that pulled the cool fresh night air from Hite’s pond through the entire house.

Fast forward to this century. 

I enjoyed walking my pups down a well worn path going into the area woods.

More than once my pups spotted rabbits galore playing in a thicket. 

One day we arrived at sunset and we watched an old white-haired gentleman set up a rabbit box-near the thicket.

We saw different folk doing the same thing at different times.

Think about it.

A perfect hidden Hobo campsite on Dreher Road: The pond, fish, frogs and rabbits, trees, brush and water for a bath. 

I’d say many a hobo or homeless person, over the years, occupied this perfect camp site.

Surely property owners and officials are excited about the coming town houses to that location.

I’m excited too.

Thanks to Greenhill Baptist Church and members like the Derrick family I have many happy memories of the area and neighborhood businesses as it was in the old days, Y’all.