Zephyrhills 100th Anniversary: Scotty’s City Drug Store

By Gregg, 27 January, 2010, 35 Comments

Isn’t it fascinating that a building can so often evoke memories for us?  Walking into the home of your grandparents or a former school room can bring to mind the sounds, smells, feelings and experiences of different times in our development. As a part of our centennial reminiscing, we have asked alumni to share their favorite locations in Zephyrhills of years past.  It is not surprising that many listed Scotty’s Drug Store as just one of those extraordinary locales.

A bit of research on Scotty’s City Drug Store reveals that this particular building was a bit uncommon in its own right.  The location on the north side of 5th avenue was built in August 1911 by Waldo M. Francisco who built the structure completely on his own with self-crafted blocks. The drug store by the same name opened in 1911 on the location. It has housed several different businesses: Napier Drug Store in 1919; Allen Bickford Drug Store in 1926; City Drug Store in 1930 and Scotty’s City Drug Store through its closing in 1970.

The teens of the 1960’s and 70’s will remember the Scotty’s proprietors who were Scott and Edna Jordan whose children were Randy, Jan and Vicky.

Scotty’s was the first Zephyrhills business to feature a drive-thru window for dispensing prescriptions.  A drive-thru bulletproof window, originally used at a bank, was positioned in the alleyway on the west side of the building.  The drive-thru enabled customers to pick up their medicines without leaving their cars, quite a boom for elderly people and mothers with babies. Mrs. Jordan was also a teacher at ZHS and later served as a guidance counselor at Zephyrhills Junior High School. After leaving Zephyrhills in 1970 the Jordan family had additional adventures. They moved to Inverness and a few years later, they became missionaries to Haiti.  While in Haiti, Scott improvised a system he called “pharmacy on horseback,” enabling doctors to operate clinics and provide much-needed medicine to remote mountain villages.

Here are some local reminiscences of the ambiance of Scotty’s:

“Before it was Scotty’s Drug, it was Bill Skinner’s City Drug and I worked for 50 cents an hour. My routine was to go in before school and fetch 25 pounds of ice from the ice house. I then used a hand machine to crush the ice to be used that day,” said Bill Baker, Class of 1954

George Neukom, Class of 1954 said he recalled the friendly competition with Neukom’s Drug Store.

Ann Brooke Smith Neukom, class of 1958 was a babysitter for the Jordan’s in 1958 and also helped in the drugstore.

Lynn Nichols Timmons, class of 1960 shared that her first job was at Jordan’s, manning the soda counter—selling drinks and ice cream. “I made a whopping fifty cents per hour at age 15,” she exclaimed.

“Daddy would take my brother, Johnny and I there for great hamburgers and milk shakes,” said Diane Clements Vilas, class of 1965

“They had the most wonderful sundaes and shakes in town and town dentist, Dr. Mann would always give his patients a free ice cream cone coupon when you left his office,”  said Suzie Hill Pippin, class of 1973

“It was a great teen hangout and they put real vanilla flavoring in the cokes,” said Clereen Morrill Brunty, class of 1973

“I remember going there many days after school with my friend, Vicki Jordan,” said Jackie Hood Grant, class of 1977

“They had a live radio show and my Grandma Geiger worked at Scotty’s,” said Sharon Geiger Reeves, Class of 1980

Countdown to Centennial

Countdown to Centennial
By Madonna Jervis Wise and Clereen Morrill Brunty of the 100th Anniversary Committee, ZHS. Article originally appeared in the Zephyrhills News on July 9, 2009.

All rights reserved. Photos © Madonna Jervis Wise

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