Greene County Arkansas

Paragould, Arkansas

Centennial Edition Section 3


Monday, August 29, 1983~Paragould Daily Press


Photo courtesy Dr. C.W. Starnes

A Fire at the Stancill Hotel, located at the south east corner of Pruett and Emerson, brought a crowd of observers into the streets, including A.W. Welborn, who took this picture. The photographer was more noted though for his portraits, such as the one (below) at right of Melba Martindale.


Photo courtesy Melba Martindale


                     Welborn's Studio


   "Mr. Welborn makes pictures of all sized and styles, does picture framing, enlarging and kodak finishing. Personally, he is one of our best known alert and progressive citizens and is fully alive to the best interests of Paragould and the vicinity."           

                        From Paragould up-to-date, 1918

     But confusion is epidemic in trying to sort out the history of Welborn's Studio. Each person asked remembers it being in a different location. Others say, "Talk to Franklin Wilbourn; they were related."

   The Welbourns, of the wholesale business and

     The business summary of A.L. Welborn's Studio in the 1918 commercial brochure, Paragould Up-to-date, reads quite a bit like the business summary of McHaney's Studio included in the same publication.   the Welborns, of the photographic studio, were not related, but the families did live next door to each other for a time, Franklin Wilbourn recalls. "We sometimes got each other's phone calls and mail," he said, proving that the confusion is not just a modern-day problem.
     "Photography at the present day is not merely the transmission of one's features on paper, as in days gone by, but has now developed into a high art that produces every expression and the operator must have the natural talent for the profession and be an artist in every sense of the word to measure up to public taste," the brochure read.  "One of the most capable and reliable men engaged in this profession in this section is A.L. Welborn, proprietor of  Welborn's Studio."  

     Welborn apparently opened his first studio in about 1903 after apprenticing with Tom McHaney. He worked for McHaney at several different times, each time leaving anew to open or re-open his own studio. When McHaney finally closed his Paragould operation after moving to Oklahoma, Welborn bought him out.

    Welborn died sometime in the 1930s and his widow, Jessie, continued to operate the business, in later years

    Today, long after both Welborn and McHaney closed down, some people get the two confused.    out of her home. She died sometime in the 1940s.



Transcribed from the 1983 Centennial Edition by : PR Massey

Return to Greene County, Arkansas Centennial Edition

Return to Greene County, Arkansas Newspapers

Return to Greene County, Arkansas Index Page

2010 PR Massey