Law compiles book about Varnado’s history

Published 9:12 pm Sunday, August 23, 2015

When Sally Thigpen Law served on Varnado’s Board of Aldermen for five years starting in 1999, the service got her to thinking about the village’s past.

For over a year, Law visited the library in Bogalusa to find out as much as she could about Varnado’s beginnings. She came up with interesting tidbits and compiled her findings into a book titled, Village of Varnado — Memories of the Past.

“It was very time consuming compiling the book,” Law said. “I started gathering the material in April of 2014. It took me well over a year to get all the material for the book.”

Law said relatives of early Varnado mayors donated articles and photographs for the book.

“I got my first information for the book from Elaine Williams Hoggett,” she said. “Her father was the first mayor of Varnado. There wasn’t an election then, but Gov. Earl K. Long appointed

him and three of the aldermen.”

Homer Seal was twice elected Varnado mayor. Law said Seal’s daughter donated articles and photos of her father during his time as mayor.

Levi Walker was the first female mayor elected in Varnado.

“It was very interesting, but very time-consuming compiling the book,” Law said. “I sat at the library sometimes two or three hours a day looking for information. It was real exciting when you found something you didn’t know about.”

There are various newspaper clippings Law compiled from local newspapers.

“I didn’t get anything out of my head when doing this. It all came out of the newspaper.”

Law said contacted a family member to get some information about Walt Magee, Varnado’s second mayor.

“His niece, Jeannine Magee Bracey, gave me pictures of her grandparents, who were Walt’s parents, and an early article on the Town of Varnado that her uncle, Mason Magee, typed up many years ago,” Law said.         

Varnado was incorporated in 1947.

Law first served as an alderman in 1999 and then won a four-year term.

“My being in office was what got me to thinking about doing this book,” Law said.

The book is selling for $25. It is an extra $5 for shipping and handling. Orders can be sent to the Village of Varnado, P.O. Box 200, Varnado, La., 70467.