Joseph Allen Prevatt, Successful Merchant and Veteran of World War One

Charlton County Herald

R. Ward Harrison, Editor

March 31, 1950

A native and lifelong resident of Charlton County, Joseph Allen Prevatt was born in 1892, six miles west of Folkston in the Traders Hill district.

He is the son of the late Jackson Prevatt who moved to Charlton from Baker County, Fla. as a young man, settling on the farm homestead where the subject of this sketch was born. Shortly after coming to Charlton the elder Prevatt was married to Miss Mary Ann Dowling, a daughter of Aaron Dowling, a former Ordinary of Charlton County, J.A. Prevatt being one of six sons and daughters born to them.

Mr. Prevatt obtained his education in the public schools of the county while growing up on his father’s farm near this city. After completing his school studies he worked for about ten years as a woodsman for J.V. Gowen, Sr.

While employed by Mr. Gowen, World War One came along and the young woodsman entered the nation’s armed forces serving for more than a year on the battlefields of France where he acquitted himself with credit.

Returning to Charlton County following his release from the Army, Mr. Prevatt shortly thereafter bought out a grocery and market business operated by J.S. Haddock in the building now occupied by Johnson Brothers grocery store. After continuing the business there for six years he purchased the building and mercantile business operated for many years by the late M. Altman. After carrying on the business there for three years he transferred it under lease to the late Gilbert Mizell. He then worked for a short time for the Folkston Grain and Grocery Co. and then for J.H. Johnson’s sawmill enterprise at Racepond.

After terminating his connection at Racepond, Mr. Prevatt in association with his brother, O.K. Prevatt, operated a naval stores business for about four years, working the timber on the White lands owned by E.B. Stapleton. This was during the depression when naval stores prices were at a low ebb.

When the late Gilbert Mizell’s health forced him to retire from business, Mr. Prevatt again took over his market and grocery enterprise acquired from M. Altman, since which time he has successfully carried on the business and is regarded as being one of the city’s leading mercantile establishments.

Mr. Prevatt has recently completed a modern brick store building on the lot adjoining the old Altman store on the east where he now has one of the cleanest, best-stocked and most efficiently operated grocery and market stores in the city. The old Altman Building, a Folkston landmark has been dismantled and an attractive brick business building with quarters for a dry goods store and barber shop has been erected on the site. Mr. Prevatt’s block of modern new brick buildings have added much to the appearance of Folkston’s business district and are contributing to the city’s business progress. He is to be commended for this evidence of his faith in the future of the city and county.

About thirty years ago Mr. Prevatt was married to Miss Ellen Altman, daughter of the late Mr. and Mrs. M. Altman, pioneer residents of Charlton County. To this union have been born four daughters. Mrs. Vira Huggins, Folkston; Mrs. Velma Becker and Mrs. Jewell Haddock of Jacksonville and Miss Joelyn Prevatt, at home.

Mr. and Mrs. Prevatt are both members of the Free Will Baptist Church. He is also a member of the W.O.W. He is quiet and unassuming in manner and is widely regarded as being one of the county’s most honorable, upright citizens and a business man of the highest integrity, fair, honest and courteous in all his dealings.

Charlton  County Archives