At the beginning of the 20th century William R. Lietch and his wife Saluda owned a large farm on the road that connected Norcross to Stone Mountain, in the area where today Jimmy Carter Boulevard crosses I-85. For some years they had telephone service from both the Norcross and Tucker local telephone systems, since their location was on the edge of the territory covered by each system. Since that was a time when “long distance” service was more of a challenge than today, they were sometimes called upon to be a “connection” to relay messages from subscribers of one system to friends on the other.
Their son ArchieHoward (“Arch”) Lietch earned a Doctor of Pharmacy degree and took over operation of the Norcross Pharmacy, on South Peachtree Street, in 1907, running it for over 30 years.
Dr. Lietch married Jessie Twitty, the daughter of preacher T. T. Twitty, who had moved his family to Norcross in the 1890s when he was called to serve at the Norcross First Baptist Church. Jessie’s grandchildren tell the story that when Jessie Twitty had previously been living near Buford she had attracted the interest of a young man from that area.
After she moved to Norcross he remained smitten, but her interest in the relationship evidently had waned. His last-ditch attempt to woo her was to walk to Norcross from his home miles away to bring her a copy of the sheet music to a popular song of the day, “I Wonder Who’s Kissing Her Now?” No luck though! Arch and Jessie lived in a home at the corner of Thrasher and Autry Streets in Norcross and raised three children – sons Howard and Tom and daughter Sara. Tom and Howard both served in the U.S. military in World War II.
Dr. Lietch died in 1948, a short time after he and Jessie had moved back to the farm outside town. Jessie remained there for many years, and her granddaughter Sylvia has fond memories of time spent with her grandmother on the farm as she grew up – riding the mules Red and Kate, enjoying seasonal crops such as corn, tomatoes and scuppernongs, feeding the pigs and turkeys that were raised there, spending the night there with her high school girlfriends after Friday night football games.