Brokerage Days: From Penny Ante Alley to A “Wirehouse” – Part 6

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When I worked at that small firm, Sims Securities, it was located on Broughton Street just blocks from Russell Street, the main street in Orangeburg, SC. (Four blocks of fine shopping!) Previous to my associations with said firm, it had been founded by Mr. Donald Salley as “Salley Securities,” eventually became “Salley-Sims” and later, after Mr. Donald retired, “Sims Securities.” I’m not related to Mr. Donald but I am related to some of the Salley’s because one of Mr. Donald’s sons by his first marriage, D.D., married Harriet “Pat” Boone, who was a wonderful lady, one of my mother’s best friends, and a cousin as well since her grandfather from Rowesville had married one of my great-great aunts from Rowesville. Got it?

So where does Penny Ante Alley come in? Well sir, and Mr. Donald told me this story himself, seems that in the early 1960s, he had founded Orangeburg’s first stock brokerage firm in an office building located on Penny Ante Alley. This little street had been around awhile. Even in the 1970s, on the side of an old brick building on the Alley, one could still make out the faded sign: “Bryant Livery Stable,” the Bryants being another fine old Orangeburg family.

However, as Mr. Donald told me, the address lacked gravamen for a brokerage firm. Think about it: “Sally and Company, Stocks, Bonds, Mutual Funds, 142 Penny Ante Alley, Orangeburg, SC. ???” Not an address to inspire confidence.

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Charles McCain

Charles McCain is a Washington DC based freelance journalist and novelist. He is the author of "An Honorable German," a World War Two naval epic. You can read more of his work on his website: http://charlesmccain.com/

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