This was the medical office of Dr. John Cooper Godbold, Jr. (1888-1952). Dr. Godbold was the son of a Wilcox County physician. He came to Whatley in 1912 to practice medicine. His first office was in the Jeffrey Building which also housed Dr. Jeffrey’s office and other businesses. This building is no longer in existance. Dr. Godbold built this office building in the late 1920s.
Dr. Godbold’s Office building is a small, stuccoed structure that’s crowned by a low pitched, hip roof displaying exposed rafter ends. It has two entrances on the front. The building has been altered over time. The facade of the building had a canopy, which has been removed. A rear addition, consisting of one room, was added in the early 1930s. The stucco was probably added in the mid-1930s.
The two front entrances on Dr. Godbold’s Office accessed two separate waiting rooms, the left one for whites and the right one for blacks. Behind these waiting rooms was the doctor’s office. The rear examination room was added when Dr. Godbold hired a full-time nurse. He maintained his practice in Whatley until the early 1950s. Around 1953, this building was rehabbed into a residence for a crippled relative of the Godbolds. After that person died, the building was used for storage.
This building is a contributing property to the Whatley Historic District that was listed on the National Register of Historic Places (NRHP) on April 30, 1998. It is located on Main Street in Whatley beside the Post Office (GPS coordinates 31.650696, -87.705816).
Source: NRHP “Whatlev Historic District” Registration Form.
Photographs courtesy of RuralSWAlabama.