Fannin County TXGenWeb
Clemmie Templeton Sealy Rainey


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Mrs. Clemmie Rainey plays the "numbers game" while Ladonia (pop.900) sleeps. And she has found that the pay-off is good.
Mrs. Rainey, 56, is nightwatchman in the Fannin County town. She's been going to work- armed with a .38 special revolver- at 8 pm and making her rounds till 5 am for some 16 years 'off and on'.
She likes the job wouldn't have any other, and prides herself on bing a constant watcher and jot-downer of license plates of strange cars. That's how she plays the 'numbers game'. Significently, Mrs. Rainey was born near the Hunt County community of Jot 'em Down.
A few months ago when the L.F. Fry Dry Goods store in Ladonia was burglarized, Mrs. Rainey chased the intruders car all over town in her 15 year old sedan. She jotted down the license number, phoned it to deputies at Bonham, and the man was arrested. He had stolen more than 50 dresses from Fry's.
More recently, Mrs. Rainey spotted a car parked in back of Jay Lindley's second hand store. The time was 2 am, an unusual hour for anything to be parked anywhere but at home in Ladonia.
She throught it over, and at 3 am awoke deputies in Bonham with information about the license plate. This single phone call helpted authorities clear up to 24 seperate burglaries- 12 in Fannin County and 12 in Grayson County. 
Generally, Mrs. Rainey prowls the Ladonia streets and back alleys all night. Often, she's accompanied by her husband, Ross, but points to her trusty .38 and says flatly: "I'm not afraid of anything or anybody".
In the red brick city hall, which sits in the middle of Ladonia's square, Mrs. Rainey can always get in a hot game of Forty-Two with the "boys in the back room". Of course, even that breaks up around midnight. The town restaurant, Dorothy's Cafe, cloese up at 8pm or earlier, Severice stations cloese at dark. There is no movie, and Ladonia gets so deserted at night that a bunch of local youngsters can safely start a game of "kick the can' in the middle of a downtown street.
I'ts in the eerie quiet of the night, though, that Mrs. Rainey reaches for the switch and turns off all the lights of City Hall.
Then, she sits in the dark and watches.
"You know, you can really learn things by just sitting and watching", Mrs. Rainey said. "It's by sort of like detective work, and I like that".
Time never hangs heavy on Mrs. Rainey's hands. She has five keys that have to be punched throughout the night, and she's made it a habit, too, to clock store fronts. Ever so often she discovers a door accidentally left open, or finds keys left in the door by merchants anxious to get home. Additionally, she has had to be on hand to answer Ladonia's fire alarm setup at City Hall. Mrs. Rainey is responsible for calling out Ladonia's 28 volunteer firemen.
Mrs. Rainey first got the hang of being a wathman during the lifetime of her first husband, Luther A. Sealy, who had the job in Ladonia 14 years. She started the job full-time several years ago.....
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