"This & That" News - August 2006

If you're looking for a certain article I wrote in a past issue of "This & That" you might find it faster by doing a "search" with your browser. With Netscape just click your mouse at the top at EDIT and then FIND and type in the word or words you're looking for. If you use Internet Explorer, just click on EDIT and then FIND ON THIS PAGE to do a search.

Below is August 3, 2002 to August 31, 2006.

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August 31, 2006 Circulation over 5,000 Vol 10 Issue 501

I have some good news this week, Doug Williams received his shipment of books tuesday...... "Gene Autry, Oklahoma, A Lifetime of Memories." The book is 141 pages and filled from cover to cover with info and photos about Doug's days of growing up in Gene Autry and other memories. I been reading through it and recognize a lot of the names and photos, even though I didn't grow up in Gene Autry. He's already sold several dozen in just 2 days. I'm telling you folks, if you are interested in owning a copy of Doug's book, you better get hold of him, these books won't last long. Go to the link to Doug's website below for more info, he even takes credit cards and paypal. dougwilliams@cableone.net Click Here - Click Here - Click Here

Before we leave Doug and go on to something else, I need to correct a mistake I had in last week's T&T. Doug Williams' sister-in-law Schahara lives in West Texas, and not in Colorado, That is Doug's other sister-in-law. Anyway, those Empress Trees of Schahara's is growing so fast in West Texas, in the pic they are only 90 days old. Wow! Click Here

I was driving on South Washington the other day and noticed Brent Hodges has his Quality Builders Supply building up for sale. A friend told me later that Brent is kinda going into semi retirement and moving to the Houston area where he has his boat docked. Brent plans to open a small cabinet and woodworking shop close by. Last Fall when I was trying to get set up to pour the cemetery markers for the veterans section at Rosehill, Brent came to my rescue when the 4x4s I bought at the lumber yard were out of square. I gave Brent a call, and he said come on down. Brent had his long time employee Michael put the 4x4s through the planer, and when he got through the boards were perfectly straight and square. I use the 4x4s to make the form to hold my mold in place until the material sets. Here is a pic I took the other day of the 4x4 form. Click Here

Brent helped when I really didnt know what I was doing, just knew I wanted to make markers, and vaguely had an idea how to go about it. But like so many others out there, Brent came through when I needed that help, and didnt even charge for his service. Brent's cabinet making business was located at 205 South Washington here in Ardmore behind Animal Health Center. By the way, most people have forgotten the Animal Health Center is where Chickasaw Regional Library originally started out about 1950. Click Here

Brent's cabinet shop really consists of two buildings, one on South Washington and the other behind it on A SW. Here are a couple of photos I took this week. Click Here - Click Here

Here I am pouring my 'white cement' into the 4x4 mold when making those markers. The boards Brent put through his commercial planer are working great..... I've poured 38 markers so far! Its people like Brent and a lot of others across the country that made this happen. But we are getting those badly broken and unreadable markers replaced. Click Here

Wilkinson Feed and Seed was across the street from Brent's business. I was in Nannie's Antiques in Marietta, Oklahoma the other day, and there I saw some kind of notepad with Wilkinson Feed and Seed on the cover. It was behind a piece of glass, so I didnt get to hold it and and look inside. Click Here

Here's some other items I snapped a picture at Nannie's Antiques including an old wringer washer, a smug pot, a bee hive billows, a couple of water plugs, two motorcycles carved out of wood, and a traffic signal light. Click Here - Click Here - Click Here - Click Here - Click Here - Click Here - Click Here - Click Here - Click Here - Click Here -

Another piece of Ardmore history came down last week. It was the old Galt mansion at Dornick Hills on the north edge of Ardmore (3605 Chickasaw Blvd). All thats left is an open lot now. Sad. Click Here

I was over in the northwest part of town last saturday and saw what looked like a very old tree in a front yard, so I stopped to ask. Jack Herndon was working in his yard and said the tree is probably over 100 years old. The tree is located at 11th and N Street NW. I failed to ask him what kind of tree it was, but I think its a hackberry tree? Click Here

This is an old radio I have that still works great. Its a tube type made by General Electric of a material called bakelite. Sure picks up Ardmore's Oldies channel good. lol Click Here

My cousin, Carol Jean Carmon Cole, was up from Ft Worth last saturday and brought a special plant. Its from the seeds of these two big 4 O'Clock plants that grew in front of my grandparents house next to the lumber yard on 3rd NE back in the 1960s. Its took root really well, and growing fine! Now to see what color the blooms will be... I think they were pink if I remember right. Time will tell. Click Here

It is sure good to see cooler weather the past few days here in Ardmore. Those 106 days were awful. The weatherman says even cooler weather is on the way. I dont drink much coffee in the hot summertime, but I've ready to start drinking more coffee with winter coming on. I sure like that OkieBlend coffee specially roasted and blended by the Jolliff's in Wilson Oklahoma. If you ain't tried a cup, your missing out. Click Here - Click Here

I guess the two things that really stuck in my mind when I visited Susanne and Dan Jolliff's business in Wilson a year ago was that old 1895 coffee bean roaster and those neat coffee sacks from all over the world. Click Here - Click Here - Click Here - Click Here

SOME LETTERS FROM THIS WEEK'S MAILBAG

"Congratulations on the 500th issue of "This and That". Although I haven't read every word of all 500, I have looked at almost all of them. The newsletter never fails to educate and entertain. Thanks for all your work." -Mark Coe
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"I had forgotten how beautiful the Blue River is. I still miss the old swinging bridge over Pennington Creek in Tish. I also enjoyed the pictures of the remodeled Gainesville zoo. It looks great. And you have added another hamburger place for me to try. Keep up the good work. Your 1908 graduation program of AHS seniors had my grandmother's name in it (Mary Mueller). She is my mother Frances Holder Arnold's mother. Keep up the great work Butch!!!!!" -Tom Arnold
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"Butch: I am looking for a photo of Will A. Ward, who was a deputy sheriff of Carter County, OK. in 1918. He was living with his wife Ida and their daughter in Ardmore. There was also a constable Charlie Jones of Wilson township that I could also use a photo of, but Will Ward's photo is the most important. I don't know if you can help me or maybe you know someone who can. Thank you." -Steve Slaughter Sjs1930@aol.com
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"Butch, That Poem by Woody Guthrie Brought back memories I was Three years old when my Dad and Mom loaded me my two older sisters and older brother and we started out west on our way to California. We run out of money in Tucson Ar.and lived there untill 1938 for five years then we went back home to Ada. The movie Grapes of Wrath told the story just the way I remember it we were Okies. you could tell a rich Okie from a poor Okie the rich one's had two mattresses on top of their car." -Paskell
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Butch. This is a picture of the Ardmore grade schools in 1936. -Grover Click Here
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Dear Mr. Bridges, I am trying to find a copy of the Ardmore AFB Officer’s Wives Club cookbook, “Plane Cookin,’” so I searched the net and found a mention (below) on your website. I clicked on the link and it only showed a picture of the two books mentioned. Do you know how I can contact the person who has the cookbook? It was in your Sept. 2005 newsletter so I’m not sure it’s even still available. I was born in Ardmore in 1958 when my father, Col. George Norman, was stationed there and my mother has recipes in the cookbook. She had given a copy of it to my daughter for her 9th birthday, with her special recipes handwritten in the front and back. Unfortunately, we suffered some flood damage recently and that book is now molded and ruined. My mom is going to be 89 this Dec. and I would like to get another copy for her to recreate what she gave my daughter. I greatly appreciate any help you can give me. Thanks very much , and have a great day. If you know of any other way to get a copy, please let me know" jpmanm@eatel.net Click Here
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"Hi Butch: Thanks for all your work with T&T--I'm sure you know all your readers appreciate your efforts. I wonder if you or your readers can answer this question for me: Was there ever a Town in Oklahoma named Pittsburg? I know of the County but I'm curious to know if there ever was a Town. Shots of Blue River near Tishomingo were beautiful. Also, chess set is a real work of art. Thanks." -Mel
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"That's pretty cool. Never really realized just how involved Oklahomans' were in the Civil War. Just always figured since it wasn't declared north or south that the Territory wasn't effected by the war. Thanks."
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"That has to be the cleanest restaurant that I've ever seen. Great decor. Love the Elvis stuff. Maybe that friend of yours that was retiring from the courthouse who had a bunch of Elvis stuff should meet the owner of this restaurant. Might be a good place for her collection to be shown." Click Here
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"I was wondering if you could help me. I am trying to research my Great-Grandfather. This name was Leo John McGivern. I believe his family came to OK from Illinois. I was told at one time he was the Mayor of Wilson, OK. Is there any place I can look this up? I wanted to tell my kids about it. Thank you for any help you may be able to give." -Melissa King Foster melissaf@colonialsavings.com
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"Greetings Butch, as always I enjoy your T&T each week. Thank you for taking the time and trouble to share with us. Thought these Westerns entertainers might interest you. They appeared in Ardmore Downtown celebration a few weeks ago. KXII was there and aired some of their act on the news. Choctaw Casino, actually the barbecue place next to the casino, saw them and swept their acts up for 2 Saturday shows for 3 months. They are good clean entertainment. Keep up the good work. Praise God for the rain." -Carol Keisel Click Here
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"I just happen to come by shortly after the bad traffic accident today (08/30/06) at the intersection of Meridian and Hwy 70 in Lone Grove. I shot the attached photos of the Medivac Helicopter that was sitting across the two westbound lanes of Hwy70. They airlifted the lady to OKC. The 6:00PM news said she was in critical condition" -Dwane Stevens Click Here - Click Here - Click Here - Click Here
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"hi butch. thanks for showing the turner falls picture. it sure brings back memories. my grandparents owned francis brother’s drygoods in davis. my grandmother alma ellis francis had a cousin, ellis ledbetter, who lived in ardmore. we used to visit him when i was a child. he lived in a beautiful contemporary home which i think was designed by bruce goff. i remember the living room was paneled in redwood with concealed lighting. i can’t remember where it was located. we used to visit him & go to lake murray lodge for sunday dinner." -susan
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"We lost a good cowboy last week. Bruce Dillman, author of The Cowboy Handbook, died of a heart attack. For the past few years, Bruce has been deeply involved with the Gene Autry, Oklahoma Museum and the annual Cowboy Film and Music Festival. He had moved to Gene Autry earlier this year so he could devote more time to the museum. I sang at his funeral and he was buried at the cemetery near the museum." -Les Gilliam www.LesGilliam.com
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"Butch, we went to Lebanon to see the big fish kill yesterday afternoon and came back through Madill and ate at the LeGrande Mexican Restaurant just this side of Madill, across from the WW Trailer Manufacturing place. It was delicious. We had such a wonderful time at the establishment, great meal, and in a nice clean restaurant with very cordial employees. The owner said they hand roll most everything they serve and make it from scratch. I had a plate with a Chili Relleno, Beef Enchilada, refried beans (the best ever) and Mexican rice! Herb had a Mexican plate with enchiladas, beans and rice, we shared an order of Guacamole. The salsa and chips were different but very good."
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"Hi Butch, My Great Grandfather, James E. Cisco was born 1867 in Salyersville, KY. James E. Cisco moved to the Ardmore area around 1895 or 1896. Henry Cisco (my Grandfather) was born 1897 in Ardmore, OK. My Father, Walter Vanoy Cisco was born 1921 in Olney, OK. Then in 1923 they moved to California. In the 1970's my Grandfather went to visit his old stompin grounds. I have a photo of him with the "Cisco Road" sign, from that 1970's trip, but I can't find it right now. It is my guess that Cisco road was named after James E. Cisco. Enclosed is a photo taken 1917 in the Ardmore area. The man holding the bat is Henry Cisco." -David Cisco popcisco1@hotmail.com Click Here
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"Butch, If anyone can, it would sure help our butterfly friends to make it through this dry spell. Any old fruit, bananas, placed up above the ground to stop ground varmits will work, riper the better. It would help them make it thru the year. Farmers Market seems to have over ripe bananas if asked for, just punch a few nails holes along its length and watch them (and some very pretty ones) enjoy your effort."- Jack
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"Butch- La Rocas Mexican Restaurant (the old Hub) in Marietta makes a really good hamburger with two pieces of meat, all the fixins and a large side of fries." -Carole
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Butch here is some of those watermelon seed, this is a raised bed . I have had to water every day since this drought. I'm usin 1/8" black plastic drip line (TheDripStore.com) with 5 gal water ever night. At end of Oct I will clean out for turnips, looks like only way to insure a crop. Click Here
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"Your visit to Gainesville, Texas to the Gainesville Zoo brought back some boyhood memories of the area of Leonard Park in which it occupies when I resided in the city in the late 30's, 40's, and 50's. During the 30's no city zoo existed in Leonard Park and the current stately, tall pecan trees were youngsters such as was I. Your visit to the Gainesville zoo also stirred up some other memories of Gainesville which follow. The creek that flows through a portion of the city zoo was of inconsequence at the time. But the creek then and now commands an approach into the city from the West. Apparently in the late 30's the old bridge was decrepit (most likely wooden) and needed replacement. Therefore, under the auspices of the WPA it was removed and was being replaced with a new one made of concrete and steel. I remember my Uncle Willie Joe Gore and I carried a freshly made hot lunch each working day during the summer of 38 or 39 to his brother and my maternal uncle, Harold Gore, who among other men, was employed by the WPA to build the new bridge. The workmen evidently did an excellent practical engineering job because the bridge continues be in use this very day. A posted plaque on a post of the bridge is dedicated to their workmanship. My Uncle Harold was proud of his participation in building the bridge. In the late 30's I lived in Gainesville, Texas with my maternal grandparents Elmer and Jodie Gore. We first lived in a house on Gribble Street that was located abut two blocks north of the local dairy where us boys would visit daily during the summer to look for free inscribed ice cream bar sticks. Later, we moved to 335 Ritchie Street. While living on Gribble Street I remember an elderly black gentleman we called Uncle Tom, who lived in a rundown house in a thicket of small trees and brush. He was very friendly and loved company. So us boys stopped by to visit with him each day we visited the local dairy. If he had some old fruit or vegetables he had found at a grocery store disposal unit he would share it with us. We would refuse it but he insisted that we take it. So we did. Some times the fruit or vegetable was okay. At other times . .. . well. We had a vegetable garden about one block east of us located on a once thriving metal junk yard. Because of the enriched soil created by some of the metal we grew some fantastic vegetables. Later we moved to a three bedroom house in 1939 located on 335 Ritchie Street my grandfather Gore had bought with a bonus that was bestowed upon him by the Federal government for his participation in the Philippine War. The house he bought was built in 1900 and need repairing. So the older boys and our grandfather replaced the shingle roof, the front porch, and repainted the house white. The house still remains there today. Passing by it brings back many fond memories. In the 40's a dam was built across the creek that flows through the Gainesville Zoo. I think I was about 14 years old at the time. We young boys enjoy swimming below the dam and diving from a homemade diving board into the creek. I learned later during a visit the dam was destroyed by a rainstorm that dumped several inches of rain in the Gainesville area. In that same creek using bailing wire I caught a hugh Garfish that measured four feet long. Later in 1957 my family and I moved back to 335 Ritchey Street in Gainesville and lived there for seven enjoyable and happy years which included attending the Nazarene Church located only a short block north of our home. My wife and I reside in San Antonio, Texas. Our children are grown and are raising their own families.Though I was born at Fort Sill, Oklahoma and raised there until age 6, I call Gainesville, Texas my hometown because of the fond memories of most of my boyhood." -Grant West, ewest1@satx.rr.com
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"Butch, did Doug Williams mention the size of the skull? My son saw the picture and thought it was a bear. Of course, if the skull was only about 6 inches long is could have been an opposum, but it appeared larger in his picture. Go to www.ask.com and type in the questions "What does a bear skull look like?" and then "What does an opposum skull look like?".....pictures of each will come up....notice the jaw teeth as well as the front teeth. I would have never guessed a bear skull would look like that, but it was very similar to Doug's pic. Thanks." -Carol Jean Thomason Click Here
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Our high school friendships we soon must sever,
And fade as the dying day,
Our closest bonds must all be broken,
As through the world we wind our way,
But yet, whatsoever be life's fortunes,
We love thee still, OUR ALMA MATER,
Dear Ardmore High so true.

-1936 Ardmore High year book

See everyone next week!

Butch Bridges
Nashobish Ikana
PO Box 11
Ardmore, Oklahoma 73402

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August 24, 2006 Circulation over 5,000 Vol 10 Issue 500

I was in Wynnewood, Oklahoma a couple weeks and a friend told me I could find a great hamburger at Patty Jo's at 907 East Robert S. Kerr Boulevard. Immediately upon entering this quaint restaurant I could tell I was in the right place. Its hard to go wrong when the theme for the dining area is non other than Elvis! There was Elvis Presley memorabilia all over the place. And when they showed us the dancing flamingo, that just topped it all off. But like the owner, I could not recall the name of the music the flamingo was dancing too. If you're ever at Patty Jo's, see if you recognize the music of that dancing flamingo. Click Here

Here's some pics I snapped inside Patty Jo's. Click Here - Click Here - Click Here - Click Here - Click Here - Click Here - Click Here - Click Here

And this is a view of the outside of Patty Jo's. Click Here

And now for a glimpse of that great hamburger. This was no whimpy burger either.... made using a large bun and large piece of ground meat.... so hot you had to wait a minute for the burger too cool down! Click Here

I found another interesting piece of history by accident on the way to Patty Jo's but it was located on the north side of Robert Kerr Blvd. A memorial dedicated to those who fought in the Civil War. Click Here - Click Here - Click Here - Click Here - Click Here - Click Here

We were in Gainesville, Texas last monday and got some great pics. Joe Leonard was born in Gainesville and was our tour guide, directing us to some neat places to see. And I have to mention the great BBQ sandwich (pulled pork) I ate at Joe's urging at a new eating place called Blue's BBQ just two blocks north of the Gainesville courthouse on Commerce Street. I didnt get a picture of that bbq sand but I can still taste the delicious bbq meat!

Some of you will remember Joe Leonard wrote a book about the infamous bank robber Haney Liddell who robbed several banks in this area back in the 1920s including the Marietta bank. Below is a link to Joe's book Bah Bah Black Sheep and info. Click Here

I took a lot of pics in Gainesville and will have to save some of them in the next T&T. But I did take some pics of recently remodeled Gainesville's Frank Buck Zoo. Click Here

Joe's grandfather, John Leonard, started the Gainesville Daily Register 1890 and Joe's dad, Joe Jr., continued the newspaper. Just across from the Frank Buck Zoo is Leonard Park. It's named after Joe Leonard's grandfather, John T. Leonard who was mayor of Gainesville back in the early 1900s. Joe's father ran Gainesville's newspaper for many years. So being born in Gainesville and with all this history in his family, we had the best tour guy a person could want for! Thanks Joe for being such a great guy, we'll be back to Gainesville soon! Click Here

A number of you wrote in to answer what kind of bird that was we saw just outside the St Louis Archway. It turned out they were Red Winged Blackbirds. Grover Wells was one of several who sent in a pic of this beautiful bird. Click Here

Several of you wrote in about the animal skull that Doug Williams sent in last week. It seems the consensus was this skull came from an opossum. With those teet sticking out like they do, he must have been one mean critter. Click Here

Doug William's sister-in-law, Schahara, lives in Colorado and planted 24 Empress Trees last May and at that time they were just a foot high. But in about 60 or so days they had grown to over her head. I can hardly believe how fast they grew in that wonderful Colorado weather. I bought two about the same time, and because of the severe drought here in Ardmore, they have not grown but about two feet tall, but they are surviving. Here is a pic Schahara sent the other day of her beautiful Empress trees! Click Here

I mentioned a while back the photos I have on webshots of Devils Den receives more look-sees than any of my other webshot albums. And I am still trying to figure out what is in the my Sept and Oct 2002 T&Ts that makes it come in second in views by people. I have a feeling its the photos of Magnetic Hill just west of Springer? I said long ago it is one of the best kept secrets in this county. lol This & That Photos Sep 7, 14, 21, 28, 0ct 5, 12, 19, 26, 2002 Click Here

A couple of months ago I mentioned about a Reader in Springer giving me some watermelon seeds. Well about a week ago, I saw my first and only little watermelon showing up beside the house where I planted them. Its a little late in the season for it to do much, but who knows, it may turn out to be a delicious melon. Click Here

SOME LETTERS FROM THIS WEEK'S MAILBAG

"Butch, I was doing some research for cowboy slang and game across the word "Arbuckles". It is slang for coffee, taken from a popular brand of the time. It was common for someone to say, "Give me a cup of Arbuckles." That made me wonder where our Arbuckle mountains got their name? I'm sure it's been talked about in your many T&T's, but can someone refresh my ailing memory?"
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"Butch, I meant to send these photos to you but don't think I ever got around to it. I shot a few photos of Blue River NE of Tishomingo, Okla earlier this summer before it got so dry and two photos of the old wooden water wheel on Pennington Creek near the Fish Hatchery which is north of Tishomingo. Doesn't that water on the river look inviting?" -C. Dwane Stevens Click Here - Click Here - Click Here - Click Here - Click Here
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"Dear Butch, I have been a subscriber to "This and That " for some time now and I look forward to each issue. I presently live in Auburn, California. I moved here from St. Louis, Missouri. I moved there shortly after the construction of the Arch, before the grounds around the structure were landscaped. I lived in St. Louis for 27 years and the pictures of the skyline were very representative of the view from the Arch. For a little bit of history, the Old Courthouse (in your pictures) is where the Dred Scott case was decided. It is a wonderful city with a great variety of activities. The only drawback is the weather, Hot & Humid or Cold with Wind Chill. I do hope you enjoyed your trip. If I had known you planned to visit the city I could have given you some pointers as to where to go and what to see. Hope you did not miss seeing the "Hill" that is the Italian settlement where Joe Garagiola and Yogi Berra grew up. There you can find great Italian food. My favorite restaurant is Giovanni's on the Hill". Thanks for the pictures, they took me back to the time I lived in St. Louis." -Rosetta Spadarotto rspadarotto@sbcglobal.net Click Here
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"Thanks for taking the time to post your experiences on the internet.. I enjoyed reading it and will try your idea." -Bernadette Lange in Hobe Sound, Florida
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"Thanks for the pictures of the park at Sulphur. I walk there each day & love the beauty and the peaceful feeling there. We are so fortunate to have it in our area of the world." -Iva Lee Quetone
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"This is the menu of a Vencedora cafe in Ardmore in 1914." -Grover Click Here
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"Thanks for the pictures atop the St Louis Arch. That's the only way I'll see them, not just fear, but terror of heights would prevent me from making that journey. If I made it at all (which would be never) I'd feel better close to others." -Tomi Click Here
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"The beautiful bird with the red wing in the picture from St. Louis is a Red Wing Blackbird. We have them in our yard in Broken Arrow. They were also in our yard in Texas when we lived there. " -Joyce and Don Coe
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"Hi Butch, the bird in St. Louis looks like a red-wing blackbird. They are so used to people on the beach at Assateague Island that they will sneak around behind them and snitch potato chips from the blanket. Once when a storm was coming, a flock of them appeared in my back yard the day before (I'm sure they know) and ate all the berries off my pyracantha bush hopping back and forth like kids eating corn on the cob until not a berry was left. I always enjoy your newsletter!!!" -G. Kallgren in Maryland
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"Joshua we are praying for all of the troops. Not just once in a while but all the time. But thank you for fighting for us and insuring that we are free. Again thank you." -Kathleen Stoner
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"I am looking for anyone who can identify this family of four." rabell@arbuckleonline.com Click Here - Click Here
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"Hi Butch just wanted you to know I took the grandkids to Saint Louis aug 5th. Had a great time done the boat ride and the arch. did you go to the Hard Rock Cafe while you was there? sure enjoy your news letter." -Concetta
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"We are sending this e-mail to update everyone about two books that we have coming out in the near future. The first one "Gamblers and Gunmen Along the Northern Pacific" published by Smoke Ridge Books, should be available later this summer. The second one, tentatively titled " Bud Ballew Legendary Oklahoma Lawman" has been picked up by Globe Pequot Press. The contract has just been signed and we are unsure about the exact publication date, although it will most likely be late 2006/early 2007. If you would please impart this information to all the membership, and any others that you think would be interested, it would be greatly appreciated. As the books get nearer to publication, further details will be forwarded. In the meantime, any further queries can be directed to personally. All the best." -Lauretta and Elmer McInnes, 216 Roslyn Ave. Yorkton, Sk S3N 1P4 306-782-0057
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Butch, I’m a new fan of your website and am enjoying everyone’s e-mails on Ardmore’s history, especially the ones about drag racing at the old Lake Murray strip, and later at the Springer strip. Coming of age in the 50's and 60's was so very nice. We had the best looking cars, the best looking women, and the very best music ever. I started racing in 1958, at the Lake Murray strip, and raced many times every Sunday against Joe Carrell’s 55 Ford Crown and Charlie Allison’s 55 Chevy with my 56 Olds. About then I joined the Slowpokes Car Club and we had to move the racing to the Springer air strip, approximately in early 1959. The old landing strip came up in chunks very quickly and we had it resurfaced with a 40 foot wide by 2000 foot long strip of asphalt. We never had it so good then. About 1961,1962, and 1963 a lot of the guys bought new cars with big engines such as Bill Pages 1961 406 Ford, my 1962 409 Chevy, Joe Carrell’s 1963 427 Ford, Jess Mitchell’s 1963 427' Ford, J.R. Shaw’s 426 Dodge, and Jim Ragland’s 1962 327 Chevy. Just about everyone from Ardmore and surrounding towns came out and participated in some way by either racing, watching, or on someone’s ‘crew’ at one time or another. It was so much fun to just be in the race, and if you won, that was just a little bit better. The drag strip is still going today, bigger and better, and I believe it is the oldest strip still operating in the USA. Here are a few of the names I remember from the "good old racing days". Many of the original guys are still around. I am sorry if I have forgotten some of you.

Charlie Allison Mike Henderson Jim Ragland Shorty Almon Floyd Gaither Gilbert Rose Bill Benton Floyd Gentry Glenn Reinhart John Bogle Norman Flowers J.R.Shaw Bosco Carmack Caeser Lang Lloyd Smith Glenn Carrell Clint Lang Charles Schwabb Joe Carrell Wendell Knisley John Smith David Capps Peck McBride Victor Thompson Leland Cavner Gene Riotte Royce Vanbuskirk Clyde Copley Joe McRenolds Charlie McDonald Joe Colter Glen Rabe Charles Page Gerald Ellis Bill Page Bill Freeman

It was great to reminisce. -Dennis Lavers
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"As I recall Butch, you recently posted a web address where we could do a FREE search for sex offenders (and child molesters/predators) near us. I have been trying to re-locate that web-site with no results. Can you help?" -Roy Click Here
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"Try riding in that "egg" contraption 7 months pregnant and then having to lie on that pregnant tummy in order to look out the windows at the top. I would not recommend any woman in their 3rd trimester to do what I did back in 1978!! HA!!!"
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"Doggone it, you did it again. Your visit to St. Louis, Missouri reminded me of the time I was stationed at nearby Scott Air Force Base, Belleville, Illinois, located just across the Missouri River. I arrived in St. Louis, Missouri by train in February 1948. From the terminal several of us young Air Force basic trainees, who that month had recently graduated from 13 weeks of basic training at Lackland Air Force, San Antonio, Texas, climbed aboard an Air Force bus and were transported to Scott Air Force Base for training in various career fields. I had been selected to learn Telephone and Telegraph repair for the next 9 months. These are some of the episodes I vividly remember. On Saturdays after a week of training we students traveled to St. Louis, Missouri known by military servicemen as the most friendly city to the military during World War II. We had previously been told by servicemen who had been stationed there during World War II were allowed to ride free on the city streetcars. Of course by 1948, that city rule was no longer in effect. However, a city rule still in existence written in World War II, which we younger servicemen liked very much was the rule that allowed young servicemen at age 18 to buy alcoholic beverages. I had just turned age 18 in January 1948. The city rule during WWII was "if you were old enough to fight, you were old enough to drink." So, of course, we chose the city of St. Louis for our rest and recreation on Saturday after a week of industrious study. My first visit to downtown St. Louis did not present a good impression to me, for the buildings in 1948 were covered in black soot from smoke of coal that was used for heating. Matter of fact practically all the cities and towns including Scott Air Force base used coal in 1948 for heating homes, buildings, and hot water tanks for baths. I spent a week at Scott Air Force base as a fireman feeding large furnaces installed in seven dormitories with coal to heat them and seven hot water tanks. Yeah, me, a young man from Oklahoma, who was used to mostly using wood and natural gas for heating, bathing, and cooking. The only time I remember we used coal at our home was during the winter of 1943 when we lived at Waurika, Oklahoma. We used it in our one and only heating stove. Times before and after we used only wood and/or natural gas. My second visit to the city of St. Louis was for the purpose of traveling on the Admiral, an excursion boat, that regularly carried passengers 10 miles upstream and 10 miles down- stream on the Missouri River. Saturday night was the biggest night of the week for the ship. Prior to boarding the ship an attendant said to us two young airmen, my buddy, Bill and I, "You military are welcomed aboard the ship but please don't give us any trouble." This meant, of course, don't get drunk. The attendant had immediately recognized us even though we were in civilian dress. We promised him we wouldn't give the ship's crew any trouble, paid for our tickets, walked the gangplank into the interior of the ship, and made our way to the upper deck to observe the rolling Missouri River. At least I held to my promise of not getting drunk that night but my friend, Bill Fields, got drunker than a skunk. Matter of fact he became so intoxicated two hours later he decided to walk the railing of the ship as it made its way up the river. He was walking on it when I spotted him. He had only walked about five feet when he lost his balance and began to fall. I quickly ran over to where he was, grabbed him by his belt around his back, and pulled him toward the interior of the ship. Had I not grabbed him in time he would have fallen into the Missouri River that was 10 feet higher than normal due to the heavy spring rains of 1948. I think he learned a lesson that night for the next time we visited the ship three weeks later, instead of walking the ship's rail he danced on the ballroom floor of the ship with a girl in his arms he had met there. It was at this time in my young life I first saw live ballroom dancing by couples dressed in their finest; men in black tuxedos and women in various beautiful gowns. These couples evidently were professional dancers or amateurs who could dance well because they majestically glided across the floor. As my friend, Bill, danced with his female friend I sat at our table, and slowly sipped beer as I watched the costumed dancers move smoothly and effortless across the ballroom floor. Dancing has always fascinated me, but alas I have never learned to dance. I made several other visits to St. Louis thereafter. One of them was a visit to the St. Louis zoo where I saw a 30 foot long snake, either an anaconda, or a boa constrictor that was being forced fed by its caretaker. Today St. Louis looks much cleaner since it began using natural gas instead of coal. The Gateway Arch is an outstanding engineering marvel. I have been told by others who have visited St. Louis since I lasted visited the city that the Admiral continues to ply the Missouri River." -Elmer G. West, ewest1@satx.rr.com

Note: The Missouri River empties into the Mississippi River at St Louis. At 2,500 miles long, the Missouri River is the longest river in the U.S.
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"We were checking records in Altus today and exploring the area. We came across this bell in Martha and my wife remembered your web page." -Jim & Linda Oliver Click Here
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"Remember the Alamo, remember Pearl Harbor, and for God's sake - - remember Boise City!" Click Here
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"An example of someone with too much time: This is a chess set; the men and board are made with a chain mail technique, interlocking rings of steel. It took over three years to build." Click Here
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"1936 Ardmore High School Football Team." -Grover Wells Click Here
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Back in Nineteen Twenty-Seven,
I had a little farm and I called that heaven.
Well, the prices up and the rain come down,
And I hauled my crops all into town --
I got the money, bought clothes and groceries,
Fed the kids, and raised a family.
Rain quit and the wind got high,
And the black ol' dust storm filled the sky.
And I swapped my farm for a Ford machine,
And I poured it full of this gas-i-line --
And I started, rockin' an' a-rollin',
Over the mountains, out towards the old Peach Bowl.

Way up yonder on a mountain road,
I had a hot motor and a heavy load,
I's a-goin' pretty fast, there wasn't even stoppin',
A-bouncin' up and down, like popcorn poppin' --
Had a breakdown, sort of a nervous bustdown of some kind,
There was a feller there, a mechanic feller,
Said it was en-gine trouble.

Way up yonder on a mountain curve,
It's way up yonder in the piney wood,
An' I give that rollin' Ford a shove,
An' I's a-gonna coast as far as I could --
Commence coastin', pickin' up speed,
Was a hairpin turn, I didn't make it.

Man alive, I'm a-tellin' you,
The fiddles and the guitars really flew.
That Ford took off like a flying squirrel
An' it flew halfway around the world --
Scattered wives and childrens
All over the side of that mountain.

We got out to the West Coast broke,
So dad-gum hungry I thought I'd croak,
An' I bummed up a spud or two,
An' my wife fixed up a tater stew --
We poured the kids full of it,
Mighty thin stew, though,
You could read a magazine right through it.
Always have figured
That if it'd been just a little bit thinner,
Some of these here politicians
Coulda seen through it.

-Oklahoma's own Woody Guthrie 1930s

See everyone next week!

Butch Bridges
Nashobish Ikana
PO Box 11
Ardmore, Oklahoma 73402

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August 17, 2006 Circulation over 5,000 Vol 10 Issue 499

A couple weeks ago I was in St Louis...... not St Louis, Oklahoma but St Louis, MO. We went to the top of the Gateway Arch and took some of the most awesome pictures. I created a Folder on my website where you can go view them.... there is a link to the photos a little further down.

I must warn you, to make that 630 feet trip up to the top of the stainless steel arch, you take a seat along with 3 or 4 others in what I'd call a big chicken egg shaped tram. It takes 4 minutes or so to make the trip up and 3 minutes for the return trip down. You are in such a confined area, if your clostophobic or anything like that, you best not get in. lol Click Here

This is a link to the Folder with all the pictures I took in St Louis. Maybe someone knows what kind of bird that was near the Archway with the beautiful colored wing tips. Click Here

More info on the St Louis Gateway Arch Click Here

And for all you scientifically minded people, here is the technical info and specs! Click Here

Doug Williams has submitted his new book "Gene Autry, Oklahoma: A Lifetime Of Memories" to the publisher. He says in about 10 days the 200 books will be in his hands. I suggest you get a hold of Doug and reserve your copy..... I'm predicting they will go fast. Click Here

The webmaster for the Remembrance Memorial Park website, Linda Wagner, has created a blog to go along with the website. The blog will let people be more interactive with the memorial site at the Airpark and post comments for others to read. I think this will be a nice compliment to the original Remembrance Memorial Park website. Be is the email Linda sent to Gary Simmons and me........

"Below is a link to "Our Little Memorial Blog" that I setup to be used with the original website Remembrance Memorial Park, and make it more interactive and get feedback, information about any of those listed or not listed on the site. The Comments posting is working now if you and others want to try it out. " -LK McGill Wagner Our Little Memorial Blog

SOME LETTERS FROM THIS WEEK'S MAILBAG

"Hey Butch this is Joshua Carroll of Tishomingo, OK. I was just writting you to let you know that, my Grandfather Neal Freeman sends me your news letter every week. I am currently deployed in Iraq right now, and I seen the part about the asphalt worker and the 104 degrees, just wandering if i could put out to everybody reading to remember to pray every once in a while for our troops over here. Yesterday i seen 136 degrees, and the power goes out like every hour, so that means no cool water. But anyways i enjoy your news letter and me being only 20 years old i find it a excellent source to get history in my home state, OKLAHOMA." -PFC Carroll, Joshua of Tishomingo, OK
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"I would LOVE to hear from any T&T Readers that have ancestors with the surname of COLE, RICHARDSON or WALKER. These families left Texas and moved to OK." -Licia Babb gsdmoonshadow@aol.com
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"Butch, Thought you might like to see this Ardmore Grammar School class roll from 1908." -Grover Wells Click Here - Click Here ------------------------------------------------------------------------- "Butch, We drove up to Sulphur today (Monday, August 14) to enjoy the COLD water and get some relief from this heat. Some of the trails are being renewed along the creek. It's really going to be nice. On our way home we took a side trip into the Falls Creek camp, and I snapped a few pictures of the new tabernacle. When completed, it will seat over 7,000 people. It is quite an impressive structure. It looks like the lower level will be covered with stone." -Kerry

Pic 1 - You can see the tabernacle over the trees. The shot was taken looking south from the high road just outside the construction entrance. This entrance will eventually become the main entrance into the camp. Click Here

Pic 2 - Looking at the east side of the tabernacle. Click Here

Pic 3 - The west side of the tabernacle. Click Here

Pic 4 - Northwest corner where the stone work is beginning. Click Here

Pic 5 - Another view of the west side. Click Here

Pic 6 - Vendome is looking low these days. I've seen it MUCH higher. But it's still COLD and stinky! Click Here

Pic 7 - The workers in the park are resurfacing the trails. Click Here

Pic 8 - I sat my body on those very falls and let the cold water splash over me. It was cold enough to take my breath away! Click Here

Pic 9 - More work on the trails. Click Here

Pic 10 - Some of the trails are completed near Lincoln Bridge. Click Here

Pic 11 - More of the completed section. Click Here
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"Slowpokes...We need a photo of Shirl Conway and Robert Boucher for our Slowpoke photos, if anyone can help. Also still looking for any old hot rod or custom car photos from the 50s in the Ardmore area. Thanks." -Rob Ragland 580-504-4697 rragland@brightok.net
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"If you think the guy on the steam roller had it hot (he has shade) try standing at the hopper where the asphalt is dumped in, then get hold of the rake the guys use spreading it. You can add the temperature of the asphalt (it is in the hundreds of degrees to the 104!" -Bill
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"Butch, I am in the process of finishing blocks into a quilt from a bee that my mother Pat Baker was a member of. The club was N-----Quilt Club, and I don't know what the N stood for. Others belonging to the club were: Irene Jones, Ella Bone, Bonnie Gaines, Pearl Carmon, Floda Graham, Maxine Rose, Clelie Crim, Nora Thomason, Alma Harrison, Callie Layman, Clive McMurray, Jessie McPherson, Maude Chancellor, Velma Holliman, Elsie Fraser, and Sue Thomason. If you can find out what the N stands for I will appreciate it. The quilt will be shown in the Trinity Valley Quilt Show in Fort Worth in September. Thanks." -Mary Whatley crwhatley@compuwise.net
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"Butch, I see where Preston Jamison keeps a page on Blue river trout fishing. Hey, Rusty! Remember the first time you ever saw Blue River? People are never the same after going there, even in the cold and rain.....Good memory. -Rome Ingle romelisa@cox.net
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"Speaking of movies, have you seen "Elizabethtown" with Orlando Bloom. It was filmed up here in Northwest Arkansas (mostly Eureka Springs). The plot & such was okay, but the scenery was just beautiful.
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"Butch -- I thought your readers might be interested in the following Gene Autry Birthday Festival." -Dick Lindsly, Frisco, Texas

The Gene Autry 99th Birthday Festival: 2006 will mark the 99th Birthday of America's favorite singing Cowboy, Gene Autry. Traditionally, this festival has been held in his hometown of Tioga, Texas. This year the celebration, with an expected attendance of over 30,000, has gotten "too big for Tioga". It will be held October 6, 7, 8 at the world-famous Southfork Ranch in Parker, the site of the TV series “Dallas.” The Festival opens Friday, October 6th, at 9am with the start of the National Finals of PoloCrosse. At 6pm , the Opening Gala Dinner and Auction will take place. Tickets are $100 and include a meal with concert by Country Hall of Fame member Ray Price, plus dancing featuring Texas Hall of Fame member Gary P. Nunn. Booth space is available to showcase your items and/or company. Call Hoot Gibson at 214-538-3910 to purchase Gala tickets or booth space, or if you are interested in advertising in the program book. Special room rates are also available ($69/night) at Southfork Hotel – call (972) 578-8555 (Be sure and mention Gene Autry Festival. Shuttle service provided to Festival for hotel guests) For more info, email guichntex@yahoo.com. The weekend festivities will feature a broad spectrum of western entertainment for the whole family; details can be found at http://www.geneautryfestival.info/ Proceeds from the Festival will help build a museum to honor Autry through the Tioga Museum & Heritage Association, a tax-exempt 501 C-3.
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"I have some interesting info about brown springs you might want to add. it starts out in 1983 when I was 8 my friends father and mother where taking us to eagles nest to camp for two days. we stop by the springs to get some water out of the pip . it was about dusk .when we heard a sound from up the hill . as a kid thing did scare me to much. so I went up the hill to see a group of people in black dress going in the Cemetary. there was this lady yelling and cry as the people in black took her with them .my friends father yelled for us to come back to the truck.when we got there we told him what we seen. so he got his shot gun out and went to the hill. next thing we know he was running down yelling at us to get in the car. he now get in get in so we did just that at that time we where to young to understand why he said that but I looked back as we took off and there where 6 people in black running after him. we stop at the store to call the cops . one come out to the store. when my friends father told the cop what we saw and heard the cop told him then that there is not any cops that will go out to that place from ether side the Texas are OK side and that we are lucky to be a life. this was my first time there. then about a year later when I was nine my brother and 6 of his friends went there late at night. my brother and three ethers where the only ones to make it out a live .he told my mother that a friend of his was meeting some people he know up there. my brother said they where meet at the top of the hill by 4 guys in black they where led in to the woods deep in there my brother said that they killing goats and rabbits and blood was every where in there. then they came across a long flat stone and on the stone was a young girl dress in white with blood all over her. that when my brother and his friends said man lets get out of here and they started running back in woods the way they came in. but only 4 made it out. two did not make it. he told my mother they went to the cops and told them what they had seen . that what I to be true. even knowing this I still would go back over the years with my G-mother to vist up there for see my G- mother said that was our family in the old Indian cemetary so we use to put flowers on the graves. I got to know one soul of the cemetary his name is Tommy the little in the pic you took . he is a joker and like to play games on you. i have told people over the years about Brown springs and thing I seen there . they not Belive me so I took them there to see with there own eyes on two diffent times with two people one in 1992 we took a guy there said that a ball fire chased him down the hill we did see it. the other time was in 1993 before my oldest son was born. and this guy also said the same thing and ether one would ever go back with us. so now days we still go there and i take my two kids with me for ian Indian and see things that most don,t see . my family is from Gainesville on both sides my mother and fathers. nothing will ever scary me away from there. thank you."
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"Dear Butch, While reading the Issues I noticed something about a "Bigfoot." I am asking a question that some people may think I'm crazy but I'm not. Around 35 - 40 years ago my first husband and I had been fishing on the Red River all day. In the afternoon around 5 - 6 pm we were coming home to Wilson from between the towns of Jim Town and Leon. Off to our right there was an animal at one of the hay-troughs that horses and cattle eat from which is approximately 6 feet high. There was this animal eating from the trough and it looked at us then went back to eating. [It raised it's tail to take off, but when it saw we weren't stopping it continued eating.] When we got to Wilson, I mentioned it to my Dad and he told me that it was a real animal and what the name was and I looked it up in the Dictionary. He was correct, but now I don't remember the name. {I told my Dad ...first that I thought someone around that area was interbreeding animals.} Surely someone down around that area has seen it sometime or other and can tell me the name.

Here's the discription - which was of 4 distinctive traits:

1. Around 6 feet in height with long ears like a Jackass; 2. Long slender snout like an Anteater; 3. Tail looked to be 2 feet long and flat like a Beaver; 4. And last was the shape of a Kangaroo in body form. (Looking like a Kangaroo with other markings.)

It was close to brush/wooded area and water. So I believe it lives around those areas. My son said it was a Nutria but the descriptions in the Dictionary and Internet didn't fit what we saw. Would you or your readers help? Thank you." carolbwatkins@yahoo.com
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"Hi Butch, I've been following with great interest your posts about the Confederate section at Rose Hill. The reason being that my great, great grandfather was a Confederate cavalryman (19th Texas Cavalry in Navarro County (Corsicana)), his children and grandchildren were long-time residents of Ardmore (I myself lived most of my early years in Carter County), and although I spent about 6 years in genealogical research a few years ago, I was never able to determine his death and burial place. He and my great-great grandma appear in the 1860 census in Navarro County, TX; I have microfiche records showing he served in that cavalry unit during the Civil War; and then he just disappeared. My GGGM and their four children then appear in the 1880 census for Somervell County (Glen Rose) Texas but there's no mention of him. (I've been unable to find any trace of them anywhere in the 1870 census). I'm assuming he died and was buried sometime in that 20-year interval. When I saw your posts, I hoped against hope that he would possibly be among the grave markers in Rose Hill (all the rest of my ancestors, on both sides, are buried either in Rose Hill or Hillcrest) but his name was not among those you listed. Do you possibly know of an online registry of Confederate burial sites, with names listed? BTW, I really enjoy your weekly postings. A friend in Healdton began sending them to me a month or so ago. I also like that picture of Turner Falls shown on your web site. Many a summer day have I spent in that swimming hole below the falls and also the one at Blue Hole." -Jim Bramlett, Henrietta, TX sooner1938@cebridge.net
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"Butch, This is the 1922 Ardmore High School football team." -Grover Wells Click Here
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"Here's a photo of an old oil field service building just south of Fox, Oklahoma. Notice the phone number. It's been many years since there was a Pike City telephone exchange. It was located just about a mile south of this old building and less than 1/4 mile south of what was known as Sulivans Corner. My folks were also on the same exchange. Our house was about three or so miles south of the Pike City switch house." -C. Dwane Stevens Click Here
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"Scheryl found this skull this morning on our property and wants to know if anybody can tell what it is? I tell you she is a skull finding person it looks like a graveyard around here." Click Here

Doug Williams, Author
Gene Autry, Oklahoma:
A Lifetime Of Memories
www.jamesdouglaswilliams.com
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From The Wilson News
January 1915:
1-21-1915 The Oil Refinery at Ardmore took the first run of oil this week.
1-28-1915 It is reported that the dynamite explosion here last Friday night was plainly heard two miles the other side of Healdton.

February 1915:
2-4-1915 Misses Eula and Verda Marrs and Messrs. Jim McCorley and Benny Darling drove to Healdton oil fields on Sunday for a pleasure trip. They reported twelve rigs blown down by the wind storm.
2-4-1915 The Wirt Post Office opened its doors last Monday. They have a carrier from the Healdton office.
2-4-1915 In the state legislature the house passed a bill Friday providing for a payment of a pension of $10.00 a month to all disabled or indigent exconfederate soldiers or sailors or their widows.
March 1915:
3-18-1915 The Wilson School baseball team went to Ragtown last Saturday to play the school team of that place. The Wilson boys found a team of grown men, the boys team not having had practice enough to give them confidence to enter the game. The score was 17 to 36 in favor of ragtown.
3-11-1915 $1,000 Dead or Alive - Governor Williams has offered the above reward in behalf of the state for Henry Starr and others who are supposed to have taken part in a daring raid on the State Bank at Carney on December 29.
-submitted by Mindy Taylor mindy@brightok.net -------------------------------------------------------------------------
"Just checking your website here in Sydney Australia, after my adult son suggested he would row some upside down tomatoes. Site looks good, and there is enough information for anyone to try. As my son said to me I have a balcony almost around the house and plenty of timber to attach these fittings to. Its August and here in Sydney we are fast approaching Spring, so I will definitely give it a go. I will keep you up to date." -Peter Clothier
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"Butch, here's the udated version of my business card. Now if I only had a business! Ha! I shot the old pump jack out at Oil City and the steam train down at Rusk, Texas earlier this year when Terri and I were there. Kenneth Eck let me shoot a couple of his dinosaurs for my card. Thanks Ken!" -Dwane Click Here
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Time goes by so quickly. I can hardly believe we are at T&T issue 499 and going to hit number 500 next week. Its been an incredible journey of friendships all over the world and I've loved every minute of it. Thanks everyone.

"A friendship can weather most things and thrive in thin soil; but it needs a little mulch of letters and phone calls and small, silly presents every so often - just to save it from drying out completely." -Pam Brown

See everyone next week!

Butch Bridges
Nashobish Ikana
PO Box 11
Ardmore, Oklahoma 73402

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August 10, 2006 Circulation over 5,000 Vol 10 Issue 498

Workers are finishing up the resurfacing of Stanley street SW this week. When they removed the asphalt the other day, you could see the original red brick street. These were laid when the street was called 2nd Street SW in the 20s. Stanley Street was name after Ardmore police judge (1917) H.A. (Henry Austin) Stanley and his wife Lela who taught at Lincoln Elementary. They lived at 1023 Stanley where Lela also conducted high quality private school at one time. This first picture is looking east from the 200 block of Stanley. Click Here

And this is looking west on Stanley from the same spot near B Street. Click Here

This is a pic I took of the actual machine that lays the hot asphalt. When its running, you will see a dump truck of hot asphalt in front of it, continually pushing the hot asphalt into that hopper. Click Here

There are a lot of people who have to work in this god awful heat. But after watching this asphalt crew for few minutes, I can tell you these guys resurfacing the street are tough... working in more than a 104 degree heat. But one worker has got to be one tuff cookie and should get the prize. He's running the steam roller so I snapped a pic of him in the photo below. When the steam roller passed by me, the ground shook beneath my feet, and immediately after passing, I walked across Stanley to the south side, and I could really feel the heat hitting me in the face from the hot newly laid asphalt . Talk about hot.... I'm talking about hot as hades. Click Here

This is a close-up I took of the steam roller operator. In that 104 degree heat, his job will separate the men from the boys real fast. One can only imagine how hot it is perched above that steam roller as shown in the picture below. Click Here

Last week I mentioned the "9 ft Segments" south of Miami. This old piece of Route 66 history is probably all that's left of when the highway was only 9 feet wide back in the late 1920s. This particular part of the old highway is a couple miles south of Miami, Oklahoma then back to the west. The pic below was taken about 2 miles down this old section of roadway. The famous Route 66 was born right here in Oklahoma in 1926. The highway went from Los Angeles to Chicago. Click Here - Click Here - Click Here

I've mentioned over the years several times about the only signal light in Pushmataha county is located in Antlers, Oklahoma. When I was over there a couple weeks ago, its still the only traffic signal in the county. Click Here

Over at Tahlequah, Oklahoma is the Illinois River, a tributary of the Arkansas River. where lots of people rent a canoe or whatever from the many tourist camps there, and ride down there river. Here's a couple pics I took when traveling thorough that area. Click Here - Click Here

When we left Tahlequah the next morning, I asked where is a good place to get an old fashion breakfast. The lady said right down the street 1/2 block.... Lucky's Cafe. And was she right. The meal was delicious, very reasonably priced and packed with people at 8am. Click Here

Grover Wells found an interesting motorcycle on the web, its fashioned after a hamburger. lol Click Here

Larry Smith gave me a peanut rounder this week he picked up at Blossom, Texas (about 10 miles east of Paris, TX) . The Anderson Candy Company is located in Blossom, Texas and the peanut rounder Larry gave me wednesday was just made that day! Boy, you talk about taste the freshness!! And I'm like a lot of others in Oklahoma and Texas, if it ain't red, it ain't a true peanut rounder. lol Click Here - Click Here - Click Here

It been almost too hot lately to make replacement markers for those broken at the Confederate section in Rose Hill Cemetery. I've been able to pour a few in the late evenings, but sweat is just dripping off me when I'm though. But slowly Doug Williams and I are making progress. I created a webpage listing all the markers replaced to date, including links to pics of each new marker. Click Here

I talked to Doug Williams this week and he'll have his new book to the printers in day or two. He told me it was a lot more work than he imagined. Everyone I know who has wrote a book has told me that same thing. But in the end its worth the work. Click Here

SOME LETTERS FROM THIS WEEK'S MAILBAG

"Butch, I'm doing research on the town of Springer, OK and the old school. Can anyone tell me what year the old brick schoolhouse burned?" neta@brightok.net
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"Butch, I need to find April 10, 1955 edition of the Daily Ardmoreite. It has information telling who, and why the slowpokes car club was formed. The Library has it on microfilm, but that paper was poorly copied. Please call Rob Ragland if any one can help. 580-504-4697 Ardmore...Thanks. rragland@brightok.net
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"Howdy Butch, reference This and That, Aug 3, 06, Vol 10, Issue Blue River #497. Your pictures of the Blue River located near Tishomingo, Oklahoma reminded me of my fishing along the Blue River. If my memory is correct the river is located about 1 mile north of Connerville, Oklahoma. I resided at Connerville, Oklahoma with my maternal grandparents. My grandfather, Elmer E. Gore, was the pastor of the local Assembly of God Church. Matter of fact it was the only church in town. Two fishing tales in the year of 1944 stand out in my memory. I was aged 14 at the time. The first one occurred one early summer morning as I sat on the bank of the Blue River and fished for perch. I had been fishing for about an hour without even getting a bite. As I cast my fishing rod for the 20th or so time, I heard a voice above me shout, "Son, have you caught any fish yet?" I look up the embankment and saw a middle aged man looking down at me. I answered, "No sir, not nary a bite." The man came down the river bank to where I was, He asked if he could borrow my fishing pole. I handed it over to him. He spit on the baited hook, cast the line into the river. Lo and behold within one minute a large perch took the bate and began to swim away with it. The man swiftly yanked the pole, hooked the fish and landed it. Handing the fishing pole back to me he said, "Son, you've got to spit on the bate before the fish will bite." After he departed I tried the same thing as he had done. I guess I fished at least an hour but no fish. To this day, I have often wondered why that man caught a fish and I couldn't. My second fishing tale happened the same year. Tiring of not catching any fish one day, I began to wander along the bank of the Blue River. As I walked along the bank of the river I saw a 4-foot long dark colored snake swimming down stream. The snake looked like a water moccasin to me. I walked toward it. Suddenly the snake opened its mouth. As the mouth of the snake opened wide I saw at least 10 small snakes come wiggling out into the water of the river. Having never before experienced such a sight I made a rapid retreat out of the water to the dry safe land of the river bank." -Elmer G. West, ewest1@satx.rr.com
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"The next time you are in Grove, OK allow extra time to go see Har-Ber Village. It is a complete antique village named Har-Ber Village after Harvey-Bernice Jones who started it in 1968. Harvey Jones owned Jones Truck Lines of Springdale, AR I have visited it one time in 1992 and, if you like to see how our ancestors lived, it is well worth anybody's time to see it. The Frisco Ry branch line to Grove from Rogers, AR was 46.3 miles long and was where the 1939 movie Jesse James was filmed. The steam locomotive used in the film came from the 5 mile long Dardanelle & Russellville Railroad. Tyrone Power, Henry Fonda and Randolph Scott starred in the movie. The Frisco turned their locomotives at Grove on a "gallows turntable." A gallows turntable has no pit, the turning operation is completely on top of the ground." -H. E. Huber, Plano TX
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"Your mention of and pronunciation of the Oklahoma town, Miami, reminded me of a recent communique from an old friend from college days. In 1955, I left Healdton for the first time in my life and ventured out to the Univ. of California in Berkeley. I received a "bid" from the Sigma Chi fraternity and became a pledge along with another Okie kid, C.W. Morrison, from Miami. In those days, before protest and burning bras, we were two wide-eyed, gangling li'l kids lost and swallowed-up by the UC campus and the Bay Area. The Greek way was lost on me and I transferred to the Univ of San Francisco for my Sophomore year. C.W. stayed on at UC and we lost touch with each other. A couple of years ago, just out of the blue, I received a letter from C.W. with a Miami address. For forty years he had been a practicing attorney in the Bay Area, living on a houseboat in Sausalito, and eventually going to the California State Legislature in Sacramento. Retiring from law, C.W. moved back to his family farm near Miami. One day, while visiting in Kansas City, he saw my name in a play review, and got in touch with me. I had to dig out my old UC yearbook and fraternity memorabilia to refresh my memory of those days in the East Bay and C.W. in particular. We recently had a wonderful reunion in Omaha! C.W. has never lost his Okie accent and, as you stated in your article last week, he pronounces his home town MY AM UH....As always, your weekly newsletter brings back all sorts of memories. Thank you so much!" -Sonny McClanahan of Healdton
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"Hi Butch. Mr. Jones Koyle (Jones is his first name), the current owner of the Brady Ranch and I hung a new Pooleville sign on the corner of his property today. This sign replaces the old one which blew down a few months ago. The new one is a duplicate of the old one except it is made of aluminum and the old one was plywood. Here is a picture of it." -Jon Click Here
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"Mr. Bridges, I came across your web page about Brown Springs in Thackerville, Oklahoma. I found it interesting how much information you have been able to find out about brown springs and how accurate your information is. I grew up in thackerville and I know any and everything that goes on in town and in brown springs. I have talked to a lot of people that have heard of brown springs and the stories of things that happen there and I can honestly say until you experience it for yourself its not the same. From what I have read you have not been back since Sept.- Oct. of 1999. I understand you are a busy man but you should take another trip down there. You may think I am crazy when I tell you this but alot has changed. If you thought you felt an evil since and it felt like someone was watching your every move go back and see how it feels now. A group of teenagers from Texas wanted to go up there one night, we were down by the overflow around the pipes drinking and just being youngsters, we warned them and told them not to go but they insisted on going. Of course they had been drinking and took alcohol with them when they went up but I can honestly say I have never see so many guys cry that much and have that scared of a look on their faces in my life! I was a junior in high school which was around Dec. of 2004. I remember it had to be around then because it was freezing cold out side that night and one of the boys came back with no coat. Needless to say I don’t know exactly what happened up there or what they did but when i saw the terrified looks on there faces and the tears rolling down there cheeks i knew something was wrong. As soon as they got to the bottom of the hill, back to the road they didn’t stop, not even to look and see if a car was coming they ran to their trucks and we have not seen or heard from them since. I went up there my sophomore year in high school and I will admit it was very scary, but it was nothing like the experience the second time a group of friends and I went up there the winter of my senior year. There were about 10 of us all together, 2 guys the rest girls. The guys had been drinking but not enough to do anything stupid, we were standing in front of a grave stone that was leaning up against a tree, exactly like the one you have in the picture, anyways we were each about a foot from it and we were tying to make out the words on it when out of no where it just fell forward. I swear on anything that not a one of us touched it, so how it fell forward with the weight of it leaning back against the tree, well it still puzzles me to this day. Right after that happened we all got a little scared and decided in respect of the dead we would go ahead and go. We were in a single file line each one of us holding the others hand so no one would get left behind, I was second to the last and as we were approaching the fence to get out something pulled the girl on the end backward with such a force that it took 3 of us down with her. I was not like she slipped over something which made me fall to, it literally felt like someone was pulling us back in. To this day i have not been back and nobody from the group I went with has been brave enough to go back. Whatever happened that night to those boys from Texas or whatever they did while they were up there, they upset some one or something up there I just don’t know who or what it was. If you do decide to go back I would take more pictures and see if you get anything out of them like before. I don’t know if the things i told you have helped at all with your experiences or if you even believe me that it happened but I thought it was interesting that an outsider actually believed that brown springs was haunted or even that something evil lurked around up there. Any input or reply you would like to give would be great, good or bad. Thank you for taking the time to read this and I am sorry if I have wasted any of your time."

Note: Of my 425 web pages on my website, the Brown Springs get more Hits a month than another other webpage. I sure didn't plan it that way, but that's the way the stats show it. -Butch Bridges Click Here
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"Dear Butch, Sometimes I am amazed at what I find weekly in the newsletter. This week I saw the pictures, at the end, of the concrete rooftops on the old Chapman ranch. A good friend of mine, Phil Chapman, is the grandson of P. A. Chapman, the landowner of that ranch before the Corp took it for Lake Texoma. He told me that the houses were build for sharecroppers who lived and produced crops from the land. The foreman's house sits above the water and is still used as headquarters by the Wildlife Refuge people. Phil reminded me of early stories told about how Texoma would silt up and become nothing but a mud hole because of all the suspended sediment flowing into the lake from the Washita River. These are the same stories I remember hearing as a youth growing up in Ardmore." -Monroe Cameron
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"Here is a neat picture of Gene Autry standing and talking to a friend of mine on Main Street of Gene Autry in 1948. The old man is F.O. McDonald and the man with his back to us was Newton Brock. Any body know who the other two could be?" -Doug Williams Click Here
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"YEAAA WE ARE GETTING RAIN!!! and the temperature was down to 78, I don't think its been down to there even at night for over a month? It has been so long since we had any rain I had to go out and take a picture LOL, we wound up with 2 and almost a 1/4 so far in just 25 minutes, maybe we get some more tonight. and none of it ran off. just started thundering again 8:16 pm, crossing my fingers LOL just inside Lone Grove city limits, east side." -Phillip Click Here - Click Here
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"Butch, While you're on the subject of pronouncation, you might also want to remind readers that "Texhoma" is a town in the Oklahoma and Texas panhandle straddling the border between the two states. (Special laws allow them to have a school district with the elementary school in one state, the high school in the other.) The lake on the Texas-Oklahoma border near Kingston is Lake Texoma (not Texhoma)." -Wes Leatherock
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" A couple of years ago this came up on another list I was on and it turned out there are quite a few Miamis around the country. A poll of people living in those areas showed about half are pronounced Miamee but about half are pronounced Miamuh. I assume the pronunciation of the one in Oklahoma follows the pronunciation of the Miami Tribe or Nation, which has its headquarters in Miami, Oklahoma, and a rather interesting web site." Click Here
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"Do you know anyone that might interested in some Baseball, Football, Basketball, Golf, and Hockey Cards? What we have is about $15,000 worth and we're asking $7,500 or best offer. There is about a 100 lbs of these cards that we have, they go from matted to rainbow color to see thro to just regular style. These cards are in super good shape, some that has not been out of the package. I enclose three scan pictures which does not do the cards justice, they are a must see to know that I speak the truth about their conditions. Please if you don't mind, and can, pass this to anyone that may have an interest." -Vera KamieLJones1@msn.com
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"Butch, I’m a native Ardmoreite who lives in Norman. Our dad is William Ford Spearman who was John Easley’s right hand man forever at the Daily Ardmoreite. Our mother was is Sydney V. Spearman who was a nurse at Hardy Hospital, then a clinic, then Ardmore Adventists Hospital unit she retired at the ripe old age of 78, Both are deceased now. I’m the baby brother of Bill, Doris and Dorothy, Muriel, and Betty. Anyway, My wife and I love to travel Oklahoma in our Vette and are always looking for places to go via the less traveled route.”. -Jim and Judy Spearman
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"Nice bell in Grove, OK though the wheel looks too small for it. Another knock-off of C.S.Bell's work, I guess. Notice the little decorations at each end of the longer inscription on the yoke." -Carl in MO Click Here
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"Good shots of Blue River.... I have kept a page up for the trout fishing at Blue River.... a cousin lives in Tishomingo.... and there are other its in addition to Blue River.... Pecans for instance." -Preston Jameson Click Here
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This "Touch of Ear" Draft Mule Hitch will be at our Murray County Antique Tractor & Implement Show September 16th, 2006 at Sulphur, OK and will participate in the Power Drive Parade at Noon. Since I drove mules as a young boy, I have a great love and appreciation for them. I have not had the privilege of seeing this hitch to date." -Doug Morris doug2927@sbcglobal.net Click Here
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"What dreadful hot weather we have! It keeps me in a continual state of inelegance." -Jane Austen 1775 to 1817 Click Here

See everyone next week!

Butch Bridges
Nashobish Ikana
PO Box 11
Ardmore, Oklahoma 73402

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August 3, 2006 Circulation over 5,000 Vol 10 Issue 497

I was in Miami, Oklahoma last week and found some interesting pieces of history in that area. Miami, Oklahoma is in the far northeast part of the state, just before you get to the Missouri line. This is a pic I snapped of downtown Miami. Click Here

While there we stopped at the Miami Library to check my email and when I got through I asked where to get an old fashion hamburger, and a couple of teenagers immediately agreed..... Ku Ku's. So off to Ku Ku's we went. Ku Ku's Drive In's were originally started in 1963 as a chain outfit with restaurants scattered around the country. Gene Waylan of Miami opened his hamburger restaurant in 1965 and still operates the last Ku Ku's in the U.S. We were lucky enough to catch Gene at his eatery and he had some interesting info to pass along. Here is a pic I took of Gene standing beside a New York TImes newspaper that even mentioned his great burgers back in 2004 along with some other great places along Route 66. Click Here - Click Here - Click Here - Click Here - Click Here - Click Here -

Of course I couldn't leave Ku Ku's without taking a picture of their famous hamburger. But I had not yet mastered all the settings of my new Olympus Stylus 710 digital camera and the picture came out a little blurry. But I think you will get the idea, this was really a great hamburger! Click Here

Another piece of history on the wall of Gene's restaurant beside the New York Times clipping was a photo of local resident Dean Walker. Dean could stand with his feet turned 180 degrees and pointing behind him. lol Click Here

The last of the original nine foot wide pavement or whats left of it in OK. A must if your to truly experience RT66. Originally dirt, then rolled gravel between granite blocks it was paved in concrete then asphalt later on. Nine feet wide it was. Click Here

Just so everyone understands, Miami, Oklahoma is not pronounced like Miami, FL. I have created a wav file to listen to so even those T&T readers in other states will know how us 'locals' say Miami, Oklahoma. (pronounced my-ah-MUH) Click Here

Speaking of saying Miami correctly, when I was in Miami, OK I was needing the phone number to the Miami Public Library. So I called from my cell phone1-800-FREE 411 (or 1 800 373 3411) to get the number. A computer voice asked what city and I said my-ah-MUH Oklahoma. "She" said that is Miami and pronounced it like the one in FL. I said yes. "She" ask for the business and I said Miami Public Library and "she" said something like "Miami Laundry" or something like that.. correct? I said "no". She said to repeat the name of the business, and I just said "library" and she gave me the number! lol

If you've never heard of the "9 ft Segments" south of Miami, you are in for a surprise. I'll talk more about that piece of Route 66 history next week.

I found a big bell in the town of Grove, Oklahoma at the Grace Baptist Church. The plaque on the side of the concrete base says the bell is in memory of Wendell Crume. So now I just have one more county to get a pic of a bell and I'll have at least one photo of a bell from all 77 counties. Would you believe I still cant find a bell in the Miami, Oklahoma area (Ottawa county)? Click Here - Click Here - Click Here - Click Here

And just south of Grove a few miles in a community known as Delaware I found another smaller bell inside a belfry on top of the old "community building" (its no longer in use). Next to the building a few feet to the south is a concrete memorial that reads: "In memory of Frank G. Fuller, A community builder, Oct 13, 1938". Click Here - Click Here - Click Here

A couple of years ago a friend was telling me about a very unusual rock about 8 miles north of Milburn, Oklahoma at the highway's "T" intersection (just about a half mile or so south of Highway 7 on the east side of the road). Now you talk about an eye catcher. Click Here

Robin Ezell of Texas sent in a neat piece of Healdton history this week. Its an old "counter check" from the State Bank of Healdton. Click Here

I told a few weeks ago about another upcoming book by a local resident. Well, he is another step closer to publishing...... and plans to have it published by the end of this month. I promise you want be disappointed when you get your hands of his book. Doug is going to have it crammed full of local info and photos, especially info on Gene Autry, Oklahoma, his stomping ground. Check it all out at Doug Williams' new website. Click Here

SOME LETTERS FROM THIS WEEK'S MAILBAG

"Does anyone recognize this tombstone? It is unusual so thought someone might recognize what cemetery it is in." rabell@arbuckleonline.com Click Here
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VETERANS OF THE CIVIL WAR, JAMESTOWN, OHIO. 1861 - 1865 Chaffin, William P., Pvt., Company H, 74th Regiment, Infantry, Ross Twp Click Here
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"Dear Butch, Reading this issue of T&T reminded me of one of my favorite hamburger haunts while growing up in Ardmore, Bill & Barb's. It was originally located on US 70 East, just west of the bypass. Then it moved to North Washington and 13th, I think. It was next to a grocery store on the west side of the street. They served the largest hamburger I had ever seen at the time. And they was good." -Monroe Cameron
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"Butch, thought you would like a copy of this, its a pic of Buck Hale (now deceased) in front of his sawmill at Gene Autry. Click Here
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"We went to Blue river over at Tishomingo, Ok. today and man what a treat, it is just beautiful and the water is so clean. Imagine this and the drought we are in but the water as you can see is still running strong." -Doug Williams Click Here - Click Here - Click Here - Click Here - Click Here
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"Mr Butch---- I was rambling through the Sons of Union Veterans and came across the Oklahoma Chapter. They have a grave registration system. This is very handy when searching for family in the Civil War. Give it a looking at." -Taylor Crowe Click Here
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Aug 3O, 2006 Oilpatch Mania for Aug 3rd.
Last week when I wrote about Pooleville, it occurred to me that it would be interesting to write about all of the communities that started springing up in Picken’s and later Carter Co. All of this information is coming from Mary Frost’s Thesis in preparation for her Master’s Degree at OU. “Early settlements were made in the Washita Valley, in the neighborhood of the present Berwyn. In 1870 a ferry known as Henderson’s Ferry was established on the Washita River. A store was opened and a village which was called Lou grew up. Later the name of the town was changed to Dresden. When the railroad was built through the region in 1887, the station near by was given the name Berwyn. In 1941, Berwyn was changed to Gene Autry, to honor the motion picture actor who has recently acquired a ranch in that neighborhood. The old village of Lou or Dresden has disappeared. Another settlement which was important in the early life of the county was Newport, fifteen miles northwest of Ardmore. It was located in a good farming region; and after statehood it became a custom to start the biennial political campaigns with a rally at Newport, since it was a central point. A free barbeque was provided, and people came from all over the county. Often state candidates were present. Each candidate was given a chance to state his platform, and some pretentious oratory was heard. The meetings were good examples of ‘grass roots’ politics, for a majority of the audiences were country people. The population of the community has decreased with industrialization in the county. The town of Lone Grove grew up in a farm and ranch region on the prairies west of Ardmore in the 1880’s. It had sufficient population to become an incorporated village under the Curtis Act of 1898. Its population has increased greatly, but the town still maintains a trade territory. It has one of the large consolidated schools of the county. Hewitt was also one of the pioneer settlements in the western part of the county. A community and school existed there by 1885. When the Ringling Railroad was built to Ringling, in 1913, Hewitt was passed by and the new town of Wilson was built. The name Hewitt has been preserved in one of the largest oil fields in the county. The town of Ardmore was founded in 1887, when the Santa Fe railroad extended its line to that point north from Gainesville, Texas, and established a station there. The location chosen for the town was on the 700 Ranch property owned by Richard McLish, A.B. Roff, and L.P. Atkins. The town sprang up around the buildings of the old ranch, which stood as a landmark for many years. The only other dwelling in the neighborhood was on the homestead of the Stephen B. Douglas family, which had been built in 2886. This house also came within the limits of the town. The first store in Ardmore was built by Frank and B.B. Frensley. It was a general merchandise store, which drew trade from Indians and settlers in the vicinity. The building was finished on July 28, 1887, a date chosen later to be celebrated as the birthday of Ardmore. (They just had their celebration last week.) Other stores and buildings were hurriedly put up, and the town appeared almost overnight. It extended east and west from the Santa Fe Depot (which was still a boxcar). It rapidly became the market for the products from the surrounding country, replacing Gainesville and other towns of north Texas. By 1890 a town of 2,000 stood where pastures, fields and forest had been a few months before. Blacksmith shops and livery stables were among the first business establishments. The first blacksmiths were a Mr. Conahan and Joe Moody. J.H.Staffenburg established the first tailor shop. Pioneer doctors in Ardmore were Dr. Yarbrough, Dr. J.N. McNeese, Dr. A.J. Woolverton, Dr. Frederick P. Von Keller, a native of Alsace Lorraine, and Dr. Hardy. Most of these men spent the remainder of their lives in Ardmore and gave much time and effort to its development. Dr. Hardy and Dr. McNeese founded the first hospital between Oklahoma City and Fort Worth, Texas. Early in the history of the town, Dr. Von Keller established a hospital which has continued to the present. (Remember this Thesis was written in 1942) The Von Keller and Hardy hospitals have afforded hospitalization facilities to almost the whole of Southern Oklahoma. (Remember this was written in 1942). -Kenneth Eck kenlorek@cablerocket.com
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"I remember Dug's Grill as the 'D&M Grill' in the '70s after Doyle and Mary Hicks took it over. I believe it was the second door east of White's Auto, the first being Herr's Jewelry. Used to jog down there (or to Miller's Dairy Freeze) for a quick lunch back when AHS & AJHS were still on Washington. One other quick question for ya... Wasn't there a 'Doug's Grill' or something like that near the NW corner of Main and Washington. Seems like I recollect a vertical wall sign with an arrow (sorta like a 'J') in that area but not sure. Could have been Dug's in your pics but it seems like it was farther east. Thanks." -Garth Hoard, Lone Grove, America
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"My friend in KY looked out her window at her horses and saw this little fawn ..later on when the horses moved on the doe came and gathered her youngster up and moved on as well. Feel free to add these to your newsletter if you want to. I just thought they were too nice not to pass along." -Licia from Florida Click Here - Click Here - Click Here
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"I was so pleased to find your website regarding the replacement Confederate markers in Rose Hill Cemetery. For several years, I have been "collecting" Confederate burial sites here in Oklahoma. I have thousands of CSA veterans and their wives in my files. As time allows, I will send you information I have to help you in your efforts. I will use the information you have on your vetmarkers page and will send you any info I have on people who are listed with question marks. Here is the first one: There is a grave for "Marm" A. McElroy, wife of W. W. McElroy. Her name is actually Mary Agnes McElroy. Her obituary is located in the "Daily Ardmoreite" 27 March 1917 p8 c4." Click Here
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"Scheryl and I went to Lake Texhoma today over by Tishomingo, Oklahoma and looked at the housetops. They are concrete houses that the Chapman Ranch built on their farmland back in the 1920s. The area was taken over by the Corp of Engineers and Lake Texhoma was built. Now they are a good fishing pier so I am told. The lake is low but when it is normal elevation all that is visible is the top of the houses. The smaller house is a garage." -Doug Click Here - Click Here - Click Here - Click Here - Click Here -------------------------------------------------------------------------
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“Climate is what we expect, weather is what we get.” -Mark Twain

See everyone next week!

Butch Bridges
Nashobish Ikana
PO Box 11
Ardmore, Oklahoma 73402

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