This and That Newsletter
Vol 22  Issue 1,095     Circulation 5,000      January 18, 2018
Ardmore, Oklahoma
My permanent email address:

The link below is to a website in which it's authors have done a lot of research on Devils Den north of Tishomingo. Its been closed by its owner since the 1980s. I remember going there several times as a kid, but not often, too far away. Then when we'd hear about snakes everywhere amongst those rocks, it kinda put a damper on going.

I created a folder a few years ago to post photos of Devils Den that I'd accumulate from time to time.  Enjoy.

Some 1922 Ardmore Businesses:
•Chickasaw Lumber 400 West Main
•Fonville's Photo Studio 9 1/2 West Main
•Carter County Printing Co. 7 1/2 South Washington
•Williams-Poe Grocers 125 North Washington
•Strasmick Jewel Shop Princess Theater Corner
•Model Vulcanizing Co. Barney Oldfield Tires 15 A Street NW
•Dr. Hancock, Optometrist
•First National Bank, 33 years in Ardmore
•Harvey Brothers Funeral Parlors 300 West Main
•Harlen's Grocery 225 West Main
•McLaughlin Furniture Exchange, 203 5th NE
•Dr. F.L. Williams, Chiropractor, (over Hamilton Shoe Store)
•Blue Goose Tea Room, 12 B Street NW
•J.F Buchanan, Tayloring, 5 West Main
•Cornwell-Chowning Lumber Co. 3rd and Caddo
•Budd Hoard Co. Largest clothiers in Southern Oklahoma
•Ardmore Abstract Co. Simpson Building
•C.P. Hall Outfitters, Caddo Street, 20 years.
•Solomon's Butter Nut Bread, Solomon's Steam Bakery
•Briarwood Barber Shop, Joe Steward, 117 North Washington
•Ardmore Wallpaper and Paint Co. opposite Hotel Ardmore
•E.H. Ellison Plumbing 30 North Washington
•J.C. Penney Co. North Washington, opposite post office
•Ardmore Pharmacy in the Simpson Building
•Whiteman and Simpson Co. hats, shirts, suites
•Ardmore Hotel, 100 rooms with bath, 50 without. J.C. Clopton, Manager
•M.M. Wallis, successor to Joe Curtis Dry Cleaning
•Peoples Building and Loan, George Selvidge, Manager, 8 West Main

You can find current gas prices for a particular Oklahoma town by entering the name or zip code in the GasBuddy search box.

Q.  Dinosaur fossils have been found in two places in Oklahoma. Where?
A.  Dinosaur bones have been found in Atoka and Cimarron counties of Oklahoma.

Q. The last major free-flowing river, non-commercialized and unencumbered by dams or water releases, is located where in Oklahoma?
A. Answer in next week's newsletter

Below is from This and That newsletter archives of January 19, 2006

Ardmoreite Charles Smith sent in some interesting history this week. In last week's T&T Mailbag there was a picture of the Paoli, Oklahoma bank. When Charles saw the picture, it reminded him of the story his mother told about the bank robbery. Below is the details in her own words. But first here is a picture of the bank building as it stands today that Charles sent in.

Below is the story of the Pendley Bank Robbery of Paoli, Oklahoma as told by my mother, Georgia Ann Reeves Smith, January 24, 2004:

Alma Pendley was my best friend. I often stayed over at Alma's house when I was in high school at Paoli because it was to difficult to get into town from the farm SW of town. Alma and I were very involved in school activities and often had to go back to the school in the evenings.

One day two men came into the bank and robbed it. Marie Pendley was taken hostage by the robbers and driven to the Turner Falls area where they all stopped at a café. Marie asked to go to the restroom while the robbers went into the café. Marie met another woman in the restroom and asked her to call the police and tell them that she had been kidnapped by bank robbers. Marie then went into the café with the robbers. As they all left, the other woman in the restroom came into the café and made the call to the police.

They were all caught a short time later and Marie freed.

Marie called her husband, Dee. He and the two girls immediately left to pick up Marie. The son, Junior, was away at college. Meanwhile, My mother and father, Sam and Laura Reeves, left the family farm in their wagon, 2 ½ miles SW of Paoli for the Pendley residence. All of the town folk had come out to the Pendley's home to greet Mrs. Pendley when she returned home. The Pendley's arrived safely back home by sundown.

I asked Marie later if she was ever afraid? Marie replied that yes she was afraid.. She was worried that the robbers might take her somewhere way off and leave her and she wouldn't get to see her family again. I remember that my friend Alma cried hysterically and I remember hugging her and trying to console her.
Paoli, Oklahoma. Six businesses shown .... from left to right:

W. H. Howard Blacksmith Shop
John Isbel's Restaurant
T. J. Dobyn's Store
G. F. Riley & Ernest William General Store
F. D. Pendley's Hardware & Grocery
The Bingham Meat Market
A reader recently wrote that he remembered the Chickasaw district, which still exists. I am copying a brief history of the Arbuckle Council from the official webpage for information. For a short time, there was a Chickasaw Council. See below:

"The History of Arbuckle Area Council

The Congress of the United States of America granted the charter to the Boy Scouts of America on June 15, 1916 with the signature of President Woodrow Wilson. Small scout troops in southeastern Oklahoma were formed and existed on and off for years prior to the development of a great scouting movement. In 1918, the Ardmore Council, BSA had a membership of 67 scouts in three troops. R.F. Beid was the Scout Executive and attended training at the Raccoon Mountain Conference at Chattanooga, Tennessee.

In 1920, a high school teacher named D.T. Bradshaw headed a Boy Scout Troop in Ada, Oklahoma. The troop had 22 members, including Drew and Bennie Page; Joe Hargis; Dick Simpson, Jr; Henry and William Roach; Glen and Dean Spencer; J.M. and Browall Coffman; Carmen Hargis; and Bill and Claud Smith.

By June of 1920, area citizens in Ada launched a drive for $6,000 to support the scouting movement. Civic clubs, ministers, and schools backed the movement. The Ada News headlined it with a Page 1 top story and advertisers pitched in to help. The result was the formation of the Pontotoc Council, BSA on July 8, 1920 with Orel Busby, president; L.M. King, Robert Wimbish and M.F. Manville, vice presidents; M.R. Chilcutt, treasurer and P.A. Norris, national committeeman. Tom Steed, who would later serve in the U. S. Congress, was writing an article about scouting for the Ada News. Harry Miller was recruited as the first Scout Executive for the Pontotoc Council, BSA. Miller was a 1903 graduate of the Princeton School of Theology and a strong advocate of youth development. The scouts built a lodge near Wintersmith Lake in Ada and by October, 1920 had grown in membership to nearly 500 boys. The first Eagle Scouts from Pontotoc Council, BSA were Richard Walker Simpson and Drew Page.

In 1922, the Garvin and McClain County Council was organized with W.A. Wilcoxson as the Scout Executive. When Wilcoxson resigned in March of 1925, the counties were transferred to the Ardmore City Council and they renamed the council to Red River Council which served Murray, Garvin, McClain and Carter counties. In 1930, the name was changed to the Chickasaw Council, BSA.

The Arbuckle Area Council, BSA was formed in 1945 when the Chickasaw Council, BSA and the Pontotoc Council, BSA merged. Scouters in the old Pontotoc Council, BSA wanted to name their district after their esteemed leader, Harry Miller, and the new Arbuckle Area Council, BSA formed into an administrative unit of three districts which are the Chickasaw District, the Harry Miller District, and the Washita District--each of which still exists as an active District in the organizational structure of the Arbuckle Area Council, BSA. The Arbuckle Area Council, BSA currently serves nearly 2,900 youth with over 1,000 adult volunteers. The Earl Q. Gray Scout Center was built in 1983 in Ardmore, Oklahoma and serves as the Arbuckle Area Council Office. The Ada Service Center Office was opened in 199__. The Arbuckle Area Council, BSA continues to serve youth in a nine county area which includes Pontotoc, Murray, Johnston, Garvin, Coal, Atoka, Carter, Love and Marshall counties."

Leonard R. Mitchell, Past President
Arbuckle Council #468
"Butch, I must have missed the previous question about Chickasaw Council of Boy Scouts. As I understand it, there actually was a Chickasaw Council. Way back there were many smaller councils. When Arbuckle Area Council was formed, Harry Miller Council and Chickasaw Council were combined and they became the two districts now known as Chickasaw District and Harry Miller District. I don't know when Washita District came into being. It may have been at the same time. The three districts now make up the Arbuckle Area Council with 9 counties. More information can be found on their web site."
"Butch, here's some more southern Oklahoma historical trivia. My grandfather, Charles E. Merrill, Sr. was selected in 1906 to represent Ravia, I.T. at a Johnston County meeting to select the county seat when Oklahoma became a state. Ravia's argument for that honor was the Frisco Railroad. However Tishomingo was chosen because it was the largest town in the county and the Chickasaw capital building was already there. C.E. owned a hardware store in Ravia and had migrated by train with his wife and 6 children from Virgil, Ks. My dad was the baby of the family." -Rella Helms
"Hey Cuz, When I was growing up in Davis it was said that there were two entrances to the Bitter Enders cave (as we knew it back then). The entrance that we were accustomed to using was the one just south of Hennipen. You turned left at the old Richard Morton home on the south side of U.S. 7 and drove for about a mile or so where you would get out and walk a 100 yards or so back to the East where you had to look closely to find the entrance to the cave. I remember that the cave was so hot that in the summer when you came out of the cave you could see your breath like when you would walk out of a warm place and into the cold. We could only get down about 50 feet or so because that was as far as our ropes would allow. We made several attempts to go deeper into the cave but never had enough rope and when we did, we would get to a point to where you had to be very small to squeeze into the hole to continue down. I enjoy reading about the old caves in and around the Davis area. I went into and even found a beautiful photo of Turner Falls which I now display proudly as a screen-saver at home. Have one here in the office as well but its not of the quality as the one at home as the work CPU does not allow us to down-load some items on the government computer. Hope this helps answer some of the inquiries you receive. Was nice to see the article on "our" Uncle as well. I never knew that was how he lost his arm." -Ralph in Korea

Some mail from this week's MAILBAG.....

Q. Have you ever heard of a community in Carter County of Zita?
A: Zita School center of school district is 3 miles west of Fox
Hi, I am Doug. and we have an old Edward B. Luke Piano. it is similar to the ones in your photos. I was wondering if you have any info on it. I am 43 and live in Wichita Falls TX. we have had that piano in the family since before I as born. Any info would be helpful.

In 1893, E. B. Luke came to Ardmore from Detroit, Michigan. At the time, his brother, Jack Luke, operated a music and school book store in Oklahoma City. He urged E.B. to open a similar store in Ardmore. In 1895, Luke’s Music Store opened on east Main Street near the Whittington Hotel. Following the rail yard explosion in 1915, the store moved to 212 West Main. In the early years, the store delivered pianos via horse and buggy throughout the Chickasaw Nation. Over the years, the scope of merchandise increased. Appliances were added during World War I, and a complete line of sporting goods was added after World War II. Following the death of E.B. in 1942, the store was operated by his son, Ed, until it closed in 1981.


We never know the worth of water till the well is dry.

Butch and Jill Bridges

"Friends Make Life Worth Living"
PO Box 2
Lone Grove, Oklahoma 73443
Vicious Dog Attacks in Oklahoma
Oklahoma Bells:
Bill Hamm's Cemetery Database
American Flyers Memorial Fund - Administration Webpage
Official American Flyers Memorial Website
Ardmore Army Air Field/Ardmore Air Force Base Website
Mirror Site of the Ardmore Army Air Field/Ardmore Air Force Website
Carter County Government Website

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