This and That Newsletter
Vol 25  Issue 1,269   Circulation 5,000      May 20, 2021
Ardmore, Oklahoma
My email address:  [email protected]

"What we have done for ourselves alone dies with us,
What we have done for others and the world remains and is immortal."

A Glimpse Into The Past

"Once upon a time.... some Ringling residents will remember the Cornish Children's Home that began as a dream for Moses E. Harris, who taught school at the Chickasaw Chapel near Marietta. He dreamed one night that he built a magnificent orphanage. Shortly after his dream, Harris began securing funds to build such a place in Cornish, Oklahoma.

The frame structure was started in October 1903. Then in 1917 the three-story wooden caught fire. It was a sad day for all the kids who lived in the home, but it didn't take long for rebuilding to begin. Funds were slow to come in so Wirt Franklin, a local oilman, paid for the completion of the building after striking oil near Oklahoma City.

After Harris reached old age he sold the 297 acres and home for $7,000 with the understanding that the home would keep going. After about two years it sold to an individual and the doors were closed forever. The home ultimately housed over 1,700 homeless children." -Recorded by Betty Carroll October 17, 1984

April 1927
The bodies of Dorothy Scott Waggoner and Guy Waggoner Jr., heir to millions in Texas and originally from this area were recovered from the desert near Douglas, Arizona. While on their honeymoon their vehicle blew a tire, overturned, and neither survived the accident.

April 1951
Carter County opened its brand new jail Saturday afternoon but had no prisoners. Sheriff Jack Powledge said all the equipment had been moved in and the place was ready for occupancy, but had no miscreant occupants.

April 1951
All Oklahomans aren't excited about having an oil well in their backyard. A recent well blew in unexpectedly and Leta Duke and her sister Lela Johnson, found oil all over their neighborhood, killing 40 of their chickens, ruining the paint on their cars, ruined their garden, and caused their dog's hair to fall out.

April 1968
A government space scientist says it's possible newly detected mysterious signals from outer space may represent Galactic navigational beacons being employed by an advanced civilization to guide their manned spaceships along the Milky Way, or may represent communications between four inhabited planets, or somebody trying to contact us.

A grave marker I made the other day.

We continue making progress locating people or their kin with unclaimed property at the State Treasurers office in OKC. As of today we have reached area people about unclaimed property totaling over $854,713. And the search continues....

So with the above being said, how long has it been since you checked your name or a family member's name? Its easy to do a search at the Oklahoma State Treasurer link below. I think every state in the union has a unclaimed property website through the respective state treasures website.

Q.  An entire town and human existence once lived and thrived in a town that is now beneath a lake. Founded in 1901, the town at one time boasted a population between 300-400 people. The town is now covered in water. Where is this town?
A.   Lugert-Altus in southwestern Oklahoma.

Q.  The Oklahoma Thunderbirds rescued people from what concentration camp?
A.  Answer in next week's newsletter

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

Red River Station Cemetery working scheduled for Saturday May 22nd has been cancelled due to wet conditions, hope to rescheduled soon.
-max brown
KVSO radio station postcard and Colverts Dairy token circa 1950 the size of a quarter. -Robert Hensley
Butch, Many many thanks for your newsletter which I read every word now retired here in Austria. My father, Julius Levine, and grandfather, Simon Levine of Marietta and Ardmore. Graduate AHS 1950. Would appreciate any photos of boy scout camp (I was Eagle Scout and that helped in many job positions) of which name I forgot.

Emil Levine in Austria
Captain, USNR, RET
[email protected]

Hi Butch;
Your photo of the Park Theater brought back a lot of memories. Back in 1953 and 1954 myself, David Harris, and the manager Mr. Dean did a lot of the work there including changing the marquis from the Ritz to the Park. We also recovered every seat in the theater in red naughahyde fabric throughout the summer. David and I both worked as projectionists for Criterion Theaters out of Oklahoma City. They owned the Ritz, the Tivoli , The 77 North, The Skyview, and The Starlight drive in theaters. We worked at all of them. -Jim Guess, Porter, Oklahoma

Below is from This and That newsletter archives of May 14, 2009

Ardmoreite Mae Scott sent in a great group photo of Franklin school back in the 1940s.
Oklahoma Antique Aircraft Association will be having a "Fly-In" at the Pauls Valley Airport, Pauls Valley, Oklahoma on Saturday, June 6, 2009. It will be open to the public and is a gathering of pre and post WWII aircraft. The Pauls Valley Kiwanis will be selling breakfast at 8:00 AM and lunch at 12:00 PM. Please attend and enjoy the fun and learn a little about aviation.
This is a pic from a Stereoview Card which reads " This world's greatest educated horse, owned by Hardy Murphy of Ardmore, Oklahoma at the Fort Worth, Texas Stock Show and Rodeo". This is a rare stereoview card.  -Robert Hensley
"Great grandpa was old man Tuck, my Grandma was Minnie lee Tuck. I have actual pictures of my Grandpa and his son after they were shot and pictures of the restaurant he had my Aunt Leta Henry from Ardmore gave to me. My Grandma married John Henry. I loved listening to my Aunt talk about our history. I would love it if any T&T Readers have any old pictures of my Grandpa?s Ferry. I have some but they are very old The Oklahoman did an article years ago and they had 1 picture of the Tuck's ferry going across the Red River. Thank You."  -nancy henry-killmeyer
"Hi Butch, I came across your website in doing some additional research on my families history in Oklahoma and thought you might be interested. My family were the Richetti's, Adam was my great uncle and Eval was my grandmother."  -Fred S. Sustik

Comanche Bank Robbery:  On April 26, 1933 friends of Blackie and Adam; Coleman Rickerson, Clarance Garatley, and Shine Rush robbed the bank at Comanche, Oklahoma. Leaving one man in their parked sedan, two men entered the bank and held seven persons at gunpoint while forcing the cashier to hand over two thousand dollars. After they had released five hostages, a posse man confronted them and was wounded in the hip in the gunfight that ensued. Clarance Garatley, and Shine Rush rushed to Blackie's farm where they hid out in a cabin at the back of the farm.

Three days later on April 29, 1933 local law enforcement officials aided by a tip raided Marie and Blackie Smalley's farm. In the ensuing shoot out, Clarence Garatley is captured however Coleman Rickerson was killed in the shootout when he refused to surrender. Blackie, and Marie along with her younger sister Eva Richetti were arrested for harboring a criminal at a cabin behind their farmhouse.

As time went on Blackie Smalley found himself in prison once again for robbery. On December 13th 1943 Blackie while confined to the Oklahoma State prison was working in the prison canteen during that afternoon when he was approached by 2 inmates, Moses Johnson and Stanley Steen. Both inmates accosted Blackie and robbed the canteen of $30.00 and Blackie of his watch. Blackie reported the robbery to Sergeant Pat Riley at 3:15pm. Sgt Riley located both suspects in the boiler room where they had worked. As he began to question them about the robbery, Moses Johnson hit Sgt Riley over the head with a pipe, then Stanley Steen stabbed Sgt Riley about the face and back with a knife. Leaving Sgt Riley on the floor to die, both inmates hurried to the prison canteen where other inmates in the area realized what was going on and quickly exited the canteen. Moses Johnson then confronted Blackie and stabbed him with an ice pick killing him. Shortly thereafter other prison guards arrested the two inmates in the canteen but not in time to save Blackie Smalley.

"If you really want to do something, you'll find a way. If you don't, you'll find an excuse." -Jim Rohn

See everyone next week!

Butch and Jill Bridges

"Friends Make Life Worth Living"
Ardmore, Oklahoma

Oklahoma History Website #2 (backup website)

Vicious Dog Attacks in Oklahoma
Oklahoma Bells:
Bill Hamm's Cemetery Database
American Flyers Memorial Fund - Administration Webpage
Ardmore Army Air Field/Ardmore Air Force Website
Carter County Government Website

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