This and That Newsletter

Vol 12  Issue 584     Circulation 5,000      April 3, 2008

PO Box 2

Ardmore, Oklahoma 73402

email address:

Toll Free Number in Oklahoma:  580-215-4333

I have decided to get the bad news over with first.  I'm in a mell of a hess this week.  I lost my wedding band somewhere in the yard, or maybe under the house.  I only did 3 things when I got home yesterday, so I am sure its somewhere around one of those 3 DIY jobs I did last night. I hope someone close by has a metal detector I can borrow. If I don't find that wedding ring quick, Jill may cut my water off.  lol   Now on to the good stuff everyone has been waiting on all week......

There are so many beautiful sites right here in south central Oklahoma. Born and raised here I'm still learning about the beauty that abounds in this area.  Jill and I saw first hand that beauty in southern Jefferson county just a couple weeks ago, and the green leaves of Spring were not even here.

Have any of you heard of Ketchum's Bluff?  Probably not.  I know I never heard of it so this adventure into our adjoining county to the west was a new experience for me.  About 45 miles west of Marietta, Oklahoma just over in Jefferson county on Highway 32 is a sign, just a sign, nothing else, that reads: OSCAR with an arrow pointing south down a very narrow patchy blacktop and partly dirt road.  Oscar, Oklahoma is located down this road about halfway between Highway 32 and the Red River.  There is no town of Oscar today, only a couple of houses and places where you can see where building used to be, including an old wrought iron fence and gate at that "T" intersection where Oscar used to be.

When we reached the spot where the road turns back west, you know you were close to the Red River, very close, but you couldn't see it because of rolling hills between the dirt road and the river.  We stopped in front of this dilapidated and run down cinder block building, not sure what it was used for years ago, but it was in sad shape and uninhabitable.

It was here you had to park as close to the fence as possible to allow any passing cars by, then we crawled over the fence and gate, and proceeded to walk south toward the river.  After going just a few feet you came to the top of the hill, and there was Ketchum's Bluff.  What a magnificent sight, I can not describe it here in words.  But I took a few pictures.......

And just a few 100 yards east of Ketchum's Bluff is "burned out bridge road" that connected Oscar, Oklahoma to Nocona, Texas years ago.  This bridge has been talked about in past issues of T&T back in 2003.

Tony King has a website with more pictures he took of the Ketchum's bluff area and closeups of the old bridge while floating down the Red River back in October 2007.

This bridge is not to be confused with Airline Bridge a little further east of the above Ketchum's Bluff bridge that crossed the Red River between St Jo, Texas and Wilson, Oklahoma.

Tony made his trip down the Red River last Fall in his most unusual boat named The Good Ship Sandfly.  Boy, I would give a hamburger to make that same voyage in his boat today and view the scenic beauty he saw from the water.

Last week we talked about the removal of the old 1927 East Anadarche Bridge on Concord Road southeast of Ardmore.  A reader happened to look out her door just as the transport truck went by with the bridge, and snapped the picture below.

Speaking of bridges, Minnie Whittington said there an old bridge near Faxon, Oklahoma like the bridge at Byars, Oklahoma that was in last weeks T&T.  Minnie lives at Grandfield, Oklahoma and Faxon is about halfway between Grandfield and Lawton.

Also in last week's T&T we posted a couple of pictures taken at the old Indian burial ground we visited south of Wilson and a tree with a honeycomb. I suggested the honey may have been robbed by a bear in that area.  But a reader called this week and said she had heard for years that Big Foot had been sighted by residents in that area south of Wilson, so maybe it was a hungry Big Foot with a sweet tooth?   lol

Something else mentioned in last week's T&T is the desecration of cemeteries. A friend told me this week he has kinfolk buried at the Bullet Prairie Road cemetery NW of Tishomingo. He hadn't been there in a while, but when they visited the cemetery this week, every marker and tombstone was gone.  Only depressions, etc., in the ground where people were people used to be buried. He believed about 50 graves are in the cemetery, with about 12 having, or did have markers. The cemetery is on Bullet Prairie Road west of Tishomingo, about halfway to the north where Slippery Falls Road intersects. Where Bullet Prairie Road meets the cemetery, the road 'Y's and goes around the cemetery on both sides, and continues on north. I wonder after all these many many years, just what has become of these dozen or so tombstones?  It is sad some people have such disrespect for cemeteries. But then there may be more here then one might first suspect?

Oklahoma Outlaws Lawmen History Association Rendezvous

Saturday April 19th at Ardmore starting at 8am

Free - Make plans to attend!

Herman Kirkwood, in OKC at  for more info.

You can find more updated info on the April 19th meet on the Oklahoma History Boards....... come on, sign up, and join in!

Derek Helmke with the Carter County Sheriffs Office has been busy updating the deputy sheriffs list, past and present. There has been many additions and corrections to the list since 2 weeks ago.  Many of you emailed Derek with help and Derek wants to tell everyone how much it is appreciated.  If you noticed any discrepancies or a deputy who's name has been left off the listing, please email Derek.  His email address is at the top of the list.

I stopped by Doc and Lou Godwin's home this week on 15th NW here in Ardmore and snapped a picture of their Statue of Liberty. This is quite impressive as you will see in the photo below, and quite a statement by the Godwins to their beliefs in this country.

But we can't leave the Godwin place without me showing you a pic of the bell they recently mounted in the front yard! Course you all know me, I couldn't leave either, until I rang that bell.

Oklahoma Trivia- from Oklahoma History Trivia Book

Q.  What amendment was defeated by Oklahoma in 1982?
A.   Equal Rights Admendment

Q.  Where in Indian Territory was the first Civil War battle fought?
A.   (in next weeks T&T)

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

"Hi Butch, First I will say that we really enjoy "This and That" very much and regarding your story of the bridge on Concord road I am wondering where the name East Anadarche Creek came from.  The original Blevins road was named for my dad and I was saddened to see it had been changed not long ago when I drove by the home place.  I almost drowned at that bridge as a small child while trying to walk out on ice going home from school. A older boy took me and my brother home walking about 1/4 of a mile in our icy clothes, mother put us onto  a feather bed, made us a hot Watkins liniment tonic and we never even had a sniffle. I loved that bridge.  Keep up the writing."
This is good. You got 30 days of it free---ole crowe Civil War resouce (A lot of great things which is free for a while.....articles, Civil War letters, songs. So much to view.)

"Right-handed shovel reminded me of the day I was asked to work as a Derrick hand with a drilling crew and they told me to be careful with that left handed chain.  I thought they were joking but sure enough, when I threw the chain with my right and, it came back and dang near knocked me off the derrick floor.  It only took me one time at that for me to understand why it was a left handed chain.  Guess Jill and I have something in common now that we can talk about - BESIDES YOU!!!"  LOL  -Poss in Korea
early pics of ardmore by Mark Coe

"Butch, I'm an old timer who grew up at Provence during the depression of the thirties.  I can remember hard times and it has been a teacher for life. I am James W. (Buddy) Fair, son of the late A.D. Fair a former old Carter County jailer.  A nephew of the late Pete Fair, former Carter County Deputy that retired from A.P.D.  My grandpa was Justice of Peace James W. Fair of Carter County for more than 20 years. "This and That" brings back lots of fond memories and some not so fond.  That is life so we take what comes our way.  My first 8 years of school was at Provence and the last graduating class before it consolidated with Dickson School after World War II.  I'm glad I was born in 1932 not 1942-1952 or any other time.  I know what it is not to have gas, lights or running water and everything that these late models take for granted but I admit I wouldn't want to return.  I appreciate who I am and what I can afford and by the grace of God I can know where I am going when this life is over.  Besides the depression being a good teacher so was the Army."  -J.W. Fair
"I picked up a copy of Country Weekly with Blake Shelton on the cover last night and he was talking about his home and "exciting" nightlife of Tishomingo Oklahoma. I thought it was neat to see one of my hometowns get some recognition. I really admire him for his charity work for victims of Oklahoma natural disasters, great hometown guy!"
"I remember Reagan, Oklahoma. Pennington creek flowed through there. The skating rink was built over the creek which flowed on south, part of it being diverted under the rink, into the swimming pool, out the pool, over a water wheel and back into the main part of the creek which then continued on to and past the west side of Tishomingo. I'm sure the last 50 years has clouded part of my memory, but I spent a many an hour in the rink and the pool. It was a fish hatchery then, as well as now. The only cabins I recall were the houses, mostly built of rock, were for the manager and for offices."
Mr. Bridges, I have reviewed many pages of your site and I am in hopes that you or someone can help me on some genealogy in Oklahoma.  Here is my problem:

I am seeking information on a Great Grandfather and Great Grandmother, who were in Oklahoma.  Here is all I know:

Names: J.D. Collins
Althia (or Aletha) Fuller

They were married in Johnson County which was then Carter County.
In the Chickasaw Indian rolls the following was found on their marriage:
Collins, J.D. 37, Fuller, Althia 25, May 2, 1899 Mannsville/Teller D 162 (book d, page 162)

I am assuming that J. D. Collins was from the Mannsville area and Althia Fuller from the Teller area. Family history states his name was probably Jeff D. Collins, but I am not confirm that.

As he was 37 yrs old when he married Althia, he may have been married previously, but not confirmed. They had two daughters, ---Clara born approx. 1900 and Lilly born approx: 1902 both born in Ardmore, though not sure, Lilly birth certificate does state Ardmore, have not been able to find Clara's birth certificate. I have completely reviewed all data in USGENWEB Oklahoma web sites, other then the above marriage data, nothing on J.D. Collins or Althia Fuller. There are a lot of Collins and Fuller's in Johnston County and Carter County per the USGENWEB site.  I need help on where to turn to find anything on the following:

J. D. Collins Althia (Aletha) Fuller

The history of Teller, Oklahoma around the 1890-1900 period of town The history of Mannsville, Oklahoma around the 18990-1900 period of town What made people come to these areas around this period. Type of jobs around this period in this area. Family history states Althia (Aletha) died around the time of the 2nd daughters birth and the girls were given to relatives to live with.  I found both daughter's living with a Fuller family in McLennan county in the 910 census.  Since there is no 1890 census or 1900 in Oklahoma, any advise where to found the Grandparents. I am thanking you in advance for any help/advise you can given me."  -Gloria Gosdin
"Just a coincidence.  While I was reading your newsletter, I was sipping
coffee from my Whataburger coffee cup that I still use now and then.  It's still in good condition and I have the lid for it. Bought it about 1979 and
took it with me to Whataburger every time I went.  I certainly got my
money's worth from it!"  -Leon Bow

"Hey Butch: Great pics of the oak gall. There are many species (800+ in the USA) of gall wasp and each seems to have a particular tree, branch or leaf that they like to use to lay their eggs. The adults lay their eggs in a hole that they chew into the branch or leaf. The tree reacts to the intrusion by growing a gall like the one pictured. There are several theories as to why the tree grows the gall. The hatchling larva of the gall wasp feed on the tissue in the gall before exiting the gall via small holes."

Don Whitton, Registrar
Oklahoma City Zoo

"Butch I have a new place I want you and Jill to try.  It is called Steve's Steak Barn and is located at the intersection of Highway 110 and Goddard Youth Camp Road (SE of Davis, OK). He has been open about a month and they have a good hamburger and great steaks, chicken breast and pork chops all cooked over live coals.  Also a Sunday buffet with home cooked food and really good desserts.  He is open for lunch only on Fri. Sat. and Sun right now and open for dinner on Thurs-Sun."

"Butch, Folks can brag all they want about Whataburgers, but they are just pale images of what they used to be.  Just familiar fast food, nothing special. However; they did at one time have one of the best burgers around.  I was in the Foley, Alabama area in 1969 and there was a Whataburger in Pensacola, FL just a few miles away.  Anytime we went to that area we always had a whataburger.  The ones today don't even look the same.  Those 1969 burgers were made on the large buns, not the dinky one they sell today.  Old fashioned burger, mustard, pickles, lettuce, tomato and meat.  So juicy it was hard to hold one together until you got it eaten. Cost a quarter. I can almost hear their goofy commercials on the radio."
"Butch, I bet it was used as a storm cellar."

"I am seeking information on the members or history of the Cherokee Strip Cow Punchers Association. Initials are CSCPA.  A list of incomplete member data is listed on my web site. Please review and email me if you have additional information on the members."

"Butch: The Oklahoma Historical Society will have it's annual state meeting in Ardmore April 16-18 at the convention center. Several noted historians will speak, among them Gary Simmons of Ardmore. His topic is "World War II in Southern Oklahoma." Gary is a relentless preservationist of local history and this is a well-deserved honor."
'Drive In Review' by Devin Winter on the movie 'Rambo'

Q.  How did the Tower Motel get its name?

A.  The Tower Motel and Restaurant were named after the Tower Heights housing addition which was just west of the motel. There was also a Tower Gulf gas station and Tower Drive-In theater.

"Butch, My cousin Lee Tibbens and long time This and That reader has been in the hospital in Ardmore for a few weeks now and it looks like she has longer to go.  She has asked if your readers can remember her in their prayers.  Thank you."  -Jayson Pruitt

The best thing one can do when it's raining is to let it rain.  -Henry Wadsworth Longfellow

See everyone next week!

Butch and Jill Bridges

PO Box 2
Lone Grove, Oklahoma 73443

Save on long distance calls, just a couple cents a minute!
Oklahoma Bells:
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 schools, past and present
Carter County Government Website

All previous issues of This & That can be found on my Website.
Feel free to forward this free newsletter. Mailouts: over 1,500.
To be removed from my T&T mailings, just send me an email.
I do not sell, trade or give my mailing list to anyone for any reason.