This and That Newsletter
A Weekly Publication

Vol 18  Issue 884      Circulation 5,000       January 2, 2014

PO Box 2

Ardmore, Oklahoma 73402

email address:


Whether we wanted it or not, the New Year is here, and I've began the 18th year of T&T newsletters. At the end of each year the thought goes through my mind to stop publishing my newsletter, but then like I've said for years, I learn right along with everyone else.  Even though I was born and raised in Ardmore, people are always surprising me by submitting new southern Oklahoma history with nearly every issue.

This week I received the following email from Montana:

"Hello Butch, I was looking on the net for hand tooled leather purses, wallets and belts. Your This and that Newsletter caught my attention when I seen the article about Jo-O-Kay leather goods. In 1975 I opened Gene's Saddlery and Boot Repair here in Browning, MT, The previous owner sold these leather purses, wallets, by Jo-o-Kay. I continued selling these purses and wallets which were top selling items. I operated Gene's Saddlery until 1982. The new owner operated it until he went bankrupt. Now i started another saddlery and boot repair business. I been looking for the Jo-o-Kay leather purses, wallets without any luck. My question to you? is the Jo-o-Kay leather goods still in business. If not, maybe you might know where I can get my hands on these purses. Thanks." -Gene

When I posted the above message on my Facebook, quite a conversation developed including several people sharing the photos below of items manufactured by Jo-O-Kay of Ardmore.

I sandblasted a couple bricks this week for Jim Ragland who is one of the founding members of the Slow Pokes Car Club of Ardmore.  Jim's son, Ron Ragland, submitted the following history of the Slow Pokes Club:

"The original 10 members of that formed the Slow Poke car club in April of 1955 were, Norman Flowers, Jim Ragland, Dodle Dudley, Robert Boucher, Leland Cavenar, Junior Woods, LLoyd Ray Smith, Joe Neil Carrell, Shirl Conway and Gilbert Rose. The first drag race was held at the downtown airport August 23 1955."  -Rob Ragland

Here's a couple more bricks I sandblasted the past few days.

Milton Anthony has been appointed by the county commissioners to serve as the sheriff of Carter County until the next election since Ken Grace retired.  I sandblasted Milton one of my 1/2 thick pavers to go on the desk in his new office as a little gift. It turned out nice.

Talking about bricks and sandblasting, I was talking to Otto Utt (Ardmore Small Engine Repair) last week when I was purchasing a gallon of Marvel Mystery Oil. I put about 3 tablespoons of MMO in the crankcase of my air compressor to keep it running smooth.  We both agreed Marvel Mystery Oil is some wonder working stuff for gas engines. Otto told me people who use air tools should put 3 or 4 drops of MMO in the tool before throwing the air to it.  It even cleans the "canals" in the air tools, and will bring them back to full working capacity in just a few times of using the oil. Of course Otto should know, he's been working on air compressors for 25 years, and you'd be hard pressed to find anyone within 60 miles of Ardmore that even works on air compressors.  I been using MMO in the oil crank cases and gas tanks of my vehicles for years and completely satisfied with the product. It has been around since the 1923, it is not a Johnny-come-lately product.

Q.  Chockie, Oklahoma is the birthplace of what famous C&W singer?
A.   Reba McIntire. Chockie is 18 miles north of Atoka, Oklahoma on Highway 69
GPS:   34.582274 -95.99802

Q.  What is the oldest park in Oklahoma?
A.  (answer in next week's T&T)

From This and That newsletter archives of December 31, 1999:

"We have been out of Wilson, Oklahoma since 1968. We currently live in West Africa. We get mail through Houston. We both enjoy your news about home."
"I haven't seen much on the news about that calamity. As a National Red Cross volunteer I expect to get to Washington DC to supervise part of the response next week. There are hundreds of volunteers giving up Christmas and New Year to repond to this disaster. There are thousands of people homeless in Guam... Nearly 16000 are US MILITARY members and families according to Sit Reps from FEMA. Yet, where is the news and information that could help get this island, this American Territory, back on it's feet? I hope that you get the word out in your news next week that there is a real need of money, etc., to help these folks."
Christmas Eve I went with some friends driving around looking at all the Christmas lights. Fantasy Land at Turner Falls is remarkable, as is the one in Sulphur. I forget it's name but for many years it is been hosted at a residence in north part of Sulphur, Oklahoma. Here in Ardmore we have some beautiful sites too. Central Park and Main Street is all aglow like it has never been in the past. I remember as a young child with my grandparents going to Wilson, Oklahoma to see the Bo Ward's Christmas display each year. It is not there anymore.

Gas prices today in the Ardmore area......

Check gas prices by town or zip code anywhere in U.S.

Non-ethanol gas (pure gas) stations in the Ardmore area (updated).

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

"Just a short note to say thanks Butch for the News each week. I'm not from Carter County but I still enjoy the history from that part of the country. I'm from Hughes County, but live in Keller, TX (North Texas).

Thanks for all your hard work of gathering and editing the newsletter and then posting. You are so faithful with the Thursday Posting, I look forward to it each week.
I'm sure Carter County people really get a kick of seeing and reading so much from their past.

I pray you and Jill have had a very Merry Christmas and may 2014 be full of good things and good projects. BTW, I really like the look of some of the bricks and stone you are sandblasting, I can tell you are getting very good at it.

I also like any and all of the tech stuff you share with us from time to time too. I have followed up on some that I can use and pass some on to others that might find them useful as well. Blessings in 2014!"  -Jerry Summy
The state legislature established the office of District Attorney during the 1965 session.

The first District Attorney election took place in 1966, and the newly elected DAs took office in January 1967.

The office of Justice of the Peace was abolished in Oklahoma in 1967.

The statutes concerning Justices of the Peace were repealed by the 1968 legislature, to take effect January 13, 1969.

After the creation of the office of District Attorney, the first person elected in the 20th Judicial District (Carter, Johnston, Love, Marshall & Murray Counties) was Burke Mordy.

After the change in the judiciary that abolished the County and Justice of the Peace Courts and created the offices of Associate District Judge and Special Judge, the first to hold those two positions in Carter County were James Dillard and Earl Brown.

Additional trivia about those two positions:

Only four people have been Associate District Judge in Carter County - James Dillard, Earl Levally, Tom Walker and Lee Card.

There have been seven Special Judges - Earl Brown, Luster Cook, Tom Walker, Mike Hisey, Bebe Bridges, Charles Tate and Thomas Baldwin.

Only one person in Carter County has ever been Special Judge, Associate District Judge and District Judge - Tom Walker.
"Oh, Yes, this is just the best present we could have, This and That is our weekly present. I live in Texas, and can hardly wait until Thursday evening to see what you have to say to us! Thank you so much for your dedication to all of us who love the news from home...You say YOU are blessed, well, so are all of us. Thank you so much for all you do for us, and Ardmore, too."  -Jo Summers

"Butch it was good to see the picture of the Ambert Page grocery store at Marsden, Oklahoma in last week's This and That Newsletter. I'm sure there was a lot of history to that old building. My cousin, Roy Murphy, married Ambert's daughter and the old store building eventually became their possession. Tired of paying taxes on it, Roy decided to do away with it and he and my husband, Buford Rackley, burned it in 1990. At the same time the old Page house was torn down by my husband. It had been moved to that location from Ardmore many years before. It had once been owned by a prominent Ardmore doctor. Carpenters of today said at the time it was being torn down that you don't see lumber like that anymore."  -Betty Rackley
"Butch. Pics are of a "shanty" & items I found in a dump close by. The tag is dated 1951, which is probably pretty close to the era this is from. I remember, as I'm sure you do, families living in structures like this. Kids today might be much more appreciative if they had grown up living in something like this... You're welcome to use the pics as you see fit. Some of your readers might like to see."  -Belinda

Always bear in mind that your own resolution to succeed is more important than any other. -Abraham Lincoln

See everyone next week!

Butch and Jill Bridges

PO Box 2
Lone Grove, Oklahoma 73443

Bells of Oklahoma
Carter County Courthouse Paver Project
Save on long distance calls, just a couple cents a minute!
Ardmore High School Criterions Online
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

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