This and That Newsletter
A Weekly Publication

Vol 19  Issue 987      Circulation 5,000       December 24, 2015

PO Box 2

Ardmore, Oklahoma 73402

email address:


We all get Christmas wishes and cards this time of year. But every year Jill and I get a special Christmas card from Australia. Steve and Sonia Moran live north of Sidney and first time I met Steve in Ardmore was back in, I believe the 90s, when Steve was here looking for police dog breeders in Oklahoma. This year the Christmas card from the downunder had a water color drawing of a kangaroo which pretty much dominates the Australian countryside. Thanks Steve and Sonia, Jill loved the card and placed it on our Christmas tree.

Below are a couple photos Steve emailed me last year of the kangaroos that abound all around him.

Christmas Trivia

Broken Arrow, Oklahoma native, Ralph Blane, with his writing partner Hugh Martin, wrote "Have Yourself A Merry Little Christmas." The song was first published in 1943 and made famous in the 1944 movie "Meet Me In St. Louis" where it was performed by Judy Garland.

October 1931
Those crazy California people have raised their speed limits. California motorist may now roll along the open highways at 45 miles per hour without fear of being arrested for speeding.

October 1931
The Carter County Courthouse and Jail is to have a new roof and the work will be started in 10 days according to Cole Johnson, Chairman of the Board of Commissioners. Cost of the two jobs will be $1,990 and will carry a 2 year guarantee. The court house is leaking badly and the damage to the third floor is substantial. Prisoners are forced to scurry from place to place in the county jail when it rains.

October 1955
Ardmore City Commissioners approved a contract to construct the Mountain Lake Dam NE of Ardmore for $243,528.24. There is still one right away to be secured and commissioners gave the go-ahead to condemn the land if necessary.

October 1964
Ardmore's seven water wells in the Newport area were shut down marking the end of the drought emergency which hit the city in the summer of 1963. The wells were drilled in 1956 to 1957. Under continuous pumping the production of the wells declined from 9 million gallons a day to about 1.4 million gallons a day. The wells are to remain shut down indefinitely.

Christmas parade at Duncan, Oklahoma in 1940.

25 Rare Photos In Oklahoma Taken During The Great Depression of the 1930s

Some pavers I sandblasted the past week

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

Still loving my Perfect Probiotic by Probiotic America I have been taking everyday. My stomach fat has been greatly reduced and I feel better than I have in years. If you really want to get rid of that belly fat I truly believe probiotics is a "must have".

I installed an Okie Power Saver last week at a friend's house and saw some of the best before and after results I have seen of all my installs. Before installing the power saver his total electric home was drawing 43 amps with the central heat was running. After I installed the power saver box next to the central heat and air disconnect box at the far end of his house, the amps being drawn dropped down to 24. Very impressive.

Several weeks ago someone mentioned to me their electric bill is larger in the winter than in the summer because they have an all-electric home. That's all the more reason to own an Okie Power Saver. Also the Okie Power Saver is also a FULL house surge protector. You say you have brown-outs?  All the more reason to own a Power Saver unit.

Q.  What Oklahoma town has a 100+ year old water tower that originally came from Nicaragua in Central America?
A.   At Ada, Oklahoma stands a water tower called the "Witch Hat" that came from the Panama Canal after it was finished and the water tower was no longer needed. The tower first went to a scrap iron company in Chicago, then to Ada in 1918.

Q. We have all heard of King Arthur and the Knights of the round table in England. Oklahoma has a castle much like those of King Arthur's days. What Oklahoma town has a unique castle?
A.  (answer in next week's T&T)

From This and That newsletter archives of December 26, 2001:

From The Daily Ardmoreite
Ardmore, Oklahoma
Thursday, December 26, 1935



General Store, Drugstore, Filling Stations and Physician's Office Destroyed


County Commissioner Says Ardmore Firemen Saved Buildings

Fire, originating in Coffey and Richards' store and filling station, destroyed a drug store and a doctor's office early Tuesday at Lone Grove at a loss estimated at between $15,000 and $20,000. Work of Ardmore firemen prevented the blaze from spreading to other business houses and residences on the main street. The loss was partially covered by insurance.

The fire, discovered at 1:30am by A.M. Stringer, county commissioner who lives nearby, was well under way. Before he could reach the scene, Dr. G.W. Hathaway's office next door was ablaze. The doctor's office joined the Heflin & Doss drugstore and filling station, operated by Mr and Mrs O.K Darden. The Darden's residence at the rear and a garage were destroyed. Darden also had a filling station in front of his drugstore.

Mr and Mrs Darden escaped barely in time. A new automobile, driven less then 100 miles was burned. E.W. Coffey and Roy Richards operated a large general store and filling station. Stringer said the blaze apparently originated near the back of the store. Stringer's store and filling station east of the Coffey & Richards' business were saved. Ardmore sent its chemical truck to aid in saving other buildings.

In Dr. Hathaway's office were several hundred dollars' worth of instruments, it was said. Telephone and light service was interrupted for a time. Both telephone and light wires spanned the burning building.

Ardmore Department Helps

"All that prevented other business houses from burning was the splendid work done by the Ardmore fire department", Stringer said. "Lack of wind also was a factor".

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

Dear Friends,

Martha and I send our best wishes to you and your family for a special Christmas Season. We hope your home will be saturated with love and that you will find a way to pass on some of that love to someone else who is starving for love and friendship. The birth of our Lord Jesus carries a message of peace and love that comes from no other source. We hope you find the opportunity to slow down and spend special time with those you love.

Our New Years Eve Show and Dance at the Prairie Rose Chuckwagon Ranch near Wichita, Kansas will be the final performance of my Silver Lake Band. Although I am retiring the band, I will continue t do solo performances for the foreseeable future. Hope our trails cross sometime soon.

Keep Smiling,

Les Gilliam

?The Oklahoma Balladeer?
The Daily Ardmoreite
Ardmore, Oklahoma
October 27, 1946

Ardmore Man Sells Play

Elmer Leroy Baker, formerly county superintendent of Carter county, has sold a one-act play of five scenes to the F. A. Owens company of Danville, N. Y.

The play will appear in a forthcoming issue of "The instructor," a nationally circulated magazine for teachers. It is entitled "The King Is Born," and is arranged so male, female and mixed choruses can be used effectively in the scenes. It deals with the birth of Christ and is very appropriate for Christmas programs for both schools and churches. Although Baker has written numerous poems and stories, this is the first poems and stories, this is the first play he has ever attempted to write. The F. A. Owens company was the first publisher to whom he submitted it.

Baker was county superintendent of schools here before his induction into the Navy. He served in the Asiatic-Pacific theater of the war and is a life-raft survivor of a typhoon disaster at Saipan in October or 1944, where his ship was lost, all members of the crew injured, and one of his best friends was drowned. Baker, himself, suffered a disability in this marine disaster from which he has not recovered.

He says his most trying experience of the war was clinging alone to a capsizing life-raft all night in waves forty and fifty-foot high. He was enabled the opportunity of saving his life by the miracle of a peanut can, key attached, which he snatched from the agitated waters, opened and used to cut a two-inch manila line in two, which was causing his raft to capsize by each breaker 200 yards from his ship, which was being pounded to pieces on a reef.

After cutting loose the line, he drifted to sea seven miles, where he was picked up by a minesweeper.

A second trying experience Baker vividly remembers was running ammunition from Saipan to Okinawa during that battle in a convoy of 19 ships, 15 of which were loaded with ammunition and bombs, including the LST-1013 he was aboard.

Baker has given up teaching temporarily to study professional writing and other subjects at the University of Oklahoma, where he is now a student, and expects to obtain his master's degree.

He has written a book of 85,000 words about his war adventures and a collection of war poems which are now being considered for publication by a publisher in New York.
"Butch, I found The Miracle on 34th Street on Amazon using Searchalot. It is available for rent or purchase. I just purchased a dvd copy from IMDB shows other versions.. also...1959,1973 & 2001 all TV versions. The 1973 TV version is available on Youtube." -Richard Creecy
"The site where this was found says it is from 1909. Seemed right to share with T&T. Merry Christmas." -David Cathey
"Butch, I lived & grew up 10 miles from the Shiny Brite factory in North Bergan, NJ. As a teen ager I passed the factory every day on my way to work. Before air conditioning was common you could see all the ladies working making the ornaments. When winter arrived all the windows were closed but you could see all the workers making ornaments in time for Christmas. Brings memories back just thinking about all the fancy ornaments that would be at the stores at Christmas time. I might still have a few around that survived the times." -OKEEFENOKIE OKIE

Sept 21, 1897
DEAR EDITOR: I am 8 years old. Some of my little friends say there is no Santa Claus. Papa says, ?If you see it in THE NEW YORK SUN newspaper it?s so.? Please tell me the truth; is there a Santa Claus?

The New York Sun's reply:  Yes, Virginia, there is a Santa Claus. Thank God! he lives, and he lives forever. A thousand years from now, Virginia, nay, ten times ten thousand years from now, he will continue to make glad the heart of childhood.

The New York Sun's reply in 1897 is the most reprinted editorial in any English language newspaper.,_Virginia,_there_is_a_Santa_Claus

As I finished up this newsletter it is Christmas Eve and Santa Claus will be here in a few hours. We want to wish everyone a Merry Christmas and remember it's not just about presents or food but about a baby named Jesus. He's the reason for the season. And if it's not cloudy where you are, look outside this evening and see the most beautiful and rare full moon. The last full moon at Christmas was in 1977 and the next one won't appear until 2034.

"O Holy Night" is a well-known Christmas carol composed by Adolphe Adam in 1847 and here it is sung by a 7 year old.

Merry Christmas and we'll see everyone next week!

Butch and Jill Bridges

PO Box 2
Lone Grove, Oklahoma 73443

Vicious Dog Attacks in Oklahoma
Bells of Oklahoma
Carter County Courthouse Paver Project
Ardmore High School Criterions Online
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

All previous issues of This & That can be found on my Website.
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