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Russett, Oklahoma

Elmer Buel "Dooley" Holbrook Family
by Carolyn (Holbrook) Day

Elmer Buel Holbrook  also known as Dooley married Hilda Clara Pfortmiller along with another couple (Terrible Dry & Letha May) on the Dickson highway on Dec. 24, 1936, actually the wedding certificate states Mannsville, OK. 

I remember my Mom and Dad talking a lot about Russett, OK and that is where my oldest sister Barbara (Holbrook) Bussell & brother Jerry Walker Holbrook were born.  I am the third born and was born in Tishomingo, OK  and my youngest sister Kathryn Annette (Holbrook) Williamson was born in Gene Autry, OK.  I know my parents were sharecroppers on the Chapman farms.  I am so excited about all the information I have read about in this website.  Many of the names are familiar to me and as a child use to hear the family talk of many of these people.  I especially remember the names of Fred Chapman and Warren Jones and my brother stated Warren was the foreman for Fred Chapman. 
I spent many summer vacations on Uncle Dave & Leet  Eggenberg's farm.  Elizabeth Eggenberg (Aunt Leet) as we always called her is my Mom's sister.  One of mom's brothers, Uncle Gordon Pfortmiller who married Veda Pollard, my very dear aunt also lived in Russett and her daughter Phyllis (Pfortmiller) Franklin mailed me the website.
SARAH HELEN (BALLARD) GRADY is my cousin on my Dad's side.  I read the story from her friend and mailed this website to her brothers.  Sarah Helen died December 10, 1989 in Denison, Texas hospital.  She was a wonderful person and I do not know of anyone who did not enjoy to the fullest being around her.  I have her obituary in front of me and will scan and mail to the website. (ed note. See Obituaries for Posting)
One of the greatest things I remember is that my dad and mom were saved at the Russett Baptist church.  I do not remember the pastors name or the one holding the revival but that is when they were saved.  I think the picture above of dad standing in front of the church was taken years later when they were out driving.
My grandmother Anna Katherine Muller came over from Germany & married my grandfather John Dietrich Pfortmiller in Kansas I think.  They had five children:  Warren, Elizabeth (Leet), Hilda, Gordon & Walt.  Uncle Walt was killed in World War II and left a widowed wife, Ima (Fowler) who we always called Aunt Iva along with three daughters:  Joann, Jeanne and Rowena. 
I am a first cousin to Edna Frances Schwab who has also mailed information to this website.  Edna Lea (Holbrook) Godfrey Lamb is my dad's sister.  Uncle Bud & Aunt Gladys (dad's sister) also worked the Chapman farms and were the parents of four children:  Sarah Helen, Billy, Johnny and Alva Ballard.

We had family on both sides living in Russett.  My grandfather John died at 62 and we children never got to know him.  My oldest son Chad was born on his birthday;  August 28,1962. Grandma, Grandpa Pfortmiller and Lloyd Perry and Uncle Walt, who was killed in World War II are all buried at Russett.  The Eggenbergs are buried at Russett Cemetery.
We visit the cemetery at least once a year and I remember as a child when the cemetery was not kept up that my parents and the Eggenbergs would go up sometime and spend the day trying to find the graves of their loved ones.  It is so nice today.
The website has been so interesting to me and I don't remember a lot but it is part of my family's roots.  I have enjoyed every story.

I do not know much about the Noah family.  I do know that Ray Noah graduated from Russett in 1943.  I was told there were five boys.  Ray married my dad's youngest sister Mabel Holbrook and they had four children:  Diane, Gail, Phillip Ray and Timothy Mark.  Timothy died as the result of an automobile accident in Madill.  Uncle Ray and Aunt Mabel are deceased.   

As of May 2007 the status of children born to Dooley & Hilda Holbrook is:

First born:  Barbara married Elmer Bussell and they have two sons; Elmer Gerald and Gene.  They have three grandchildren.  Barbara died in 1986 and Elmer in 1992.
Second born:  Jerry married Barbara Lamm and they have four sons; Mark, Jeff, Jimmy and Tommy.  They have nine grandchildren and one due in December.
Third born:  Carolyn married Jimmy Day and we have four sons;  Chad, Joel, Tim and Jason.  We lost our precious Joel very suddenly Dec. 12, 1978.  He died from congestive heart failure and we were unaware.  He was 14 Yrs. and 13 days old.  We look forward to being together again.  We have seven grandchildren and two great grandsons.
Fourth born:  Kathryn married Cecil Williamson and they have three  daughters and one son.  Kat stated she prayed five years for this boy.  They have eight grandchildren and expecting another in June.
We are a close family and realize how very blest we are and so thankful to have had such loving and hardworking parents.  Dad died in 1995 and we lost mom in 2004.  Life is never the same after you lose your parents but the memories become more precious every day.  We all miss them.  We children have committed to meeting once a month in each others homes to share and catch up on family and just to cherish every moment to be together.  I have found you have to commit yourselves or you just won't do it.  We have a great time together and have come to realize in our older years how precious every day is.

I believe this feeling is very well expressed in the following poem. 

Turn on your speakers and click the button for background music.  Song


I grew up in the 40's/50's/60's with practical parents. A mother, God love her, who washed aluminum foil after she cooked in it, then reused it. She was the original recycle queen, before they had a Name for it... A father who was happier getting old shoes fixed than buying new ones.

Their marriage was good, their dreams focused. Their best friends lived barely a wave away. I can see them now, Dad in trousers, tee shirt and a hat and Mom in a house dress, lawn mower in one hand, and dish-towel in the other. It was the time for fixing things. A curtain rod, the kitchen radio, screen door, the oven door, the hem in a dress Things we keep.

It was a way of life, and sometimes it made me crazy. All that re-fixing, eating, renewing, I wanted just once to be wasteful. Waste meant affluence. Throwing things away meant you knew there'd always be more.

But then my mother died, and on that clear summer's night, in the warmth of the hospital room, I was struck with the pain of learning that sometimes there isn't any more.

Sometimes, what we care about most gets all used up and goes away...never to return. So... While we have it... it's best we love it... And care for it.... And fix it when it's broken..... And heal it when it's sick.

This is true... For marriage.... And old cars.... And children with bad report cards..... Dogs and cats with bad hips.... And aging parents.... And grandparents. We keep them because they are worth it, because we are worth it. Some things we keep. Like a best friend that moved away or a classmate we grew up with.

There are just some things that make life important, like people we know who are special.... And so, we keep them close!

Good friends are like stars.... You don't always see them, but you know they are always there.

Keep them close

Author unknown


In the following photo gallery click on the thumbnail photo to view it enlarged.  Click on your browser's return button to return to this page.

Elmer & Hilda Holbrook

Hilda & Elmer Holbrook

Aunt Edna & Hilda Holbrook. The little girl in the coveralls is Edna Frances Godfrey Schwab    (Photo taken at Russett)

Cecil Holbrook

Charlie Loyd Holbrook

David Eggenberg & Friend

Helen & Grandma Eggenberg

Elmer Holbrook Family

(r-l) Hilda, Elmer, Jerry, Barbara, Carolyn & Kathryn.

Dooley Holbrook, Barbara & Jerry

Jerry & Barbara Holbrook

Kendall Holbrook

Kendall, Laura & Charlie Holbrook

Lloyd & Grandma Perry

Lonnie Holbrook

Pfortmiller Family

Top row: Elizabeth(Leet), Warren,

Bottom Row: Hilda, Grandma & Grandpa Pfortmiller, Gordon & Walt


Bud Ballard & Elmer Holbrook walking in Madill

Gladys (Holbrook) Ballard

Ray Noah and Mable Holbrook

They became husband & wife

Gorden, Walt, & Warren Pfortmiller and Elmer Holbrook

Back row: Kendal Holbrook & Frank Godfrey

Front row: Cecil, Mabel, Edna Holbrook Godfrey, Grandma & Grandpa Holbrook

Jewel(Holbrook) & Henry Bentley

Barbara Holbrook & Edna Frances Godfrey Schwab

Walter Pfortmiller Obituary

Mrs. Jewel (Holbrook) Bentley Obituary - 1946 Daily Ardmoreite


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Last modified: 05/27/07