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Vol 12  Issue 594   June 12, 2008

PO Box 2, Ardmore, Oklahoma 73402

Email: butchbridges@oklahomahistory.net, Phone: 580-490-6823

As you can see at the top of this newsletter, I have added something, something that will hopefully generate at little dough to help pay for my website expenses, etc. Every time someone clicks on one of the ads above, I receive a few pennies from Google. So much for the commercial stuff, now on to the T&T…..

This week the mayor of Overbrook, Oklahoma stopped by to see me, at least that is the title I always call Albert Cullum. Al had a little story to share about his childhood and his parents’ jennies.  A jenny is a young female donkey. A trained jenny was controlled with only 3 words.  They would turn right, if the farmer said “Gee!” They would turn left, if the farmer said “Haw!” The command “Whoa!” was probably the most welcome. Anyway, here is Al’s story in his own words:

“Hi Butch, I thought I would let you know that my grandfather and grandmother, G.T. and Annie Ford (Preacher Ford), lived about 3 miles south of Milo, Oklahoma. About once a month they would hook up their pair of jennies to their hack and come to Springer airport (all day trip).  The next day mother would take them to Ardmore to sell their eggs and whatever.  Also he made brooms and would trade them on their grocery bill.  He raised his own broom corn.  They would spend the night and go home the next day across the swinging bridge at Caddo Creek, south of Milo. This all took place around 1939 to 1941”  -Albert Cullum, Overbrook Oklahoma

1923 abandoned schools in the Consolidated District 71 (Berwyn). Henderson Flatts, Dunlap and Cullins schools.


1923 pupils and teachers of the Berwyn consolidated school (Gene Autry, Oklahoma).




J.B. White, architect, 1923.

A friend mentioned to me this week about going to a 9 hole golf course at Gene Autry when he was in high school, the 60s.   It was located just north of the entrance to the Ardmore Air Park.  Does anyone remember this small golf course?

I was at Rose Hill Cemetery the other day, snapped a picture of the entrance everyone remembers through the years.  I’ve read the main entrance is going to be moved to the east side of the cemetery soon.


With political news everywhere you turn, all day long, I thought I’d share the Carter county sample ballot from the Democratic Primary held on August 28, 1990. Just looking at the names brings back a lot of memories to me.  One name I see on the ballot is childhood friend Terry Dickson, he ran for sheriff in 1990.  I remember at Washington grade school when Terry Dickson and his two brothers would beat me up after school, or tried to anyway, but I was a fast runner. lol   Sometimes when Terry and I would see each other in later years, we’d talk about Washington School days and have a good laugh. Terry Dickson (1949-1996) was an Oklahoma Highway Patrol Trooper back in 1988 when he was shot in the head by Michael Whitmilll and left for dead at I-35 and West Broadway. Terry would survive the shooting, but would be plagued with medical problems the rest of his life until his death in 1996. I can think back to the years in NE Ardmore and the good times we enjoyed. Terry and his family lived just 1/2 block north of Washington grade school. Michael Whitmill is up for parole in October of this year.

Here is the 1990 Carter county Sample Democratic Primary Ballot.

With gas prices sky high, I decided to check the gas mileage on my 1974 Chevy pickup last week.  I got 17 miles to a gallon, and 17 miles or a little less is what I drive both ways to work each day = 1 gallon to drive to work both ways.  That figures about $80 a month to drive back and forth to work on a daily basis. The old truck drives so good, I think I’ll continue using it.


I got that 17 miles per gallon in that old truck staying pretty much around 40 mph (or less) between home and work. Of course you can imagine me driving 35 or so, and the cars whizzing by me like I’m standing still.  I think on the Interstate the minimum is 40 mph, that’s one law that needs to be repealed with future gas prices headed through the roof.

Talk about saving gas……  If you noticed in the picture of my ’74 pickup while ago, the back end is up higher then the front end.  That means I’m always going down hill. lol

Of course a 4 day, 10 hr day, work week would be nice too, not travel that 5th day, just stay home.  Did you know that 106 million people drive to work everyday alone?  Change is in the air.

But I also been googling electric bikes the past few months.  I’d like to get one, but Jill says I have no business driving on the highway with an electric bike. And you know, 98% of the time she is right, so I guess I better listen to my better half.   lol

Visit the Oklahoma History Boards, start a topic if you want too!


Q.  What group of Oklahoma workers went on strike in 1919?
A.   coal miners

Q.  Who opened Oklahoma’s first mail route?
A.  (answer in next week’s T&T)

Some mail from this week’s MAILBAG…..“I just read you latest T&T and as usual enjoyed it very much. It especially brought back fond memories when you spoke of water witching. When we were having a home built back in 1959 about a half mile East of the Freewill Baptist Church of Stobtown, we needed to locate a site for a well to be drilled. My Grandmother Brewer who lived near Deese (just East of Stobtown a couple of miles) came and witched one for us. She cut a willow branch (like a Y) and used it and placed a rock over the spot she had chosen. She cautioned us to not let Joe Barrett drill anywhere but there! We called him and he drilled on the spot and found a great stream of water. I might add that even during the drought years, it never ran dry. We left there and sold our place in 1963 but I still miss that place and remember how much love and care she put into her ‘witchin’, as she called it. Thanks for a great newsletter and we do enjoy it. Give my best to Jill and tell her to watch out for those chiggers!” -Kathryn in Las Vegas, Nevada  goody2shus@peoplepc.com

“My recently deceased brother has several numbered, signed prints by the artist Don Pinkston. Does anyone know where I can find information about this man? My brother acquired the pictures about 1989. Thanks for any help.” -Jan Smith

“Butch, thanks for writing about the Church on the hill.  I attend there and am very proud of what God is doing with our ministry.  Sometime when and if you get a chance and you find someone there have them let you tour the inside of sanctuary.  It is going to be beautiful.  Again, thanks for the tidbits of the devils backbone which is now considers the Kings Hill.”

“Hi Butch, It was most interesting reading about the Belleview Pool in Sulphur.  I worked there in the ’60’s as a teenager selling popcorn, sodas and frozen candy bars.  I fondly remember the contrary record player that boomed songs out over the big speakers in the pool area.  The cold plunge pools on the outer edges were actually warming pools for the icy cold water from of the cold flowing wells.  The pool was owned and operated by Tommy and Edith Molachek as long as I can remember.  They had a home across the street south of the picnic area.  The grounds were beautiful with lush grassy picnic areas and bridges over the various water pools.  I remember walking the big wheel at the pool, but don’t remember a drowning associated with the wheel, which one of your contributors mentioned.  Directly across the street was a large duck pond with a small deck where I feed the ducks as a child.  My husband and I were dating while I worked at the Bellview, he and Mr. Molachek visited as he waited for me to finish my shift.  I can remember him repairing the old record player so many times, as it malfunctioned and sent records sailing across the room instead of gently dropping them down.  Mr Molachek often told my husband stories of his past.  I remember him telling of working as a young man with his brother on the Hoover dam project, they stockpiled rebar which was in short supply due to the war and sold it to the contractors.  Apparently doing very well on his rebar project, he saved his money for the Belleview.  We can’t remember if he told us that he bought the Belleview or if he built it.  He was quite a unique character, his wife was a nurse, they didn’t have children.  Belleview was the site of many family reunions, church picnics and such.  Evening activities were ongoing as the park area was open to the public at no charge, strings of lights kept the park light until closing.  It was the perfect place for an evening party,  and usually there was a cool breeze blowing across the ponds.  It’s such a shame we were unable to preserve this unique bit of Sulphur history.  I know the pool was still in operation in the early 70’s as our daughter took swimming lessons there.  I do know that the pool closed for a period of time and reopened without much success.  Mr Molachek came to us as a young married couple wanting us to purchase the pool, he wanted so badly to see it continue.  It is so sad to look at the lot there where the once beautiful pool and park has been filled in and nothing remains but our fond memories.” -Larry and June O’Gwen

“Hey Butch, I thought maybe some of the T & T readers might be able to help… I have three dogs that live outside and I have noticed these biting flies that attach themselves just behind the dogs ears… They almost look like a scab until try to touch and 10 – 15 flies fly away!! Without buying cow tags to hang on them, is there anything your readers may recommend that will get rid of or prevent these pests from biting?”  -Joe B. Ritter, AHS Class of 80, Cedar Hill, Texas  Joe.Ritter@txcars.ang.af.mil

“Dear Mr. Bridges, Does anyone remember those auto air conditioners that fit into the windows and cooled by evaporation as the car moved? And how about those “water bags” hanging on the front grill that cooled the motor? Or the signs on the sidewalk on Main Street in Ardmore outside the movie theaters that read “20 degrees cooler inside”. Those who recall can appreciate what we have currently to make us more comfortable.”  -Donald Bridges, CA

“Does anyone by chance know which funeral homes were in existence in 1918 in the Ardmore/Healdton area and are they still in existence today? Also – does anyone know who has the official records for the Hewitt Cemetery?”

“My Grandmothers name was Ova Mae Campbell. She owned Andy’s Hamburger Stand in Barnsdahl, Oklahoma from the 1950’s until sometime in the 1980’s. The Tulsa World use to do surveys for the best hamburgers in N.E. Oklahoma and she won several times. Remember as a child living with her stocking the pop box.”

“Butch, reading your newsletter today. I had to let your friend know I have an older friend than his 87 year old lady. I’d really like to talk to that lady genealogy wise. My friend is 97, she has just bought herself a new computer. She told me she hoped to use it at least 3 years. I told her with her attitude she probably would. I’m sending you some pictures of my flowers. My husband has a really nice garden too. But I haven’t taken any pictures of it. Tell Jill hello for me. I really look forward to your newsletter. I often send it to friends. And I think some have subscribed to it. Keep up the good work. Take care of that wife. Good ones are hard to find.” -Minnie Lou Whittington in Grandfield, Oklahoma   kenco@pldi.net



“Butch: My nephew sent this to me from Phoenix, having made many trips to Az to visit I found this very interesting, many sites I visited are in this sight! I have been sending T&T to my Nephew “Keith Currens” my Niece ” Carolyn Currens” and my wife’s sister ‘Connie Currens” for a number of years and they really enjoy it! Connie is from Lindsay Ok! Best to all.” -Hoot Gilbert


“Butch, Apparently folks in other places search for the “perfect” hamburger too.” -Jim Bramlett, Henrietta, TX


“Wanted to mention that your newsletter in some respects reminds me of Mr. Norris’s popular, Roving Reporter, column in the Daily Ardmoreite. When we were in junior high and high school always read the paper to see who he might mention or had seen in town that day. Thanks.”

“Howdy Butch and Jill. I just ran across your web site on Dr. S.N. Earp, Shadrick Newton Earp was a Man, who moved from to I.T. with his family from McIennan county Texas late 1800’s. My great great grand mother Pamellia Gille Ann Earp was his sister. Both were born in Polk County Ark. Their Father was John Wesley Earp Born 1828 Tenn. and died 1919 Foss, Oklahoma. Shadrick’s mother was Lenna White she had some Indian blood from her Grand Father from North Carolina. No one knows for sure what tribe. Shadrick N. Earp was a third cousin to Wyatt and his famous brothers if my count is right. Shadrick Earp is reported to have died after He drank carbolic acid in an cafe in Oklahoma City March 8th 1908. He became divorced in 1901. You can find two photos of Dr. Earp as a youth and as a man, also on photo of his daughter, a very pretty young woman.” -Luther Gale Baker


“Butch, I was going through some of the collection that my Dad left me and ran across a program guide for the 1964 3rd Annual Ardmore Shrine Club Rodeo. Dad always loved Rodeos and I always went with him so I was probably with him at this one. I think I remember seeing Lorne Green and Dan Blocker from the Bonanza TV series at one of the Rodeos at the Hardy Murphy Coliseum. Don’t remember what year that was. Maybe you or one of your readers can verify that since my memory plays tricks on me now days. Anyway, I was going to scan some of the photos and advertisements in the Rodeo Program and send them to you but I decided to do something different this time. Below is a link to a music/video tribute to the 1964 Shriners and the Rodeo of that year by means of the program book. Just click on the link and turn up the volume and let me know-good idea or bad idea?” -Dwane Stevens   onmp@arbuckleonline.com


“Just a note to tell you that I was delivered by Dr. Walter Hardy in Hardy Sanitarium on May 31, 1944. I was born with my intestines on the outside of my body. A doctor (don’t remember name) flew in from North Carolina, repaired the area and I was one of the first survivors of this particular defect.  My mother Aileen Sue Staples was a nurse at Hardy Sanitarium for many years and my brother, Lawrence Hardy Staples, was named in honor of Dr. Hardy.  I enjoy getting your letter each week as it tweaks my memory of my younger years in Ardmore.”  -Ronald Staples

“Hi, Butch, I have been approached by a publishing company that specializes in local history books.  The basic plan of each book is to have approximately 200 photographs with short paragraphs.  Each picture must have a copyright release.  I as wondering if any T&T Readers has photos of early Ardmore which they would be willing to have published in such a book?  I would really like to have pictures showing the building of Lake Murray, damage to the city after the tornado in 1944, early buildings/businesses, ward schools, asphalt mines, etc.” – Charlsie Allen  charlsie@duracom.net

“Hi Butch and Jill. I know this is not an Ardmore paper.  However, It will feature stories I write about growing up in Ardmore.  A section of the paper is the Whitewright Rose.  I am a contributing writer for that section.  I am attaching a page (Acrobat Reader format) from last Thursday’s edition that introduces me.  I thought your readers would like to know.”  -Richard Henry


“Butch: If you ever get to Weleetka, Oklahoma (about 10 miles west of Henrietta and 5 miles south of I-40) be sure to stop at the famous and best chicken fried steak café in the state.  It is worth the trip.  Just be sure you are real hungry. The price is $6.99.  Their ribeye steaks look like roasts. They are in the $10 to $15 range.  The little hole in the wall café is the Roundup Restaurant and the phone number is 405-786-2000. Best Wishes Always to you and yours.”  -Ken Bacon


Today, June 12th, is Jill’s birthday, so I thought we should wish her a good’un this year and many more.  The “Happy Birthday” song dates back to 1893 when it was “Good Morning To All”.  It was not until 1912 that the words to the song as we know it came along.

Happy Birthday to you

Happy Birthday to you

Happy birthday, dear Jill

Happy Birthday to you!


To send a Happy Birthday wish to Jill…..


See everyone next week!

Butch and Jill Bridges
Nashobish Ikana
PO Box 2
Lone Grove, Oklahoma 73443

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Oklahoma Bells: https://oklahomahistory.net/bellpage.html
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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