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Vol 12  Issue 614   October 30, 2008

PO Box 2, Ardmore, Oklahoma 73402

Email: butchbridges@oklahomahistory.net

In the last issue of T&T we talked about  a Reader finding some kind of mystery fruit growing behind the MTC Federal Credit Union on 12th NW. Several of you wrote in with your suggestions, but it was Leland McDaniel who came through with the name for this variety.  Leland is the local OSU Extension Agent here in Ardmore, and he reported this particular fruit is the Jujube fruit, also known as Chinese dates. I did a search on the internet and found much reading, including all the purported medicinal properties of this fruit. I think next Spring I’ll find a way to plant a couple of these on our acreage.




When I was a kid back in the 1960s we had horny toads running all over the yards in Ardmore. Many of us would catch one and keep it as a pet for a few days. They looked mean and scary with those horns sticking up from its head, but in reality they were harmless. Today the horny toads are all but extinct in Ardmore.  But I’ve been told there are plenty of them still in Texas.  And everything is bigger in Texas, so the saying goes, but Texas can not brag about having the biggest horny toad.  This one was found in the front yard of a residence in Medicine Park, Oklahoma on the west side of the creek (about half way up ‘the hill’).  I wish I knew where the owners purchased this scary looking fella, I’d like to have one for our yard.  lol


This week we picked up some more sweet potatoes at Farmers Market here in Lone Grove.  2 weeks ago they were 79 cents a pound.  This week they are down to 2 pounds for a dollar.  So gas is not the only thing that’s come down in price. Jill is keeping me filled on sweet potato pie!

The Daily Ardmoreite, September 12, 1948

Two Women Dead Result Ambulance – Truck Wreck

A 91 year old woman was killed, her 48 year old daughter-in-law fatally injured, and three other persons hospitalized in a headon crash of an ambulance and a farm truck six miles north of Ardmore on Highway 77 at 7pm Friday.

Dead are: Mrs. Malinda Mae Garrett, 91, Gainesville, Texas, who has recently been in an old folks home in Tulsa, but who was enroute to her son’s home in Gainesville at the time of the accident. She died before reaching the Ardmore sanitarium and hospital.

Mrs. Geraldine Garrett, 46, wife of C.A Garrett, a Gainesville carpenter and do-it-yourself laundry operator. Mrs. Garrett, gravely injured about the head, died at 12:45pm Saturday at the hospital. She had been given several transfusions during the night and only slight hope had been held that she might survive. She was riding in the ambulance with her aged mother-in-law and the impact hurled her the length of the vehicle into the windshield.

Less seriously hurt but confined to the Ardmore hospital and sanitarium for treatment are Bill Clifford Parks, 20, Prague, driver of the ambulance, Robert Eugene Vandiver, 25, Prague, assistant ambulance driver, John “Buck” Hale, 35, driver of the other truck involved in the crash and Mrs. Doris Hale, 31 of Gene Autry.

Hale and their 3 year old son, Larry, also in the truck with Mrs. Hale, escaped without injury.

Garrett, following the ambulance in his own car, was only a short distance behind and witnessed the crash which killed his mother and inflicted fatal injuries to his wife.

Marcus Carter and Theo Cobb, state highway patrol officers, who investigated the accident reported the following details:

Parks, whose father owns the ambulance, said that he was driving about 60 miles an hour. The ambulance, going south, was at the point about a mile and a half north of Caddo creek bridge on U.S. Highway 77.

The truck, owned by Pat Whitfield, for whom Hale works, was going north.

The ambulance had just passed a gasoline convoy truck. As it cleared the big truck, it came face to face with Hale’s vehicle.

Both drivers swerved sharply toward the shoulder, the result being a headon crash. The truck and ambulance were demolished.

The Harvey ambulances were dispatched to the scene and the injured admitted to the Ardmore hospital and sanitarium. The body of Mrs. Garrett was taken charge by Harvey funeral home. It was said the body would probably be removed to Prague for services.

Carter said that Garrett told him his mother had been a guest at the old persons home in Tulsa and he was dissatisfied with the care she seemed to be getting. He had decided to return her to Gainesville, and had gone to Tulsa and arranged for her ambulance journey to the Texas city.

This week I added a quart of Marvel Mystery Oil to my 74 Chevy pickup’s crankcase.  I’ve been reading up on it, and I probably should have been using it all these years. From what I’ve been reading, MMO can really extend the life of a motor.


Ten cheapest places to buy gas in the Ardmore area.


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


Q.   How many earthquakes are recorded in Oklahoma each year?
A.   Over the past 29 years we have averaged 60 per year

Q.   What did the Curtis Act do?
A.   (answer in next week’s T&T)

Some mail from this week’s MAILBAG…..“Butch, my earliest memories of the Tivoli was from the early 70’s while in the 10th grade, I secured a job there as a ticket girl. I quickly became quite popular with my classmates when they found out I could get free passes for them. I remember the cost of a movie ticket at that time (1973) was only 75 cents. I honestly don’t remember going to the Tivoli as a little girl with my folks, probably because the Skyview Drive-In was cheaper for us. But I do remember seeing several movies there during my high school years, including Dillinger, the movie that was filmed in Ardmore.

In fact, my dad worked for Mac’s Wholesale at that time and was making a delivery to the Tivoli at the time they were filming part of the movie in an upstairs apartment somewhere above Luke’s Music Store–at least I think that’s right. Anyway, it was directly across from the Tivoli and Mr. Ben Johnson & Mr. Warren Oates were standing inside the Tivoli lobby taking a break from the filming and my dad was able to meet both of them. I think that was the highlight of his life at that time. I remember him smiling from ear-to-ear, you’d have thought he’d met John Wayne & Henry Fonda.

I also worked at the Ritz during those years and remember not being too crazy about the balcony as I wasn’t a huge fan of high places. One time at the Tivoli, I had to help with a delivery and we had to take the supplies back behind the movie screen and I thought it was totally cool. There was no movie being shown at that time so all the lights were up and you could see through the white screen. I remember seeing some old movie posters on the walls, some graffiti and even some old props, too. I’d give anything right now it I’d had a camera with me at that time so that I could have the photos to share. All I have are my memories.

Thanks again, Butch, for bringing back old memories long forgotten & stored away.”  -Kathi G., Fayetteville, Arkansas

“Hi Butch: We lived in Welch, Oklahoma from 1970-1981.  Nowata is west of Welch.  There is a newspaper in Chetopa, Kansas that “might” have covered the 1893 train robbery.  Chetopa is on the Oklahoma/Kansas line.  Might not hurt to contact them.” -Anna Marie.

“Butch, this sign is/was behind the old BL Owens store on Hinkle street.”


“Lost another good guy from OK.” http://news.yahoo.com/s/ap/obit_tony_hillerman

“This one about a feral hog herding cows in Texas was too weird & cool at the same time not to pass on. It?s pretty neat.” -Kathi   Squeaky the cow herding hog

More Oklahoma history……    www.CarolynBLeonard.com

“Butch I have been running the Shell V-power in my Trailblazer SS for a little over a month now. I average 1mpg more in town and 2 more on the highway than with any other non ethanol premium unleaded.  The shell is not always the cheapest but it is definitely a good gas also my truck runs a little smoother and the fuel is obviously a lot cleaner than some as I was running generic gas in it and I got an emissions light after a few tanks of the shell it went away I had it cleared once at a shop but was told to take to dealer they told me was probably caused  by bad gas.”

“Took these pics at the Seminole Nation Museum’s Sorghum Festival today (10/25/08) at Wewoka, Oklahoma.” -James Catron





“Channel 9 in OKC just did a story on magnetic hill.  Maybe you saw it.”

“Butch, I’m writing on behalf of my dad Bob Farrington (who would have written if he was still with us). We used to live in Ardmore at 1002 East Circle Drive. We were told that the bricks that make up the huge fence/wall around the back of the property were bricks from the Tivoli theater. We don’t know why they were available or when the fence was built but I thought maybe some of your readers would know something about it. Just thought I would pass along a memory that I have and dad would have shared with you. If I can find a picture of it I will send it along this week.” -Marilyn (Farrington) Roder

“Hey Butch, as I recall the Tivoli burned down at one time in maybe the 60’s and the Park Theatre was the only one open for some time? Did you get information on that?” -Mike Pennington

I just happened upon your website.  My husband grew up in Marietta (Meadowbrook area).  He passed away in 2005, but his brother Bill and his wife MaryAnn live in Ardmore and his other brother, George lives in Oklahoma City.  I enjoy reading your newsletter.  I have a question.  I have a DVD of the Groucho Marx TV program “You bet your Life”.  On an episode from 1953, there is a lady named “Ruby Williams”.  She is from Marietta Oklahoma.  Groucho made a joke about a time he was in Marietta.  Does anyone remember a lady with this name? This would have really been a “big deal” for a small town like Marietta, Oklahoma.”

From the Bill Hamm cemetery records:In the Leon, Oklahoma cemetery……….

RUBY LEA WILLIAMS      5 OCT 1929     22 AUG 1972

“Butch; It is always a pleasure to get the This and That delivered to my mailbox each Thursday evening. In this week’s edition there was a question about a train robbery in Nowata. Maybe this link is what they were looking for.

This one about Henry Starr may also be the one he is thinking of, however this one is not a train robbery, but the robbery of the Express office in Nowata by Henry Starr.

I found this one in a listing of Oklahoma U.S. Marshalls. The biography speaks of a train robbery at Seminole Switch and the death of Marshall W.C. McDaniel by Bob Rogers who robbed a train at Seminole Switch in December 1895.

“McDaniel, W. C. was commissioned in the Western District of Arkansas. Deputy Marshal McDaniel was shot and killed by Bob Rogers. Bob Rogers, living in the Cherokee Nation started his young life as a robber where he went to reform school at a young age. It was not long after Bob Rogers got out of reform school that he went back to his old ways by forming a gang. In January of 1895, the heat got so bad that Rogers gave his whole gang away to the deputy marshals for his own freedom. Then in December of 1895, Rogers went back to his criminal ways by robbing a train at Seminole Switch. On March 16, 1895, Deputy Marshal Jim Mayes led eleven deputy marshals to Bob Rogers?s father?s home, where they surrounded it before approaching it just before daylight. Four people in the house allowed the deputies to enter. Three deputy marshals went to the upstairs of the house to arrest Bob Rogers. W. C. McDaniel, being the lead marshal, went to the top of the stairs where he met Bob Rogers waiting with his pistols in his hands. McDaniel ordered Rogers to raise his hands but giving up was not in Bob Roger?s plan. A slug tore through McDaniel?s body, just beneath his heart, coming out his body where it passed over the heads of two oncoming deputy marshals. McDaniel?s body fell backwards, lifeless into the other two approaching deputy marshals. Deputy Marshal Phil Williams, the next deputy in line of fire from Rogers, was fired at striking him in the wrist. This action caused the two deputy marshals to fall to the bottom of the stairs. The deputy marshals in the lower story of the house became excited when they heard the shooting and, seeing their fellow officers killed, then drove down the stair case. The officers retaliated with a volley of about fifty shots. Bob Roger?s father was shot by a stray bullet in the big toe. Rogers put down his pistols picked up McDaniel?s Winchester, and fired two or three shots before taking cover to wait for an opportunity to escape. The lawmen sent a friend of Rogers up to ask him to surrender but he refused. Finally Roger agreed to come down if he would be allowed to keep his rifle. Rogers came downstairs, then walked to the front yard of the house, standing before the deputy marshals with McDaniel’s Winchester rifle in hand. Bob Rogers made an attempted escape, firing at the officers as he ran. The officers fired back at him, striking him twenty-two times with 38 caliber slugs and twice with the blast of a shotgun.”

Hope one of these is the right one. There’s so much history in this state to research. It is always fun digging into our state’s past.” -Gerald Whitworth
Glenpool, Oklahoma

In cooperation with Turner Publishing Company the Oklahoma Law Enforcement Memorial has made a special purchase of all remaining stock of two books by Oklahoma historian and author Ron Owens. The books are Oklahoma Heroes and Oklahoma Justice. Oklahoma Heroes: A Tribute to Fallen Law Enforcement Officers is a limited edition hard back with 304 pages published in 2000. It tells the history of the Oklahoma Law Enforcement Memorial and the stories of over 600 fallen officers whose names are engraved on the memorial plus many more that are not yet engraved on the memorial.

Oklahoma Justice: the Oklahoma City Police: A Century of Gunfighters, Gangsters and Terrorists is hard back published in 1996 and tells the story of the Oklahoma City Police Department from it?s beginning in 1889.

Both books retail for $29.95. The Oklahoma Law Enforcement Memorial is offering them for a donation of just $20.00 for each book plus shipping and handling if required.

Shipping and handling prices are:
1 Book sent at Media Rate is $ 3, total amount due would be $23.00.
2 Books sent at Media Rate is $ 4, total amount due would be $ 44.00.
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2 Books sent at Priority Rate is $ 6, total amount due would be $ 46.00.

If ordering more than 2 books contact us for shipping and handling price. To order your copy of either book or both books send a check made payable to ?O.L.E. M.? to:

Oklahoma Law Enforcement Memorial, Inc.
PO Box 10776
Oklahoma City, OK 73140-1776

There are only a limited number of each book available through this offer so do not hesitate to order your copy. Contact the Oklahoma Law Enforcement Memorial at oklememorial@aol.com if you have any questions. Also check out the Memorial web site at www.oklemem.com

“Butch, in the late 50’s Mr. Yates had an unbroken horse that no one could seem to break for riding. Someone told him about my Grandfather (John Hester) and Mr. Yates contacted Granddad and he worked out a deal to bring the horse to Wilson for Granddad to work with. Well after about 2 weeks Granddad told everyone that he was going to ride the horse on his 80th birthday, so all the family gathered at his home southwest of Wilson and when we got there, the horse was broke for riding and standing waiting for someone else to try (No takers). Mr. Yates came for the horse and Granddad told him thanks for the fun and would not charge a dime. Mr. Yates was so grateful, he game him a new Stetson hat. Our family still has the hat. As everyone probably will remember, Mr. Yates had a store on the south side, east end of main street in Ardmore.” -Ken Kemp

“On the Gene McFall story in last week’s newsletter. Buddy’s last name was Mitchell and he worked for B. L. Owens and the Globe theater, as well as Gene McFall.” -Edna

“Butch, I was looking at the National Finals Rodeo website and saw that Wrangler is going to honor Clem McSpadden at their gala this year. I then saw where he died earlier this year of cancer in Houston.  You may remember that he used to announce the rodeos in Ardmore. He later went on to become the general manager for the National Finals Rodeo from 1967-1984 while it was held in Oklahoma City. He was also a force in Oklahoma politics for 20 years beginning in the mid 1950’s.” -Monroe Cameron


Turner Falls:  “If you walked the 2 or 3 miles up to the source of Honey Creek, you were at “Wild Woman Cave” entrance (or exit). There is at least one other entrance up above the spot where the spring comes out of the rocks. There are at least 2 more caves on Honey Creek and 2 more located to the south of the falls. “Outlaw Cave” is just above the falls on the north side of the creek, not much to it. “Sink Hole Cave” is located about 1/4 mile west above the falls, maybe 1/8 mile south of the creek in a ravine. It had a steel cable that ran several feet (at least 50-60 feet, maybe 100 feet or more?) down into the steep, nearly vertical entrance to the cave.

“Wagon Wheel Cave” is located about 1/3 mile south of the bath house at Turner Falls along the trail that leads up the canyon. It is located at least 100 feet up on the side of the steep, rocky hill on the east side of the creek bed and trail. It has one large room at the clearly visible entrance, a small, very narrow passage way back to a much smaller room and not much more.

Crystal Cave” is located another 1/2 to 3/4 mile past Wagon Wheel and requires some easy rock climbing to reach. The entrance is well hidden in the trees and rocks, but can be easily found up along the same easterly side of the hill. It is at least 1/4 mile past the end of the trail leading up the canyon, but worth the hike.

There is at least one other cave located on the old Butterly Ranch, now part of Turner Falls Upper Campground that is worth mentioning. I think this one is called “Bitter Enders Cave” and may have another name that I don’t recall. There was always some confusion and interchanging of the names of the caves around the park and surrounding area by some people (especially visitors from out of town), but these are the names most often used by all of the local old-timers in the area that lived their entire lives there. It has been many years since I explored it and the other caves at TF Park and the surrounding area, but at one time I had maps to locate and maps of the layout of each of these caves and all known names. Too bad I don’t have those notes with GPS coordinates to share today. Good Luck, BE CAREFUL and happy spelunking!”

“Doty’s Bell Gas Station just to the west of the Vendome Swimming Pool on Broadway in Sulphur, Oklahoma.” https://oklahomahistory.net/ttphotos8a/DotysBellStationSulphur.jpg

“Hi Butch.  I remember…..riding the city bus from E Street to down town on Saturday morning—– It cost a nickel and included a token for the ride back.  The show was a dime, but everyone went down the street before the show and got their popcorn for a dime because it was larger than that sold in the show.  The westerns were common fare and always included a cartoon or two as well….those were great days to grow up in when it was not necessary to lock doors and we could walk to school and town without fear.  Shame we can’t bring back those kinder and gentler times.” -Dale Gant

“I recently came across a copy of the R. G. Dun OKLAHOMA REFERENCE BOOK for July, 1924. I am attaching the pages for Ardmore. I thought you might get a kick out of it. It is interesting to see how many of the businesses you remember from growing up in Ardmore. I found 23 names I remembered. I’m sure there are others who remember many more.

One of my favorites was the Solomon Bakery on Main Street. He made the best salt rising bread I have ever eaten. It was my dad’s favorite so we always had it in the house.

I also want to recommend a book I just finished reading titled, RAGTOWN: A HISTORY OF THE GREATER HEALDTON-HEWITT OIL FIELD by Kenny A. Franks. It was printed in 1986 with a second printing in 1994. I found it on Amazon. The seller was a bookstore in Edmond.

It is a short book, but contains many photographs. The notes and bibliography at the end of the book give you a jumping off point if you want to dig deeper into the rich oil history of Carter County.”  -Monroe Cameron

The Lone Grove Ledger
“From the Archives” submitted by Mindy Taylor
Nov. 4, 1913
~ The way of the transgressor is hard and especially when the Pinkertons get after him.  R. E. Clayton, formerly of Ohio, was placed in jail here after being charged with a crime in Ohio.  The Pinkertons were given the assignment to track him down and found Clayton in just 16 days.  He has been working in the oilfields and was arrested by Charley Jones, the
Hewitt constable.
~ The preliminary steps toward the organization of a Chamber of Commerce for Wilson have been taken.  The men who are now building Wilson will be behind the chamber of commerce movement, including F. L. Letch, formerly of Lawton, State Senator Jack Langston, late of Guthrie, L. L. Dunlap, G. J. Leeper, W. H. Bradford, Dr. Darling, T. F. Maloney, H. L. Carmichael, J. T. Martin, James White, and W. W. Means.  Two banks have been organized and a cotton gin and grain elevator are in the works.  Wilson is in the center of one of the biggest cotton-growing districts in the south.
~ The pleasant weather of last week had dried the roads so they were in condition for traveling.  Now Saturday’s rain has put them out of commission again.  The weather and road conditions make it hard on freighters and movers.  Dr. Tidmore’s office is now half way between Hewitt and Wilson and from all indications, it will stay there for some time.  The railroad has become a public necessity, as the wagon roads are absolutely impassable if it were not for the railroad we would be without food and material necessary to carry on the work in the oil fields.  If ever we did need good road building it is now.
~ Want to learn more about Wilson’s history? Come visit the Museum! 
Hours:  10:00 – 4:00 Tues., Thurs., Fri., & Sat.

‘Tis now the very witching time of night,
When churchyards yawn and hell itself breathes out
Contagion to this world.
  -William Shakespeare

See everyone next week!

Butch and Jill Bridges
Ardmore Oklahoma
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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