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Vol 13  Issue 670 November 26, 2009

PO Box 2, Ardmore, Oklahoma 73402

Email: butchbridges@oklahomahistory.net

I received a photo this week from sisters Elisabeth Spain and Marjorie Holmes of Tulsa. They have an old Graham, Oklahoma school class photograph and hope someone will recognize others in the group picture. Here it is in her own words:

“Butch, the picture my sister and I are submitting dates back to 1905 or 1906. This was a one room school at Graham, Carter County, Oklahoma. The teacher on the front right is Cora Ballard, an aunt. Two spaces to her right is our mother, Della Ballard born May, 6, 1901 and on her right is her sister, Mae Ballard born May 6, 1889. The young child in the wicker buggy is from the Brooks family. He had a condition that caused the bones to break at the slightest pressure, hence the buggy. The grown man on the back row is Homer Burrow. Three spaces to his left is Bryon Grisham, born October 7, 1896 in Indian Territory. Little did Della and Bryon realize it, but 18 years later they would marry and have three children: Bob Grisham, Elisabeth Grisham and Marjorie Grisham.

Della and Mae’s mother, Jenny Ellen Berry Ballard died when they are 4 and 6 years old. Their father, Charles Ballard was a medical doctor who served a wide area in and around Ardmore, Kingston, Pooleville, Madill,, etc. Dr Ballard died at the early age of 47 due to heart problems. He is buried in Rose Hill Cemetery in Ardmore. Bryon died at age 76 in Ardmore, Della died at age 104 in Tulsa, Oklahoma. Both are buried in Rose Hill Cemetery as is our brother, Bob.

Not many people are still around that can identify some of the other children in the photo. If you or any of your T&T Readers recognize any of the others, lets us know.” 
-Elizabeth Spain and Marjorie Holmes, Tulsa


Jill and I were in El Reno, Oklahoma last Saturday and took in the old Ft Reno.  Its located just about 4 miles west of El Reno.  Our first building to see was the Visitors Center, but we couldn’t go inside because it was closed for some reason.


This information sign was located in front of the Visitors Center.


On the west side of the property was the mess hall.  A person could tell the oldest part of the building was in the center, and the date and Cavalry emblem on the wall.


This old cast iron bell was located in front of the old church.


Here is the front and back of the brochure.



On the west side of the Ft Reno property was the fort cemetery.  It has the main walled section where people who lived and died a the fort are buried.  But attached by a walled enclosure next the the Main cemetery is the WWII POW cemetery.  There are 8 graves in the SE corner of the POW part of cemetery belonging to Italians who were buried at the fort.


In the remainder if the POW part of the cemetery are graves of German prisoners.


This is the back page of Ft Reno’s brochure and POW info.


While in El Reno Jill and I ate a pretty good burnt onion burger at Johnnie’s Grill.

Outside View     Inside View 1    Inside View 2 

Inside View 3    Food Line      Hamburger

As we were leaving Johnnie’s Grill this old 1958 Oldsmobile was parked out front.  In case you didn’t catch it above, the same Olds is in one of the photos on the wall inside Johnnie’s Grill.


After leaving El Reno we headed for Kingfisher to visit the Chisholm Trail Museum.  But I’ll have to wait until the next issue to share the pictures, since there is not enough room here today.

Steve Hamm has added another Ardmore High School criterion to his website.  The 1970 Criterion now online.


I have quite a story  to tell this week about our Barred Rock chickens.   Jill had let them out last Monday as she does everyday to free range for an hour or so, and when she went into the house for just a few minutes, a hawk swooped down and tried to grab one of the 4 hens.  When Jill heard all the hollering going out outside, she rushed back out and and saw one hen ‘dead’ behind the house.  She grabbed the broom and run the other 3 hens into the chicken coop area.  Our rooster, Milo, had decided right off to save himself, and ran to the safety of the covered chicken run area, leaving the hens to fend for themselves.  Jill just knew the one hen was dead, it was laying on the ground on its back, feet sticking up, and neck laid over to the side.  She look around in a few minutes and it was gone, so she just knew the hawk (one of several) had returned and grabbed it up, and flew off with it.  But then after a few more minutes had passed, she looked around, and there was the 4th hen walking around, doing fine.  She quickly rushed it inside the coop area with the rest.

We still don’t know exactly what happened.  We think the hawk must have knocked the hen unconscious for a few minutes when it swooped down trying to grab it.  Whatever the case, the hens are fine and we are so glad.  Those 4 hens and one rooster (even though he is a little feisty sometimes) are like children to us.  We get about 3 eggs a day, sometimes 4, delicious.

Ever want to give money to someone anonymously?  The other day I was watching the 5:30pm news and there was a story about a website in Washington state were a person can do just that. GivingAnon, a non-profit company started in 2005, allows the donor to remain anonymous to the person receiving the money.  Its a service that could be valuable in certain situations.  But then it might drive the recipient crazy trying to figure out who sent them dough.


Gas prices today in the Ardmore area……


Q.   Who established the first trading post in Oklahoma?
A.    Pierre Chouteau

Q.   What country first claimed Oklahoma ?
A.   (answer in next week’s issue)

Some mail from this week’s MAILBAG…..

Fall images of the bricktown area in OKC.  -Cecil Elliott





“Butch, Interesting article about BL Owens furniture store that sponsored a country and western show on Channel 10 in Ada back in 1954, the duo was Jude and Jodie of Jude and Jodie Furniture in OKC.  In 1954, after auditioning for a spot on a 30-minute weekly show that was sponsored by the B.L. Owens Furniture Store in Ardmore and broadcast over KTEN-TV in Ada, they were hired for $50 a week.”


Chickasaw National Recreation Area (Platt Historic District) this week


Hello Friends, First of all, I?d like to remind you of two public events coming up in December, 2009. On December 12, my band and I will be at the Quail Valley Fun Barn in Winfield, Kansas for our annual Cowboy Christmas Ball. 7pm ? 10pm. Please call 620-221-0052 for reservations. Come join us for good food and lots of dancing and toe tapping fun. On December 31, my band and I will be at the Prairie Rose Chuckwagon in Benton, Kansas for the New Years Eve Dance. 9pm ? Midnight. Please call 316-778-2121 for reservations and directions.

Album #15 – My latest CD is now available. The title is “Oklahoma 1955”. This CD is in response to the many requests for an album the folks can dance to at home. The title song tells about Western Swing music in Oklahoma in 1955, when Oklahoma was tops in Western Swing. Included are several Bob Wills songs and some old pop tunes from that era. The list of songs is shown on my website http://www.lesgilliam.com

-Les Gilliam

“Butch I stopped today in Waurika, I had been driving by this restaurant for 7 years and had never stopped there.  Well I could not stomach another Sonic burger so I went to Nicki’s Place and man for $3.25 you can get a really good cheeseburger (seemed like a pound of meat).  It is just west of the railroad tracks on the north side of US 70.”



“Butch, I’m looking for any information I can find on 2 men that lived in the Ardmore area in the early 1940’s.  Virgil Ray Ethridge and Edward Medford.  If anyone that reads T&T know anything about these 2 men, would you please let me know.  Thank you.”  -Nelda  nftrue@swbell.net

Springer Christmas Parade will be on Saturday, December 12, 2009 at 1:00 PM.  All entries will meet on the South side of Springer School parking lot at 12:30 PM.  Open to all riding clubs, car clubs, ATV, motorcycles, church groups, floats, animals and walkers.  Entry free is one (1) new wrapped toy per entry.  Refreshments following parade at the Springer Community Center. For additional info contact Springer City Hall at 580-653-2500.

“Butch,  Here are some images of the old Union Station here in Oklahoma City.”  -Cecil Elliott



Moore, Oklahoma brother and sister Erin and Glenn Elmore, ages 16 and 15, play a duet arrangement of Ernesto Lecuona’s stirring classic MALAGUENA, November 15, 2009. This was the final performance of the Sunday afternoon Pearl Peveler Piano Studio Family Duet Recital held at Moore’s Eastern Avenue Baptist Church. Following the recital performances, Erin and Glenn were each presented by Mrs. Peveler with the National Guild of Piano Teachers’ Paderewski Award gold medal.  Parents are Tom and Karen Elmore. Grandparents are Jack and Faye McAnulty of Oklahoma City and Glenn and Patsy Elmore or Ardmore.


“This pretty neat, it is the rock quarry along side the highway to Ada, Oklahoma.  It is probable over 200 feet deep. It’s only about 100 feet from the road and 50 feet from the railroad.” -Doug Williams


The Killed Deer by Hulda Fetzer

The deer in a woods a-bounding went;
The hunter a bullet quickly spent;
The deer fell dead,
And the hunter said,
“That bullet went straight as it was meant.”

There’s a lot in this if you’ll think it o’er,
And the more you think it, the more and more;
Had the bullet missed,
And behind it hissed,
The deer would be bounding as before.

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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