A Home Grown Home Page

Home of the This and That Newsletters

Vol 14  Issue 694  May 13, 2010

PO Box 2, Ardmore, Oklahoma 73402

Email: butchbridges@oklahomahistory.net

Ardmore has some 14 parks, but the oldest, Whittington Park, is still the most widely used.  The city did not acquire title to Whittington Park until 1902, but it had been used for recreation and relaxtion as long as there had been an Ardmore.  The town’s first birthday party was held there back in 1888 and it is still the site of the yearly birthday party on July 28th.

Back around the turn of the century, those parties lasted for as long as three days.  Everyone got thrills or chills as the balloon pilot made like a monkey from a horizontal bar suspended from the rising bag.  There were rodeos, horse races and the inevitable “speakin’s.”  The Ardmore Reds often provided baseball entertainment  in their eye opening red suits as they met the team of a neighboring town and provided material for many an off the cuff bet by the sport element.  There were square dances and many games and contests designed to please persons of every age.  And there was food, lots of good food. Sometimes there might have been lots of whisky too, which had probably been smuggled in on the Santa Fe by local citizens, may of whom seemed hard on shoes, judging from the uncommonly large number of shoe boxes they carried in the arms on the train from Texas to the Indian Territory.  It is said there were thousands of covered wagons from all over southern Oklahoma parked at Whittington Park on these occasions.

Tourist Park was purchased in 1911.  Cars were becoming popular and every town of any size was trying to cash in on the tourist trade by providing camping facilities.  Tourist Park  comprised block 344 on West Main Street just east of the present National Guard armory.  It is now leased to the Girl Scouts.

Central Park was acquired in 1910 from the heirs of Bob Lee, early day Ardmore lawyer.

Fraley Park, named for pioneer Charles Fraley, became a city park in 1924. It is located  just east of Washington School and contains two of the Reed wading pools. Mr. Reed, a wealthy Kansas City businessman provided Ardmore with two such wading pools, the other being at Whittington Park.

Selvidge Park located at the end of D Street NW was acquired in 1932, the gift of George P. Selvidge Sr., and other residents of that section.

Oakland Park is at the end of East Main street in what is now known as City Park addition.

E.A. Walker presented Ardmore with two parks in 1934 and 1935 that have been invaluable and useful gifts- Walker Stadium, adjoining the city along highway 70 on the west edge of town and Walker Park, which is located on B NW between 9th and 10th.  Popular Walker Park has baseball diamonds, tennis courts, swings, and other playground equipment and picnic areas.

-The above history is from the Carter County History book, 1957 edition

Steve Hamm now has the 1907 Ardmore yearbook online!


Here is a picture Joe Hock in Edmond sent in this week.  He took the photo near Piedmont, Oklahoma. An artist would love to paint this to canvas.


The first part of this week, Monday evening, was pretty scary around here again.  Tornados all over Oklahoma and north Texas. Thankfully we made it through this one ok on our ponderosa.  Some people within 5 miles of us were not so lucky.  I’ll be glad when the spring storms are over.

Some of you will remember me buying worms from South Carolina last summer and putting them in worm bins. Well they made it through winter just fine, and I have plenty of worms and even more important, worm castings for the garden.  The worm harvester separates the worms from the castings, which drops through the wire mess onto a tarp below.


This is just a sampling of the worms that came out the other end of the harvester and fell into a bucket.


I guess my next project will be to figure out how to attach an electric motor to the worm harvester so I don’t have to crank it hand.

A few months ago I found a great freeware program that let’s you connect to another computer, such as at work, or home, or a friend’s computer. Even let’s you transfer files.  It requires no installation on your computer, just run the EXE file, or even better, just go to their website and click on “Run Ammyy Admin” in the middle of the website, answer ‘run’ a couple times, have the other computer do the same, and after an acceptance screen, your hooked!  I’ve been using it quite a bit lately to check friend’s computers around Ardmore and around the country, even used it from GermanyA.


Q.   What river was once blocked by a huge log raft?
A.   Red River – Known as the Great Raft of 1799

Q.   What happened on Black Sunday?
A.   (answer in next week’s issue)

Gas prices today in the Ardmore area……


Things you don’t hear any more:

Quit slamming the screen door when you go out!

Some mail from this week’s MAILBAG…..

“Butch, Not only are the coreopsis all along the highway median, they are COVERING the hills that burned off a few years ago. These pictures don’t do justice to the bright color, but you can get an idea of just how far they extend into the hills. It’s worth the drive to see them. Also, the Indian paintbrush is impressive this year.” -Kerry




“I am doing my family history. I am trying to find a location of a farm in 1935. My great grandfather, Albert Nole(a)n passed away at his home near the Mary Niblack School on Hoxbar Route Jan 13 1935. He was a member of the Holiness Church. His in laws were Thomas Sidney Hollis and Malissa Emeline Stephens (maiden) Yocum ( 1st marriage) Hollis (2nd). Wife’s name was Bessie O Yocum Hollis Nolen. Do you know of any one that could help me find this farm…BTW it was a pecan orchard.” -Elizabeth Cook  kbcook04@yahoo.com

Springer Volunteer Fire Dept. Bar-B-Q Fundraiser and Dance
Saturday, May 15, 2010 6:00 PM at Springer Community Storm Shelter
Bring your lawn chair and enjoy the dance and music.

The Yellow Submarine is a Kingston, Oklahoma landmark.

“Dr. Leonard R. Hock bought this submarine and painted it yellow and placed it in front of his Medical Office. He was the Doctor in Kingston, Madill, Ardmore and Durant for many years. He was on the school board for 15 years, a Deacon in the Baptist Church, and brought hundreds into this world when they were born. One morning he got a call at 2:00 AM by an elderly lady that lived near Durant. She needed to go the hospital and the only Hospital she would go to was the hospital in McKinney, Texas. Dr. Hock drove her to McKinney and stayed with her until 7:30 AM when he told her he had to get back to Kingston by 9:00 for an appointment with another person. After he returned he sent her a bill for $15.00. The Dallas Morning News did a half page spread story about him being one of the last real Country Doctors. In World War II he was wounded and was given a Purple Heart. His wife Margaret was also an officer in the Army Nurse Corps and was awarded the Bronze Star for saving the lives of fourteen wounded service men while hiding on the second floor of a building in Manila with the Japanese soldiers going in and our on the ground floor under them. General Douglas MacArthur met Margaret and honored her for her bravery and being the only person caring for these American troops. All of them came out alive.  Both Leonard and Margaret graduated from Central High School and were high school sweethearts.


Below is a picture of Leonard and Margaret Hock standing at the front door of their first home after getting married.”  -Joe Hock


“Butch, I have been using The Works for a spell now. I bought it because the single active ingredient is Hydrogen Chloride. The Works is inexpensive and works because it is hydrochloric acid. I just wanted those readers who are finding new uses for it to be aware of this so that they will take the proper precautions. I always try vinegar (acetic acid) first. Sometimes vinegar needs to soak in order to attack hard water deposits, but while it is soaking it makes my kitchen smell like Easter.” – Chuck


“Hi Butch, A few months back I told you about the camera that had the missing screw and how I took it behind a panel just before the OKC bombing blast in 1995.  Here is a picture of that camera that goes with the story that you published in March 2010, if my memory is correct.”  -Cecil Elliott

Bring your Cameras!

We will start at 9am Saturday, June 12, 2010. Location will be 1624 South Agnew -Okla. city ?OKC FOP Lodge hall.

9am Welcome

9:15am we will hear from Pres. Kirkwood on past activities and present activities as well as future activities.

9:30am Ken Frates will show film footage of the Machine Gun Kelley & Urshel Kidnapping trials. Ken Frates will be our speaker.

10:30am we will travel to S.W. 59th & Council rd and visit the graves of Jim Casey and Victor Casey. Roger Shaw and Herman Kirkwood speakers.

We will then travel on to S.E. 29th and Sunny Lane to visit the grave of Moman Pruitt the most famous trail lawyer in history. Speaker Herman Kirkwood.

Then on to The Ole Orchard Restaurant for lunch. Reasonable prices and good food.

After lunch the next stop is N.E. 36th to visit the grave of ?Slaughter Kid?. We will then travel to Jones, Ok.and visit the old saloon and meet Ron Green. Herman Kirkwood speaker.

We will travel back into OKC and visit the graves of Cattle Annie and George?Hookie? Miller with Al Ritter speaking on Hookie Miller and Steve Bunch speaking on Cattle Annie.

Next stop will be Fairlawn Cemetery and visit Ed O?Kelley?s grave and also the OKC Police officer who killed Joe Barnett. We will also visit the grave of Clyde Maddox?s mother and the grave of the first commissioner of Charities and corrections in 1907.

We will also visit the grave of Jack Love former Deputy US Marshall and Sheriff as well as Oklahoma?s first corporation commissioner.

Next we will visit the grave of E.E. Kirkpatrick Doctor and Oilman. He delivered the ransom money $200,000 in marked twenties to Machine Gun Kelley in Kansas City.

We will be selling our inventory of books. All are Oklahoma related. Most are New books and out of print. Priced Right


“Jill should look into a sprinkle scarecrow. I have one and it works great.”  -Don


“Bill Murray after his governorship sponsored a Colony in So. America Somewhere on the Coast E. of Venezuela, I think in Guiana. I once had a neighbor in Odessa Texas that was a young girl when her family went to the Colony, she said they almost starved, and came back into the U.S. through New York. She later became the Postmaster in Fort Davis TX.” -Jim

Johnston Murray, Alfalfa Bill’s son, spent part of his time there growing up and spoke Spanish pretty well as a result. Johnston Murray later served as governor, as his father did.” -Wes Leatherock

“Hi, Butch — Any idea what happened to the tiger faces that were once located over the northern doors to the gym at old Ardmore High?  When we were kids, my dad would always tell us that his Art instructor at AHS, Joe A. Russell, designed and made them. Now they are gone from that location. I hope they’ve been saved for the school. Also — any idea what the city street crews have done with the brick pavers replaced with concrete on 3rd Avenue west of the old school?”  -TOM ELMORE  gtelmore@aol.com

“My location is in Denver, but my father was born in Ardmore.  My grandfather: Hamilton Green. He was a school teacher there in the late 1930?s and into the 1940?s before he moved to Tulsa.  His wife was Winifred Moore, later Winifred Green.  My Dad is John Luther Green, who turns 81 on July 3 of this year.  The question I have concerns a cannery that we think was WPA funded, perhaps not. Grandfather Green worked there in the summers to teach others how to can. He was not such a great cook, but was a science teacher, and understood the physics, biology and chemistry behind the food preservation process. Steam and pressure cookers were new then and I think they canned with tin cans as well.  Does anyone have any reference to a cannery in Healdton, a community kitchen, or classes taught in Ardmore during those years? Or recall a teacher named J. Hamilton Green in the 1930?s and early 1940?s in Ardmore.”  -Luther Allan Green, Louisville, CO  lutheragreen@msn.com

“Butch, I saw the pallets and thought about you!” -Huff

Museum Memories
Contributed by Melinda Taylor
The Wilson News
October 5, 1916
Wilson is in the center of a large cotton district and is favored with a considerable amount of trade. There are three gins in the immediate town of Wilson which run continuously during the cotton season. The total capacity of the gins is approximately 100 bales daily. Owing to the fact that it covers such a large territory, the gins are often compelled to run during the night in order to supply the demand.
There are about 5,000 bales of cotton sold here yearly. Wilson has an advantage on account of its location on the railroad. The vast territory from which the town has to draw embraces an area with a sixty-mile diameter and extends into Texas.
The cause of this great amount of cotton coming to this town is that they have shipping facilities and always afford a better market for the raw product. The cotton is ginned and sold here in town to exporters, the seed being sold to the oil mills. The public is furnished with a regular man to weigh their cotton as it is brought from the gin; therefore they are assured a fair deal. The prices for cotton and seed are better here than elsewhere in the neighboring country or cities. Hence it behooves the farmer to take these things into consideration before disposing of his cotton.

Wilson Historical Museum Hours: Tues., Thurs., Fri., Sat. 10:00 a.m. – 4:00 p.m. http://www.wilsonhistoricalmuseum.org

Cotton Fields – Creedence Clearwater Revival – 1982

When I was a little bitty baby
My mama would rock me in the cradle,
In them old cotton fields back home.


See everyone next week!

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

Save on long distance calls, just a couple cents a minute!
Ardmore High School Criterions Online
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
Ardmore School Criterions

All previous issues of This & That can be found on my Website.
Feel free to forward this free newsletter. Mailouts: over 1,600.
To be removed from my T&T mailings, just send me an email.
I do not sell, trade or give my mailing list to anyone for any reason.