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Vol 14  Issue 711  September 9, 2010

PO Box 2, Ardmore, Oklahoma 73402

Email: butchbridges@oklahomahistory.net

Phone: 580-490-6823

1889 City of Ardmore incorporated. Prior to this, there were no city police, no sanitation department, no city courts, and no public schools. Prior to incorporation, the Ardmore Board of Trade operated as an unofficial town government. These local merchants met every Tuesday evening to consider community problems. In 1898, the Board of Trade was succeeded by the Ardmore Commercial Club, a forerunner of the Chamber of Commerce.

1889? Scales Bath House is located just east of the Santa Fe water tower. For 25 cents, one could bathe in a tin tub, or shower beneath a barrel with holes drilled in the bottom. Saturday afternoon was reserved for the ladies.

1890 A federal court is established in Ardmore. The most common federal offense was illegally bringing intoxicating liquor into the Chickasaw Nation. It was estimated that over $200 worth of whisky came into Ardmore daily. A favorite way was for individual citizens to take the train to Gainesville and return with a ?shoe box? under their arm. It became a Sunday afternoon diversion to meet the train and count the passengers detraining laden with ?shoes?.

1890 The first Jewish congregation in what will become the State of Oklahoma is founded in Ardmore. At one time, Emeth Temple was located at 121 A Street NW.

1890 First National Bank established. The first nationally chartered bank in Indian Territory.

1890?s Each year 50-60 thousand bales of cotton, with a value of over $1 million, are sold in Ardmore. This continues for many years. During the Fall, it is common for a line of cotton wagons over three miles long to form.

1890?s The Pickens County Anti-Horse Thief Association is formed. The membership fees paid hired riders armed with federal warrants to track down horse thieves.

1891 The original Whittington Hotel, a wooden structure, opened at the corner of Main and Caddo streets. Wiley F. Whittington, a former Confederate Army captain, came to Ardmore from Dexter, Texas. Following the Great Fire of 1895, a 72-room brick and sandstone hotel was built on the same site. A second reconstruction was needed after the rail yard explosion in 1915. The Whittington featured the first metal cage Otis elevator in Ardmore. After Wiley?s death, his daughter Jewel operated the hotel until it closed in 1965. The building was razed for the bricks and fixtures.

1893 ?The Daily Ardmoreite? begins publication. The first daily newspaper to be printed in Indian Territory. It was also the first paper in Indian Territory to be printed by Linotype. The struggling newspaper was purchased by Sidney Suggs in 1897. Mr. Suggs turns his $2400 investment into a success and himself into a leader in Oklahoma journalism. The ?Ardmoreite? is the only survivor of several dailies that were once published in the city, including the ?Daily Citizen?, the ?Chronicle?, the ?Ardmore Appeal?, the ?Bulletin?, and the ?Morning Democrat?. At one time, the ?Ardmoreite? publishing company also printed the weekly ?Democrat?. Between 1900 and 1907, at least twenty-six newspapers were at one time or another published in Ardmore.

1893 In 1893, E. B. Luke came to Ardmore from Detroit, Michigan. At the time, his brother, Jack Luke, operated a music and school book store in Oklahoma City. He urged E. B. to open a similar store in Ardmore. In 1895, Luke?s Music Store opened on east Main Street near the Whittington Hotel. Following the rail yard explosion in 1915, the store moved to 212 West Main. In the early years, the store delivered pianos via horse and buggy throughout the Chickasaw Nation. Over the years, the scope of merchandise increased. Appliances were added during World War I, and a complete line of sporting goods was added after World War II. Following the death of E.B. in 1942, the store was operated by his son, Ed, until it closed in the early 1980?s.

1893 Ardmore?s first town baseball team, The Browns, is formed.

Back in the 1960s I was told by my mother and her mother that my great grandmother, a Choctaw, would not sign up for the government allotments. The reason unknown, maybe fear of the White Man’s ways and promises. I have a book titled, “Oklahoma: A History of Five Generations” (1965) and on page 327 I been reading about a resistance movement by some Indian tribes, primarily Full Bloods, to the government’s Allotment program.  The leader of such a resistance movement was Chitto Harjo, a Creek Indian, and his Crazy Snake Rebellion. Harjo presumed to establish a new Creek government based on old tribal law and customs, and  his followers arrested people who accepted the allotments and whipped them in public. For whatever her reason, I can kinda see why my great grandmother, Ida Murphree Wilson Miller, might have not wanted to sign up for an allotment.


This coming Saturday, September 11th is the 21st annual Auction and Crafts at Clarita, Oklahoma put on by the Amish community in that area. If you are planning to go, here is something to think about:  With all the rain the past few days, and people attending the event directed to park in Amish farmer’s open fields, it might be way to muddy to get out when leaving. Just something to think about if you’re planning to attend.

Map of Clarita, Oklahoma.


Q.   What is the highest waterfall in Oklahoma?
A.   Actually 2 with the same height.  Turner Falls and Dripping Springs in Adair county, Oklahoma.  Both reported to be 77 feet.

Q.   What famous expedition came through Oklahoma between 1804 and 1806?
A.   (answer in next week’s issue)

Gas prices today in the Ardmore area……


Some mail from this week’s MAILBAG…..

“I always look forward to Thursday evening to catch ur newsletter.. I have to comment on the last issue. I’m not sure that my grandfather, Walter Hardy, began practicing medicine in Ardmore in 1887. He was born in Feb. 1870 and would have been only 17 yrs old. He was married and had his first child by 1895 so I think his practice began in the mid 1890’s.”  -Nancy Crockett

Followup:  The 1887 date is probably a typo.  The date more likely is 1897.


“I remember the Speake that ran the general store in Milo., and believe, at one time, they ran the general store in Graham. If you never went into those long ago general stores, you really missed a treat. They had everything. You could also charge, which it seems everybody did back then, and settle up once a month. There will probably be many that remember buying flour in large bags because they came in gingham, or cotton material, and I had many a dress made from this material. I remember Creede and Jessie Speake well. Thanks to Nancy Milson for bringing this to our attention.”

“Butch, Thought I would add another Love County grocery store to your list. My great Uncle and Aunt, Dick and Lona Fuller, owned Fuller?s Grocery on Highway 77 just south of the intersection of Highway 32, where the two highways are the same for a couple of blocks. The store was located on the west side of the road. The building is still there. It has been a carpet store and a video store. I don?t know what it is right now. I remember that even though they owned a large two story home and land about a half a mile north of the store, which by the way the house is still there and occupied, they lived in the back of the store. I would love to hear of any memories that others may have of them and their store. Ironically, Lona is my blood relative, she was a Bridges (perhaps we are kin) and Uncle Dick Fuller, as far as we know, was not connected to my Fuller lineage.”  -Dwain Fuller

Clayborn and Rosie Allgood West family webpage on Facebook


“Dear friends, Both Melvin and Mary Troutz have gone to be with the Lord. Their faith has become sight. I know this may catch several of you by surprise so I will give some detail below.  The viewing was held at Mission Park South and the service took place at Mayfield Park Baptist Church in San Antonio, Texas.

Here is some detail:

Several weeks ago it became necessary for Mary and Melvin to go into a nursing home. It was a difficult decision, but Mary?s health was going downhill fast ? and as most of you know, Melvin could not live on his own without her. In fact, Mary was transported by ambulance to the ER and hospitalized for dehydration and other complications. It soon became apparent that Mary was in very bad shape and needed to go into the nursing home under hospice care. She was never expected to last very long there ? her poor body was just used up.

In the meantime, Melvin was taken to the hospital as well and treated for a mild infection. Because of his health condition, only one nursing home in San Antonio could care for Melvin. For several reasons, Melvin and Mary were in separate homes. After 65 years of marriage, they were now living apart from each other. Melvin used to tell me that the Lord allowed World War II just so he could meet his wife. As soon as he proposed, the war was ended. I don?t know if that?s exactly how it happened; but I know he deeply loved Mary.

Sometime on Thursday of this week, Melvin fell from his electric wheelchair and badly injured himself. Possibly the result of a stroke, Melvin fractured the base of his skull and broke two vertebrae in his neck. Doctors at BAMC determined that damage was severe and would be fatal. It was determined that Melvin would be made as comfortable as possible, while trusting God with the outcome.

Ironically, the family received a call Friday morning concerning Mary as well. Her blood pressure had fallen to a place that could not be read and she was not expected to last the day. (Keep in mind that these two events are completely unrelated ? neither knew about the condition of the other.)

I waited with half the family at Melvin?s bedside while the other half were with Mary across town. These two had been inseparable in the time I?ve known them and now, after weeks apart, they were racing one another ?home? where an eternal reunion awaited them both.

At a little after 6pm on Friday, September 3, Mary slipped quietly into the arms of her Savior. Seven short hours later Melvin?s breathing stopped as he opened his eyes in heaven. I have no doubt Mary was waiting there (standing upright), with their son and other loved ones as he was escorted by our Lord into a place where there is no more separation.

I have been in ministry for over 20 years and I have never witnessed anything like this. There is no surprise when family members involved in a tragic accident together die in close proximity to one another. However, to have a husband and wife that have been apart from one another the way these to have, and to have completely unrelated health issues? Melvin?s being the result of an ?accident?, and to witness them go into eternity at virtually the same time is nothing short of a miracle. God?s hand of favor is evident!! I stand amazed!


In Christ alone,
Jerry Canupp

“There was a school official in Lone Grove who once flew a lighter than air craft. I think his first name was “Pete”. Does anyone know his last name. His mother was in my church in Ringling about 1965 to 1967.” -Joe Hock

The Ardmore High School Class of 1965 is having a 45 year reunion September 24, 25 and 26, 2010. If you have not received any reunion information in the mail, please let us know. alaarch@swbell.net or bobbyeahs1965@yahoo.com

“Butch, I wonder if any of your Readers have the recipe for the Hot Tamales that we used to get in Davis at Babes or at Pick’s Hot Tamales?”

You’ve never seen a clock like this one.


“Hey Butch, Just a heads up, some friends of mine and I have a new radio show, Adventures Into The Strange. We simulcast on three online providers and 67 radio stations nationally. We cover everything. You can go to the links page, and we are listed there. Just click onto the link for our show and it will take you to it. We are on Monday Thru Friday, 8PM to 10PM. We do archive some of the shows.”  -tuklo


Museum Memories
Compiled by Melinda Taylor
The Wilson News
October 27, 1916
The day of all days in the calendar of the small boy has almost arrived and the youngsters of this vicinity are anxiously counting the hours until circus day. It looks now as though a large percentage of the local population, both young and old, will be present at one of the performances when the Barnum & Bailey Greatest Show on Earth exhibits in Ardmore, Nov. 6.
Not in several years has so much local interest been evidenced in a circus event as has been exhibition of the Barnum & Bailey Circus. It is promised that the show will display more new and novel features than ever before, including 100 new acts from Europe.
The principal feature is the new Oriental, spectacular pageant, “Persia”, or “The Pageant of the Thousand and One Nights.” This great display, which is portrayed by 1,350 persons and hundreds of horses, elephants and camels, depicts in pageantry the famous tales of the Arabian Nights. In New York City, where this pageant was produced for the first time this spring, it was announced the most gorgeous and stupendous Oriental display ever presented in America.
Among the foreign circus novelties to be seen for the first time this season are four troupes of wonderful Chinese performers direct from Peking, the great Hanneford family of ridersSiznor Bagonghi, famous dwarf equestrian from Italy; James Teddy, champion jumper of the world; Pallenberg’s two troupes of trained bears, and a host of other novel acts too numerous to mention individually. Pallenberg Poster
The Barnum & Bailey Circus is traveling this season on five trains, made up of 89 cars. More than 1,400 persons are carried in the various departments of this great show, which also includes an enlarged menagerie of 108 cages and 41 elephants.
A brilliant, new street parade will be given on streets during the morning hours preceding the first performance.

Wilson Historical Museum Hours: Tues., Thurs., Fri., Sat. 10:00 a.m. – 4:00 p.m.

Rainy Days And Mondays, by The Carpenters, from the 1971 album The Carpenters


See everyone next week!

Butch and Jill Bridges
Ardmore Oklahoma
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

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