A Home Grown Home Page

Home of the This and That Newsletters

Vol 14  Issue 721  November 18, 2010

PO Box 2, Ardmore, Oklahoma 73402

Email: butchbridges@oklahomahistory.net

Phone: 580-490-6823

Jill and I took a road trip to eastern Oklahoma last weekend to celebrate our anniversary.  We left Lone Grove Saturday at 6am and by 9am we were making our first stop for breakfast in Talihina at Pam’s Diner.  Pam’s was the place to eat that morning, people coming and going every few minutes, so I knew it must be good food. Boy was I right.  We had a delicious breakfast and the price was great. Breakfast for the two of us came to $10.95 tax and all.  Here is a pic of my egg omelet.


While waiting on our food I snapped this pic of the people eating.  It was a very busy place.


This is a view Pam’s Diner on the outside, located right in downtown Talihina.



From Talihina we traveled on NE to Poteau, Oklahoma stopping at the Walmart there to pick up a few things.  We didn’t find a whole lot of things to see in Poteau, so we traveled on south to Heavener, Oklahoma to see the Runestone. The lettering was supposedly etched on the stone around 800 AD.  It is about a 100 yard walk down a trail to the building that houses the Runestone.  The trip back to the top is not for the weak heart but there are benches to take a rest going back up.






This next pic is the actual letters on the Runestone.


There are some spectacular views from atop the Runestone State Park looking out over Heavener.




And in the old downtown part of Heavener off the Highway 259 I found these two rocking chairs. Really well made and the one is a man’s rocking chair for sure.  I sure wanted it to take home. lol



Before leaving the small town of Heavener, Oklahoma I took a pic of this caboose on display.


We spent the night at the really nice Big Cedar RV Camp and Cabins in Big Cedar, Oklahoma. Dave Wakeman has 3 cabins, we took cabin #3 for $70 that night. It was clean as a whistle and we couldn’t have asked for a better mountain stay than offered by Dave Wakeman and his RV Park. This first 3 views are inside the cabin.




This is a view of the outside. Its not a big cabin, but all we needed for the night. We loved the rocking chairs.


This is the office at Big Cedar RV Park.


The next pics are looking out from our cabin’s front door.




These next pics were taken in the area of Big Cedar.







We drove a total of 653 miles,  spending $70 on gasoline, averaging 25 mpg.  This is a map I drew of the route we took with the furthest north being Poteau, OK.


Of the entire 653 miles, the area we liked best because of mountains and rural locale was about 40 miles east and west of Honobia, Oklahoma.  I have mapped out this area in the link below.  So when we make another trip back to eastern Oklahoma, we will drive a lot less and see a lot more of what we are looking for in nature! We have already found a cabin to rent at Honobia to stay the night for $70. In fact, we would love to retire someday to a few acres in the Honobia, Oklahoma area!  If anyone  has some acreage for sale in that area, let me know.


From This and That newsletter archives November 1997:


I received the following email the other day. I have never heard of it, but maybe some of you have. Let me know if you’ve looked into the future through the lowly persimmon seed.

“Well as the winter approaches, people start wondering how bad a winter is coming. The old way of forecasting it was to cut open a persimmon seed and see if a ‘knife’, ‘fork’ or ‘spoon’ was inside. The knife meant it was to a cold, wet winter. The fork meant that the winter was to be a wet, mild winter. The spoon meant that the winter would be dry and mild.”

Clemscott in NW Carter county was named after 2 local citizens Clem Brooks and Scott Sparks.


As a follow up to the above archive, about 2 weeks ago a couple employees at the Carter county court clerks office opened up some persimmon seeds.  They all contained spoons.

Last week about 30 of my 1,600 subscribers did not get their T&T.  They were bounced back to my by AT&T and a couple of their subsidiaries for being spam.  Every few years I go through this, and nearly every time its always AT&T.  Hopefully this time will go ok, and hope those of you who did not receive your T&T understand it was not on my end.

Q.   The Oklahoma ballad, the Dicky Bird, back in the 20s and 30s is reference to what?
A.    The oil field pump jack.Click here to hear the song:   Dicky Bird Ballad  (takes a minute to load)

Here is the same song if the above link does not work for you.


The above song was taken from a 33 1/3rd record I’ve owned since 1957.



Q.   Who was the Cherokee Bandit?
A.   (answer in next week’s newsletter)

Gas prices today in the Ardmore area……

https://oklahomahistory.net/gasprices.htmlSome mail from this week’s MAILBAG…..

HUGE ESTATE SALE 14 miles east of Chickasha, OK (15 miles west of Lindsey, OK). Long Time Antique Dealers Sam and Mary Mays. 50 Years Accumulation. Saturday November 20, 2010 9am to 5pm.


“A few years ago I spent the winter in Yuma, AZ. The Imperial Sand Dunes are visible to the west.

An average Thanksgiving and Christmas weekend there will be over 100,000 visitors to the area. Probably 25,000 to 50,000 sand vehicles of some sort. All the way from two wheelers to full blown sand rails (about 1500 lbs.). Since there are no roads, no direction signs, very limited visibility going over a hill, and a vast difference in weight of the vehicles, there are frequent crashes. There are absolutely no rules of the road. No police, nothing. Do whatever you’re stupid enough to do. About 11-15 emergency rooms visits each day of those two weekends.

A regular weekend will not have that many visitors. From the 1st. of November to March 30 there were 11 deaths the year I was in Yuma.

Weekends it’s a scary place. People will speed over a 50 foot sand dune they can’t see over, and don’t have any idea what’s on the other side. Maybe a cliff. ”  -Larry


Dean Pelton grew up in the northeast part of Ardmore just a block from Dr. Boyd’s and the Community Swimming Pool, in the same neighborhood I did.  But most of Dean’s adult life has been spent in Tyler, Texas.  He is now retired and thinking more and more about home and wishing he was back here to finish out his days.  Dean called me last week to say if anyone is interesting in trading homes with him in Tyler, send him an email in Tyler, Texas at fdpelton@yahoo.com

“Verrry interesting! As it happens, I’ve been corresponding with a couple of descendants of the maker of this bell, who was William Thompson Garratt of San Francisco. We speculate, but have not been able to prove, that W.T. Garratt was related to John W. Garratt of St.Louis, who ran a brass foundry. J.W. Garratt did not advertise bells, but a couple have been found bearing the name of his company. Most interestingly, both Garratts hung their bells on fittings which are in the same style as that used by the Hooper/Blake bell foundry of Boston, Mass. This photo is a good illustration of that face. From the photo, the Yuma bell was made in the 1870s.” -Carl Zimmerman


“One of my Dad’s dearest friends was Roy Withers – one-time mail-carrier for “Ragtown” (Wirt) west of Healdton. Roy said that he had to carry a “hog-leg” (i.e. a .45 revolver) with him to protect himself from those would-be robbers who would try to steal the payroll checks for the oilfield workers.  Who could imagine that one could Google for “Roy Withers” and find a picture of him in his mail car, were it not for Butch Bridges’ www.oklahomahistory.net !!”


“Please share with others from Healdton. I am wanting to do a documentary film on what it was like growing up during the 50’s and 60’s in southern Oklahoma. What I need is pictures from Carter County, most especially Healdton area. Right now I need any pictures of the Derrick Drive-In. Do not worry about the condition of the pictures, I can re-master and recondition anything. If you can send scanned copies at 300dpi or send originals (originals will be reconditioned if need be, for free, and of course returned). I can also use video…any format. Any piece I use from anyone will be acknowledged in the video. Glenda Connick can attest to the fact that I have $40,000+ in audio/video production equipment ready to be used, and the expertise to use it. So, let’s get going and create something that is really fun.

You may contact me with any questions or concerns via e-mail at  k-mcbride@satx.rr.com  or by phone at 210-375-4557. I am currently doing a life documentary project and am in my third month of production with about 45 days to go and would like to begin this new project just after the first of the year. If you hear me refer to eMagineering Digital Studio and/or Moose & Squirrel Productions…know that it is still me.”   -Kenny McBride

“I’m Harold Levine, grandson of Simon Levine, who started peddling in Southern Indian Territory in the early-1890s. Simon migrated from Russia and had a cousin who was preceded him in immigrating to the US and who started peddling in Calvert, Texas just north of College Station. Simon opened his Marietta store in 1899 and moved to the 214 Main St. location in 1928, which is now home to Levine’s Antiques. Simon and his wife Fanny had 5 sons, Nathan, Ben, Philip, Ira and Julius and 2 daughters, Esther and Dolly. Nathan opened his store in Oklahoma City in the mid-20s and which was later operated by two of his sons. My dad, Ben (1902-1996), opened his store in Gainesville, Texas in 1932 which he operated for 40 years. Julius ran the store in Marietta after my grandfather retired and later moved to Ardmore where he opened his men’s store. He eventually left the dry goods business as he became afflicted with MS but later opened up a liquor store in Ardmore when Oklahoma became “wet.”

Julius and Molly’s sons are Perry, who lives in Cherry Hill, NJ and Emil, who lives in Vienna, Austria. Both are retired naval officers.

A couple of other tidbits passed down to our generation…(1) Simon anonymously donated money to build a city park in Marietta and (2) he lent money (purportedly as did a lot of merchants) to Levi Strauss to help him get his ready-to-wear dungarees business (Levi’s) off the ground.

Your website indicated Julius had started the Marietta store but I wanted to make sure that Grandpa Simon wasn’t forgotten!”

Harold Levine  hl@radiobop.com
Program Director
Radio Bop | http://www.RadioBop.com | “Your Never-Ending Nonstop Sock Hop!”
Radio Bop 60s | http://www.RadioBop60s.com | “Boss Radio Is Back!”
http://www.ROOTSofROCK.US | “The Music Elvis Grew Up With!”
Radio Swing Worldwide | http://www.RadioSwingWorldwide.com | “Hits from the 30s and 40s!”

All participants meet at 12:30 PM in the Springer School parking lot on the South side to register.
Entry fee is one (1) unwrapped toy per entry.
Everyone welcome – ATV’s, cars, bikes, animals, walkers, floats, tractors and etc.
Immediately following the parade join us for refreshments at the Springer Community Center.
Volunteers and donations are welcome and greatly appreciated.


Wichita Falls, Texas

The Wichita Falls Railroad Museum invites the public to visit this Saturday evening during City Lights Parade and Downtown Festival from 4 to 8pm, November 20th.

FREE ADMISSION to the railroad cars on the middle track open to view inside the dining car, passenger car, sleeper and caf? car. Entrance to the grounds will be at the 8th Street gates across from the Farmers Market.

While on the train, Museum officials will be offering coffee and hot chocolate for $1 a cup plus fried pies at $2?to enjoy ?dinner on the diner?.

Bronna McNeely, newly elected President of the Wichita Falls Railroad Museum will have membership applications on the train and the new Kiddy Train will be offering free rides for the youth. The lighted train will be featured in the downtown parade at 7pm.

“I took this picture this morning, Wednesday, November 17 looking out our front window. We received about a foot of snow yesterday on top of what we have been receiving each day for more than a week. I’ve gone through about 45 pounds of Ol’ Roy Dog Food in the past 10 days feeding birds. The big birds, the Clark’s nut crackers, gray jays, and Steller’s jays all prefer the dog food right now. The chickadees are scooping up the real bird seed. Our two fox swing by the porch both mornings and evenings to eat, but they don’t eat as much as the big birds. It’s off to town today to restock the Ol’ Roy.”   -Monroe Cameron at Big Sky, Montana


Q. “Butch, for years I have seen the white building just west of I-35 about half a mile north of exit 33 and have always wondered what it was. I had never seen any vehicles there until recently so I had always just took it as an old abandoned building. Do you what it is?? I saw another like it in northern Oklahoma so I know this isn’t the only one.” -Gene sent from my iPhone

A. Gene, that is the FAA VOR navigation system tower used by airplanes.



“Just found your site through a lady in Healdton. I was born and raised in Ardmore but left in Sept 1960. I have relatives and have been visiting 1 or 2 times a year for the past 6 years. This is my third trip in the past 4 months because I am doing genealogy work on my family. Does anyone know anything about a Van Hellums who died in 1980 – he owned a boot making/repair shop for many years in Ardmore???” -Lonnie Mahan lamahan@yahoo.com

When the Snow is on the Roses – Sonny James 1972

Now the golden sun can see us kiss
Every summer day we’ll love like this

When the snow is on the roses
When the bluebird’s flown away
In my arms we’ll both remember
All the love we shared today

As we walk along the silvery shore
Vows we make will last forever more

When the snow is on the roses
When the summer stars are gone
One more summer will be over
But our love will still go on

When the snow is on the roses
When the bluebird’s flown away
In my arms we’ll both remember
All the love we shared today
All the love we shared today


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

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.