PO Box 2, Ardmore, Oklahoma 73402
Just this week I got my hands of the recently published Oklahoma Courthouse Legends. The book’s author is Oklahoma City attorney Kent Frates. When you first set your eyes on this book, you know it’s quality from cover to cover. This book tells stories that are handed down and sometimes even embellished around Oklahoma?s courthouses. All 77 Oklahoma courthouses (including the 4 U.S. District courthouses) are featured in alphabetical order with 2 pages dedicated to each courthouse. When you see the vivid colors, the detailed photos, the historical accounts unique to each courthouse story, you can’t put this book down until you’ve read it to the end. The courthouse photographs were taken by renown Oklahoma photographer David Fitzgerald.
Pages 30 and 31 are dedicated to the Carter county courthouse here in Ardmore. The Ardmore courthouse has also been honored to be the only photo on the dust cover, a picture of our Grand Stairway and inside rotunda. This is the same Grand Stairway in which movie goers watched FBI g-man Melvin Purvis walking down and going over to the snack bar for a shoe shine in the 1973 movie Dillinger.
The book’s pages are big sized, 9 1/2 X 13 1/2 and 175 pages in length. I bought my book through Herman Kirkwood, president of the Oklahoma Outlaws Lawmen History Association for $50 plus $5 shipping. If you or anyone you know might be interested in obtaining one of these books, you can email Herman at firstname.lastname@example.org for more info or give him a call in OKC at 405-946-2096. I know in the past couple weeks he’s sold about 30, so they are going fast.
I passed by the United Methodist Church at West Main and E Street this week and saw the firm Karr Tuckpointing from Iowa doing some face-lifting, and preservation of the church’s outer surfaces. Karr Tuck Pointing comes to Ardmore on a regular basis to do work, and was at the courthouse in December 2006 doing some work on the outside walls. I remember on that Friday, December 15, 2006 they left Ardmore just as the snow was starting to fall. They returned to Iowa in the middle of a terrible snow storm. Hope that does not happen to them this time. If you need some tuckpointing done, you might try to get hold of them before they leave town.
Doug Williams sent in an interesting photo last week. He set up a Farm Cam on his property east of Ardmore and low and behold a bobcat walked in front of the lens! Bobcats have been spotted within a 1/2 mile of our place too, on South Meridian. I’m sure of the dogs being let out of the house for a few, and never returning, some have fallen victim to these bobcats.
This week Jill and I stopped in at the Happy Days Diner in Pauls Valley to try their hamburger. As you can guess, the theme of the decor is from the times and days of the movie Happy Days. Happy Days Diner is located just a couple blocks east of I-35 and the Pauls Valley exit.
And here’s a pic I snapped of that delicious burger!
From This and That newsletter archives January 10, 1998:
On November 1, 1997 a lot of Oklahoma had a telephone area code change. It’s been 405 in basically the western half of Oklahoma. But we were told come Nov 1, it would change to 580 and only Oklahoma City area would retain the 405 area code. Well, something went wrong, or we were miss-informed. Now 60 days later, many people are confused just when does the 580 work? Some people in other states must call the old 405 area code or the call won’t go through. Even in Oklahoma you may or may not be able to reach the person in Oklahoma you are calling using the new 580 area code. My call to the Operator got the following response….. “it is not fully implemented in some areas.” So, do you tell people to call you in Oklahoma using the 405 or the new 580 area code? Print new stationary? Business cards?
Q. What is the oldest chartered town in Oklahoma?
A. Choctaw is the oldest chartered town in Oklahoma. Choctaw gained status as a town in 1893.
Q. What is the oldest park in Oklahoma?
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…..
The Daily Ardmoreite February 7, 1945
From the Rambling Reporter
Ike Hobbs, who was the first sheriff of Cooke county, Texas, fought the last battle with the Indians in the Chickasaw Nation. However, these Indians were not Chickasaws. The battle was fought near Thackerville. Cal Stewart, who still lives in Ardmore, heard the guns when that battle was fought. Hobbs said he had eight men with him and each man had one shot with the exception that one of his men had a rifle that would not fire and he made no contribution to the battle. The Indians were on wild horses that took fright and ran away with them and the white men were in no shape to follow them up.
Gaither Homecoming singer/songwriter STEPHEN HILL will be appearing at Northwest Baptist Church in Ardmore, Saturday, January 22nd at 6:30 p.m. Tickets are $10 at the door. For more information call 580-465-6255.
“We at the Arbuckle Historical Society in Sulphur have not verified the use of this little building on the west side of Highway #177 about 7 miles south of Sulphur. Some have said it used to be called the Breezy Hill Inn; some say it was used by Wells Fargo, and others Pony Express. According to the Murray County Courthouse, paperwork for the widening of Highway #177 was started in 2002 A.D. so the building would have been torn down that year or 2003. The old home that stood near this building has been gone for some time, and a more modern home built farther off the highway and a little north. It is still there.
One of your readers in this week’s T & T stated that robins were seen in large numbers along the Point Road, on her property, etc. We live about 5 miles south of Sulphur, and have been told these birds are red-winged & yellow-winged blackbirds.” -C. Roland Earsom
On Monday, January 17th at 7 p.m. at the Sulphur Museum, 402 W. Muskogee, Sulphur, Oklahoma, our speakers are to be Sen. Johnnie Crutchfield, Sen. Frank Simpson, and Repr. Wes Hilliard who will be present to speak briefly about “Yesterday, Today, & Tomrrow” in the OK State Legislature. Everyone is invited.
“My cousin Anne Palmer was married to Chris Gers. Chris was the head pro at Dornick Hills in Ardmore. Did not know he was also the Pro at Falconhead located in Burneyville.” -Bill Meigs
“The grazing bull pictured in this’s week’s This and That is a Watusi. These cattle originated in Africa; however, many can be found in the US today. Those which are full blood Watusi are small compared to American longhorns except for their horns. The size of their horns is unbelievable, not in length, but in overall size. The one pictured pretty well shows this.”
“Butch, I have a picture somewhere that I took of the Sirloin Stockade bull after that tornado hit Ardmore back in ’92 or ’93. I was working at what was then the Cook’s Laundry/Dry Cleaners pick-up store in the little Karry-Out Corner center between the mall and Wal-Mart. That day the tornado trashed Healdton & Lone Grove and headed directly across the mall/Wal-Mart and up Commerce towards Springer & Ardmore High School. After it was all over I looked out the back door towards the hospital and Sirloin Stockade & that huge bull was laying on it’s side almost in the street. And of course, almost every light/telephone pole was snapped in two from there on up Commerce. One of them was evening lying across the Sinclair gas station. I will never forget that day. Just wish I had my pics on the computer so I could share them with you & your readers. Just wonder how many of your readers remember that storm.” -Kathi G.
“I have this very same Elvis cut-out!!!! It’s currently being housed in my boss’s closet in his office. Scared the daylights out of him the first time he opened the closet door & Elvis was standing in there. HA!!! BTW, any chance you can ask them where they bought their table & chairs sets?? I have been ‘DYING’ for a dining set just like that for my house!!!”
Oklahoma Toddler in Hospital after Pit Bull Attack in LeFlore county, Oklahoma
“Hi Butch, I had a quick question for your Readers. My Grandfather was born in Oklahoma – his parents were farmers, though he ended up in California as a carpenter after WWII. His name was Henry Harrison Simpson – his Father was Thomas Albert Simpson (in Roger Mills County) – and his father (I think) was Samuel Harrison Simpson. I’ve got a 4th cousin (or something like that) who still lives in OK (I’m in Houston) and we’ve been talking a bit trying to piece together some family history. She mentioned that there was a Simpson, OK – but she couldn’t find any of the history of that town to determine if our family had any history there. I just thought I’d check with you since you’ve mentioned that town a bit in your writings.” -Steve Simpson email@example.com
Ardmore Eating 1930s+
“An eating place was usually called a ‘Cafe’. Restaurant was high tone for the big cities. We also had ‘Drive Ins’ where girls ‘car hops’ came out and took your order – and you ate in the car. They had a tray that hooked on your window, you rolled up the glass a little, a prop below held it up. If you wanted more of something you honked or blink your headlights. Today’s Sonic is the update but the ’30s drive-ins also had sit down service inside. ‘Pig Stands’ for BBQ were also common. I don’t recall one in Ardmore but we always stopped at the one in Pauls Valley when we went to OK City.
The main downtown eatery was Earl’s Cafe just West of the Palace theater (later Tivoli). Across Main Street about where the Chamber of Commerce is now between D & E was the Green Frog, a popular drive-in.
Behind the Palace on B st was Bill Vaughan’s. Good plate lunch was 35 cents. My Dad ran the Conoco station half block away on B & Broadway. Hungry people would try to bum a quarter off him. He would give them a note and send them to Bill Vaughan and settle for it later.
Further out just off Broadway at hiway 77 (now Commerce) was Priddy’s, the most popular drive-in and teen hang out. Further down 77 just South of the ‘Old Soldiers Home’ was Puny’s. Puny a huge man, over six foot & 300 pounds plus, was a great people person and long time operator of eateries up thru WW2 on Main St just off Caddo (A st NE). Hamburger Inn was across Washington from the then Post Office. Their three inch hamburgers, meat fried with onions, for a nickel were great. Most of their biz was thru a window on the street but they did have a counter inside with four or five stools.
1930s hamburgers (15 cents) came in ‘regular’ with meat, onion and mustard and ‘educated’, lettuce, tomato and mayo. French fries hadn’t been invented, at least in name – they were ‘shoe string potatoes’. Chicken fried steak was then called breaded veal cutlet and was a highlight of my Grandmother’s life at Puny’s. I know more about his place because my Dad owned the building. Small T bone steak was 65 cents, large 85. I remember Puny telling my Dad, all the eateries were about to raise the coffee price from a nickel to a dime because ‘you just can’t make it any more on a nickel’.
Drinks were water, coffee and ‘sody pop’. Tea was uncommon, ice tea something you had at home and ice coffee unheard of. The bottle drinks were like today, Coke, Dr Pepper and various flavors plus names like Nehi, Grapette. I don’t remember Pepsi Cola then but there were Royal Crown and Double Cola twice as big as Coke for your nickel.
Salad – there was poke salad, some kind of plant but nobody ate that. Potato salad was always at summer outings. Lettuce with tomatoes, etc like today hadn’t been discovered. I think it awaited oil/vinegar dressing. Salad dressing was mayonnaise like today that came in a jar. Later in WW2 a local eatery was doing big biz with oil/vinegar salad dressing. The then Air Base bought some and analyzed it, finding the olive oil cut with mineral oil – which almost resulted in some free room and board for him. His place was put off limits for a while, I heard. I didn’t live here 1942-1981.
On Caddo, (now A st NE) East side, off Main st, was a kind of farmer’s market. A convenient place where farmers brought in a wagon load of whatever was in season. I recall my Grandfather having a discussion with a farmer who wanted seven cents for his cantaloupes rather than the usual nickel. Watermelons priced from a dime up, for what we called ‘knots’, the size of a basket ball. You got a pretty good melon for a quarter.
Ice cream was the big treat for us kids. We had a freezer that Mom put the egg custard in, surround with cracked ice and rock salt, then you cranked the handle forever till you felt it freezing – hard to turn. The ‘dasher’ a part inside where the ice cream made, was great to get to lick the dasher. Two ice plants in town, just over the tracks on 1st SE and D NW about where the 1st Nat’l Bank drive thru is now. My Grandfather would get 25 lbs block of ice put on the front bumper of his Model T Ford to take it home. By mid ’30s there were ‘double dip’ ice cream cones in 3 flavors, huge double dip for a nickel.
There was free food if you had a garden or raised chickens. Free food big-time 4th of July, 1933 at Sulphur – a public buffalo barbecue. People came from far and wide, crowds ‘you couldn’t stir them with a stick’ at the then Vendome swimming pool area. Strong in memory, my Mother’s uncle and family drove from South Texas on their way to Yellowstone. Their brand new Chevrolet was stolen so they spent most of the summer in Sulphur. There was a public barbecue at Ardmore fair grounds sometime after that – but my recall fails.” -Bob McCrory
Compiled by Melinda Taylor
The Wilson News
W. M. Wormington has decided that Wilson is a splendid place for a plumbing business and put in a complete line of plumbing supplies last week next door to News office. He will also handle sheet metal. Has been at the game for 25 years and suffice it to say assures satisfaction to all.
Sam Allard and W. T. McPherson will open up a line of 1917 styles in wall paper in the News building immediately. These boys have been in the business in some of the leading cities of Texas and Oklahoma and know it from the first principles up to the latest ideas in classy interior decorating.
L. H. Webb, contractor and carpenter, has located here. He is also prepared to do small jobs of wood work, painting, etc…
J. A. Conner has moved into a building near the News office and is now prepared to write you up a life insurance policy or real estate lease.
A Brand New Store: B. P. David & Son – General Merchandise – Look for the new brick store on Main Street, near W. B. Gill’s office.
City Barber Shop: E. J. Woods, Prop. – Located on North side near Mobley Corner. We appreciate your barber trade. Give us a trial.
Hudson Houston – Don’t forget we have plenty of Colorado and McAlester coal – Phone 32
Clowdus & Bridge – watchmakers, jewelers, expert watch repairing – All Work Guaranteed – Location: Crescent Drug Store. Please remember that 82 is the phone number of the assistant editor and that any and all news items you will report in to her will be gladly received and promptly handled. Phone 82.
Visit us online at http://www.wilsonhistoricalmuseum.org . Wilson Museum hours: Tues., Thurs., Fri., Sat., 10:00 a.m. – 4:00 p.m.
Behind my grandfather Stanley Carmon’s lumber yard at 3rd and H Street NE was Mr. A.L. Senter’s home. In his backyard was a water well, so shallow, the water was standing just a foot or two from the surface. During the rainy season the water would even overflow and drain down a creek behind everyone’s house toward this bigger creek at 3rd and I NE. In the Fall my grandmother would go behind the lumber shed and find poke growing in the area of the well overflow, pull a mess of it up, bring it into the house, and cook the poke with scrambled eggs. Sure was good tasting.
Poke Salad Annie by Tony Joe White 1969
To understand what we talking about
Down there we have a plant that grows like a turnip green
And everybody calls it poke salad … poke salad
Used to know a girl lived down there and she’d go out
In the evenings and pick her a mess of it, carry it
Home and cook it for supper, cause that’s about all they
Had to eat, but they did all right.
Down in Lou’siana,
Where the alligators grow so mean,
There lived a girl that
I swear to the world,
Made the alligators look tame
Her daddy was lazy and no count
Claimed he had a bad back
And all her brothers were fit for
Was stealin watermelons out of my truck patch
Poke Salad Annie
The gators got your granny
Everybody said it was a shame
Cause her mama was a workin on the chain gang
A wretched, spiteful ( (?))
Every day ‘fore suppertime
She’d go down by the truck patch
And pick her a mess o’ poke salad
And carry it home in a tote sack
See everyone next week!
Butch and Jill Bridges
PO Box 2
Lone Grove, Oklahoma 73443
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Ardmore High School Criterions Online
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