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Vol 18  Issue 893  March 6, 2014

PO Box 2, Ardmore, Oklahoma 73402 Email:  butchbridges@oklahomahistory.net Phone: 580-490-6823

We talked a couple weeks ago about the old Park Theater on Main Street being razed to make way for a new office building.  As of today it it pretty much history, just a memory left.


I guess there is hardly a soul in southern Oklahoma who has not seen the Lazy S Ranch sign on the sunny side of the Arbuckle Mountains at one time or another.  I’m sure my count is in the 1,000s.


Sometimes we take the ‘back road” to Davis i.e. Highway 77 and I always glance up at that rock sign on the side of the mountain and I think back to an email I received in 2000. Seems that it did not always read Lazy S Ranch, but in the 20s was used to advertise a famous fountain drink.

September 2, 2000: “Hi Butch Saw the inquiry about the Coca Cola sign on the mountain and thought I would pass this information along. We have been told in the 1920’s, when the ranch was owned by Cal Washburn, the rocks did indeed spell out Coca Cola. Then the company decided not to renew and the rocks were used to form the now famous Lazy S Ranch sign. The sign measures 70 ft. high x 100 feet wide although that area doubles when it’s time to repaint. HA! If your readers have any more questions about the Lazy S Ranch we would be more than happy to answer them. Keep up the good work with the newsletter.”

I received a phone call this week from Tennessee inquiring about a Baird Photography that was on Main Street back in the 1950s. If anyone knows of Carlton  and Bernice Baird and how to contact his descendants, let me know.

Tonight we are babysitting a one week old Boer goat. He is so adorable. I maybe not want to take him back to his foster parents in the morning. His mother abandoned him a birth, so he’s being bottle feed until he’s older.


Several years ago someone called me and asked what their password was for Windows.  I told them I didn’t know.  They said, “Well you’re the one who set it up for me.”  I had to laugh. I told them that was 10 years ago, how could I remember a password that I setup 10 years ago?  LOL

What I am leading up to is I must have several hundred passwords I need to keep track of and use from time to time.  In April 2011 I talked about a program called LastPass. It has been a lifesaver for me and I don’t know what I would do without it. I use LastPass from 2 or 3 times a day to several dozen times a day month in and month out. All I have to do is remember one password, the Master password to run the LastPass program. If you have lots of passwords to keep track of you might want to check it out at the link below.


Q.  What Oklahoma town was known as “the world’s largest oil field over 100 years ago?”
A.  Glenn Pool, Oklahoma. In 1905 the Glenn Pool oil field is discovered near Tulsa in Creek County. This field helps push State production from 4,000 to more than 22,000 barrels per day. Owned in large part by Henry Ford Sinclair, it became central in the formation of the Sinclair Oil Company in 1916.

Q.  Where in Carter county was oil first discovered?
A.  (answer in next week’s T&T)

From This and That newsletter archives of February 24, 2001:

A piece of history fell in Ardmore this week. The east wall of the old Martin and Fedler Drug Store at Main and Caddo came tumbling down. My friend Ernest Martin snapped this picture of it just a couple of hours after the wall fell. This all happened about noon on Friday March 3, 2001.

A couple weeks ago I spoke about the Wishing Well in Cornish, Oklahoma. Its located right on Main Street, probably since around 1900, maybe before. Cornish was established February 22, 1899. The townspeople had to fill the well in with dirt/sand some years back, because kids were throwing dogs and cats in the well. Shame we can’t have a piece of history without pranksters. Since that write-up I’ve learned the real Mayor of Cornish has invited me out to see him…. I’m going to make that trip when the weather clears up. I’ve also been told a movement is underway to get a sign put up saying, “Welcome To Cornish, Oklahoma”. I hope so. I know I will make a donation to help pay for the sign, if needed.
About 2 or 3 weeks ago, Ardmore was invaded by birds, namely grackles. They invade each year by the thousands. When its bad, the City of Ardmore puts out “cannons” to scare them off, or at least try to scare them away. These cannon blasts started in my part of town at 6:30pm Saturday night the 24th. Boy, every few seconds that cannon when off, and is it loud! And this has been going on, every evening, all week.
I knew my Grandfather, Stanley Carmon, built the Stanley Building in Hobart, Oklahoma around 1930. It was not named after my grandfather, but it was called the Stanley Furniture Store in Hobart. What I didn’t know until this week was he built the Methodist church in Hobart too, around 1926 or 1927. I received this information from my cousin, Bobbye Gay Carmon Hobbs, in Houston. Guess I’m going to have to travel to Hobart soon, and take come pics.  -Butch
“I was looking through my stuff the other day and found a unique little wooden vial. It is a sewing machine needle holder made by Singer Company. The handwritten date on it is 1925. Its even got some neat looking needles in it! This has got to be a collectors piece! I can’t even remember where it came from, except from my teenage years.” -Butch
I been re-organizing my pictures. I have about 1,500 photo files that go with my T&T issues since I started.
Update:  Today I have over 17,000 photos.
“We really enjoy your This and That every week, and I have passed it on to several friends. The Springer Methodist Church has a bell and ring it every Sunday morning before 9:00 services. Also, several weeks you were talking about photography studios in Ardmore, but no one mentioned the Fonville brothers. Howard Fonville had a studio about where John Williams studio is now on the south side of main street and Pete Fonville’s was located on the north side of main street near the old Ritz theater. Keep up the good work.”
“Hi Butch: The person seeking information on A. D. Wilkinson, printer and writer, might be interested to know: the subject was a man due some respect for his intrepidness. I did not know A. D. Wilkinson but was acquainted with his daughter Gwen Simmons (an accomplished poet), now deceased. He has a granddaughter (Carolyn Simmons) who lived in Oklahoma City at last report and a grandson (Milton Simmons) in Arizona (Tucson, I think). If last week’s enquirer remains interested, their address might be accessed in the white pages. Mr. Wilkinson was a Bible scholar and I have copies of two of his works; in fact, the bibliography in my book, “THE GREAT DECEPTION: Symbols And Numbers Clarified” contains reference to one of his works. Mr. Wilkinson’s research was controversial and too far advanced for fundamentalist thinking; therefore, his endeavor caused disfellowshipment from the Central Church of Christ in Ardmore, for his far-reaching dissension with conventional pedagogy. As far as I know, I possess the only copies of his work; to be sure, he was far more scholastic than his contemporaries. Hope this will help.” -Ben Winter
“I was really excited reading about the drip gas, and looking at those great pictures. I have lived in the oilfield all of my life, and have seen such arrangements, but never had seen the pictures of any of the drip recovery devices. During the depression, I often rode with guys that were running their cars on drip gas. I did not understand how and where they got it, at first, but as your informant said it was powerful and smelly. I remember a good friend that was burned to death when filling his car with drip and it exploded. He was an inveterate smoker, and probably had a cigarette in his mouth. Even with gas at 15 cents a gallon, during the depression a tank full of drip was a big saving. A lot of folks that lived on leases used it.”
“Butch, These are pictures of a Church Steeple in Dallas at the intersection of NorthWest Highway and Pickwick Lane. I’m not for sure on the name of the church. The face of the clock says “night cometh” I wonder what’s the story is behind that? Just look at all of those bells packed into that thing and the clock too. What a Butch Bridges wonder packed all into one!”

Gas prices today in the Ardmore area……


Check gas prices by town or zip code anywhere in U.S.


Non-ethanol gas (pure gas) stations in the Ardmore area.


Some mail from this week’s MAILBAG…..

“Butch, we went through Paoli Saturday and noticed these two concrete barriers and it looked like there were steps going down into one of them. Maybe your Readers know what the heck this is?”  -Doug Williams


“Butch, I think this was the old Fields Pecan Pies factory in Paul’s Valley.”  -Doug Williams


“The old wooden water wheel around Falls Creek is still there, at least 15 years ago when I took Jack’s picture standing by it. It didn’t look like the photo you showed, more weathered.  Also we used to square dance on the top floor of the Elk Building, may have caused some of the weakness in that building. LOL”

“Butch, This weeks story on drip gasoline also related to pipelines. All pipelines have a container every so often in a low spot in the pipeline to let the condensate water drain out of the pipeline. A person from the pipeline company would come along and open a gate valve on the container and “blow ” the liquid into the air every 30 days or so to keep the liquid from building up and interfering with the flow of gas. Being aggressive we would arrive at the container location, hopefully before the company man had arrived and blow the condensate into a 55 gallon barrel. This “drip”, condensate from the gas that dripped into the low container ran just fine in our cars in the Texas Panhandle. We would store the drip in 55 gallon barrels, out of site of course, and have gas to use into the summer. Drip from pipelines was available in abundance in cold winter months but not in the summer. We would set the timing up a bit on our car and pour the drip gasoline through a felt hat to strain out the water. 55 gal barrels were usually available at most oil company yards where many of us worked. If they had contained oil, and most did, this was okay as the drip only seemed to burn better if mixed with a bit of left over oil. One did not want to store the drip to close to one’s house. According to most of the old timers of that day you could stand on the street in Borger, Texas on a cold winter day and tell which car was burning drip when they drove by. I drove a 55 Ford for many miles on this poor mans aid to transportation. Would bet that this practice is alive and well today.” -Wally Glasscock, Richmond, Virginia

“Hi Butch; I figured everyone in oil country knew about drip gas. Along with the oil coming out of the ground was bubbles of what was known as casing head gas or raw natural gas with a high sulfur content and smelled like rotten eggs. It was piped off to refineries to be cleaned up to where it could burned for heating. As the pipe lines ran across the country, a liquid would separate from the gas and settle in low spots where the line ran across creeks and gullies. There was a tank place in each low spot to collect the drip gas (sometimes known as condensate) It was usually disposed of by running a pipe some distance from the drip catcher where it was ignited and burned off. It wasn’t unusual for people to tap the drips betting from five to twenty gallons of drip gas. It was really low octane and would ping and clatter when burned even in old low compression car engines. It would also wash any oil off the cylinder walls causing the engines to wear out very rapidly. It wasn’t unknown during the depression years for independent stations to dump some drip into their tanks to increase their profit but you could smell the exhaust as they drove down the street. The revenue boys called that “Untaxed gas” and would close down and fine service station owners when they caught them.”  -Jim

“Hey Butch, I began running drip in my cars when I was twelve years old (in the 40’s. Had a 28 Chevrolet Cabriolet without a top) There were only two high school students with cars at that time in Ada High, and I was in Junior high…bought it with newspaper route money. I continued using drip until in the late sixties. Also used it in my race go-carts. It NEVER caused ANY of my engines to overrun, etc., but it did get MUCH better mpg, ran stronger than pump gas, and NEVER caused carbon build-up on the valves. You C0ULD smell it when it burned, but it was not a strong smell (didn’t smell when it was a fluid.) Wish I could get some today, instead of this government subsidized methanol trash they are palming off on us (which absolutely ruins carburetors and pumps) If it wasn’t government subsidized, methanol would have to sell for over five dollars a gallon, and it is subsidized…with OUR TAX MONEY. We are not GRADUALLY running out of water…we are running out of it FAST. Consider an average of at least eight gallons per person per day…we are not getting NEARLY enough rains to replenish the aquifers. Farmers HAVE to irrigate the corn, takes approximately FIVE GALLONS of water to produce a gallon of gas…and it sells for less than PURE gas. Makes me sick to just think of the waste of the water.” -George

When wolves were reintroduced to Yellowstone National Park after being absent nearly 70 years, something astounding happened.

As an adult I’ve often thought about all the kids who attended Washington Elementary from Carter Seminary. They were extremely quiet and stayed to themselves – even on the playground. A few years ago I saw a documentary about Carter Seminary that showed the abuse that those children endured there. According to the documentary, many only spoke their native languages and were punished severely for not speaking English.”

“Dear Butch: If you ever get down Dallas way here is a place you must try.”  -Larry
Keller?s Drive-In
6537 E Northwest Hwy, Dallas, TX 75231
(214) 368-1209

“All the USGS topographical maps I have assembled showing the routes of abandoned rail lines in Okla. and Texas have been collected into a set at the following link. Hover your cursor over a map to display the title, select a map, right click on it and select “download” or select the size you want to view. Select “original” to view at full resolution, you’ll have to scroll around a lot to view the entire map. These instructions may vary slightly with Internet Explorer, Chrome, or Firefox. If you have problems let me know. I’ll be adding more as time permits.” -Dwane Stevens

“I remember so well going down to Caddo in the Spring and early Summer with my Daddy. People had horse-drawn wagons lined up on the east side and they were lined with hay. Some had watermelons, cantaloupes, honey dews….all kinds of fruits and vegetables that were in season. even though Daddy always had a big garden, we’d go down and see what was available and he’d talk to some of the guys about different things. I sort of drifted around looking at stuff. Seems like there were some “vendors” who offered other stuff for sale as well, such as tools, quilts, but might be wrong on that. There was a store on Caddo we referred to as Mrs. Mayhall’s, where you could buy items such as washtubs, scrub boards, etc. And there was a grocery store where we bought things form time to time. Man, I wish I could go back in time to one Saturday back then and see it all over again.” -Diane Armstrong

June 19, 2004 newsletter: “Well you folks around Ardmore made the news with your 3.7 earthquake a few days ago. I guess Missouri could not stand it so we had a whole 23 acre lake disappear LOL just outside St Louis, how about them beans? They say the water finally dissolved a limestone layer beneath the lake, many high dollar condo owners will have to foot the bill to repair the lake.”

“Hi Butch, don’t know if you’ve heard this but the smallest National Park is located in Guthrie, Oklahoma. It measures 8 by 12 1/2 feet and has one tree.” -Jim Foreman

“With malice toward none, with charity for all, with firmness in the right as God gives us to see the right, let us strive on to finish the work we are in; to bind up the nation’s wounds; to care for him who shall have borne the battle, and for his widow and his orphan – to do all which may achieve and cherish a just and lasting peace, among ourselves, and with all nations.”
-Abraham Lincoln

See everyone next week!

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

Vicious Dog Attacks in Oklahoma
Bells of Oklahoma
Carter County Courthouse Paver Project
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

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