PO Box 2, Ardmore, Oklahoma 73402
I received the following email this week:
“The State of Oklahoma put a town sign up on Highway 7 (13 miles west of Davis) there at Regan’s ranch marking ALPERS Oklahoma. -Gary
My mind flashed back to the 1960s when I had a Honda motorcycle and I traveled west of Davis and would see the sign ALPERS. I wondered…. town? I don’t see any town. There is not much left of Alpers, Oklahoma except a house or two along the highway. Alpers was established as a post office July 15, 1918 to November 14, 1931. I pulled the info below from my Archives.
From my April 6, 2002 archive: Alpers was named after Dr. Henry William Alpers. Henry Alpers was born October 8, 1866 in Hamburg, Germany. Henry and his uncle came to Ardmore when Henry was 12 years old. Henry’s parents were to come to Ardmore but for some reason that never happened. After completing medical school in Joplin, Missouri Henry travelled with another Ardmore doctor in the 1880s and 1890s. Sometime later he settled in Davis, Indian Territory and practiced medicine in Davis and also in Hennepin. He owned a drug store in Homer (later named Alpers) and a grocery store at Gooseneck, Indian Territory.
On July 31, 1905 Dr. Henry Alpers married a Waco, Texas lady named Stella May Davis. They raised three children, Thelma Maye Alpers Halcomb, Curtis Lee Alpers, and Eva Lou Alpers Lawrence. Dr. Alpers died November 13, 1935 and Stella died in 1973. They are both buried in Davis, Oklahoma.
I found Dr. and Mrs. Henry Alpers’ grave marker on findagrave. CLICK HERE
A few pavers I sandblasted the past week.
You can find gas prices for a particular Oklahoma town by entering the name or zip code in the GasBuddy search box.
I have not taken TruVision for weight lose in nearly 2 months. But I have been taking the probiotic and I’ve really seeing my stomach fat fading away. It takes at least a month to really see the pounds start dropping, but they do drop. If you really want to get rid of that belly fat I truly believe the probiotics is a “must have”.
Someone mentioned to me their electric bill is larger in the winter than in the summer because they have an all-electric home. Electricity is their only way of heating the house in the dead of winter. That’s all the more reason to own an Okie Power Saver. And OG&E continues to report each week I am in the “Efficient group”. I have only been placed in this group since I installed my Okie Power Saver. My Okie Power Savers, are also a FULL house surge protector.
Q. Which Oklahoma legend was born on October 3rd, 1939 in Seiling, Oklahoma?
A. (answer in next week’s T&T)
From This and That newsletter archives of November 3, 2001:
My friend Ernest Martin sent me a couple of pictures he took of Prices Falls in the heart of the Arbuckle Mountains, south of Davis, Oklahoma. Boy, that water sure looks pretty flowing over those falls, makes me want to drive up there, take off my shoes, and stick my feet in the water! And that Ernest may be a senior citizen, but he can handle a digital camera with the best of them! Here is the text of Ernest Martin’s email this week, “A drive by view, near entrance …….today, of the Falls Creek Baptist Summer Encampment Grounds located in the Arbuckle Mountains portion of Murray County.”
Speaking of digital photos, for a year or two I been searching for a program that will let me quickly and easily lighten the pics I take inside a building or house. And this week I found it thanks to a Reader! This little freeware program automatically “looks” at the pic and makes the correction. The program, Photo Enhancer, will automatically adjust the brightness, and I can do about 2 photos a minute. When you have a dozen or two, this sure helps. I used this program to brighten most of the 14 pics in the Halloween photos above. To find out more about this neat little utility.
“Hi Butch! Enjoying your weekly Newsletter…and esp. the article about my cousin, H.W. McKinney. Sent a copy of the photos to another of our cousins, Sherrie Balthrop Cronk, who grew up a stone’s throw from where H.W. lives now. She has lived in Michigan for many years. The note you received from someone about Buzzard’s Roost reminds me of back when we were kids and used to drive out the Lake Murray Road and would go out to Tucker’s Tower, back in about 1945, before it was remodeled and we’d climb those ‘dangerous’ stairs at midnight just for a ‘lark.’ We’d swim nude in the lake and feast on a watermelon that one of us had copped from a farmer’s market, and I guess we did a few ‘wild’ things that would be considered tame by today’s standards…. At 72, now living in the heart of Missouri, most of the people, places, and happenings of years gone by are just fond memories! Bob Taylor, Rocky Top Ranch, in the beautiful hills of central Missouri just yards from Lake Pomme de Terre….. P.S. Keep up the great work!”
“I am a retired police officer from Washington, DC. My father’s family is from Oklahoma. I was told that there was another LAWMAN in my family; perhaps 2. I have subscribed to every magazine that a publisher in Stillwater published, reading what I could hoping to stumble on a WILSON LAWMAN. It’s been years, but I remember that the publisher was in Stillwater. I am a single parent so my daughter considers my roots the critical. I was told that JOHN THOMAS WILSON, was a DEPUTY US MARSHALL, OKLAHOMA TERRITORY in the 1800’s. Possibly Cheyenne Territory.. He went by the name of TOM WILSON. His son EZEKIEL PROCTOR WILSON WAS ALSO A LAWMAN. I was told by Oklahoma kin that HE WAS THE ONLY AUTHORIZED LAWMAN AUTHORIZED TO USE A “SHOULDER HOLSTER”. Butch, does this make sense? Was it possible that handguns had to be visible and not concealed? ZEKE WAS KILLED AT AGE 25. I can send DOB’s. It now appears that you are my last hope before I close this case out as NOTHING FOUND: POLICE TERM. If J. THOMAS WILSON was a lawman I just don’t know for sure. I have tried the LAWMAN’S SITE YOU RECOMMENDED. Butch, I did find a EZEKIEL PROCTOR who was a CHEROKEE LIGHT HORSEMAN. What is that; is it LAWMAN RELATED? I want to know if I did have a Great-grandfather that was a LAWMAN. I grew up in the Panama Canal Zone and when I was in the US Army, I took my leave in Tulsa with kin that I had never met.” -Stan Wilson email@example.com
“Just received your weekly letter. Your last e-mail encouraged me to send you meanderings as I recalled my early years in Ardmore. I recall the second day of the Gene Autry rodeo when one of the bulls jumped from the arena into the grandstand, nobody got hurt and they even managed to rescue the bull from the stands. It really scattered the spectators and was the talk of the town the next day. Do you remember that the Great Atlantic and Pacific Tea Co. had a store on the corner of main and “c” street. The original manager was Bill Boyd, he of course left them eventually to open his Pak-A-Sak stores, one on the road in S.E. Ardmore and the other on West Broadway near Mr Pickens Texaco station. The A&P was still at main and “c” in early 1949, it closed very soon that same year. Priddy’s restaurant was located next to the Tivoli theatre in April of 49, and i believe Elmo Eden bought it within the next month. The bus station was on the S.W. corner of Main and ‘C’ and south of it on “c” was a two story house owned by a Mrs. Emerson which she ran as a boarding house and also served food to any and all who showed up. Unfortunately she had passed away before i got to town. Directly across the street from her boarding house was the Sprekelmeyer printing co. and the old Green Front Grocery store. I understand the grocery store moved on to Main Street next to Luke’s Music store. My youngest daughter managed to be born at Hardy Sanitarium in August of 1954 just before the new hospital was opened. I used to have morning coffee in the Ardmore Pharmacy with my friend Jack Hinckley and his young son was born right after my daughter, however he was born in the new Memorial hospital. I believe jack now lives in a Denver suburb. I recently sent a message to Gary Simmons stating that my wife was perhaps one of the first female employees of the Ardmore Air Base. When Mr. Wyatt Walker of the Russ Mitchell Construction company of Houston arrived in Ardmore to build the runways and aprons, he selected my future wife as his personal secretary. She and a girlfriend officed in an old farm house on the air base property. They were warned not to walk around unescorted as many of the laborers were a tough lot. Occasionally the girls would borrow the timekeepers horses and ride into Gene Autry for lunch. Late in 1942 as the completion of the construction phase ended she went to work for the Air Corps. This lasted about 5 months before she resigned and obtained employment at the Federal Savings and Loan office.” -Bill O’Heran
“You know Butch I can remember back in the 40’s when “Trick or Treat” just wasn’t done in Ardmore. But it was a great time. Main Street was blocked off and people came to town in costume and just walked up and down trying to figure out who each person was. Even the adults would participate. I was just a little girl then and when I think of Halloween that’s what I think of. It was really funny when someone recognized you and you couldn’t recognize them. You puzzled over who it could have been. Of course there were some that went out and did damage but most were in town having real fun. Thanks Butch for keeping old memories alive.”
“Hello, Took a fall foliage trip to Beavers Bend and into Arkansas and Texas. This is the only bell I saw that was in plain sight. Right on Main Street at Valliant, OK. Across from the Fire Department. Didn’t know if you had this one or not. This was a big one, at least 24 inches across. It was mounted in a rock planter about three foot off the ground in the middle of the Street.”
“This is pretty cool. Saw this in Southern Living a couple of years ago. Had to go and see it for myself. Have been going to Paris, Texas for the past 20 years and never knew this was there. This past weekend we went on a Fall Tour and stopped and took a picture of it. The hat has a 3′ wide brim on it. It is really a Texas Big Hat.”
“Butch, those autos with wooden spokes had a problem with the wheels coming apart at high speed (50 MPH) even when they were new. I would encourage your friend with the Dodge to look the wheels over very, very, very carefully before hitting 60 again. (Might even have termites. Those were such beautiful and well made cars. We had a 40 model Dodge that was trouble free for the time. Thanks for the hard work.”
One of the secretaries in the County Commissioners Offices, Michelle Bray, has two twin nieces in Oklahoma City who recently recorded a music CD. These two 13 year old song birds sing and even yodel country music in unison in a way that will sure bring a smile. I had the pleasure of listening to the CD Michelle received from the singing twins when they visited her the other day at Lone Grove. As I listened to the 10 songs on their CD entitled “Our First Trail Ride” my favorite was Number 8, “The Yodeling Bird”, so I wanted to share the words of this toe-tapping song with everyone!
“It sounds absurd but we think we heard a bird that yodeled a melody,
We’ve heard a whippoorwill and a ran, and it was neither one of them,
And a robin just doesn’t sound that way to me,
It might have been a mockingbird though I’m not really sure,
We never heard a mockingbird sing like that before,
It’s the sweetest sound we’ve ever heard,
We think we heard a yodeling bird.”
“You might be thinking this bird can not be real,
But we can only tell you what we’ve heard and how we feel,
It’s the sweetest sound we’ve ever heard,
We think we heard a yodeling bird!”
This link is to a signed photo the Prairie Twins gave Michelle when they visited her the other day in Lone Grove, Oklahoma. https://secureservercdn.net/220.127.116.11/knn.c7e.myftpupload.com/ttphotos15b/PrairieTwins2.jpg
Here is a scan of the front cover of the Prairie Twins new CD.
Some mail from this week’s MAILBAG…..
The Daily Ardmoreite June 6, 1971
Highway Workers Gather Artifacts
Chester Brooks, director of the State Highway Department, reported finding of valuable artifacts during construction of I-35 in Southern Oklahoma.
He reported, “Whenever anyone digs, as the highway department is constantly doing, our state’s story is likely to be enriched by new information about those who preceded us in this land. Whether that information is preserved for us all or lost depends on the diggers.
“Cooperation between the Oklahoma Department of Highways and Oklahoma Archaeological Survey at the University of Oklahoma has already salvaged many fascinating scraps of our land’s history.
“The University of Oklahoma is responsible for issuing excavation permits and any unauthorized digging anywhere in the state may be penalized by a maximum fine of $200 or 30 days in jail or both. This Antiquities Law was passed after the Spiro Mounds were looted in 1935,. Surface pickups of archaeological objects is permitted, but University archaeologists are always interested in learning of new facts.
“Don Wyckoff, State Archaeologist and Director of the Oklahoma Archaeological Survey at the University of Oklahoma described the results of salvage operations that were joint efforts of the Oklahoma Department of Highways, the Archaeological Survey personnel and highway contractors.
Some 2,000-year-old spear points were salvaged in 1970 from a sand pit dug during the construction of I-35 south of Davis. The Guy James Construction Co., discovered the prehistoric evidence while digging sand to mix into asphalt for the new interstate road.
From the sand pit, known as the “Primrose” site, over 200 pounds of “Pre-forms” were saved. “Pre-forms” are stones that have been chipped out in rough form, preparatory to final finishing into spear points, arrow heads, knives, cooking tools, etc… Those found near Davis were made from Arbuckle stone approximately 2,000 years ago and were found in pits dug by nomadic Indians near their camping areas.This is the first time the Archaeological Survey has received such a large series of pre-forms and they plan an exhaustive study about the different stages of manufacture of various stone implements. Some 7,000 year old spear points made of stone from Texas and the Red River area were discovered too, indicating the camping site was in use over a long period of time.Q. “Butch, do you information on Camp Howze that was located northwest of Gainesville?” -Scott
A. From Gary Simmons: “Butch- An impressive memorial was established, November 11, 2006, on the grounds of the Texas Travel Information Center just south of the Red River. It memorializes the 103rd Infantry Division that was stationed at Camp Howze prior to going overseas in WWII. Two other infantry divisions, the 84th and 86th also trained there but are not part of the memorial. The weather was perfect for the 3 p.m. dedication attended by an estimated 1,000 people, many were veterans of the 103rd that were bused from Dallas where they were attending their annual reunion. The Fort Sill Brass quintet provided the music. Master of Ceremonies was Tom Carson, KGAF-AM radio. Walter Modrzejewski, 103rd Chaplain gave the invocation. Texas A & M Corps of Cadets posted the colors. Lejeune “Rabbit” Wilson, a 103rd veteran, told of his effort and others to make the monument possible. Texas State Land Commissioner, Jerry Patterson; the TxDOT Commissioner, Ric Williamson; Texas State Veterans Commissioner, Charlie Buerschinger and Rep. Michael Burgess also spoke. The realistic statue of a 103rd Infantryman, “Call to Duty,” was unveiled by the sculptor, Edd Hayes. It truly is a work of art. The 21-gun salute was provided by VFW Post No. 122. The always touching, taps, closed the ceremony. Camp Howze was activated August 17, 1942. Approximately 90,000 soldiers trained on the 58,000 acres of rolling plains northwest of Gainesville, Texas, until the base was deactivated in October 1945 and dismantled in late 1946. During the three years, many of the 90,000 walked the streets of Ardmore on weekends or bivouacked in Lake Murray Park as part of training. As an elementary student at Springdale, I remember the excitement of being able to visit with soldiers and hold a M1 rifle when a platoon of marching soldiers from Howze took a “smoke break” along the road in front of the school. Beginning in 1943, approximately 3,000 German prisoners of war were imprisoned there or shipped to other POW camps. Ardmore Army Air Field’s, 200 POWs, were assigned from Camp Howze and returned there after helping with the base closing at Ardmore.”
“Hi Butch. My father (Clint Holt) is one of the young boys sitting in front of the Concord School. He was born in Indian Territory in 1900. Glad to see that photo.” -Jeri Holt Bassett
“Butch, I’m old enough to have known the first Jewish merchant in Mill Creek. He and his family had the dry good store there. He was Mr. Frank Stye. If I remember what he told me correctly he came from Armenia. Good folks.” -Roy Roundtree
The Wilson News January 19, 1917
A. A. Edwards Granted Patent on Brooder
A. A. Edwards, a local business man, has been granted a patent by the United States Patent Department on a chicken brooder. The patent number is 1,210,438 and was granted January 2.
Poultrymen who have used Mr. Edwards’ brooder say that it is the best on the market. It has been endorsed by the Oklahoma A & M College.
Mr. Edwards has worked long and faithfully to perfect his baby chick brooder and has been put to considerable expense in securing a patent and placing it on the market; but success has at last dawned and it is predicted that Mr. Edwards will be successful in giving the poultry world this great invention.
Mr. Edwards is receiving many congratulations from his friends and the New Wilson News predicts much success for him in his new venture. The machine is manufactured wholly in Wilson.Visit us online at WHM – Wilson Historical Museum or at the museum. Hours: Tues., Thur., Fri., Sat. 10:00 a.m. – 4:00 p.m.
Nick & Bob in Boyd’s Land of 10,000 Stories
“If stupidity got us into this mess, then I don’t see why it can’t get us out.” -Mark Twain
See everyone next week!
Butch and Jill Bridges
PO Box 2
Lone Grove, Oklahoma 73443
Follow me on the TruVision lose weight program
Vicious Dog Attacks in Oklahoma
Bells of Oklahoma
Carter County Courthouse Paver Project
Ardmore High School Criterions Online
Oklahoma Bells: https://oklahomahistory.net/bellpage.html
Bill Hamm’s Cemetery Database
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 Government Website
All previous issues of This & That can be found on my Website.
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