PO Box 2, Ardmore, Oklahoma 73402
Email: email@example.com, Phone: 580-490-6823
The following is from one of my newsletters in 2001.
In November 2001 in The Daily Ardmoreite there was a photo of the Sheriff Harvey Burkhart loaning one of three Thompson Submachine Guns to the Military Memorial Museum here in Ardmore. Since no one remembers just how the sheriffs office came about owning these three 1921 model machine guns, the sheriff asked me to do a little research on those machineguns.
I called several people and finally my friend Ralph Richards put me on to a name. Ralph was a deputy sheriff back in the 70s and suggested I call another retired deputy sheriff, Bud Hunt. Bud Hunt was a deputy sheriff for Gerald Cobb back in 1959, and remained a deputy about 14 years. Before signing on as deputy sheriff, Bud was the police chief of Healdton. Gerald Cobb was sheriff from 1959 to 1963, and it was during his term of office deputies first wore uniforms. Before Gerald Cobb became sheriff, deputies wore plain street clothes.
Some of you will remember the name Bud Hunt, associating it was the shooting at the old Mulkey Hotel here back in 1972. I had just been an ambulance driver for a couple of years when that call came in. Bud Hunt and Robert Denney had placed a man under arrest at the Mulkey. Bud Hunt was placing the man in the patrol car when the prisoner grabbed Bud’s revolver from his holster. When Robert Denney saw what was about to happen, Robert drew his firearm and fired. The man died later in the hospital.
Below is the story about the submachine guns as told to me by Bud Hunt.
The 3 Thompson Machineguns were bought about 1959 or 1960 right after Cobb became sheriff. Cobb sent undersheriff Pat Battles down to Texarkana, Texas to pick up the guns at the Red River Arsenal there in that town. The Red River Arsenal commenced operations under that name in 1945. The sheriffs office purchased the machineguns for riot control at a price of about $20 each. The interesting thing about these 3 machineguns was that one of them was used by Deputy Pete Fair at the big shootout that took place at Sooner Food Store on North Washington back in December 1960. Pete Fair was the only deputy there who had one of the Thompson submachine guns during that shootout, in which Ardmore police office Bobby Rudisill died. After Rudisill was shot trying to enter the back of the store, officers fired hundreds of rounds of machinegun, carbine, and pistol rounds into the building where the three burglars were holed up.
Below is a link to that 2001 photo of Burkhart loaning the machine gun to the museum.
Those of you interested in the shooting at the Mulkey Hotel in 1972, here is the story.
Anyone wanting to read the complete story about the 1960 shootout at Sooner Foods at 1213 North Washington where one of those Thompson Machineguns was used by Deputy Pete Fair, here is the story.
Back in the 1960s and 70s one of the best locksmiths to make you a key (besides the Ardmore Bicycle Shop) was Charlie Tanner. I bought my first real motorcycle, a Honda 305 Super Hawk from Charlie, it was 1 year old when I paid $450 for it. After Charlie passed away, Lloyd’s Lock and Key came into being a good place to have keys made. It was located at E Street Northwest and Grand Avenue. When Lloyd passed away David Salthouse made keys. I had to call on him this week when the key to our 2006 Hyundai Sonata stopped working in the ignition. David fixed me up a new key pronto. And David offers 24 hour service when you need him.
A few bricks I’ve sandblasted.
You can find current gas prices for a particular Oklahoma town by entering the name or zip code in the GasBuddy search box.
Q. Where in Oklahoma was the largest fish ever caught?
A. Paul Easley of Mead, Oklahoma landed the biggest fish ever caught in Oklahoma when he snagged an 8-foot alligator gar from Lake Texoma that weighed 254 pounds in April 2015.
Q. In Oklahoma the main crop today is wheat. What was it 100 years ago?
A. (answer in next week’s T&T)
From This and That newsletter archives of August 3, 2002:
I received a phone call from Ames, Iowa. It was from a lady name Sybil Stone. This story really started in 1966 when Sybil Stone sent a letter to a Tulsa newspaper seeking information and help in finding a bell her great grandfather, John Rex of St Louis, gave to a church mission in Oklahoma in honor of his daughter, Sybil Rex. He presented the bell to a mission somewhere in Oklahoma but exactly where was not known. All they remembered was being told it was at the end of a railroad line at a church mission. The family in Ames, Iowa never did find where the bell was located after searching all these years. But the other day that changed!
A priest from McAlester, Oklahoma was doing some research in Tulsa and happened across that 1966 letter from Sybil Stone of Iowa. He contacted a friend who had internet access to do a search, and sure enough, Sybil Stone still lived in Ames, Iowa. The priest contacted Sybil Stone and gave her some much sought for information concerning the bell. Here is the first of two emails I received this week from Sybil Stone of Ames, Iowa:
“My great grandfather John E. Rex was born in Philadelphia 1820 died in St.Louis Jan 10, 1888 (my cousin says he died of pneumonia after attending the funeral of a friend). My grandmother Sybil Mary Rex was born in St Louis Mar 21, 1859. Married in St Louis Apr 3, 1895. Died in St Louis Nov 9, 1946. So…. I am assuming that John Rex gave the bell to Father Robot before 1887, as Fr. Robot died in 1887. All I knew was that the bell had the name Sybil on it. I had no idea of any other inscription until Fr. King called me from McAlester. I have a small note, possibly in my Aunt’s handwriting (she is another Sybil) that says:
Vinita – Indian Territory first bell rung on a Catholic Church was rung in Vinita and had the name Sybil Rex inscribed on it. It was given by John Rex of St. Louis to Fr. Robot. ——End of Railroad line.
That is exactly what the note says. So, the bell had to have been given to Fr. Robot before 1887 when he died. More mysteries. (I dearly love mysteries)” – Sybil Stone
Sybil Stone’s daughter also has a computer and internet, and she did a search the internet and found a bell from Krebs on my website. A Reader was in Krebs last Spring and took the photo. Sybil called me to see if I had additional info or a close-up photo of the bell at Krebs. I don’t but hopefully I can get a better picture. Maybe even someone in the McAlester/Krebs, Oklahoma area can help get that close up photo. It would be interesting to see the actual inscription on the old bell! https://secureservercdn.net/184.108.40.206/knn.c7e.myftpupload.com/bellphotos/krebs2.jpg
And this is the second email from Sybil Stone of Ames, Iowa:
“My great grandfather, John E. Rex worked for a dry goods company in St. Louis. At one time it was Samuel C. Davis and another time it was Homer, Rex and Tracy. Anyhow, he traveled to the Indian Territory to deliver goods to a trading post . He became friends with a Catholic priest, a Father Robot, who had a mission church. Where? (I am not sure). And so, at some point, so the story goes, he had made, and donated a bell to a church somewhere in the territory. And, the bell had the name of his daughter on it. The daughter was Sybil Rex. (my grandmother). John Rex also became friends with many of the Indians in the area. I have a photograph of my grandmother dressed in full Indian costume It is titled, “Our Indian Princess”. I lived with my grandmother while growing up, and our attic trunks had all sorts of Indian moccasins, etc etc that her father had gotten in the territory. There was also a friendship with Robert Owen, who later became a Senator. He escorted my grandmother to the Veiled Prophet’s Ball. (Another story) Anyhow, all of this before my grandmother was married. She may even have gone to the Territory with her father. In 1966 I first became aware of the Bell Story from my mother. I tried to pursue it, and really got nowhere. I gave up. I was so surprised when I got a phone call just last Tuesday from Father Kenneth King, who somehow found one of my original letters of 1966. He said he thought he had found THE bell. He says he understands the inscription on the bell in St. Joseph’s Church reads: “I am Sybil. I am the voice of one crying in the wilderness. Rt. Rev. Abbot D. Isidore Robot, Prefect apostolic of the Indian Territory.” So, that is my story to this point. I am awaiting the mail from father King who is sending me something from a 90th anniversary book from St. Joseph’s.”
Sybil Stone Obituary
This week a Reader mentioned a place in Ardmore he went to as a kid in the 40s called Candyland. I had not heard of it, so it whet my curiosity. I did a little research and one thing led to another. Candyland was located at #9 North Washington and owned by Frank Johnston of Ada, Oklahoma. I guess he had a store in Ada first, then opened up one at #9 North Washington here in Ardmore in 1939. Candyland sold candy and confectionary of all kinds and most important, funny books. One friend told me she and her sister bought many a funny books at Candyland. For you younger generation Readers, present day comic books used to be called funny books.
A couple of years after Frank Johnson of Ada opened his store up in ’39, the store became the property of Aaron J and May Miller of Ardmore. A few years later the Millers would move their store from #9 to #14 North Washington. Mr and Mrs Miller continued Candyland until about 1957. It seems like a lot of businesses were located in the unit block of North Washington that brings back memories to a lot of people. In my research I found dozens of eateries and food stores along North Washington during the 30s 40s and 50s. One interesting piece of history I ran across, the Orthodox Baptist Church under the direction of Rev W. Lee Rector held services for a couple of years just north of Main street at #26 North Washington. The church services were held there from 1935 until about 1938 when they moved to 320 North Washington. Here are some other businesses I made note of:
#5 North Washington – Grants Cafe, #7 North Washington – Diamond Cafe, #13 North Washington – Hollis Brooks Grocery, #15 North Washington – Pride’s Bakery
#7 North Washington – Carroll’s Cafe (Carroll and Mildred Franks). In 1946 there was a Togo’s Sanitary Bath House located at #10 A Street NW. The owners were Mattie Simpson and Young Togo (1886-1964). Togo is buried at Keller Cemetery. Young Togo was such an unusual name, I did a search in google.com and didn’t find much. I did find a Young Togo listed in a professional boxing match in 1912 in Ft Smith, Arkansas. Then another boxing match in 1911 at McAlester, Oklahoma. Could this professional boxer Young Togo be the same Young Togo buried at Keller Cemetery north of Lone Grove?
#5 North Washington – Oscar’s Cafe (Oscar L Wilcoxson), #7 North Washington – Carroll’s Cafe, #19 North Washington – Brooks Food Store, Major Brooks, owner, #23 North Washington – Togo’s Sanitary Bath House
#13 North Washington – New Dixie Cafe, #15 North Washington – Dubiel Gun Repair, #26 North Washington – Jack Parks Bakery
#7 North Washington – Carroll’s Cafe, #16 North Washington – Nellie Lowe’s Restaurant, #30 North Washington – Ellison Building, Webb’s Office Supply
#7 North Washington – Carroll’s Cafe, #14 North Washington – Walter Miller Watch Repair, #17 North Washington – The Toy Box, Tom C. Smiley, owner
#9 North Washington – Wilkes Dry Cleaning, #16 North Washington – Coffee Cup Cafe, Nellie Lowe, owner
Also about 1960 Carroll and Mildred Franks moved their cafe from #7 North Washington to 1314 North Washington where it would be known as Carroll’s Drive Inn. Here is an interesting side note about Carroll’s Drive In. My cousin, Jerry Carmon, met his wife to be, Ida Walters, at Carroll’s Drive In at 13th and North Washington. She was a car hop at Carroll’s Drive Inn.
Jane Hale of MO attended a family reunion north of here at Hennipen, Oklahoma last weekend. While she was here she conducted one of her book signings at Hastings plus brought me the most unique fireworks ever from her fireworks business in MO! It’s called the Bin Laden Noggin. She said it was their hottest selling fireworks back on July 4th celebrations. Here is that hot selling Bin Laden Noggin fireworks.
“Butch, this is the story of the Troy Schoolhouse Ghost, as told to me by my mother, who was one of many people who witnessed it. As I mentioned in my previous letter, Troy School is in Johnston Co., not far from Mill Creek. My mother, Mattie, and her 4 younger siblings attended school there. This story took place when Mom was about 10 or 11 years old. The school, as most rural schools were back then, did not have a lunch room with cooks to prepare lunches, so the students and teachers brought their lunch with them, and usually ate it outside if weather permitted. These schools also had outdoor bathrooms, usually with more than one “hole” so they could accommodate as many students as possible at one time. After lunch my mother and her friends would sometimes play Jacks on the top of the cellar which sat in the school yard, until the custodian, Joe Fletcher, rang the rope-pulled school bell to announce that recess was over. Mr. Fletcher lived within a short walking distance from the school and would go home for lunch each day, and get back in time to ring the bell. My mother said that he had a daughter named Melvina but she can’t remember if there were other children as well. He may have been a widower. Anyway, this whole story really begins on the day in which Mr. Fletcher did not return on time and ring the bell. After a short while, someone went to check on him and found him dead at his house. He was later buried in the Troy Cemetery, which sat next to the school grounds, just a bit farther east and closer to the road that ran past. Some days later, during lunch recess, one of the female students was in the girls’ outhouse when she came out running and screaming…said she saw “something” in there. She said it looked like a dark grey shadow in the shape of a person. She had been alone at the time so the students and staff contributed it to her imagination. A few days later, several girls were in the same outhouse when they came out screaming and crying saying that “something is in there”. Now this is in broad daylight. My Mom remembers that she and her friends were sitting on the cellar playing their usual game of ball and Jacks, and that everyone had turned to see what all the commotion was about, when suddenly a shadowy grey form emerged from the outhouse and drifted over towards the cemetery, just sort of disappearing when it got to the middle of it. Naturally everyone who had witnessed this was frightened and my mother remembers that some of the men teachers went over to the “graveyard” (as she calls it), to check things out further. They came back and said that it looked like someone’s cattle had been tromping through the graves and had damaged some of them. At the time, the cemetery was not fenced as it is now. Whoever was in charge of the care of Troy Cemetery was notified and a fence was erected. The shadowy figure was never seen again. My mother said her family believed that it was the custodian’s spirit warning them about the damage to the graves. She said that she was told he had been concerned about just this sort of thing. What ever (or who ever) it was, apparently got the results intended because, as I said, the figure was never seen again. Was it just someone’s hysterical imagination that caused such a large number of people to see this? Mom says NO… she knows what she saw and said that when the shadowy figure appeared, no one said a word, just stared at it “wide-eyed” and watched it as it made it’s way to the graveyard. I’ve heard this story many times and it has never altered. I may have left out some details, but the main ones are contained here. I also wonder if any of your readers may have heard this same tale? My mother’s brother, Robert, was there also and if he were still living, could testify to what they saw. (P.S., Butch, I was going to wait to tell you this after we visited the cemetery and you could get pictures but my recent trip up there resulted in a case of chiggers and I want to wait until they are “out of season” before I go back.) If you do go alone…just make sure it’s in the day. Oh, I forgot, Butch, this ghost was seen in the daytime! Maybe a night trip would be less frightening….Haha. I don’t know, but you won’t catch me there after the sun goes down. Happy haunting, I mean hunting, Butch.”
“Hi Butch, I took some pics of a Bell in Cement, Oklahoma (Caddo county). This was in May of this year when the citizens of Cement were celebrating the 100th birthday of Cement, Oklahoma. The Bell is resting on the concrete steps of the Old Presbyterian Church, which was the first Church to be built in Cement. All that remains of this church are the front steps and the Bell. I remember as a kid in the 50’s this Church was still standing but was vacant. It had a bell tower, my cousins used to play hooky from school and would climb up into the bell tower where a few holes had been created in the shingles of the bell tower so they could look out to see if the coast was clear.”
Some mail from this week’s MAILBAG…..“Butch, The cafeteria mentioned in your August 4th newsletter was run by Lorenz Boyd, son of Dr. J. Jay Boyd. It was located at the Ardmore Airbase and had a swimming pool next to it. He also ran the cafe inside the Mulkey Hotel on North Washington for a while in the 50’s or early 60’s. In earlier years he was on the Ardmore Police force and had the “Bloody Caddo” beat.” -Jay Roberts, Dr Boyd’s grandson
Hi Butch, Not often I get the opportunity to update history but here’s the skinny on the Herr family & jewelry store. A little Preface: I was born 1924 at my present address 1101 B Street NW & my Father built next door 1105 B in 1938 & the Herr family lived next door until I went out into the World in 1942. Herr Jewelry was all that time on the NW corner of Main & B Street NW. The Herr’s came from Muenster, TX (West of Gainesville). The mother came from Regensburg, Germany & had difficulty speaking English & the family spoke German at home. Children were Miriam, youngest then Frank, Lucille, Anna Marie & Rosa, Frank was my age within couple days. All the kids went to Catholic school except Frank went into & graduated Ardmore High School class of 1942, married Mary Cannon. Frank was 4F & didn’t get into the military. After the old folks passed Rosa & Anna moved the store West on Main street, same block, maybe due to renovation of Tivoli theater. Probably 1960s I was aware the Herr home had been bought by Robert & Ruby Duke. I lost contact with the Herr’s except maybe 1981 Frank came back on a visit to Ardmore, we talked, his wife had passed & he had worked for years as properties manager for a major grocery chain out Western states. I heard later he had passed.
Grocery stores – good entry on T&T about Martin – Elles 718 B Street NW — I have walked past it often the last 35 years & for years it was closed & in use for commercial storage. In recent months it has been renovated & externally looks like now a desirable residence. —- Store 9th & A st NW in 1930s was Bulards. It was a typical one-room store common on a lot of residential corners in Ardmore but different that the terrain was very low & the store building, facing the corner, not either street, was on about four foot stilts level with the street & there was a walk-way also on stilts several steps to its entry. George Bulard, his son, WWI vet, lived across B st from me, couple houses down & we talked now & then early 1980s till he passed. -Bob McCrory
Gone But Not Forgotten-
A History of the Black Families of Caddo 1872-1911
Compiled by Mary E. Maurer
The Tahlequah Arrow
September 7, 1911
Caddo, Okla., Sept. 5- For the first time in its history Caddo Sunday night had not a single negro resident, the blacks having all fled from much of the surrounding territory, the exodus starting Sunday morning following the first report of the killing of Horace Gribble, a white farmer, by negroes Saturday night and continuing throughout the day, no warning notices being necessary.
My book provides background information about some of the black families who lived in Caddo, Oklahoma, the reasons for the violence that erupted in 1911, and what happened to some of the families who left. Many of the blacks were Choctaw or Chickasaw freedmen. Some were negro slaves from other areas who were freed after the war. The book combines census records, tax rolls, maps, wills, Dawes packets, and family stories to provide as many facts as possible. The actual years covered by the book are 1850-1950 because some of the families can be found on the 1940 census and other later records. 197 pages- $20 plus $3.50 postage
Bryan County Genealogy Library and Archives
P. O. Box 153
Calera, Oklahoma 74730
Please visit my websites:
Q. “Hi Butch! Hope this finds you well in the hot Oklahoma summer. In one of your newsletters, you showed a photograph of an Indian “little man”, standing on a chair I believe. It looked to be an old photograph. I’ve looked for this image, but I haven’t been able to find it. Do you know the photo I’m talking about? Could you and it to me? I would be very grateful. As always, take good care, Butch!” -Cindy
A. Cindy, what you ask was written in a book by Mac McGalliard. In the Ardmoreite, dated January 21, 1979, there is an article about Dr. Washington and Buster Ned. It seems the American Trail series filmed Buster Ned and Mac McGalliard telling the story of the Kwanakuasha. One of the pictures shows Mac holding a book about the story of the Kwanakuasha. The picture of the Dr. and the little man is standing on the table.
A Dream Catcher Quilt is being raffled off to help raise funds for the Gene Autry Museum. Thanks.
Here are 5 scans of old postcards. -Robert Hensley
Oil tank fire in the Healdton oil field.
Ardmore street scene look west on Main Street.
Mountain Like northwest of Ardmore.
Ardmore’s First Methodists Church circa 1930s.
Hairpin Curve (horseshoe curve) near Turner Falls.https://secureservercdn.net/220.127.116.11/knn.c7e.myftpupload.com/ttphotos16b/HairpinCurveArbuckleMountains.jpg
Woody Guthrie (1912- 1967), father of American Folk music, was born Woodrow Wilson Guthrie in Okemah, Oklahoma. His father was a land speculator whose fortunes fluctuated with the oil booms. Guthrie’s family experienced a series of hardships that tied Woody’s sympathies with the poor and downtrodden. His family lost several homes and fortunes to fires; his older sister Clara died in a fire, and his father was severely injured and put out of work by another one. Woody’s mother suffered a number of breakdowns before the family was forced to send her to a asylum where she would spend the rest of her life. In 1947, a daughter, Cathy, was killed in an electric fire, leaving Woody heartbroken; he was never the same. Woody always claimed that his family was responsible for all the traits for which he became legendary. His father was a fighter, who never stopped working, dreaming, or fighting despite all his setbacks, and his mother taught him the songs that he would sing, adapt, or borrow. The early 1950s found Woody Guthrie in a state of mental deterioration. He began to behave erratically, couldn’t control his playing, or remember things. He ran away to California where he got involved with a woman twenty years his junior, obtaining a quickie Mexican divorce from Marjorie and remarrying Anneke almost instantly. They had a baby who was put up for adoption. Due to his mental state, he was eventually forced to return to Marjorie in New York and spent the rest of his days in and out of hospitals, nursed by her. Woody Guthrie died of the mind deteriorating Huntington’s disease, the same disease that killed his mother, on October 3, 1967.
“This land is your land, this land is my land
From California, to the New York Island
From the redwood forest, to the gulf stream waters
This land was made for you and me
As I was walking a ribbon of highway
I saw above me an endless skyway
I saw below me a golden valley
This land was made for you and me
I’ve roamed and rambled and I’ve followed my footsteps
To the sparkling sands of her diamond deserts
And all around me a voice was sounding
This land was made for you and me
The sun comes shining as I was strolling
The wheat fields waving and the dust clouds rolling
The fog was lifting a voice come chanting
This land was made for you and me
As I was walkin’ – I saw a sign there
And that sign said – no tress passin’
But on the other side …. it didn’t say nothin!
Now that side was made for you and me!
In the squares of the city –
In the shadow of the steeple
Near the relief office – I see my people
And some are grumblin’ and some are wonderin’
If this land’s still made for you and me.”
-1952 Woody Guthrie
See everyone next week!
Butch and Jill Bridges
PO Box 2
Lone Grove, Oklahoma 73443
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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