A Home Grown Home Page

Home of the This and That Newsletters

Vol 20  Issue 992   January 28, 2016

PO Box 2, Ardmore, Oklahoma 73402

Email: butchbridges@oklahomahistory.net

Phone: 580-490-6823

Before Oklahoma became a state, Ben Collins was an Indian policeman for the Chickasaw Nation. He lived 5 miles south of Milburn, Oklahoma. One evening around 10pm in August 1906, Ben Collins was standing on the porch with his wife, when he was gunned down by several men from out in the darkness. The Chickasaw Nation offered a reward of $1,000 for info leading to the arrest of his killers. In November that same year deputy marshals and detectives arrested Henry Pruitt, A. Washmood and Ben Tie for Collin’s murder. Three years later, at a mob lynching in Ada, Oklahoma on April 19, 1909 four men were taken from the jail and lynched. It would become known that these four men and the three arrested for the murder of Ben Collins were all accomplices that dark night in 1906 south of Milburn, Oklahoma. This band of outlaws had killed several people during those years, earning up to $2,000 per killing as hired guns.


December 1964
Mr. and Mrs. Carter Watterson Kennedy, age 79, and 63, died December 16th within a few minutes of each other. The husband who was in the yard of their home, was seen by his wife to fall. Noting that he was unconscious, she ran to a neighbor’s for aid and upon her return fell dead at his side. He was born in Metropolis, Illinois and had lived in this area since 1922. Mrs. Dince Pierce Kennedy was born December 23, 1901 at Cheek. Among survivors is a the son Clifton, Lone Grove.

December 1955
Mrs. Fanny B. Tidmore died Tuesday morning. She had suffered a stroke. Burial was in the Lone Grove Cemetery. She was born in Paducah, Kentucky, the daughter of Dr. and Mrs. Harper. She moved with her parents to Lone Grove and lived in the Lone Grove area for 60 years. Survivors include a son, Dorris “Gene” Ballew, Natchez, Mississippi. She was the widow of Bud Ballew, a widely known peace officer, and Dr. John Tidmore a Wilson physician.

December 1931
Cole Johnson, Carter County Commissioner, says it might be of interest to taxpayers to know that in Carter County there are 94 miles of state highway, 270 miles of county roads, and 771 miles of township roads.

December 1931
Miss Letha Rogers, 23, who lives near Milo had a narrow escape from death yesterday afternoon, when she was accidentally shot in the stomach by her sister. The shot, fired from a .22 caliber rifle, turned sharply downward and into the hip, failing to pierce the abdominal cavity. She was reported resting easily today and will be able, unless complications arise, to return to her home within a week. Miss Rogers and her sister for squirrel hunting when the accident occurred.

You can find current gas prices for a particular Oklahoma town by entering the name or zip code in the GasBuddy search box.


I started a new regime of Coconut Oil in my hot tea and coffee along with my Probiotic I have been taking everyday. I lost 3 pounds in 3 days since starting the coconut oil.



If you are like many and have an all electric home, you’re electric bill may be higher in the winter than in the summer. Several friends are finding out my Okie Power Saver is a great way to reduce that electric bill and save money year round.


Q.  What does the Zip in zipcode stand for?
A.   “ZIP in Zipcode is the abbreviation for Zone Improvement Program, and was implemented in 1963 an effort to speed delivery of mail by mechanical sorting the envelopes. What happened? Now 2 days for delivery now takes five!” -Don

Q.  Where is the oldest National Forest in the southern United States located?
A.  (answer in next week’s T&T)

From This and That newsletter archives of January 19, 2002:

A piece of Ardmore’s past was lost to fire about three weeks ago. I heard on the news about a fire in the northeast part of Ardmore where an Ardmore firefighter was hurt, but didn’t realize at that time it was Dr. J.J. Boyd’s old office and home. Dr. Boyd was renown around the country for his “sugar pill” medicine and especially his medicine for poison ivy. I remember when I was 16 or 17 years old I was down on East Main by the old fire station one evening, when a pickup with a camper shell on the back drove up. The man driving was wanting to know if it was all right for him and his wife to park beside the fire station for the night. Early the next morning they were going to Dr. Boyd’s to get their 6 month supply of “sugar pills”. He said they had been making the trip every 6 months for 15 years. They had driven all the way from California for Dr. Boyd’s homeopathic medicine. Dr. Boyd’s office was located at 127 “F” Street Northeast. The doctor’s office was destroyed by fire early Sunday morning on December 30, 2001.

In past issues I’ve talked about my grandfather Carmon’s old lumber yard on 3rd and H Street Northeast. A couple of weeks ago my cousins sold it to a man named Tracy Oakley here in Ardmore. He told me he planned to rent the old house out and fix the front part of the lumber yard office up for his office. He has put a nice metal fence around the front. Here’s a pic I took this week.
Stewardesses Die in I-35 Car Crash
Wednesday, February 14, 1968
The Daily Ardmoreite, Ardmore, Oklahoma

Two American Flyers stewardesses, Joan Watson, 28, and Yvonne Lutzke, 25, were killed on their way to Ardmore this morning. Officers said Miss Watson’s car slid sideways on an icy overpass on Highway I-35E in Denton into the path of a southbound truck which hit them broadside. The two vehicles then plunged down a steep embankment into Highway 24.

Another stewardess, Linda Brignolo, 22, who was a passenger in the car was seriously injured and was in fair condition in Flow Hospital in Denton. Miss Lutzke and Miss Brignolo had returned by commercial airliner to Love Field in Dallas after an American Flyers charter flight and Miss Watson had gone to Dallas to pick them up. All three of the stewardesses were based in Ardmore.

Miss Watson had been a stewardess for about a year and was from California. Miss Lutzke had been employed by American Flyers for four years and her hometown is Keil, Wisconsin. Miss Brignolo was in the last graduating class of AF stewardesses in November. Her family lives in Torrington, Conn.

The truck driver, Carl Cunningham, 25, Oklahoma City, was treated in a Denton hospital and released.
“Hi Butch, It seems as if T&T gets better and more interesting each issue. We just returned from a two week trip to Ardmore and Ringling area, mission, to help out with sick folks. Got my Wife’s sister signed up on the heartland share program. Pinto Store was located on the southwest corner of the intersection of what is now Highway 89 and Highway 53. We moved to the Pinto area on Christmas Day 1942. The store was then operated by Olbert and Otella Arnold. They were in an airplane crashed and only their baby daughter survived. The store sold staple groceries, feed for livestock, gasoline and oil, nails and fence staples and about anything needed. They bought cream and eggs, and pecans in season. I even sold Olbert a rick of wood one time. This was before the days of rural electricity, and the power for the store was furnished by a Delco Lighting System, which consisted of a bank of glass storage batteries and a gasoline generator. The unit would start and stop automatically. I used to slip into the lean-to shed where it was housed, and wait for hours, so I could see it start and stop by itself. The shed also housed the coal oil, which was in a container with a pump on top. The gasoline pump was a hand operated pump with a 10 gallon glass container on top. You pumped the gasoline into the container and then drained it into your car with a hose and nozzle. There were markings inside the glass container to represent one gallon and 1/2 gallon. You paid for the amount you drained out. The Store changed proprietors to Rayburn Ritter and then Mr. and Mrs Newt Sitton. On this trip, I tried to contact some of the Old Timers and get some of the dates, But found no one who could remember. The store was torn down in the late sixties. Maybe some other reader knows.” -Jim Brown, Odessa Texas
“Butch, Regarding leaches…I remember getting a leach between my toes while wading in the creek below Turner Falls in the 50’s. I just pulled it off, but it did spoil the pleasure some. I also remember picnics and walks around Devil’s Den. My mother collected some cactus there that were supposed to be unique to that area. Does anyone remember Hundred Acre Rock? Was it part of Devil’s Den, or just part of the same outcropping.”
“A set-up would also include a 7-Up, Coke, club soda, tonic water, fruit juice or whatever the customer wanted, and the same procedure was followed in all kinds of establishments from honky-tonks to nice restaurants and upscale clubs. Some people may remember when then-U.S. 77 just north of the Red River was lined with beer joints and places selling canned and bottled beer. Most of North Texas was dry–bone dry–while 3.2% beer was allowed (as it still is) in Oklahoma. The same thing, I believe, was true along many highways just north of the Red River. Texas has local option, with all alcoholic beverages prohibited or just beer or beer and wine, or spirits, and on- or off-premises. It can vary even within the same town; much of Dallas is dry, which liquor stores in Dallas are often clustered just on the wet side of the wet/dry dividing.
“Hi Butch, Graduated high school and left Ardmore in 1951 but still have kin and friends there so visit frequently. On my last trip to Ardmore I decided to find Red Everett’s Store out near Hoxbar. My dad was an ice man and we used to deliver ice all through that area. Well, I couldn’t find the store because it has been converted to a residence. The lady who owns the place commented that she’d love to have photos of how the place looked originally – late 40s and early 50s. Can anyone help?” -Ted Pylant
“Butch, I read your This and That for this week 1/19/02 and saw the article on Devil’s Den. I performed a land survey for the entire Devil’s Den Tract in 1998. At that time I took photos with my survey helper who is seen in some of the pictures. John Bruno bought this area in the 1990’s and is making it his home.”
“In “This and That” you asked about leaches in the streams. A few years ago, a child swimming in the Travertine Creek in Chickasaw National Recreation Area at Sulphur got a leach on the foot. It must have been a very small one. It was described by the parent as a “worm.” A pair of tweezers was used to remove it.”
“My mother, Ruth Byrd, wrote you in the last few days concerning my grandfather, James Alexander “Coot” Byrd. He was a Marshal in Kingston, OK. He was killed by a Mr. Kizziar while on duty. He was married first to a Rena? Hoggard, and then to Grace Greer. He left one son, Pete by Hoggard, and 2 sons by Greer. I believe Hoggard’s father was a lawman also and several other relatives. I have a very poor copy of the newspaper article concerning the incident. I would love to know more about the family, especially any school records of the boys. If you have any time to do any researching on this it would mean so much to us. I remember the family had very close friends named Tinkle that in my memory helped raise the two younger boys. I read your “This and That” each week hoping to see something that will give me a bit of information of my family. I am amazed in the amount of information dispensed by you and your followers. My mother’s lived in the 1920’s30’s in Madill. Thanks for your help.”  galegg@yahoo.com

Some mail from this week’s MAILBAG…..“Butch, I have been to magnetic hill several times, but have forgotten where I exit to go west off of I-35 just north of Springer. Also how far and the name of the road where magnetic hill is. It seems the name was Soldier Road. The first time I was ever there was 80 years ago and we plan to go again soon. It has never lost its interest. Thanks.”

Abandoned Oklahoma website

“The clipping was from the San Antonio newspaper in April of 1949. It was a regional 13 state barbershop quartette contest. We were the Oklahoma State champs in a contest held in Shawnee in 1948 but sorry to say we got our picture in the paper in San Antonio but did not win the contest. The winners went to Buffalo, New York to compete for the international Championship. During the short time we were together, we sang all over Oklahoma and Texas and the article on Hardy Murphy mentioning the Ardmore Birthday Party just jogged my memory of happy days gone by because we sang at one of the parties.

The judge mentioned is just one of the contest judges. The names of the quartette were Phil Stumpff, tenor – Orel Peak, lead – Raymond Cleveland, baritone and yours truly bass. The most fun I have ever had was singing with these wonderful guys. Only two of us are living today, Raymond and I. Phil and Orel are singing in Heaven. Happy Trails.” -Roy Miller

“Dear Butch, As a relative newcomer to Oklahoma, moved here in 2008 from a previous lifetime of living in North Carolina, I have enjoyed the wonderful history of OK your that newsletter shares with us all and the rich detail of lives and times past, it really is a blessing in helping preserve the oral history of my new home state.

The reason I’m writing is to ask for help in identifying a mysterious old stone building on the road from Sulphur to Daugherty that I found on one of my many backroads journeys of exploration. As you can see by the three photos enclosed it’s a rather large structure and apparently has been abandoned for decades, there not being much left inside save the odd rotting timber or two.Despite my several attempts trying to find out the “real” history of it I’ve come up with mixed stories about it but no concrete, definite explanation. I’ve heard that originally it was an “office” for Dolese Sand & Gravel Company when they mined the valley floor below but when I called and talked with a couple of different people there at Dolese they said “uh-uh”, that they didn’t build it or own it or use it an office at any time in the past and when I talked with some folks in Sulphur and in nearby Daugherty a couple of them said that they “THOUGHT” it was an old orphanage for Indian children back before statehood or a mental institution in the early 1900’s or a sanitarium for TB patients back when tuberculosis was pandemic and other similar speculations but nothing close to what is probably the truth about it. Any help on this matter will be sincerely appreciated!” -Kent

“While in California this month to watch the Rose Parade, Tricia and I visited the Paley Center for Media in Hollywood. I was curious to see if they had any kinescopes from the Mark Wilson magic show that appeared in the late 1950’s on WFAA Channel 8. They had one episode of the MAGIC LAND OF ALLAKAZAM. They also had a 90 minute TV program named THE FESTIVAL OF MAGIC hosted by Ernie Kovacs from 1957 featuring six magicians, one being a woman which was unusual because there were very few women doing magic. Also on the program was a magician named Cardini who was acknowledged as the greatest slight of hand magician in the world.

I first saw magic performed in Ardmore at the Civic Auditorium by Blackstone some time in the early 1950’s. I think it was my dad’s idea to go to the performance. I don’t remember much about the show but at some point the audience booed the act. I don’t remember why they booed but the performance made a real impression on me. Maybe someone in your audience can provide additional detail. About 25 years ago I was in Snowmass for a ski trip and saw up close magic performed in the bar of the Tower Restaurant by two separate magicians, “Doc” Eason and Eric Mead. Over the next 10 years I saw them every year because I began taking my ski trip to Snowmass.

In December, for Tricia’s 65th birthday, I set up a private dinner for two dozen of her friends in Tulsa and had Eric Mead join us and provide the entertainment. One of the tricks Eric performed was one that Cardini had developed over 50 years ago. It was still an amazing trick. Eric entertained us for 90 minutes with a deck of cards, four coins and a couple of additional props.

In the age of computers it was exciting to be amazed by one of the oldest forms of entertainment.” -Monroe Cameron


“Butch, Regarding the ladies question about leeches, we find one occasionally in the creek on our land in the Tabletop Mountains in far west Garvin County.” -Judy Bowman, Foster, OK

In our every deliberation, we must consider the impact of our decisions on the next seven generations.  –Iroquois Maxim (circa 1700-1800)

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
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.
Feel free to forward this free newsletter. Mailouts: over 1,600.