PO Box 2, Ardmore, Oklahoma 73402
Email: email@example.com, Phone: 580-490-6823
It’s Thursday evening and I’m wondering how much snow we may get tomorrow. The weather forecasters are predicting snow for Friday but the heavier snow amounts should stay north of the Arbuckle Mountains. We may only get a dusting here on the sunny side of the Arbuckles but the next couple days will be colder then a well diggers foot. The snow is beautiful but a dusting here is fine with me.
Burton A. Simpson Sr., later to be senior partner of Simpson-Fell Oil Company, had purchased property on Main Street referred to in publicity as being in the heart of the business district. With partners Roy M. Johnson and Banker P.C. Dings, he proposed to erect a six-story building at the corner of Main and A Street Southwest. Completed the Simpson building was the latest in modern technology. Each floor of the new office building was divided into offices, for a total of 110. Tenants were provided with ice water from the basement for the ice was made by special machinery. Here also was a vacuum machine connected by a system of pipes to every room in the building to remove dust and litter, carrying it back to the basement to be discharged into a furnace and burned. The building generated its own electricity. Two elevators served the building and in 1918 an employee was kept on 24-hour call to man the lift. All things considered it was a triumph of modern progress for the small town of Ardmore. Immediately popular, tenants flocked into the new building. -Sally Gray, Territory Town, The Ardmore Story published 2006
The building was originally heated by coal fired boilers. There are old electric generators in the basement. These things are huge.
There are still three old safes in the basement too.
And let’s not forget the old 1917 mailbox on the first floor by the elevator. This mailbox is a collector box for mail dropped through a chute from the upper floors of the building. The chute runs all the way down to the first floor mailbox. So tenants on the upper floors of the building, just walk over to the south wall by the elevator, place their letters in the mail drop, and the letters drop all the way down a chute to the first floor mailbox. Each day the downtown letter carrier picks up mail from the first floor collection box.
The Simpson Building would later be known as the, the Quinton Little Building, and today the Colston Building.
Banks in the Simpson Building since 1918.
This is a picture I took of the Colston Building inn 2002.
The Grandfield, Oklahoma toll bridge over the Red River has been sold for $625. Tillman County levying on the span for $2,000 in back taxes. The structure was purchased by the Bell Oil and Gas Company. It is one of the oldest crossings on the Red River and went out last year when a new and free bridge opened.
Wilson Honors its Korea-Vietnam Era Veterans
During its long history, Wilson’s husbands, wives, sons and daughters have served our country in the United States military. Those who served between 1950 and 1975 have recently been remembered—and honored—in a new book entitled A Tribute to Wilson’s Korea-Vietnam Era Veterans by Melinda Taylor. This 600-page hard bound fully-indexed book has been published by the Wilson Historical Society and Museum through the efforts of Granny’s Books Publishing. The book features over 500 Wilsonites and includes more than 450 pages of newspaper articles from The Wilson Post-Democrat and The Ardmoreite recording the military involvement of Wilsonites covering the period from January 1950 through December 1975.
The Wilson Historical Museum will be closed for the month of January, 2017; however, the book can be purchased during January by calling (in Wilson)—Denise Holt (580) 465-8999, Mindy Taylor (580) 668-1636 or Beth Tucker (580) 668-3092. In Ardmore call Carole or George Pinches (580) 224-0766 (h), (580) 504-4076 (Carole c), or (580) 504-4077 (George c). Alternatively, the book can be purchased through the Museum website, which is http://www.wilsonhistoricalmuseum.org The book can be purchased at the Museum which is located at 1270 8th Street in Wilson.
This publication is the third in a series of books helping to preserve the history of Wilson and western Carter County. Previously the Wilson Historical Society published A Tribute to Wilson’s WWII Veterans in 2012, which honors those who served, and some who died, in the defense of their country. Then in 2014 the Wilson Historical Society published The Centennial Cookbook: Honoring Wilson’s Cooks from the Past. This book, which is as much a history book as a cookbook, features recipes, biographies and stories from many Wilson cooks, ads from early Wilson newspapers, and other historical memorabilia.
What the Wilson Historical Society and Museum accomplishes is a direct result of the efforts of its volunteers, and reflects their interests. Further books are planned by Museum volunteers in the coming years to help preserve even more of the history of Wilson and western Carter County.
Some pavers I recently 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 is the center of the universe?
A. Tulsa, Oklahoma
Q. We all know Oklahoma is home to a vast amount of beautiful chapels and churches, but there is one tucked away in the rolling hills of northeastern Oklahoma on 19 acres in the most unforgettable setting. Where is this old-world style European chapel located?
A. Answer in next week’s newsletter
Below is from This and That newsletter archives of January 4, 2003
The last day of December is always a busy day at the courthouse. People waiting til the last minute to come in to pay property taxes. I snapped a pic of the line all the way out the door of the Carter County Treasurer’s Office that afternoon.
Picture of the Hamburger Inn today. It still has 13 stools for customers.
I have all 52 pages of the 1969 book ‘Pages of History’ digitized that I spoke about last weekend. Here is a Table of Contents:
Table of Contents:
Page 1 – Forward
Page 2 – Santa Fe Officials Name Ardmore. Photo of the Cyrus K. Holliday train used in historical pageants.
Page 3 – Outlaws Spell End to Roff Brothers Ranch. Photo of “700 ranch”.
Page 4 – John F. Easley, the original “rambling reporter”. Photo of Easley.
Page 5 – Fire of 1895. Ardmore’s first Fire Department established in 1895. Two Photos.
Page 6 – History of the Ardmore Chamber of Commerce. One photo.
Page 7 – Ardmore Jaycees Continue To Make History. two Photos.
Page 8 – Photos of Jim Williams, City Commissioner; Gene Paul Morrell, City Commissioner; Jim Ozment, City Commissioner; Wildon Harris, City Commissioner; Scott King, Mayor; Gerald Wilkins, City Manager; Dominic Marchesani, Chief of Police; Ed Jennings, Fire Chief; Dale Stone, President Ardmore C of C; D. Allen Wint, President Junior C of C.
Page 9 – Ardmore’s Telephone History
Page 10 – National Oil Organization Born in Ardmore. One Photo.
Page 11 – 1965 – The Nobles CUT of the SAME CLOTH. One Photo.
Page 12 – OG&E Has Served Ardmore Since 1925. Two Photos.
Page 13 – “Sprek”, A Named Remembered. Photo of L.A Sprekelmeyer and his shop.
Page 14 – Ardmore Banking History
Page 15 – The Great Explosion of 1915. One photo.
Page 16 – The Charles B. Goddard Story. Photo of Charles Goddard.
Page 17 – How Ardmore’s Main Street Came To Be There. One Photo.
Page 18 – “Pioneering Spirt”, Max Westheimer. Photo of Max Westheimer.
Page 19 – “Help for the Living” Philosophy of Walter Neustadt. Photo of Neustadt.
Page 20 – Bettes, A Tradition in Southern Oklahoma. Three photos.
Page 21 – Harvey Funeral Home is Historical Institution of City. Two Photos.
Page 22 – W.F. Crosby family history. One Photo
Page 23 – John Joseph Stolfa, Sr., A Most Fascinating Person. One Photo.
Page 24 – Cooper Farms Dairy Herd Nationally Famous. Photo of Cooper Farms.
Page 25 – Battle of the Giants, Formation of the Arbuckle Mountains. One Photo.
Page 26 – The Joe Brown Company. Three Photos.
Page 27 – History of Longhorn Supply Company, Velma, Oklahoma.
Page 28 – The Justin Boot Story – Stubbs Army Navy Store
Page 29 – A Brief History of Love County, Oklahoma. Photo of Marietta’s Main Street in the early days.
Page 30 – Washington Ranch Home is Historic Site. Two Photos.
Page 31 – Hardy Murphy, A True Great in Ardmore History. Two Photos.
Page 32 – Riding the Chisholm Trail. A cowboy’s account of trail driving through Indian Territory in the 1870’s. One Photo.
Page 33 – Healy Bros. Today’s Pioneers in Ranching. Two photos.
Page 34 – Dr. Charles Evans, A Great Educator and Community Leader. Two photos
Page 35 – The Flag Flies Again over Fort Washita. One photo.
Page 36 – Fort Washita Site Selected by General Zachery Taylor. Two photos.
Page 37 – Jim Eskew, Jr., Carries on Tradition. Two photos.
Page 38 – Col. Jim Eskew Worked with Buffalo Bill Wild West Show. One photo.
Page 39 – The Randolphs, Nationally Great Rodeo Performers. Two photos.
Page 40 – Ardmore Gibson Discount Center History. One drawing.
Page 41 – The Chevrolet Story by Dick Norwood Chevrolet. Two photos.
Page 42 – Evergreen Feeds Keeps Abreast of Changing Times. One photo.
Page 43 – The Healdton Field Fabulous Oil Discovery. Photo of Roy M. Johnson.
Page 44 – Winrock Farms, Sulphur, Oklahoma.
Page 45 – Historic Turner Falls, Natural Beauty Spot. One photo.
Page 46 – Roy Brady, Pioneer. Photo of Roy Brady on his horse Yellow Jacket.
Page 47 – Tales of Early West Lead to “Rocking S”. Two photos.
Page 48 – Democratic Government Not New to Chickasaws. One photo.
Page 49 – Stromberg-Carlson, From Telephones to Tents. One photo.
Page 50 – Burn Victims Offered Care at Shrine Burn Hospital. One photo.
Page 51 – Tribute To Pioneers. Four photos.
Page 52 – History of “Our Town” to be Written by McGalliard. One photo.
“Please don’t ever quit my friend. I’ll soon be 82 years of age and I must tell you that your T&T and your sincere friendship has been one of the highlights of my life. For the sake of everyone – hang in there and never, never, never give up. (Winston Churchill once said something like that).”
“Hi Butch, I have noticed two different emails concerning Coleman Jones. I used to see him often while delivering mail here in Ardmore. He was always friendly, I remember turning my ankle on the 500 block of A or B st. S.E. and he just happened to be riding along on his bicycle and witnessed the accident. He stopped and ask if I was aright? And I told him I had sprained my ankle pretty bad. He was sympathetic and told me just to pretend I was walking on eggs the rest of the day and I probably wouldn’t re injure it. I took his advice and limped along my mail route the rest of the day. I also delivered mail to his home address at one time. I was surprised to deliver a letter from the alumni association of Dartmouth College, where he had attended college as a young man. Seemed like he was an alumnus of the class of 1922 or some time during this period. I was extremely surprised to discover this old Gent had attended an Ivy League college and at a time when America’s Poet Robert Frost, was just emerging as a Poet and giving readings at Dartmouth, and other Ivy League colleges. To say he was eccentric is probably an understatement, but he was an extremely intelligent, and interesting person to talk too. For many years I used to see him at the intersection of Commerce and Stanley street, where he would visit with the traffic guard who would be parked there in the afternoons to help school children cross the busy intersection. I have heard him referred too as “the original hippie,” but anyone who had a chance to befriend him or just exchange a few words with him, knew he had a style of his own. He is one of Ardmore’s characters I miss.” -Mike Jones, (no relation to Coleman Jones)
“Everyone knew Coleman Jones as a little bit different kind of man, to say the least. I knew as a friend for many years being raised next door to him. He and his mother, Cecile Whittington Carter, were my best friends. Before I started to school and it would snow, he would come get me so that I could spend the day with them. I would play with his childhood toys, and learn so much history from both of them. His step-father was Charles Carter, the first Indian Congressman. As a child, his friends were the Roosevelt children and Admiral Byrd’s children. Mrs. Carter drove an ambulance in Washington D.C. and the stories that they told of their life there were wonderful. His cousin was Cole Younger, the notorious outlaw. On special events in my life, he would bring me presents and some silly poem that he would write for the occasions. The last one that I received was a corsage that he went to Scotta’s and designed for my high school graduation. To look at him on that bike, no one would know that he graduated from Dartsmouth. He was a highly educated man. He came home from college and started working at the Whittington Hotel as the night desk clerk for his aunt, Jewel Whittington. After many years of him working there, she got mad at him and fired him. Mrs. Carter and I would go to the old A&P( in her old Chevy Coupe) and then stop and visit with Miss Jewel on Saturday mornings….. that was the highlight of my week. The memories that I have of Coleman, Mrs. Carter and Miss Jewel were very different than the memories that most people have of the bearded bike rider and his family.” -Millie Scrivner Adams
“Butch, the jail trusty’s name was/is George Cooper mentioned in last weeks newsletter. We became friends during his time(s) of incarceration. I helped with the old typewriter in the jail and he spent a lot of time telling his remembrance of the Trail of Tears. Wish I had a copy. He was a good man.”
I remember as a very young kid (late 1950s) my grandmother Addie Carmon, taking me to some of her Rebekah Christmas parties held in the IOOF Building across from the Hamburger Inn on North Washington. I don’t remember a whole lot of what went on those evenings I went, because I was there just having fun. I do remember going up those cast iron steps of that 1916 IOOF Building to the second floor where the meetings took place.
Next door to the north of the IOOF Building is the Ellison Building. It was built in 1921. https://secureservercdn.net/220.127.116.11/knn.c7e.myftpupload.com/ttphotos/ellison21a.jpg
Across the street on the west side of North Washington from the IOOF Building is the Carter and Booker Block Building built in 1903. Today it is mostly a mall of antique stores and apartments upstairs.
Some mail from this week’s MAILBAG…..Q. Where was the Santa Fe Tavern located in Ardmore? Was it in the Santa Fe Depot? Maybe you or your readers can shed some light on where it was and when did it start business or close down.
A. It was not located at the Depot but a couple “blocks” south at C and 1st Street SE 300 C Street SE. This would put it across the street south from the old ice plant on the east side of C Street.
Q. “Did this record belong to someone from your family,,,,,……I’m from Ardmore and in the antique business but have no ideal here I got this record. Just thought you would know the original owner…… Thanks!” -Sam
A. Jerlene Bridges is not kin to me, that I know of.
“I read the note about the Indian at the jail. My husband J.T. Gilliam told me he used to go to the jail and visit with the Indian who cooked there and that he taught him some Indian language. That would have been sometime late 30’s or early 40’s. J.T.’s brother Bill was an Ardmore City policeman back then who went on to become a Secret Service Agent who traveled with and guarded Roosevelt during the War.” -Charlene
“Butch: In the last T&T you mentioned a friend told you “no matter how old you live to be, the years still seemed to have gone by so quickly.” I have an explanation. When I was 30 years old my 80 year old grandmother lived with me and my wife, the former Patricia Paschall of the SE Lake Murray area. My grandmother said one day that time was getting shorter. I said, “No, Grandma, time never changes. A second is a second. A minute is a minute. An hour is an hour. It never changes.” She replied, “No. You just don’t understand.” I said, “Then tell me.” She said, “I’m happy to tell you. Time is only as it relates to you. When you were 10 years old it was 1/10th of your total experience. Now you are 30 years old, and it is 1/30th of your total experience. I’m 80 years old and it is 1/80th of my total experience. So, 1/80th is a lot less than 1/30th. So, time IS getting shorter.” What could I say? Only, “You’re right, Grandma.” For those of you who knew the Paschalls, Patricia died two years ago this month at age 83 from a heart attack. We were married 64 years, 6 months and 15 days, at the First Baptist Church in Ardmore.” -Don Davidson, Brenham, Texas firstname.lastname@example.org
“We lost all we owned Aug. 13, 2016- had to be rescued in a kayak with only room for my oxygen machine and my purse. Hubby was rescued in a big boat.- our truck who is almost 5 feet high got all but 10 inches of water from the roof down. Our mobile home and everything we owned got 6 ft of water in it. The vehicle and mobile home was a total loss. Hubby also lost 2 studies one here, one at the church which the church had to be stripped down to studs – 5 ft water ruined everything in it. God did not save us from the storm, and the flood, but he has brought us thru it. We are now living in a mobile home set up on our property by FEMA. We are no longer homeless. We can see God’s hand working in every turn we make. We got our church all back together – piano, guitar, drums, replaced even new carpet in it. We only missed having church 2 Sundays- one Sunday the day of the flood- and the next week- then we set up in the fellowship hall and started having church in it. I lost my brick you engraved for me. I may get another one some day. I want to tell you this is the best Christmas we have ever had. Our daughter and her daughter and hubby lost all they had – everyone down our road flooded – the whole subdivision was under water- and the only way to get down the road for 5 days was in a boat. Other wise we might could have saved some things. We lost over 52 years of stuff . But so thankful we still have our life- we usually go in and go to bed- but our daughter was here and made us evacuate and go to her house. Otherwise we may have never woke up at all or woke up with 5 ft of water in our faces. He was watching out over us. Happy New Year.” -Rita Howell in Louisiana
Well, here we are entering another year! I wonder each year if I will be here next New Years or maybe passed on to the Happy Hunting Ground in the next where-ever. I have so enjoyed all the Newsletters from you and reading about the old times. The mention of the fall of the old Kress store falling down, also Duke and Ayres, Reavis Drug, and Hamburger Inn. What memories that brought back of going into town on Saturdays and roaming up and down Main Street. Maybe if my Grandma would spring for a quarter or so and I could see a movie at the Ritz, have a bag of popcorn and maybe be lucky enough to get a burger at the Hamburger Inn. Those were the good old days for a country girl. I feel homesick for a while after reading about others and their memories, too. I’ve been gone for 53 years now (not that I didn’t visit often), and the good memories are still there. So many friends and most of my family are long since passed, but, there are still good times that I had that I recall when I get your Newsletter. Thank you so much for all those stories and reading about oldtimes. Keep up the good work, Butch. Happy New Year’s wishes from Las Vegas! -Kathy
“Hey Butch, Seems I’ve read in some of your writings that you like Sorghum. Wanted to tell you that some friends of our went to Wewoka to a Sorghum Festival (held the 4th Saturday in October) back in the fall and brought us back a pint of Sorghum Molasses. It is the best I have eaten since we made it when I was a kid. It’s called Barking Water Sorghum and is from the Seminole Nation. This is for your information in case you do like sorghum. Happy New Year to you and Jill. I’m hoping for a wonderful, peaceful, healthy New Year for us all.” -Pat
“Years ago 40+ anyway… There were a set of 15 or so clown paintings done by someone here in Ardmore or at least that was connected to Ardmore.. They were done on velvet and displayed in various places around town.. Somehow. My grandmother, Laveen Rogers, came to own one… I am wondering if you have any info or history on that.. It is still in my family. Below is the best picture I have of the clown painting.” -Brandi Edmonds
“Roy Rogers, the BBQ stand you mentioned last night was Raymond’s BBQ located at 623 I Street NE by Lorenzo Murray. His home was located at 625 I Street NE and his wife was Thelma. I sure wish someone would come up with a photo of Lorenzo and his BBQ Stand. What a piece of NE history. I loved his 15 cent BBQ sandwiches! Instead of eating the best Sunday dinner a person could want at my great grandmother’s, Ida Miller’s home at H Street and I NE, I’d ask for 15 cents so I could go to Raymond’s and get a BBQ Sandwich. My folks couldn’t believe I wanted to do that.” -Butch
“Butch here are the last of the Ardmore photos I have to scan. I will send you others when I get them. Take note of the mother and daughter photo (link below), the photographer is a rare one for Ardmore, I have found only two photos from this photographer, Southern Art Company, Ardmore, I.T. Thanks for putting the postcards and photos in your online newsletter.” -Robert Hensley
“Each time you are honest and conduct yourself with honesty, a success force will drive you toward greater success. Each time you lie, even with a little white lie, there are strong forces pushing you toward failure.” -Joseph Sugarman
See everyone next week!
Butch and Jill Bridges
PO Box 2
Lone Grove, Oklahoma 73443https://oklahomahistory.net
Vicious Dog Attacks in Oklahoma
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