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Vol 24  Issue 1,239 October 22, 2020

PO Box 2, Ardmore, Oklahoma 73402

Email: butchbridges@oklahomahistory.net, Phone: 580-490-6823

“What we have done for ourselves alone dies with us; what we have done for others and the world remains and is immortal.”

A Glimpse Into The Past

The Business World

Mrs. Barry’s School About 1890

In the old days regular schools shied away from the commercial subjects and the business college was a necessary specialty for person with interest along that line. Penmanship was an important study before the typewriter came into general use and the ability to write a beautiful hand was a matter of great pride and an important asset when it came time to look for a job. Learning to write good English and speak clearly was also stressed.

Clint Dove is apparently the only Rudisill Business College student still in this area. The school was located near the present Douglas High School and John F. Easley was one of the professors.

J. M. Rudisill was the founder and the official name was the Indianola Business College and Literary Institute. By 1895 there were 80 students, and a new building was built one mile northeast of the railroad station. There were courses not only for the casual business subjects such as penmanship, bookkeeping, accounting and the stenography, but also an extensive program in the fields of music, art and elocution.

George P. Selvidge took over Indianola in 1903 and it became Selvidge Business College a forerunner of today’s Ardmore Business College.

For a short time in the late 1890s a professor Mooney held night school for adults who had heretofore not learned to read and write.
-from Carter County History book 1957
September 1950
Services for R. F. McCrory 72 were held following death after major surgery in an Oklahoma City hospital. He has lived for the past year at his Ranch near my Milo. A native of Kemper County, Mississippi, he came here before statehood and has established an 8,000 acre ranch. His wife was Miss Mattie Poole of Pooleville. He is also survived by a son Lyndall, and daughter Mrs. V. S. Tucker, who lives in California.

September 1926
The last of the jail breakers who made a getaway from the Carter County Jail in November 23rd 3 years ago is back behind bars and will have to stand trial for the offense. Nathan Shockley was serving a 30-day sentence on a whiskey charge when, with several others, he made an exit through the rear window. Bob Short, deputy sheriff, recently located Shockley and brought him back to the county lockup.

September 1926
F. M. Byrd of Lone Grove was appointed as jailer by Sheriff E. C. London, to succeed Charles Hathcock, who resigned to go to work with the police department. Byrd has had nearly 10 years experience as jailer in this county, 8 undersheriff about Garrett and two under Sheriff Holmes Akers.

September 1926
The first bale of cotton ginned in Carter County was raised by Elmore Johnston a farmer in the Tatum’s community. The weight was 431 lb. The price paid was $0.20 a pound, and local merchants made up $100 in premium money for being the first. The next man to get a bale ginned will be $50.

September 1926
Preparations are being made for additional rooms to be built at the Glen district school according to J E. Steele, principal. A petition calling for the building of an auditorium, library and enlargement of the principal’s classrooms will be voted upon in a few days.

Q. Where is Jed Tower located in Oklahoma?
A.  Jed Tower is in the Wichita Mountain Wildlife Refuge near Lawton.

Q.  Where in Oklahoma can you dig for selenite crystals?
A.  Answer in next week’s newsletter

Below is from This and That newsletter archives of October 23, 2008

Galaxy Sign Company of Ardmore was at the courthouse this week replacing a broken rope on the flag pole. Those are pecan trees in front of the building, but I don’t think there will be much of a crop this year. The weather is so confused I heard pecans will be slim picking in this county.

I received an email this week inquiring if I had any info on a train robbery that took place near Nowata, Oklahoma back in 1893.  I couldn’t find anything, maybe someone has some information??  The writer owns a post card on which the robbery near the Seminole switch is detailed by some kinfolks of his.
Speaking of gasoline, for about 2 months I ran gas mixed with ethanol in my 1974 Chevy pickup. The signs read “up to 10% ethanol”. My pickup ran terrible the entire time. Missed a lot, and idled rough. I switched back to gas with no ethanol, and it smoothed right out. Our 2005 Hyundai ran better than the pickup on ethanol. But everything I read says a car running on ethanol will get 2 or 3 miles per gallon less than a car running on straight gas. So I am not going to settle for a inferior gas/ethanol mix even if it means paying a little more. I won’t be running any gasahol if I can help it.


“Long before it was ever known as the Tivoli Theatre, it was known as the PALACE Theatre.” -Ernest Martin
“Hi Butch, Can we stand another Ardmore’s Theater report? You probably don’t get a lot of input from us who were here in the 1930s. I became aware of downtown Ardmore around 1930 when the No 1 theater in Ardmore was the Ritz, half a block East of the now Tivoli. The name Tivoli came into being mid-30s when the old Palace (its original name) was renovated to become the latest and greatest between OKC and Big D & FW. The Tivoli-Palace theater was a major ‘picture show’ for anywhere in the Southwest in its early days and had fallen to second string by the 30s, playing second runs and westerns. And sometimes road shows.

These were traveling movies by small producers without national distribution. They arrived with props and eye-catchers placed outside to lure people in. Mostly westerns, with rusty old guns wired to lean-ups & still shots of the thrilling scenes, etc. The Palace was an ideal location.

There were a couple of little third string movies in Ardmore that cost a nickel for admission. One mid-block across from the Ritz on Main St. between A & B, another just East of Caddo next to the depot. For a time there was one in the now Ardmoreite building.

Thursday night was Bank Night at the Ritz. At 9 o’clock a drawing, sometimes of a couple hundred dollars. Your number called, if you got in there within three minutes you won. People gathered outside on Main street hoping for luck and buy a ticket to get in quick enough. A quarter was a lot to pay just to see a movie and the off-chance you would win. Money was scarce and hard come by.” -Bob McCrory
“My earliest remembrance of the Tivoli is from 1952, the summer before I started school at Lincoln. We had moved to Stanley Street from Lake Ardmore. My sister, Sharon, and I made friends with Beverly Edwards from across the street and we went to Saturday matinees at the Tivoli. I remember that they were most often westerns and a serial along with one or more cartoons. At that time admission was two pop bottles. It seems like admission changed to ten cents at some point later.

I think it was the next year that Hopalong Cassidy came to Ardmore and appeared on stage at the Tivoli one Saturday morning after the movie and then opened the new grocery store on South Washington between 4Th and 5Th. I remember getting a Hoppy ring that day.

You were right about the darkness in the theater. My strongest memories of the theater were the clock in the auditorium surrounded by neon. It seems like the First National Bank had its name on the clock. The music that played before the lights went down was always Glenn Miller’s MOONLIGHT SERENADE. The only other lights in the dark theater were the red exit lights. And yes, the usher was constantly wandering though the theater with his flashlight ready to shine on any couple getting too chose.

I remember the same woman at the concession stand most of the years I lived in Ardmore. It seems as though she wasn’t always the friendliest person.

Christi Love, the daughter of the Tivoli’s owner, was in my graduating class in 1965. I suspect she has some interesting stories to tell.

I received my first barbershop haircut at the Tivoli Barbershop about 1949. My barber’s name was Clint Ross and he cut my hair for the next 18 years. I remember when the cost of a haircut increased from 25 to 50 cents. My mother made me go to another barber because of the increase but that only lasted one or two haircuts because she didn’t like the way the other barber cut my hair. When the Tivoli burned, Clint opened a new shop on Grand just west of “E” Street.” -Monroe Cameron
Extracted from the Lone Grove Ledger archives
85 years ago:
Aug. 5, 1913
Hewitt – The work on the new Methodist church is progressing nicley and the building will be ready for occupancy soon.
Nov. 18, 1913
The Methodist Church, South, people will no doubt be the first to have a church building in Wilson, although it will be a close race, between that denomination and the Christians. Rev. Dr. W. U. Witt of Ardmore, presiding elder for this district, has closed a contract with the Wilson Townsite Company for two lots on which to put a church building and parsonage immediately. The South Methodists now have a church structure in the course of construction at Hewitt and it will be moved to the Wilson site. Rev. H. B. Thompson, now located at Lone Grove, has the circuit including Wilson, and will preach there after the church is located. Rev. Witt intends making Wilson a permanent charge with a pastor stationed there regularly. The Christian Church at Hewitt will also be moved to Wilson in the near future.
Dec. 2, 1913
The Methodist Church has been moved from here to Wilson.
March 31, 1914
The Methodist Episcopal Church announced the following appointments: Lone Grove and Wilson, J. C. Sessums; Woodford, Charles Mann


Some mail from this week’s MAILBAG…..

Butch, Bois D’arc trees made fence lines by themselves way back there. The trees would be planted in a row that would keep livestock from getting through them. There would be Bois D’arc tree farms that supplied the trees to plant for fencing. That was prior to wire fence. -Vince
Butch, reliving the past through your newsletter is great. I recall the beginning of the Healdton Golf Course. Was a big deal back then. The Healdton of that era much different than now. The very active Lions Club members played a big role as did the many area leaders that were present back then. Those were the days, Healdton was great place to grow up back then. -Vince
Hey Butch,
Dr K.P. Martin (my father) was a charter member of the golf course at Healdton! -Don

“Hope sees the invisible, feels the intangible, and achieves the impossible.” –Helen Keller

See everyone next week!

Butch and Jill Bridges

“Friends Make Life Worth Living”Lone Grove, Oklahoma


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