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Vol 25  Issue 1,252 December January 21, 2021

“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

First Presbyterian Church, Ardmore

The first Presbyterian Church at Ardmore dates its origin to June 29, 1890. Reverend J W Moffatt, a home missionary of the Chickasaw Presbytery, help to formally organized the church in Mrs. Amanda Robinson’s schoolhouse which was located east of the present Harvey Funeral Home on 1st Street Southwest. Records show charter members as A.D. Matthews, Samuel Newell, Mrs. Nora Vandenberg and Miss Laura Matthews.

For two years church services were held in the homes of members and in the Cumberland Presbyterian Church which was located where the Carter County courthouse now stands. In 1892, J. T. Boyd, C.M. Campbell and Mrs. C.P. Vandenberg were appointed as the first building committee. Under their leadership the first church building was constructed on the lot now occupied by the junior high school.

The church building was moved to its present location in 1902 when the Broadway property was purchased, and the following year a manse was constructed next to the church.

In 1907 this church and the Cumberland Church were joined and begin worship as a single congregation. By 1915 the congregation had grown to 240 members and plans were formulated for construction of a new building and construction was started the following year. Services were held in the present church basement October 28, 1916 and the entire building was dedicated at the first service in the sanctuary November 4, 1917. This building committee consisted of P.D. Maxwell, chairman, John R. Dexter, Frank S. Gates, Roy M. Johnson and George R. Fish.

In 1935 Mrs. Eva Noble died and willed $25,000 to the church. Additional funds were raised in the present Noble Memorial Chapel  and the educational building were erected in 1938.
-from the Carter County History book 1957



Last week earth moving equipment are moving right along with the building of the new VA cemetery behind the veterans center in Ardmore. This cemetery for vets will be so wonderful as a final resting place for those who are honorably discharged for their service in this country.



Methodist Church Ardmore, Oklahoma


November 1982
Lone Grove Police Officer Bill Malone was suspended from duty following an incident in which he allegedly struck police chief Dearl Cathey in the chest.

November 1950
The partially decomposed body of John Watkins, a 47 year old transient, was found hanging from a tree 5 1/2 miles northwest of Lone Grove by quail hunters. Examining physicals said the man had been dead for more than three weeks. A vague location for the tree was given to the sheriff, and it took some time to find the place again.

November 1950
For the first time in history, negro players will be in a football game in Norman against the University of Oklahoma. The two men are Harold Robinson and Hoyt Givens, Kansas State.

November 1926
A jury was completed in District Court to try G. T. Brent, an employee of the Amerada Petroleum Corporation near Graham, who is charged with the murder of W. E. Echerd, fatally injured in a car crash May 2, 1926. A. L. Carr, jointly charged with the murder will be tried at a later date. The two defendants are alleged to have struck Echerd’s car with their car at a point near Milo. Echerd died nine days later from injuries sustained in the crash. More than 50 subpoenas where issued to witnesses.

November 1926
A. S. London will speak at Prairie Valley and Mrs. London will join with him in the singing of special songs. London is the stepson of O. K. Darden of Lone Grove. He was reared in Carter County but now is teaching in a Kansas City College.

November 1926
Harry Houdini’s mysterious feats of magic are now locked in the mystery of death. He was taken ill with appendicitis and there was no Escape. His body will be taken to New York and he will be buried in the bronze casket he carted everywhere while magically cheating death every night.

As of today we have reached people about unclaimed property totaling over $551,504.01. And the search continues.

So with the above being said, how long has it been since you checked your name or a family member’s name? Its easy to do a search at the Oklahoma State Treasurer link below. I think every state in the union has a unclaimed property website through the respective state treasures website.

Q. Where in Oklahoma is the Teepee Rock also known as the Healing Rock?
A.  Known as Teepee Rock, the Healing Rock of Skiatook, Oklahoma, is a natural formation once rumored to have healing powers by the local Osage and Quapaw Indians during the late 19th century. According to legend, anyone who felt unwell could lean against the rock to receive its healing powers.

Q.  How many square miles does Oklahoma contain?
A.  Answer in next week’s newsletter

Some mail from this week’s MAILBAG…..

1912 postcard of Oklahoma State Confederate Veterans home. -Robert Hensley
I remember when I was 14 and discovering Bitter Enders Cave that when I pulled myself up to a ledge I came face to face with a hibernating rattlesnake; needless to say I never went back in there again. -Poss Bridges
Here’s a picture of what’s left of the old Overbrook school south of Ardmore. There is a house across the road where the teacher(s) lived. I haven’t gotten back down there to get a picture of it. I don’t know how much if standing because so many trees have grown up around it. Makes me so sad to see a building like this just waste away. I do have a few pictures of the school I took many years ago. If I can find them, I will send them to you if you want them. -Cleta Hipley

Below is from This and That newsletter archives of January 15, 2009

The 4th annual Ardmore Coin Show was held November 8, 1964 at Lake Murray Lodge.  Maybe someone will remember this club and its members?

Shug West Grocery was located about five miles east of Ardmore on Highway 199 at Dripping Springs. The original was built in 1945 just after the WWII.  The second which still stands but not too much longer was built in the mid-1950s.  The first original Shug West Grocery was a metal building (1945). It was moved to 9th and E Street SE and is still used today for a storage shed.


Note: The old Shug West Grocery was demolished to make way for the widening of Highway 199 on January 12, 2009.
Orr, Oklahoma (Love County)
Post Office: July, 21, 1892 – November 29, 1957
Orr, founded in the early 1880’s, developed as an agricultural center. Growth in population and in services was continuous until about 1915, when approximately five hundred people lived in the town and some fifteen to twenty commercial establishments served the towns-people and farmers living in the adjacent area.

The business district fronted one square block with stores and shops located on all four sides. No side, however, was completely built up. Most of the buildings were one-story frame structures, some being almost flat with the ground and others having high foundations and front porch loading docks. The largest stores, in both area occupied and total sales, were the general stores, which handled everything from drugs to groceries and from clothing to farm machines. The bank, a rock structure, and a “movie” were on the south side of the square. Churches, a school system. and a telephone exchange were organized shortly after Orr was established. A feed mill, cotton gins, and blacksmith shops were also in operation. In 1913 the town had two hotels and three doctors.

Orr began to decline about the time of World War I. Many young men who went into the service did not return. Cotton “wore out” the sandy soil, and formally cultivated fields returned to pasture. Few jobs were available during the depression years of the 1930’s. State highways bypassed the town some three miles to the west and some six miles to the south, and county roads leading to the area were and still are poor. In 1949 the high school was closed, and in 1963 the few remaining grade school students were transferred to other districts.

The town square can still be located, but no business buildings remain. One small school building and the foundation of another, the storm cellar, and some playground equipment are on the school site. The cement sidewalk that led from the school to the town square can be followed for a part of the way. One small church remains active.(Note by Edgar Wallace: The one building that remains on the school ground is the Lunch Room and is used as headquarters for the former students reunion which is held each year on the second Saturday in June.)

“hi butch.  I spent many summers in Davis & at turner falls.  my cousins & i decided to go looking for a cave that my father had described.  we went up the creek & bore to the left around several bends, at times walking in the water.  i don’t know how far it was, but it seemed very far to a child.  we came to what looked like a hole in the ground.  my cousin, a boy 2 years older than I took the lead & slid down a muddy slope & landed in a pile of dry leaves.  our parents had warned us to look out for rattlesnakes.  the first thing that occurred to me was, “there must be snakes in those leaves”.  my cousin assured me that he did not see any snakes.  so  i went for it & slid down the slope as well as did my younger girl cousin.  we only had a flashlight that we took from my grandmother’s house.  we hid it because we knew that they did not want us to go into any cave except wagon wheel & the one over the falls.  well,  we were too scared to go back any further into the cave.  we crawled out with great difficulty, never to return.  our parents & grandparents never knew this story.  thank goodness!”  -susan

“Every moment is a fresh beginning.” -T.S. Eliot

See everyone next week!

Butch and Jill Bridges“Friends Make Life Worth Living”Ardmore, Oklahoma


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Oklahoma History Website #2 (backup website)

Vicious Dog Attacks in Oklahoma
Oklahoma Bells: https://oklahomahistory.net/bellpage.html
Bill Hamm’s Cemetery Database
American Flyers Memorial Fund – Administration Webpage
Ardmore Army Air Field/Ardmore Air Force Website
Carter County Government Website

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