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Vol 25  Issue 1,270   May 27, 2021

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

Back in the mid 1980s the Carter County’s new detention center was being built and the architect for the construction was Ardmoreite Bill Lumpkin (1940-2018). Since I worked at the county commissioners office, Bill and I became good friends as we met with undersheriff Bill Noland a number of times during construction phase. The only reason I was involved is in the beginning Noland wanted me to help in where and how computer cabling would be run throughout the facility.

The county originally bought 12 PCs and a Server for the Novell network. Really, that Server was nothing put a glorified PC that we put in the old Records Office (now the Dispatch Center).

What’s interesting is there was several years delay in finishing the building because of disagreements in funding the new jail between Sheriff Robert Denney and the county commissioners. Anyway, the 12 computers came in and the building was not ready so we temporarily stored them in the old county owned Floyd Gaither’s motorcycle repair shop just to the south of the new jail at South Washington and Stanley Street SE.
As luck would have it, a torrential rain storm came through Ardmore and unbeknownst to anyone, the drain in the room at the motorcycle repair shop was stopped up, you guessed it, the same room with those 13 computers and other network equipment. Noland and I went into the shop, opened the door to that room, and their swirling around in a clockwise circle (being we are north of the equator) were all those styrofoam filled boxes of equipment ($25,000 worth) floating. Ruined. Worthless.

I quickly called John Means who we bought the computer equipment from and placed 2nd order.
Back to Bill Lumpkin, I’m sure he wished he was never part of the detention center project as it was one big headache for everyone involved. I remember going with Lumpkin and Noland a number of times to the jail which still had no electricity and walking around in there in complete darkness with flashlights discussing where the computers would go and how Ethernet cables would reach each room through conduit, etc.
I remember in Mens Control Tower the glass surrounding the tower was suppose to be bullet proof according to specs. But we had not been in the jail a month and an inmate removed a shower head and broke the glass out going into the the Control Room. Needless to say Noland was really mad about the specs being substituted with non bullet proof glass. When he brought that up, all the glass panels in Mens Control was quickly replaced with bullet proof glass.

Anyway, the reason I had this trip back in time today was on the State Treasurers unclaimed property list in OKC was over $6,000 in unclaimed insurance money for the Bill Lumpkin family, so I been working today on reaching out to Bill Lumpkin’s family members. His widow, Anna Lumpkin, her phone number has been disconnected.

Bill Lumpkin was a wonderful person, he even took photos for me of the removal of the bells from the First Presbyterian Church as he knew I was at work at the commissioners office and could not go to take pictures.

From my December 2002 newsletter:
Last Tuesday, December 17th, a big crane pulled on the west side the First Presbyterian Church here in Ardmore and preparations started to remove the bells from atop the belfry. The bells have been in place above the church since 1920 thanks to a generous gift of Ardmore banker Perry Maxwell. But through the years the wood beams that held the bells in place deteriorated, so the decision was made to remove them for repair. The eleven bells will be shipped to The Netherlands for tuning, before being place back atop the church a year later. Bill Lumpkin, a local architect, had me notified Tuesday about the bells coming down. Here are some pics from that morning.

https://secureservercdn.net/198.71.190.156/knn.c7e.myftpupload.com/bellphotos/presbell3.jpg

https://secureservercdn.net/198.71.190.156/knn.c7e.myftpupload.com/bellphotos/presbell4.jpg

https://secureservercdn.net/198.71.190.156/knn.c7e.myftpupload.com/bellphotos/presbell5.jpg

https://secureservercdn.net/198.71.190.156/knn.c7e.myftpupload.com/bellphotos/presbell5a.jpg

https://secureservercdn.net/198.71.190.156/knn.c7e.myftpupload.com/bellphotos/presbell5b.jpg

April 1968
Letters are being dropped from telephone numbers. In the future, it will be all numerals, and telephone numbers will be 7 digits. ANC (all numeral calling) will allow for more phones.

April 1927
For the second time the trial of Bill Hartsfield, charged with murder in connection with the slaying of Jim Dunn, resulted in a hung jury. The ballot stood six for conviction, and six against it. Hartsfield was said to have struck Dunn with a large rock on the afternoon of October 21st, which resulted in Dunn’s death three days later. The slaying followed an argument between the two which escalated into a fist fight. Dunn’s brother testified the two were drinking in an alley. Hartsfield ordered them to leave and words were said.

A paver I made the other day.

https://secureservercdn.net/198.71.190.156/knn.c7e.myftpupload.com/bricks/EvelynsTreePaver.jpg

We continue making progress locating people or their kin with unclaimed property at the State Treasurers office in OKC. As of today we have reached area people about unclaimed property totaling over $854,713. 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.
https://apps.ok.gov/unclaimed/

Q.  The Oklahoma Thunderbirds rescued people from what concentration camp?
A.   Dachau. The 45th Infantry was one of the first units into Dachau, where they helped liberate tens of thousands of prisoners. The 45th was headed to Munich when it found the concentration camp, so the Thunderbirds quickly moved on after a hospital unit was able to take over care of the liberated prisoners.

Q.  Where in Oklahoma can you find traces of the Mesozoic era stamped right into the Oklahoma dirt?
A.  Answer in next week’s newsletter

Some mail from this week’s MAILBAG…..

Time for a road trip—-Cheetos and Prairie dogs. If you have small children or grandchildren I am going to give you a timeline weekend trip. Leave on Friday and head to Lawton, okla. Spend the night in Lawton, get up early and drive out to Mt. Scott and enjoy the drive to the top. Explore the huge rocks on the way up and the ones on top great area or taking pictures. When you leave the mountain drive through the national refuge and religious city then drive north a few miles to Meers, Okla. and have a Buffalo Burger at the Meers restaurant. When you leave go downtown to Medicine Park ,yes it’s’ a small town with most of the buildings built with some form of Cobblestone about 1/2 the size but shaped like a yellow bowling ball. When I took my grandsons there about 20 years ago they were renovating a building and there was several lying around and my grandson (Chandler) confiscated one. The last time I mentioned it he still had it. There is a stream running right through the middle of town. This is probably a full day but be sure before you leave the area whether it be afternoon or early morning be sure and go to Fort Sill and just outside and in side the grounds there is Prairie Dog town. Whatever you do be sure and take a large size pack of Cheetos, yes I said CHEETOS the Prairie dogs LOVE CHEETOS. My brothers discovered this in their spare time-as they have signed up for the refuge guided Elk bus tours for years that is held later in the year behind locked fencing. Should you be interested in one of these tours you can google the Elk tours on the Wichita wildlife refuge. -Jim Hefley
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Dear Mr. Bridges, here is the question of the Year
Here is a picture of 1951 as you can see and was done in Ardmore, the gentleman second from top right Mr. “Puny” Sparger was our announcer and I know for a fact because he show me that he made a film for a game of us, and my question is do you think Butch that film maybe someplace like in the library of Ardmore? or some another place? I am now 91 years old and I would like to show my kids and grandkids some film when I played baseball, I know this is not an easy question but I don’t have anything to loose and maybe a Very Big Win. Sorry if I batter you but you are the only I can ask that question, thank you very much Butch and say hello to Jill please. -Ernesto Wallerstein in NJ. ernesto714@gmail.com

https://secureservercdn.net/198.71.190.156/knn.c7e.myftpupload.com/ttphotos21a/PunySparger.jpg
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Dear Butch:
I really enjoy each and every news letter you send so, please keep up the good work.
I have been doing some genealogy research on my dads cousin Roy “Buster” Satterfield Paul who was one of the orphans` that was adopted from the Cornish Orphan’s Home and here is his story. I have a lot of good information that I thought you would like to have. I know that a lot of people ask you a lot of questions about the history of Carter County and the surrounding area, if some ones about any of the children that was at the Cornish Orphans maybe you could share this information with them.

Sincerely,
Larry Paul

Note: The file is over 7 megs so its too large for uploading to my website. If anyone wants the file, let me know.

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Below is from This and That newsletter archives of May 28, 2009

“In August 1868, Roman Nose led a series of raids on Kansas farms that provoked another full-scale military response. Under General Philip Sheridan, three columns of troops converged to launch a winter campaign against Cheyenne encampments, with the Seventh Cavalry commanded by George Armstrong Custer selected to take the lead. Setting out in a snowstorm, Custer followed the tracks of a small raiding party to a Cheyenne village on the Washita River, where he ordered an attack at dawn.

It was Black Kettle’s village, well within the boundaries of the Cheyenne reservation and with a white flag flying above the chief’s own tipi. Nonetheless, on November 27, 1868, nearly four years to the day after Sand Creek, Custer’s troops charged, and this time Black Kettle could not escape: “Both the chief and his wife fell at the river bank riddled with bullets,” one witness reported, “the soldiers rode right over Black Kettle and his wife and their horse as they lay dead on the ground, and their bodies were all splashed with mud by the charging soldiers.” Custer later reported that an Osage guide took Black Kettle’s scalp.”  -Larry Guthrie
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“I was amused several years ago to read in a very old (1950s) edition of The Oklahoma Almanac that Roman Nose State Park was named for “State Senator Henry Roman Nose.” It doesn’t appear in later editions, now mostly about government and I think a state publication now. The current publication says the park was named for “Chief Roman Nose.” Presumably the Tourism Department, with their emphasis on “Native Americans” as a tourist attraction thought it would be more attractive to list him as a chief rather than a state senator.” -Wes Leatherock
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“Butch, I am a long time tomato grower, and couldn?t help but notice that two suggestions may help all the growers. 1. Know if your tomato varieties are indeterminate or determinate varieties. The determinate types seldom need pruning, have a ?prescheduled? harvest where the fruit comes in at an earlier date and almost all at once. The growth and fruiting are ?determined? where the indeterminate are not. They are bred this way for large commercial growers so only one harvest is required. The INdeterminate tomato is a vine (like the determinate) but requires pruning. I like to remove all the leaves and branches before the first flower set. I usually say ?below? the first flower set, but in your case (upside down planting) I can?t. This hardens up the stalk and places the work of that ?sugar factory? plant into producing fruit, not the unneeded lower leaves. Then I remove all the suckers as they appear, with the exception of those that come from the nodes on the first and second stems. Actually, this is a popular method of directing the growth into only three stems. There is a method of removing the suckers called ?Missouri? pruning where only one or two leaves of each sucker are allowed. This provides additional leaves if they are needed. You can probably find references to this online. By removing the suckers, two things are accomplished. You get more plant growth directed into production of fruit, and there are less leaves and the sun can get to them all to create the necessary photosynthesis. When leaves are hidden, they can turn yellow and die.

2. If you want to encourage very high yields, you need to periodically fertilize the plants once they begin to set fruit. I suggest about a tablespoon of Ammonium sulfate (21-0-0) or maybe a short table spoon (2/3 -3/4 ) Ammonium Nitrate (33-0-0) every week or two. I have not grown them upside down.

But I will try it someday. Gets away from all that tying and concern about kinked branches when they are laden with fruit, disease, cutworms, etc.

I put the fertilizer around the plant in a circle about a hands width from the stem, and then water it in good, or use the ?Texas? (since that’s where I am) method of placing a coffee can with plenty of holes in it, set open side up and empty between each plant with the top at soil level. Then I put the fertilizer in a quart of water and pour it in. It drains out the holes and into the soil at root level. I wash it down with a couple more fills. In the upside down method, I guess I?d mix it up and pour it around the edges of the can and put the lid back on.

While upside down seems a good method to avoid some insect damage, the sphinx moth caterpillar or the hornworm will still get at them, and those big caterpillars can go through a plant in pretty short order, so keep on the lookout for them. If you see leaves beginning to disappear, except for the central vein and some of the other veins, suspect hornworms.

Oh, by the way, I have heard all sorts of rumors about the hornworm. First, let me be specific, the hornworm is a huge green or multicolored hairless caterpillar that has this large horn on his rump. Anyway, more than one person thinks that horn is poisonous, that these caterpillars bite, and all sorts of things that make it seem dangerous. To clear the record, it is completely harmless. They could not hurt you if they wanted, so there is nothing to be concerned about. Simply pick them off when you see them. Pitch them up on the roof of your house and the birds usually eat them. No, they don?t burrow into wood. They simply eat tomato plants until mature and them spin a cocoon in which they complete the metamorphic cycle and emerge as a large beautiful moth. The moth has elongated wings, the top wing often resembles bark, and the under wing is where you find the unique colors. One of the most common is pink or reddish and with a simulated eye. They are also called hummingbird moths as they fly much like that little bird, hover at flowers in the evening sipping nectar until mating time. They will generally lay on tomato plants as that is the only vegetable the larva prefers.

If you will mix say, about 3-5 inches of peat moss (the granulated stuff from the bottom of the bog) in with your potting soil, it will greatly enhance the soils moisture retaining abilities and prevent drying out, and reduce watering needs. Additionally, placing mulch on the top of the bucket should prevent or at least slow the evaporation rate if you aren?t using a lid. I always use mulch and for that reason.

My crop this season is not doing well as I have been experimenting, and the person who said that the plants do better with plenty of sun but lower nighttime temps is correct. Frankly, when the night temps go over 75 degrees F, it can stop fruit production. Same can be true for temps under 55, so the tomato can be a tricky vine in some areas. In Texas, we have this red or yellow clay soil and it just doesn?t drain. We have to get the ph to about 6.0 and add plenty of lime plus several pickup loads of good soil for the usual 350 sq. ft. garden and 8 ? 10 bags of peat moss. Then the summer heat comes along and it can be another problem.” -John M. Cook in Texas
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“I am so intrigued with Betty Carroll’s history of Carter County and this area. I too can remember her on the radio. It was a pause and refreshing thing to listen to her. I encourage the First National Bank or anyone else to support this kind of advertising. It will make you “lots” more money than any other kind of advertisement.”  -Ken at Wilson
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“Hey Butch, Thanks so much for sharing the letter and poem written by your uncle, shortly before his death on the battle field while fighting for the freedom that we enjoy. We can never thank these brave guys and gals enough both then and now in the service to our country. On this Memorial Day as every day, our prayers go out to our solders, airmen and sailors as well as the families that they leave behind. We sometimes forget that those left behind are heroes as well. Thanks for your T&T each week. I always look forward to it. Best wishes to you and Jill.” -Roy Miller, Oklahoma City
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“Jill and Butch, I wanted to share this with you , I watched a movie last weekend on HBO (Taking Chance) and was touched by the subject. It is True story about a Marine Officer (Kevin Bacon) who escorts a fallen Marine home to Wyoming. It makes you proud to be called an AMERICAN. My only recommendation is keep a tissue close. I don’t care how Macho you are, you will tear up.” – Kenneth Kemp, Whitesboro,Texas (Formally from Wilson)
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MtmiLdzzgGE
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With Memorial Day just 4 days away I wanted to share something written by my uncle. It was 1944, PFC Paul E. Bridges was a member of the 45th Division, the Oklahoma National Guard “Thunderbirds.” He was serving his country during WWII in France. In December of ’44 he wrote a poem to share his thoughts with his family back home in Davis. Four weeks later Paul died on the battle front in France.  I can not even imagine that January day in 1945 when Paul and his buddies were surrounded by Germans at Reipertswiller, France on Hill 415.  Early in the afternoon the Germans sent a party under a white flag to give a message to the American commander of the surrounded troops: Further resistance is futile; surrender by five o’clock or suffer the consequences. 158 were killed including my uncle Paul Bridges.

Below is the letter and poem Paul Bridges wrote:

Dec 18, 1944

Dear Mom and Dad:

Here is a line or so to just let you know I am alright. Got letter from Jack and Evelyn (Bridges) today. Will answer them later. Don’t have much time now. I wrote Don and told him I got the pictures. Do you want them back?

Write and tell me the news. I haven’t heard from Exie but I know she has written. I promised you a poem I had written, did I not? Well here it is. It is one I wrote to Exie for her. The best I could do but does tell you kinda how I feel.

‘Our Thoughts’

Just a few of these lines are from me to you,
The thoughts we have and the things we do,
Some folk just live from day to day,
While the others have something like this to say,
Though many a mile is between us Dear,
Our love seems to keep us very near,
Your thoughts and prayers that I know are true,
I know will someday bring me home to you,
Though others like us to, are in this fight,
I pray God will keep us from harm and fright,
Their thoughts and mine are all about the same,
Of our Lord, home, and your sweet name,
We dream of the future and things of the past,
We wait for the day we are home at last,
We have a job, a very hard task,
As of home there is very little we ask,
We ask your love, faith, and letters too,
They help us when we are feeling blue,
We worry not so much of things over here,
Ours is of home and folks so dear,
Some of wives, families, and mothers too,
While others, not so lucky, well they worry too,
Some of my thoughts, which here I express,
They are not only mine, although they are for you,
There are others here that think the same,
Well, so what, it is no shame,
If others there were half so true,
These fellows here would come back to you,
We are here for freedom, love, and life to hold,
While most folks there, for money and fun, so we’re told,
I pray that God, your soul to keep,
And boys left here, their souls to keep,
If our time should come for us to go,
Which you will surely know,
I just pray we will meet with Him on yonder’s shore,
And love each other as we did before.

Well, there it is. I had to borrow two pens to write as one ran out of ink. I hope you can read it and you and Evelyn let me know your opinion. You won’t see it in the papers, but all the boys want a copy to send home to their folks. So long for now, I will write you when I can, I try to write you or Jack’s wife at least twice a week – between you get the news. I hope I can write all so they won’t worry to much. Write soon and send pen and pencil if you want to, if not ok. Merry Christmas again and God bless and protect all.

Love, your son,

    Paul Bridges

See everyone next week!

Butch and Jill Bridges

“Friends Make Life Worth Living”Ardmore, Oklahoma

https://oklahomahistory.net

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Oklahoma History Website #2 (backup website)
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Vicious Dog Attacks in Oklahoma
https://oklahomahistory.net/viciousdogs.html
Oklahoma Bells: https://oklahomahistory.net/bellpage.html
Bill Hamm’s Cemetery Database
http://www.usgwarchives.net/ok/carter/cartercm.htm
American Flyers Memorial Fund – Administration Webpage
https://oklahomahistory.net/crash66.html
Ardmore Army Air Field/Ardmore Air Force Website
https://oklahomahistory.net/airbase/
Carter County Government Website
http://cartercountyok.us

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