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Vol 25  Issue 1,289    October 7, 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

In 1966, the State of Oklahoma did away with the Justice of the Peace officials and office of the County Attorney. The County Attorney was replaced with the District Attorney. Here in Ardmore there was an attorney named Claud H. Smith (1905-1998). In 1996 at age 92 he was still practicing law and did so until his death in 1998. I talked to Mr. Smith numerous times when he was at the courthouse filing legal papers, his mind as keen as ever.

Claud Smith had an upstairs office on Main Street. He was accepted to the Oklahoma Bar Association in 1949. He was elected County Attorney first, and then ran for District Attorney in 1966 but he lost his bid for DA. He was probably the oldest still practicing attorney in the United States.

In the Fall of 1997 I saw Claud Smith at the courthouse. I asked Mr. Smith what was the most memorable event at the courthouse he remembers during his lifetime (47 years) of practicing law here. Without a second hesitation Mr. Smith said the trial of Andrew Hardy in 1931. He said the trial drew the largest crowd of people ever, with standing room only inside the courthouse, and many more citizens standing outside on the lawn.

On Friday, March 13, 1998 at 3:30pm the Carter County Bar Association honored Mr. Smith with a reception and ceremony at the courthouse. There were a large turn-out of friends and acquaintances, and it was a fitting tribute to a man who everyone admired down through the years.



The old Small’s Bakery (later Priddy Foods) burned today. My grandfather, Stanley Carmon, built it in the1930s. After it closed, Ron Priddy came to my grandfather and asked him for a tour of the building and how it was constructed and all. I guess Ron liked the answers, he bought it and opened up Priddy Salad Dressing, Chicken salad, Ham Salad, Pimento Cheese etc. The building is located at 2nd and H Street NE in Ardmore, a block south of the old Hunt’s Grocery.


Dixie Sport Store, 11 North Washington, Ardmore, Oklahoma. Paul T. Roberds and Paul Roberds Jr. 1951



Every now and then someone will ask me if I was kin to Maurice Bridge that owned Bridge’s Jewelry store by Daubes. I tell them no, it is a different spelling, the s is left off. So, proper spelling of my name to show ownership would be Bridges’ with the apostrophe after the s.



August 1983
Discussion of the sulfur smell experience that some water customers dominated the regular meeting of the Water Trust Board. Trustee J. O. Greco said, “you’ll never get rid of the smell. We’ve depleted our local underground water zone and we are now pulling water from other underground zones. Board members also discussed the purchase of existing water lines from SOWC.”

August 1927
Donald Elledge, three year old, was burned fatally at the home of his parents. The child saw his 14 year old brother draw gasoline from a car in front of the home, and the child imitated him, later carrying the gasoline into the kitchen where it ignite and set his clothing on fire. Services were held at the Graham cemetery. He is survived by four brothers.


Still finding people in Oklahoma with unclaimed money. We’re now over the $1,347,341.00 dollar mark. Sometimes progress is slow locating people or their kin with unclaimed insurance money at the State Treasurers office in OKC but we keep trying and we are making a difference in people’s lives.

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 home to the world’s largest collection of bull sharks in the world? Ten of the “most dangerous sharks known to man” inhabit the 380,000-gallon saltwater tank and tunnel.
A.   The Oklahoma Aquarium in Tulsa, Oklahoma

Q.  What county is named for its mining?
A.  Answer in next week’s newsletter

Some mail from this week’s MAILBAG…..

My grandfather worked on the dam when they were building it. He said there was two pipes through the rock and the “wheels” opened and closed the valves. They used them to control water level while they filled in the openings where the spillway is and the natural cut just down from it. Once the fills were complete he wasn’t sure they ever had a need to reopen them. -Jimmy Gaston
Nov 6th. Pauls Valley Fly-In

Below is from This and That newsletter archives of October 8, 2009Major Ernest L. Massad was born in Brinkman, Oklahoma to Namey and Shafiga Kouri Massad in 1908. Massad graduated from Ardmore High School and enrolled in the University of Oklahoma in the Fall of 1928.


Butch I found this on Youtube about Ardmore’s KXII channel 12 reporter Kathy Conry leaving in 1989. She was a great reporter.
Q. “Dear Mr. & Mrs. Bridges, There was a Drug Store I think in Main Steet in Ardmore at the corner of Washington St., and the owners were Eddie and Virginia Lotz, they were my friends and very nice people, good fans of our baseball team and I remember one time that I had a cold and right away they gave me medicine without any charge. I know this is a long time ago but that came to my mind and maybe with your connections you will find about these wonderful people, My God there was so many nice people in Ardmore and I hope and almost sure this Town is in the same way.” -your friend Ernie in NJ

A’  “Butch: The Pharmacist that had the Drug Store was Eddie Lotz and was located down about where Greenberg Jewelry store was once located (next to Daubes). Eddie & his wife were good people and were very active sports fans. Unfortunately Eddie passed away from cancer and his store closed shortly thereafter (time  was in the 50’s I believe).”  -Ernest Martin


The below would be the father of Edward Lotz mentioned by Ernie in the original email.

Edward J. Lotz Sr.  1881-1962 is buried at Rosehill Cemetery in Ardmore

Vows made in storms are forgotten in calm. –Thomas Fuller

See everyone next week!

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


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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
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