A Home Grown Home Page

Home of the This and That Newsletters

Vol 26  Issue 1,309  February 24, 2022

Ardmore, Oklahoma

Email: [email protected], 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.”

At 8pm last Friday evening (2/18/22) my Facebook account was hacked. The hacker changed my password and my email to theirs. The hacker was asking for money through CashApp. 100s of my friends reported the problem to Facebook, but FB did nothing. Thanks to the help of Greg Willis in Texas, around 3pm Wednesday we were able to secure my FB back to me. The reason me and others were caught up in a circle trying to fix the problem, is we were trying to do it on my PC. Here is how we got control of my FB back to me.

1. Go to this link…. http://facebook.com/hacked

2. Above link only works on your phone, not a PC.

I am still being cloned by hackers as others are, sending a message out in hope you will Friend them. Keep a look-out for anything suspicious.

So between getting hacked last Friday night and fighting that for 4 days, and getting a call Monday morning from a special friend I’ve known from our pre-teens, the wind has been knocked out of my sails. Her cancer has metastasized and she is going on hospice. Its all I can do to keep from crying as I type this paragraph. But God will see me though this too.

A Glimpse Into The Past

Criner Hills is a small group of hills just southwest of Ardmore is known as Criner Hills. They were named after the earliest resident of the hills, John B Criner. John was born in Sherman, Texas in 1850 and his family moved in 1860 to Indian Territory. John made the hills his headquarters for various ranches he operated at Thackerville, Tatums, and Brock. He was one of the first settlers south of the Arbuckle’s and lived for 98 years witnessing the tremendous growth of the area he pioneered. He died at his home in the Criner Hills in July 1948.

Map showing where Crinerville, Oklahoma is located in Carter county.


Progress is being made on the new website. The link below is a temporary link but you can get an idea how it will look. Still have to have each individual newsletter converted to WordPress.


I want to thank the 57 people below who helped make my GoFundME campaign a success.

Anonymous, Larry Gandy, Laura Atchley, Bevin Parker-Evans, Edmond Pope, Jennifer Harvey, Emil H Levine, Cheri Clark, Roger Hughes, Pete Ihde, Shirley Barrick, L Vada Aitken, Anonymous, Carrol Evans, William Ford, Eva Taylor, Jerry Summy, Anonymous, Debra Griffin, David Willingham, Charles Walker, Monroe Cameron, Matthew Hoage, Anonymous, Edwina Wooten, Linda Lathum, Lydia Dulaney, Anonymous, Carol Hunter, Anonymous, David Bridges, Anonymous, Lee A Bullard, Robin Gray, Kristi Johnson Wedge, Ann Whitchurch, Stephanie Jordan, Elizabeth Aldridge, Marthanna Donald, Darla Herndon, Carole Geurin, Candace Gregory, Robin Ezell, Brandy Black, Patricia Downing, Bob Hargis, Amanda Lawson, Sarah Stephenson, Christopher Cox, Lenora Cunningtubby, Les Gilliam, Beth Tucker, Earlene Chandler, Richard Cravens, Max Brown, and the McAlister Cemetery Association.

The link below will give an accounting of the money received and spent so far. Just scroll to the bottom of the webpage.


Still finding people in Oklahoma with unclaimed money. We’re now over the $1,834,000 dollars. Sometimes progress is slow locating people or their kin with unclaimed insurance money at the State Treasurers office in OKC but we keep trying.

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.

If you have Facebook, I created a new Page called Southern Oklahoma Unclaimed Insurance Money. The only Post that will go on that page are names and towns of people we are looking for with unclaimed money;


Q.  What turnpike between OKC and Tulsa was named for what governor?
A.   The Turner Turnpike is name after Oklahoma Governor Roy Turner and was opened in May 1953.

Q.  Where is Oklahoma’s version of the Bermuda Triangle located?
A.  Answer in next week’s newsletter

Some mail from this week’s MAILBAG…..

Butch, in your most recent issue of This and That, Cindy inquired as to the location of Clear Creek in Indian Territory. Clear Creek is a tributary of Mud Creek and runs north and south about a mile west of Orr, OK. -Charles Walker
What a treat to see the article in last week’s newsletter on the Green family. They were especially loved friends of ours, both the parents and the kids. -Skip
Q. Hey Butch, do you or any of your friends know what year KMART closed in Ardmore?

A. The Oklahoman says 1995 -Tonya Dees

Below is from This and That newsletter archives of February 25, 2010

Over the years I’ve had several requests for info about where was the Ardmore High School before it opened on North Washington and 2nd Street in 1915. We know from several sources that before statehood the high school was located at G Street and Stanley SW (no Stanley street back then, it was 2nd Ave SW). This is a photo postcard of the Ardmore high school in 1912.  I am still trying to find out if the High School building was the same building as 3rd Ward School, or 2 different buildings.  I’m almost certain they are one in the same by looking at the photos.  3rd Ward school would later become Lincoln School.
This week Steve Hamm ran across an article showing just prior to the high school moving to 2nd and N. Washington the high school students were housed in temporary quarters on the 2nd floor of the 3rd Ward School on Stanley Street. The article goes on to say on moving day the high school students marched from Stanley and G SW to the new high school on North Washington. Here is the scanned article Steve sent with his email.
Below is a 1907 map showing the 3rd Ward school west of St. Mary’s Church and a street running along the west side of the school. Later that street would be closed off and the school extended on west with a new addition. You can still see part of the red brick street in front of the school today.
By the way, back as late as around 1930 there was a tunnel that ran from Lincoln School, under Stanley Street to the south side of Stanley so students could cross safely. There is, or was, a spot near the entrance of Lincoln school, inside wall, where you could still see the entrance leading down to the tunnel.

Also in the Mailbag there is interesting info about the “Hell Hole” of Murray County.  This mysterious hole was right along Wild Horse Creek just north of the old Fort Arbuckle location around the time of the Civil War.  I might have to see if I can bribe T&T Reader Tony King of Texas with a hamburger to take his Good Ship Sandfly along Wild Horse Creek and see if that hole is still there.  More on this in the Mailbag below.
Butch: Can’t resist telling this story on the late Henry Berry, the blind shoeshine man at the county courthouse who was loved by all.

One day in the early 70’s when I was District Attorney, I entered the courthouse from the west side and noticed Mr. Berry sitting high on his stand, head resting against the wall, with feet on the footrests. He was fast asleep and quietly snoring. I couldn’t resist playing a little prank on him. Without a word, I simply started giving him a shoe shine, starting with a large brush, then applying polish, finishing off with a shine rag. I worked in silence, not saying a word.

Of course he awakened immediately and started saying “Who’s this? Who’s this? Mr. Wallace? Mr. Bickford? Who are you?” I remained silent, and continued my pro bonno shine work. Henry was really curious, so he started feeling of my head, saying things like “…..oh, you’re Mr. Thomas, aren’t you? Are you Mr. Thomas?” I said nothing, and gave Henry my best shine.

A day or so later I had to confess. I walked up to him and said “Mr. Berry, how did you like that shoe shine I gave you?” He recognized my voice immediately and smiled broadly. “Mr. Clark, I knowed all along that was you.”

He was a fine man. One of the best.

james clark, Ardmore
The Daily Ardmoreite
January 28, 1935
“Flaming Hole” at Fort Arbuckle Still Puzzles Confederate Veteran
by Helen Lane of Healdton

Mr. Wright, recently of Stillwell, but now at the Confederate home in Ardmore will be 90-years-old March 10.  To the writer this seems an impossibility, so keen and alert is his mind.
   He served with General Stand Watie and his Confederate Indian brigade during the Civil War.  He was in camp at Fort Arbuckle in the winter of 1864 and remembers its mistletoe when everything else was dead.  The following summer while still stationed there, he discovered what he calls the “burning hole.
   As he remembers, this hole is located on the south side of Wild Horse Creek, right at its edge.  It was approximately a 40 gallon barrel round hole.  About two and a half feet down was water boiling like a pot all the time.  The water was black but he was positive it wasn’t oil  His Cherokee father had seen oil in Georgia long before he had moved to Oklahoma.  It was probably gas, but he doesn’t know.
   Mr. Wright experimented with this strange phenomenon, carefully, and the least bit fearfully at first.  He poked around in it with sticks, then he tied a few leaves on a stick, touched a match to them and threw the stick into the hole.  An explosion followed and a blue blaze consumed the leaves and stick.  It seemed to burn on top of the water but just as soon as the stick was consumed the blaze went out like a blaze on a cup of whiskey when a saucer is placed over it.
   That summer, Mr. Wright’s father, Cornelius Wright, and his uncle, Joel Bryant visited him.  He took them to see this wonder of wonders as he believed it to be, and to experience the sensation of throwing a torch into it.  His father put leaves on a stick, lighted it and then unheedful of his son’s warnings, stooped down over the hole to place the stick on the water.  It flashed like powder!  And scared was no name for Mr. Wright’s father!  He exclaimed, “Hell ain’t half a mile from this place!”
   Soon after that Mr. Wright’s company was called away.  Mr. Wright left with the sole intention of soon returning to learn more about his new discovery but fortune prevented.  He was wounded shortly after leaving Fort Arbuckle in the Battle of Cabin Creek and lay in a hospital at Perryville until the close of the war.  Now old, afflicted, and unable to make the short trip to Wild Horse creek, he spends his time wondering and musing about it.
“Butch — I saw the letter in this weeks T&T from Caitlin Higginbotham concerning the grave marker near Mannsville. My great grandfather, Allen Brown, along with his family moved to Burneyville in 1897. My grandfather, Kelly Brown (one of Allen’s sons), was a member of the first graduating class of Ardmore High School in 1903. Allen Brown was born in 1844, and he had a younger brother named John Brown who was supposedly born in about 1853. I have no further information or date of death for John Brown. It’s possible that John followed Allen and family when they moved to the Ardmore area from Kentucky in 1897. On the other hand there are a lot of John Browns. However, it does tie pretty well to what little I know about John Brown. Allen and his wife, Eliza, are buried in Rosehill Cemetery along with two of their sons and a daughter. My grandfather, Kelly, is buried in Muskogee where he lived most of his life after practicing law in Ardmore for several years. Allen and Eliza’s grave marker in Rosehill has the words “Kentucky Pioneers” engraved on it.” -Dick Lindsly — Frisco, Texas

Map where John Brown’s lone grave marker is located northeast of Mannsville

Senior Class Poem
by Helen Sayer
Ardmore High School Class of 1913

The days rush by to form the years
The years to decades steal away
It seems today is hardly here
When lo! it turns to yesterday.

And so the pleasant time has passed
‘Till all this farewell imparts
Of grief and joy we know at least
And new-born wonder fills our hearts.

Perhaps one never understands
To full extent, nor learns to praise
And thank enough the loving hands
That shows the path in learning’s maze.

We face the future with a smile
With faith in all she holds in store
And yet we fain would wait awhile
And live our school day pleasures more.

Love and joy may the future bring
And may the bright years as they pass
Fulfill each hope and heal each sting
Grant glory and honor to our class.

See everyone next week!

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


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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