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Vol 27 Issue 1,386 August 24, 2023

The Daily Ardmoreite
February 17, 1971

Stevenson Gets Death Penalty

Pauls Valley

A 50-year-old Ardmore man was convicted Tuesday of the January 4th murder of a Wynnewood policeman and ordered to die in the electric chair.

A seven man, five woman Jerry returned the verdict against George Walter Stevenson after an hour and a half of deliberation. Stevenson will appear before District Judge Joe D. Shumate at 10:00 a.m. February 26th for sentencing.

This is the first death penalty returned by a Garvin county jury in more than 30 years.

According to court records the last death penalty was accessed on June 30, 1940 against J. D. Tuggle, a Stratford man convicted of the ax handle slaying of his grandmother and grandfather. Tuggle was sentenced by then District Judge Ben T. Williams who is now serving on the Oklahoma Supreme Court, on a plea of guilty and was electrocuted.

Jurors heard Stevenson testify he shot policeman William Moore Turner, 28-year-old Vietnam war veteran in self-defense in an East side Wynnewood pool room tavern. Stevenson was one of four witnesses testifying in his defense.

Assistant District Attorney Bob Rennie presented 15 prosecution witnesses on Monday the first day of the trial and a 16th rebuttal witness late Tuesday afternoon.

10 of the prosecution witnesses said they were in the tavern owned and operated by Mildred Hennessy at the time of the shooting. Eight of them said they were eyewitnesses to the shooting. None of them testified they saw Turner with a gun or weapon in his hand.

Update: George Walker Stevenson was discharged from the DOC on 8/28/83

Sulphur High School demolished-
“All but the Auditorium foyer is rubble at the Sulphur High School. It’s just rubble now folks. But our memories are intact. Don’t be sad. The buildings had some problems and an age of at least 70. Gone is the gym, performing arts center, classrooms. The rest of the school is intact and having classes.” –Mary Lou Heltzel

Original Ernie and Fran Miller Dairy Freeze at West Broadway and E NW (NE corner of that intersection)

Platt National Park at Sulphur

Aerial view of the Ardmore High School and the new auditorium

Aerial view of Seventh Day Adventist Hospital – Ardmore 1972

Aerial view of North Commerce and Grand Avenue in Ardmore

Ardmore artist Fred Beavers – 1970

Blue Front on Caddo Street in Ardmore

The Mailbag

Q. Hey Butch, My son asked my how to locate the unclaimed funds info. Someone saw his name and told him. I wasn’t sure but I told him you were an expert and I would ask you! What does he need to do? I’ve done it before but I don’t remember.

A. You can go to the Oklahoma State Treasurer’s Office in Oklahoma City and do a search. https://www.oktreasure.com/

HAM Radio Talk KC5JVT via EchoLink

I’ve only made a couple new HAM contacts the past week using Echolink.

270. 08/19/23 7:20pm N6RLS Robin in Berkeley, CA

271. 08/19/23 8:11pm WB1EME Dylan in East Hampton, MA

Below is from my Vol 4 Issue 175 August 26, 2000 newsletter:

This past week I learned about the broken cookie store in Marietta, Oklahoma closing down its retail outlet. Those of you from this area knows how hard it was to drive by that cookie factory, smell those delicious cookies cooking, and try not to stop. A person just had to stop and buy those 99 cent bags of broken cookies. For whatever reason, the retail outlet is now closed after decades of serving the public. Here is a photo of the sign that attracted people to the outlet store in Marietta. The sign has now been painted over.

This week has sure been a good week for finding bells! One was sent to me by an Ardmore High school teacher. He said he remembered me in high school and I was a good kid. For all you non-believers, I have his email below that proves I was a good kid in school. hahahahaha

“Hello Butch, I enjoy your “This & That” every Saturday. I was a math and science teacher in the Ardmore City Schools as well as a Counselor at Ardmore High School and Assistant Principal at Ardmore Middle School. My career span 25 years beginning in 1964 with the ACS’s and ending with my last 5 years as Principal at Dickson High School, where I retired. I told you all that so I could qualify the statement ” I remember you in school and may have taught you”. The memories are all good! I drove by this bell today and stopped and took a picture for your collection. The bell is located 8 miles north of Maysville, Oklahoma on highway 74, going north toward Purcell. The bell is in a front yard on the East side of the highway.” -From Charles Smith.

This bell Charles Smith found puts a whole new meaning to portable bell

Lee and Peggy Evers live SE of Ardmore and attend the Mary Niblack Baptist Church. For many years there has been a bell in the belfry of the church but most church members had forgot the bell with the passage of time. About ten years ago, a rope was attached to the bell, and its rung every Sunday morning since! Lee let me get a pic of the grand old bell…. and it may be rusty but it is beautiful! The church bell was made in 1886!

Note: The bell was recently moved from the belfry to the inside of the church

Around 1950 Lee Evers had a car he drove around, and he had a bell mounted in the floor board. Not just any bell, a bermuda bell. He let me see this unique bell this week, and I was amazed how loud it was, when you mashed on the push rod to make it ring. It did a couple of searches on the Net and couldn’t find anything about the bermuda bell. So I assume it is a very unusual item.

A little trivia here: The old Mary Niblack School was not on Mary Niblack Road. It was located in the SW corner of Dogwood Road and Concord Road, about a mile southeast of the Mary Niblack Church which is on Mary Niblack Road.

I mentioned a few weeks ago about a proposed flowing fountain was talked about being installed in 1915 at the courthouse. The exact time was February of 1915 and there was already a water pipe installed on the west side of the courthouse in the center of the flower plat. The fountain was to be made of concrete, a six foot deep area, and backed with rough rock. The ladies civic beauty league had talked about installing the fountain for some time, and it was estimated it could be done for less then $200. If the commissioners did not have the money available to build the fountain, a new movement would be made to revive the stagnated womens league, in hopes of getting the fountain built. In 1915 there was not one fountain in any of the city parks, nor in any of the yards of the more prestigious home in Ardmore. I am still searching to find out if the fountain was actually installed.

“My husband’s g grandfather was to have lived about 18 mi south of Ardmore near Yellow Hills. Do you know of this location?”

“Love builds bridges where there are none.” -R. H. Delaney

See everyone next week!

Butch and Jill Bridges
Ardmore, OK