Is This Fall - 2004...
Is this an early Fall of 2004? As we travel through Oklahoma, Kansas, Colorado -- settling down in SW Colorado for a few weeks to celebrate our 35th anniversary, we have been noticing the green grass pastures across these Heartlands. The July rains are unbelievable! This whole weather is unbelievable! Everything is so green and beautiful during what should be one of the hottest, dryest month of the summer.
It is seems to this NW Okie like an early fall has settled upon us during the Summer of 2004. I have never seen so much rain in July. Actually, I don't remember it ever raining in July. BUT... this weather has been great for the farmers/ranchers -- their livestock -- farm ponds. It will be tough when that mercury soars above 100 again.
I am going to try and keep this short and send you onto the Mailbag Corner, because lots of you sent in some interesting memories of NW Oklahoma ghost towns along hwy 64 west of Alva. For instance, did you know that the building that housed the Hilltop Gas & Grocery 11 miles west of Alva on the hilltop was a part of the Old Alva POW WWII Camp?
Leslie and Golda "Goldie" Lyons owned and ran the Hilltop gas and grocery and motor shop from '46 to '67 where later they did motor rewiring jobs that came into the shop. Today if you drive west out of Alva it would require your imagination to see what might have been. There is just a grass, fenced pasture with a gravel pull-off area with a view looking down the hill, east towards Alva. I found it very interesting to learn that in the old days... that the reasons stations along highway 64 were at the top of the hills were because the old cars were usually steaming by the time they got to the top and needed water.
If you travel another mile west from Hilltop on hwy 64, you might catch a glimpse of a deteriorated old building on the North side of the highway where Setmore was located 12 miles west at the highway 14 & 64 junction. I am told that in the 1930s it was a station/store ran by E.H. (Hack) and Mary Lyon. Later a blacksmith/repair shop run by Harry Lyon and later by Frank McMurphy.
Moman Pruiett - He Made It Safe To Murder...
If you scroll on down the Mailbag Corner to Moman Pruiett... you might find an interesting fact that was written in a biography of Pruiett, He Made it Safe to Murder. The book is only available through the author's grandson. One of my readers sent me an Order Form for the book.
Y'all know that for the past eight weeks Oakie and I have been on the road between Oklahoma, Colorado, New Mexico, Kansas and Texas with hardly enough time to take a pitstop and breather in our hometown of Alva.
Early riverside School Pupils & Bill McGill
We hope to see, hear from ALL of you this next week and share your Okie Legacies with others in upcoming Issues of The OkieLegacy. Don't forget to make plans for Waynoka & Freedom, Oklahoma's annual rodeo's this August 2004. If you make it to Freedom's Biggest Open Rodeo & Old Cowhand Reunion, be sure to check out our Ad In Memory of... Wm. J. "Bill" McGill in the Rodeo program. This early 1900's photo will be in the AD. I shows the Riverside school pupils and their teacher, Bill McGill.
Hilltop Gas & Grocery
"The people who ran Hill Top Gas and Grocery were Leslie and Goldie Lyon. They were relatives of mine on my fathers side of the family. Goldie used to do all the motor rewiring jobs that came into the shop. My fathers mother was Flossie (Lyon) Case and my father was born and raised on a farm 1-mile south of the Hill Top Store." -- Ken
Alva's Hilltop Memories
"The owners of Hilltop Gas & Grocery when it burned was Leslie and Golda Lyons. They also had a motor shop and Golda rewound motors. Leslie passed away but Golda is still alive and lives in Cherokee, Oklahoma. She does not have a computer but I will print this e mail for her. I also remember Ma Beck and the stations along hiway 64. Most were at the top of a hill because the old cars were usually steaming by the time they got to the top and needed water. Another one along highway 64 in west Woods County was Plainview. I think the Schroeder family were the last owners of that station. I remember we had to go there to make a long distance telephone call to Freedom and Alva. The old Plainview store is about a mile or so east of the new one on the corner. You can see the old building, which is about gone, on the north side of the road. Lookout is very familiar to me as I was born near there. I loved to go there and get a chocolate pop." -- Marty
West on Hwy '64...
"Heading west out of Alva 11 miles west was Hilltop. This was ran by Leslie and Golda Lyon from 1947 to 1967. The building was moved from the POW camp in Alva. It was a first a full service Mobil Station then a Conoco. Later Leslie and Golda started rewinding electric motors and had a good business doing this at Hilltop.I have many memories of Hilltop. Don't forget Setmore located 12 miles west at the highway 14 junction. In the thirties it was a station/store and ran by E.H. (Hack) and Mary Lyon. Later a blacksmith/repair shop was run by Harry Lyon and later by Frank McMurphy. Cora had a store/post office in the early day. For a time traveler's cabins were there and it was also known as Cora Camp. The store was run by several people including H.B. Winters, the Stewards and was last run by Kenneth and Pearl Benningfield in the late thirties. The Nazarene Church was started in the early twenties. A Reverend Cocanauer led a substantial building program and outreach for the church in the early fifties. Whitehorse (Tegarden) actually has been at three different locations, the last being on highway 64. The post office was in Wadkins Grocery, just east of Ma Beck's Grocery. Clyde Rader ran the Sinclair station/shop on the north side. There was a ball diamond across the road east of Ma Beck's. I enjoy the Okie Legacy very much." -- Ed - Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
Old Home Comfort Stove Story
"My name is Frances (Fran) Robinson. I found your site while looking for The Wrought Iron Range Company. So far I have only located cookbooks. Three on e-bay and yours. I really want a parts list and address to order parts.
Memories of William "Bill" G. Dudley?
"My dad was William (Bill) G. Dudley. He passed away in 1989. I still miss him so much. I wish I could meet someone who knew him. If you knew my dad, would you email me?" -- Cindy Dudley McLaren - Email: email@example.com
"Looking for information here about Moman Pruiett! I am reading a rare book entitled He Made it Safe to Murder which is the story of Moman Pruiett. The book is fascinating and I was wondering if anyone there was aware of the existance of any transcripts of any of the trials done by Mr. Pruiett. The book is referred to in the short biographical blurb for Moman on your site. It is only available now through the author's grandson. I just recieved an Order Form for the book. If you would like an order form, I would be happy to send you a copy. The book discusses the Opera House Murder in which a doctor was accussed of killing someone he had an affair with to cover up a botched abortion. The Law and Order League (I think this was their name) hired Moman to work for the prosecution because they were afraid he would represent the doctor and get him off. He won the case for the prosecution by fooling the defense into thinking there was a witness available who would testify against the doctor. This forced the doctor to testify on his own behalf and allowed Moman to cross examine him. I really like your web site!" -- Isaac Fischer - Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
Mavie School - Minnesota
Mavie School - Minnesota -- "Would you give your name and that of your ancesters connected with Mavie? I attended Mavie School. Just had reunion with Bev Oski and we related about Mavie." -- Darlene Sabo Ellefson - Email: email@example.com
Heman, Oklahoma -- "Anyone out there interested in the ghost town of Heman, OK? My great-granparents homsteaded at Heman. I would like to share what little information I have with anybody interested and have it posted on your site. Here are some of the things I researched about Heman, hope I have all the credits right... Oklahoma Place Names 2nd ed. by George H. Shirk, University of Oklahoma Press, Norman. page 113; Heman, In northwestern Major County, 5 miles southwest of Waynoka. A post office from April 29, 1901, to February 15, 1922. Named for F. A. Heman, Santa Fe Railway conductor; Chronicles of Oklahoma, Vol XXX number 1, spring 1952 edited by Dr. Charles Evans; First post offices within boundaries of Oklahoma - George Shirk; Heman, Woods County 29 April 1901, Aurthur Biggs [ postmaster] From Oklahoma Place Names ca. 1933 University of Oklahoma Press by Charles N. Gould." -- Carl Blake - Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
Woods County Sheriff's Update
Woods County Sheriffs - Updated -- "Bill Beierschmitt retired in 1990; Ted Jones served as sheriff from 1990 to 1998 with Mike Snowden as undersheriff until 1996 then Rudy Briggs took over as undersheriff. Rudy Briggs became sheriff in 1998 to the present with Shane Vore as undersheriff." -- John Farris - Email: email@example.com
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