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Volume 8, Issue 11 -- 2006-03-18

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Volume 8
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Alfalfa County Historical Society has 2 books available. A reprint of the 1976 edition "Our Alfalfa County Heritage" family history book. A new 2006 edition "Our Alfalfa County Heritage" family history book. Contact Marty at e mail
 ~Marty Myers regarding Okie's story from Vol. 9 Iss. 22 titled UNTITLED

One home where I lived, at Goltry, was known as the Hyck place located two blocks south of the bank in Goltry [more]...
 ~Jim Bradley regarding Okie's story from Vol. 7 Iss. 46 titled UNTITLED

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Duchess Corner

This NW Okie and her infamous Pugs (Duchess & Sadie) waited for a sunshine break in the snow that fell last weekend to begin their venture east to NW Oklahoma.

That day came Tuesday as they venture from SW Colorado along the Kit Carson Trail through Colorado, southern Kansas and on into Northern Oklahoma via Medicine Lodge, Kansas where we drove by Carrie Nations home and Medicine Lodges Stockade. NO! We did not get a photo of Carrie Nation's residence. Not yet, anyway!

It was hard leaving our beautiful, much needed snow, moisture in the valley & mountains of the Colorado Rockies. BUT... we thought maybe we could tow some of that moisture to the dry, windy plains of the heartland prairies. Thursday we did see some cooler, somewhat wetter weather here in NW Oklahoma, but not much yet!

We usually start putting our OkieLegacy newsletter together on Thursday, Friday and finishing up early Saturday morning. BUT... around "High Noon," Thursday, some highway construction workers 3-1/2 miles south of Alva, OK, working on Hwy 281 cut our fiber-optic cables. So... for most of the day and into the evening Alva was cut-off from the outside world, except for a few Cell phones that could get in and out. Even the DSL internet was interrupted for this NW Okie. We were concerned that "The OkieLegacy Ezine" was NOT going to be published this week.

Whew! We wokeup Friday morning to check out our email and laptop browser to find some relief. Yes! There was a connection ... Finally! So here we are again! You can NOT keep this NW Okie and her weekly OkieLegacy ezine from reaching it's subscribers! There is always light (and connection) at the end of the tunnel of fiber-optics!
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Alva, OK - Block 29, Lots 17 thru 32...

We are starting something that should keep us busy for awhile... one town block at a time. We have started making, keeping a record of old deeds, etc... of the downtown lots around the square of Alva, Oklahoma. We are starting this week with Block 29, Lots 17 thru 32, located on the northside of Flynn Avenue between 7th Street & 6th Street. This picture on the left shows the northside of Flynn Avenue as it is today. The picture on the right is a Platt of the lots in downtown Alva.

This picture shows the southside of Flynn Avenue as it is today. Notice the alleyways that run north & south in the middle of the block.

The following link is a "doc file" of the records we have collected so far that show the Book/Page, Grantee, Grantor and instrument recorded at the County Clerk's office in Woods County, Alva, Oklahoma. The TD=Trustee Deed; WD=Warranty Deed; Mtg=Mortgage; QCD=Quit Claim Deed. Sounds like those clerks are starting to put some of these records on computer. We, hopefully, wish they would make it more accessible to online searches for some of us in the future.

Check out the many names mentioned in the Grantee and Grantor columns of the the "doc file." Here are just a few surnames that some might find of interest: Binkley, Everhart, Gregg, Ishmal, Laney, Kelsey, Woodard, Chandler, Corwick, Crowell, Grimes, harbaugh, Share, Scoggins, Goff, Emberson, Cook, Young, Matthews, Hankins, Stranathan, McFarland, Jones, McHenry, McEwen, Wiggins, Hunter, Carter, Rush, Fullerton, Fullerton, Bindrum, Frazier, Hellman, Falkerson, Haines, White, Bartholomew, Sleeper, Cureton, Thornton, King, Severance, Edwards, Velter, Beeler, Harryman, etc... View/Write Comments (count 4)   |   Receive updates (0 subscribers)  |   Unsubscribe

George Alexander Harbaugh...

[This information came from the book, Pioneer Footprints Across Woods County, pg 279.] -- According to the family member who wrote the HARBAUGH history for this NW Oklahoma history book, "George Alexander Harbaugh was born Sugust 27, 1869 at Brighton, Iowa, the thirteenth child of Elias and Catherine Engel Harbaugh."

George's parents were both German born. They moved to Tuscarawas County, Ohio. In the 1850 census it shows them living in Warwick, Ohio. Before 1860 they moved to an Iowa farm. Catherine (Engel) Harbaugh passed away in 1871 and was buried near Brighton. Elias Harbaugh moved with his five remaining boys near Medicine Lodge, Kansas, after his wife's death. Elias's only daughter, Mollie Harbaugh Landis, had married and resided in Medicine Lodge, Kansas at that time.

From Medicine Lodge George and his older brother (William), both in their early twenties, rode horseback to stake their claim 10 miles south of Alva, at the Cherokee Strip Opening, September of 1893.

William developed typhoid fever and passed away at the age of 35 years. William was survived by his widow, Lillie, and small daughter, Mollie.

George had an early grain office in Alva, and was later President and Manager of the Alva Flour Mills. He later was President of the Central National Bank and organized banks at Freedom and Beaver.

George married Mary Deirn, daughter of Charles and Melissa Ewing Deirn, formerly of Princeton, Indiana, on November 1, 1899. They had 3 children: Paul Alexander, Melissa Kathryn and Helen Elizabeth.

Charles Deirn was the first County Treasurer of Alva Woods County when Oklahoma became a State.
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Circuit Chautauquas Beginning - 1904...

We have been doing some online research for the term "Chautauquas" to help identify some of the childern in the "1910 Alva - Chautauqua" penny postcard we ran last week.

So far... what we found out is that the "Circuit Chautauquas" grew from an idea by "Redpath Lyceum Bureau" Keith Vawter (manager), beginning in 1904. These programs started with lecturers, elocutionists, artists, and musicians. During the years of the circuit chautauquas, magicians, menageries, plays, and operas were added to the schedules. Even programs for the children were a popular way to get the whole family involved in the chautauqua, which could last from three to nine (normally seven) days. A thirty year run of the circuit chautauquas supported by numerous circuits run by a couple of dozen agencies brought "culture under canvas" right to the doorstep of millions of people throughout the country, particularly the midwest.

There was also mention that the Chautauqua back east educated Sunday School teachers. Does anyone out there have any clues to the identity of any of these children and teacher? Were they from Alva and/or surrounding communities?
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Avard Hotel Raid of 1927...

Let us take you back to August 16, 1927, to the time of prohibition in NW Oklahoma and the small community of Avard, Oklahoma, at the "Avard Hotel."

On this date of August 16, 1927, local officials made a "drug bust" at the "Avard Hotel" and discovered narcotics and whiskey, arresting two individuals (whose names we have leftout intentionally to protect their living descendants). The 1927 news clipping showed up in a Garfield County, Oklahoma paper nearly 80 years ago. Does this jog any memories out there?
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Stables Cafe & Cantina Burns (Freedom, OK)...

"Here's a photo of Stables restaurant, viewed from the edge of the parking lot at the sidewalk that led to the main entrance. There is no word at this point about the cause of the first or whether the facility will be rebuilt. The nearby Cedar Ridge motel (I think that's the name) was not damaged in the fire; in fact, it was a motel resident who discovered the fire and alerted authorities - had it not been discovered in time, it is likely that the entire canyon area around the Alabaster Caverns State Park would have turned into an inferno. As it was, the fire departments were able to contain the fire to the area immediately around the restaurant. A friend who has a police scanner said that she heard the calls for fire trucks go out to Freedom, Mooreland, and Alva. I have a dozen or so photos, but they all need some prep before sending them." -- Rod View/Write Comments (count 0)   |   Receive updates (0 subscribers)  |   Unsubscribe

Update On Stables Cafe & Cantina...

"Update on the situation with the Stables restaurant, according to that report (it may be available online, I haven't checked). They plan to have a 'make-shift' restaurant open within about 4 weeks. They plan to have their new facility, larger then the first, open on the same location by June 1st. The restaurant will be open to the public. The motel, however, will be reserved for Police and Fire Fighting camps. One of the two partners is a company with several such camps across the US, and they will use the 2,000-acre spread here at the Freedom/Alabaster location for such training. The fire is officially declared of undetermined origin; they think it began in the northwest corner of the building. Word at one point was that there was a space heater in use in a certain corner of the building, though this article did not mention that (it may have been "coffee shop" talk). We are fortunate that the fire started on Saturday instead of the following day, when the winds whipped up to 55+ mph. We could have had the same scenario that they experienced in Borger and Pampa and Amarillo areas in the Texas panhandle. With no rain and now with no grass (dead or alive) to hold the soil, folks are wondering if Texas will become another "Dust Bowl" like this region experienced in the 'Dirty Thirties'." View/Write Comments (count 0)   |   Receive updates (0 subscribers)  |   Unsubscribe

Alva - Chautauqua....

"I think that this might be connected to the Chautauqua educational system that was popular during that time. See these links View/Write Comments (count 0)   |   Receive updates (0 subscribers)  |   Unsubscribe

March Winter Comes To Vallecito...

"Winter finally decided to make an appearance less than two weeks before the vernal equinox. Since Thursday morning we have had over 32" new snow and it is still coming down (11 am Sunday -- see attached photo taken Saturday on our east patio and Sunday out our bedroom door). NOAA forecasts predicted as much as 3 feet in places and it looks like we may make that. We are now 3" over our 2002 snow total: 79" total for the season, 42" so far this month, but we are still way below normal for the season. My little snowblower is in its 18 season, but started up and nearly made it to the bottom of our hill before the mechanism froze up; I was also out of gas -- I hadn't figured on getting that far. But with more gas and in low gear it could pull itself back up our hill as long as I didn't try to bite off any more snow." View/Write Comments (count 0)   |   Receive updates (0 subscribers)  |   Unsubscribe

Architect of Castle on the Hill...

"Feucart was said to be a Belgian of French descent who designed at least 4 commercial buildings and one residence in Oklahoma Territory before he went west to California.

The City Hall (pictured on the left) and a residence (now a "Bed 'n Breakfast") in Guthrie were designed by him, plus the first building for Oklahoma A. & M. College (OSU) at Stillwater, the First National Bank building at Perry, OK (pictured on the right), and the Castle on the Hill" building for the Normal School at Alva.

He was noted especially for including a horseshoe-shaped window, a distinctively arched entrance door, arches over some upper-story windows, and some peaks or spires decorating the roof edges. There are also two other (published) spellings of his name and I do not know which is correct. The book The Architecture of America, by John Burchard and Albert Bush-Brown, Copyright 1961 and published by Little, Brown & Co. shows his name to be J. Feucart as the designer of the Guthrie City Hall in 1902.

Perry, Pride of the Prairie by Robert E. Cunningham (published by Frontier Printers, Inc. of Stillwater, Ok. spells his name (in one place) Joseph Foucert and says that he was a Belgian who came to America a few months before the opening of Old Oklahoma in 1889 and that he had previously designed some 'imposing structures in Europe.' And then elsewhere the book refers to him as Joseph P. Foucart, internationally famous architect. I hope I haven't confused you too much.

We haven't gotten any of the severe weather and STILL need rain. The rural fire trucks made runs both last Saturday and Sunday." -- Roy View/Write Comments (count 0)   |   Receive updates (0 subscribers)  |   Unsubscribe

Raid of 1927 At Avard Hotel (Oklahoma)...

"I've come upon an interesting tidbit that your readers may be able to shed more light on - another item from the history of our region that local readers and residents may no longer recollect... or which may have been allowed to pass from the oral history intentionally. My curiosity has been picqued. A cousin of mine in California contacted me today, having just run onto brief mention of an incident in Avard, Oklahoma. It seems that the local officials made a 'drug bust' at the Avard Hotel and discovered narcotics and whiskey (during prohibition, I believe) in a raid conducted on August 16, 1927. We are curious as to why this clipping (from Garfield county, no name or date) made its way into the particular collection of clippings where it was discovered. It was nearly 80 years ago." View/Write Comments (count 0)   |   Receive updates (0 subscribers)  |   Unsubscribe

Castle On the Hill Story...

"In your article entitled The Prairies' Castle on the Hill", there is an error in the third from the last paragraph. The Negro Normal School was not to be located at Lansing (which was a tiny community located in eastern Beaver County), but was to be located in (and still is) Langston, Logan County, O. T., which had a population of 100 as of the census of 1890." -- Roy View/Write Comments (count 0)   |   Receive updates (0 subscribers)  |   Unsubscribe

Magill's - Lisbon, Saint Lawrence County, NY...

"I am looking for any who may have information on the Magills from Lisbon, Saint Lawrence County, New York. According to records I have been able to uncover, the family was composed of Hugh and Jane Magill, and sons of Edward, Hugh, John, and Joseph, and daughters Betty and Mary. Hugh Magill died on May 7, 1848, he was 83 years of age. His sons: Edward died on April 7, 1899 at 72 years of age John (1833-1896) Joseph died Feb 11,1889 at 76 years of age. Betty, dates unknown. I am conducting research on the Magill family from Lisbon,New York. I was hoping you could help me in the matter. I and another Magill descendant, Emma Remmington (She is descended from Edward Magill) have been trying to determine where in Ireland the Magills are from. I am hoping that you could provide a clue that in some way to determine where in Ireland. Robert Kerr married Hugh and Jane's daughter, Mary Magill. I suspect that the Magills followed the Kerrs to Lisbon. According to Naturalization Records, Robert Kerr arrived in USA in 1834. They had there first child Jane that year. From what I can determine, The Magills did not arrive until the 1840's. I see from the 1865 Bears Atlas maps that the Magills and the Kerrs lived across the road from one another. Want to hear something funny? Emma's son, without any prior knowledge, bought the Magill farm. Is there anything you can do to help me and Emma. You'll be surprise that smallest clue can make a difference. I REALLY hope you can help. Short of going to Lisbon to conduct research there, I have hit a brick wall. I live in the Los Angeles Area." -- Ruben Macias - WMIAL: View/Write Comments (count 0)   |   Receive updates (0 subscribers)  |   Unsubscribe

Class of '61 AHS Goldbugs...

"I'm still working on updating our 1961 class information. I'm getting a LOT of contacts along with a big interest in our 45th reunion. Would you verify this info. for Dorthy - because she'll be getting the mailings. The first one will be a request for biographical info. and a current pic., if people want. They'll mail that back to me. I'll put together a bio. booklet to include all of our classmates, and we'll sell the booklet for 15.00 - just enough to cover cost of production and having it punched and spiraled and mailed. We want it to be out well before the reunion on Labor Day so all of us can "study up." lol We're going to have to because it's been so damned long since most of us have seen one another that we want not to seem so stupid about recognizing people when we go to the reunion." -- Lana View/Write Comments (count 0)   |   Receive updates (0 subscribers)  |   Unsubscribe

Photo of Central Park ...

"Even though this photo shows a location very similar to the early days (circa 1910 - 1930) of the courthouse park in Perry, Oklahoma (sometimes identified as Central Park), I'm not quite certain that it was in our town and was wondering if someone could positively identify which city this was located in. Yes I noticed the backwards 'N' (in Central) but there doesn't seem to be any particular identification. No photographer's name, location, or date as to when it may have been taken. I also cannot read any business names on the windows or buildings. The little bandstand (if that's what it is) does not quite resemble ours and it appears to have a tile roof. Also, where is the courthouse? Very interesting isn't it? I am puzzled." -- Roy View/Write Comments (count 0)   |   Receive updates (0 subscribers)  |   Unsubscribe

The Rest of the Story...

Memories From NW Oklahoma ...Remember those Saturday night previews -- A good way to see both the movies for the week and to remove the temptation to go to the movie mid-week. Like it was said, "if you could stay awake!" But, one movie for the price of two was a real draw.

...Remember the little grocery store near Longfellow School. That wasn't far from 224 Center, where my grandparents lived. I would have visited that store in the 1960's, probably.

...I had just assumed that is WAS part of the touring Chautauqua system...but was hoping that some of the "Legacy" readers might have a link to some of the folks in the photograph.

Architect of Castle on the Hill ...Feucart was said to be a Belgian of French descent who designed at least 4 commercial buildings and one residence in Oklahoma Territory before he went west to California. The City Hall and a residence (now a "Bed ''n Breakfast") in Guthrie were designed by him, plus the first building for Oklahoma A. & M. College (OSU) at Stillwater, the "First National Bank" building at Perry, and the "Castle on the Hill" building for the Normal School at Alva. He was noted especially for including a horseshoe-shaped window, a distinctively arched entrance door, arches over some upper-story windows, and some peaks or spires decorating the roof edges.

Orion Stories & photos ...It's been some years ago at the Orion Cemetery we poured the concrete slab and steps on the north side of the road and built the out houses for the use of people who came on Memorial Day. People used to come on this day and visit all day long. It was the only time they saw some of these people. View/Write Comments (count 0)   |   Receive updates (0 subscribers)  |   Unsubscribe

Gas Prices In Perry, OK...

Gasoline prices in Perry, Oklahoma jumped up some more this morning (Friday, March 17th.). Now it's $2.42.9 at the independents, and $2.44.9 at the stations which are branded Conoco and Phillips. The weather predictors say that we'll have at least an inch of rain over this weekend (I don't see any dark clouds yet). HAPPY ST. PATRICK'S DAY ! (YES, I HAD IRISH ANCESTORS)." View/Write Comments (count 0)   |   Receive updates (0 subscribers)  |   Unsubscribe

Woodward News - Stable Cafe Fire (Freedom ,OK)...

Plan in works to rebuild restaurant - by A.J. Butler

"FREEDOM - A plan to rebuild the recently burned Cedar Canyon Lodge Restaurant near Alabaster Caverns is under way. The restaurant, which was destroyed by fire early Saturday morning, will be updated and larger that before, said Anita Rennebohm, one of the co-owners of the lodge. 'A new buyer came and bought the other part of the lodge and restaurant and now has become co-owner of this establishment with me,' said Rennebohm. 'We plan to open the lodge as a retreat for fire and police across the nation and use some of the 2,000 acres we have behind the park to be used for a police and fire training facility....." -- Published: Woodward News - March 14, 2006 09:23 am View/Write Comments (count 0)   |   Receive updates (0 subscribers)  |   Unsubscribe

History of Oklahoma WWII Prison Camps...

Corbett presents history of Oklahoma WWII prison camps -- By Patti K. Locklear, Staff Writer
".....Dr. Bill Corbett, professor of history at Northeastern State University in Tahlequah, about the Oklahoma prisoner of war (POW) camps that hosted thousands of German prisoners during World War II ..... Corbett explained that around 1937, before the United States even entered the war, the government began to plan for these camps, therefore when the war broke out, these plans were already in place. During the 1929 Geneva Convention, specific guidelines were set concerning the humane conditions that were to be required for prisoners of war - they were not to be treated as criminals, but as POW's - and these requirements distinguished the differences between the two....." -- Woodward News - Published: February 26, 2006 12:58 pm View/Write Comments (count 0)   |   Receive updates (0 subscribers)  |   Unsubscribe

Northwestern Normal School...

[written back when Northwestern Normal School had it's beginnings as the infamous "Castle On the Hill" of the Prairies.] -- Northwestern Normal School, of Alva, was the second normal to be established in Oklahoma. The Law establishing it was enacted by the legislative assembly of 1897, and the purpose of its founding was for the instruction of persons in the art of teaching and in all the various branches pertaining to the public schools of Oklahoma Territory.

The faculty was at first composed of a president and two teachers, and it has grown from year to year until now the faculty is composed of a president and 23 teachers. The enrollment has increased from year to year until it reached 610 for the past school year.

The Northwestern Normal School is located in the beautiful city of Alva , the county seat of Woods county, the most populous county in Oklahoma. The site of this school is one of the finest in the West, being situated on an eminence one-half mile south of the center of town.

The sanitary history of the school and the city has demonstrated beyond any reasonable doubt that no more healthful place can be found than Alva and its immediate surroundings. The purest of spring water is furnished the school and city, which largely assists in maintaining a high degree of healthfulness.

The city has a population of about 3,500 people, made up of people from all parts of the Union. Many fine homes have been built during the past year, and there is an effort on the part of all residents to make Alva a beautiful and refined town, one that by its outward appearance would indicate culture and refinement to the most casual observer upon first visitation. The school is the pride of all citizens, and to it they give most loyal support.

During the past year many permanent improvements have been made which add largely to the better equipment of the building. The cost of these improvements amount to $8,515.51. Besides these improvements, $2,800 of past indebtedness has been cancelled. The seventh legislative assembly appropriated $2,200 and the literary societies paid the balance. The commercial department that was organized one year ago, and thoroughly equipped with all modern conveniences, has proven to be one of the popular departments, having enrolled between 40 and 50 pupils during the past year. A biological workshop with all modern tools and museum of more than 100 specimens, in a fine cabinet, have been a part of the improvements along scientific lines. New steel cases for the library and about $1,200 worth of books have been added to this part of the institution. The interior of the building has been much improved by the addition of an electric light system throughout.

The seventh legislative assembly made it mandatory upon the normal schools of Oklahoma Territory to establish kindergarten departments within one year after the passage of the bill. The Northwestern Normal School has established such a department to carry out the provisions of the act.

The course of study has been much extended and improved and is now equal to the best normal school in the West.

One of the contemplated improvements for the coming year is to enlarge the seating capacity of the assembly hall. The hall is now seated with desks, and it is the purpose to have the hall seated with 600 opera chairs, thus improving the seating accommodations.

There are now six courses maintained in the institution - English-scientific, Latin, modern language, commercial, kindergarten, and music, Graduates of the first three courses receive diplomas, which are equal to five-year certificates, and may be renewed at the end of each five years by the Territorial superintendent.

Teachers of Oklahoma holding first grade certificates are admitted to the freshman year of the normal department without examination. Students from accredited high schools, other normal schools, university, agriculture college, and the preparatory university are admitted to the normal department without examination and are given credits commensurate with the progress made in the other schools. Owing to the very satisfactory work done in all the departments during the past year, but little change was made in the membership of the faculty for the coming year.

The Northwestern Normal School is taking a very creditable rank with the very best institutions in the Territory. With its magnificent building, thoroughly equipped, and with a faculty of 23 able and experienced teachers, and a student body of six or seven hundred pupils, this institution is bound to have a very excellent influence on Oklahoma and her institutions.

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