1960-2010 - 50 Years

This blog is dedicated to the students who graduated from Henryetta High School in Henryetta Oklahoma in 1960.

Tuesday, May 10, 2011

Catching Up With John Greiner

This picture is of Ron Rolen, me, and Bill Miller. We were in what I call a Time Warp Drugstore in Nichols Hills Plaza in Oklahoma City. I call it Time Warp because it has a lunch counter where you can get hamburgers, fries or many other things you once got at the Henryetta Drug Stores including Green’s (Hefners), Post Office Drug and I am not sure if Judy’s Drug had a counter, but I know Judy’s had booths. Ron and I meet at the Nichols Hills drug store every two or three weeks, have lunch and then get in one of our cars and drive around areas of Oklahoma City we haven’t seen in a while. We also go to the 12th Street area of Oklahoma City where Ron and his family lived for a few years after he left Henryetta following the 7th grade. Bill Miller was driving through and joined us for lunch and then we went to my house to continue talking about our old neighborhood in Henryetta. As you can tell, I am trying to change. I’ve been working on losing weight. So far, I am doing OK. Losing weight won’t make your hair start growing black again, but hey, you can’t have everything.

The photographer who took this picture makes an interesting story. I was trying to find someone to take our picture in the drug store. Well, Donna Nigh, wife of former Gov. George Nigh, came into the drugstore. I knew her because I had covered the capitol for George Nigh’s two full terms. He was governor four times, but the other times were for 9 days in 1963, beginning New Year’s Day, and about 5 days in 1978 when Gov. David Boren left office a few days early to be sworn in as a U.S. Senator. Anyway, Mrs. Nigh asked what we were doing, and I told her I was looking for someone to take Ron’s, Bill’s and my photo.

She said she would and the rest is history.

I wrote Bill Miller that his writing on Remember Tad Scheirmann was great writing. I really enjoyed it. I remember Tad’s daughter, GeorgeAnn. She was the co-football queen in 1952 with a girl named Carolyn Lybarger. The Hens were co-champions with Ada of the Sooner Star conference that year. Chuck Yonkers was the all-state player (tackle). I wish there were a way that GeorgeAnn Scheirmann could see Bill’s story. Maybe someone in our class knows someone who knows where she is now.


I am ready for another reunion of the class of 1960.


Saturday, April 23, 2011

Memories of Henryetta - Part 2

Remembering Tad Sherman
by Bill Miller

I know that you guys remember Tad Sherman, but I wanted you to see him as I remembered him as a very caring guy. I'm certain we all have many great stories about him as he was a terrific guy and a good man.

Tad worked at the glass plant, his wife Mary worked at the Hospital and there daughter George Ann [Pookey] was a teenager and worked at the Blaine movie theater part time. I think she dated the local HHS football hero, Chuck Yonkers. She may even have been the HHS football Queen in her senior year. Mary drove a respectable blue coupe as I recall. They were all very nice people. Mary once rescued me from a swarm of yellow jackets that I had disturbed and were chasing me across the yard and stinging me as I ran.

Anyway, they all lived in the little rent house that my grandfather owned next door to our house on 7Th and Gentry. Tad said the bathroom in that house was so small you could take care of your business and wash your hands at the same time.

The houses were separated by a double garage with heavy sliding doors. On one of the roofs corners was mounted a windmill shaped like an old woman wearing a sun bonnet churning butter that spun as she churned to show which way the wind was coming from. On the back side of the garage was a very large colony of huge black & yellow spiders. They were called banana spiders I think, but names were not important to a kid. Fear alone of these giant spiders protected there home of large blackberries from only the bravest of the brave. We were sure they could jump 50 ft. and more.

Tad had a black & tan hunting dog named Lady who would follow me to school and to the movies, then wait for me outside until I got out. She was a great dog and I still have a picture of her and I together. When Lady came into season as they say, Tad would pen Lady up and give any stray dog that came sniffing around a .22 Rat shot in the butt that sent them scurrying and yelping down the alley with there tail between there legs.

Tad was an avid fisherman and hunter. At one time he was a game warden and would show us his badge. His side of the garage was full of fishing poles and duck decoys. It was a gathering place for my grandfather, Mr. Tom Lackey from across the street and a passel of kids. Tad was always tinkering out in the garage and he had an abundance of love and patience's for all the kids in our neighborhood and believe me their was a lot. Twenty or more I think John Greiner once counted.

Tad used to practice his ducks calls over and over to and old 78 wind up record player that he had. You could hear that call all around the block and you new duck season was coming. One winter he was going to take Doug Allen and I rabbit hunting early one dark cold morning. The ground was iced over and we two had met outside his house and after waiting a while and scuffling our feet to stay warm, we stepped on his front porch and approached his front door, knocked gently, thinking he might not be up yet or worse yet, that he had forgotten. He came out quickly and told us to wait in the truck until he could get his thermos. Said that if we woke Mary she would shoot all three of us and never think twice. Just go right back to bed and be asleep before we hit the ground.

Pookey or Mary would sometimes drove his old trucks around the block while Tad, holding on for dear life, would lay on the fender well of his old Model "T" truck which was started with a crank, later a Model "A" to listen for squeaks or noise to be mended or corrected with large rubber bands like those we used on our rubber guns. Tad was not fond of vehicle squeaks and they seem to plague him. I guess it was all those unpaved roads that contributed to them.

Tad later upgraded to a Model "A" roadster and built a wooden bed where the rumble seat had been. He would load up as many of us neighborhood kids as would fit in either vehicle and off we would go bouncing down the road for another adventure. We would head for the rivers for minnows and for crawdads although there were times we just went out to the country to cut Johnson grass with hand sickles for his duck hunting blind.
Tad had a small minnow pond by the garage he kept stocked at his house for his frequent fishing trips to both the Old Lake [Nickles Park] and New Lake, where the town got there drinking water I think. These critters that we got with a sane net from the rivers were kept in the pond until needed.

I once stepped barefoot on a snake that was lying on the riverbank. The snake wiggled and squirmed under my instep and I stepped lively in one direction, never looking back, but hoping the snake was doing the same in the other. Sometimes he would get lost out in the middle of nowhere and have to stop and ask for directions on how to get back to Henryetta. Once he asked a man we came upon if he new how to get to Henryetta and the man said "yep I do". There was a long awkward pause before Tad got around to asking the obvious follow up question. We all thought that was pretty funny, Tad did not, or maybe he did later.

Tad had a row boat he kept chained up at the Old Lake which was under constant repair with black tar for leaks. This boat was used for Crappie fishing at night. We would row out and tie up at the old diving board or sometimes near the Spillway. Both good fishing spots. We use the white meat from the tails of the Crawdads which Tad said was the best bait for Crappies and the Minnows for Perch if that was what was biting.

Tad also had a boathouse and boat with 7-1/2 Sky King outboard motor he kept at the New Lake. The motor was kept in a locker inside and the boat was lifted out of the water by hand pulleys, front and back. The boathouse was secured with a combination lock on the door with the code written under the galvanized eve overhang above the door so he wouldn't forget it, which he frequently did. He would admonish me never to tell about the code location and I never did until now. There was a damn with a spillway you had to cross as a part of the road back then. When the spillway was running over he would stop in the middle and we would all pile out of the truck and give it a good washing. Just great fun.

Tad was ahead of his time I guess and he wanted to steer his motor boat from the front instead of the rear. He rigged two heavy strings tied to the motor handle and strung through eyelets on either side of the boat rail interior to steer the motor handle left and right by hand, but I have no idea or at least recall on how he planned to slow down or speed up the outboard engine. I guess he just set the throttle to one speed to start out, but I just don't remember.

At any rate on his maiden voyage as he explained to me, he was so excited at the prospects of it working, he forgot to tighten or clamp down the outboard motor to the back of the boat. He eased out and away from the boathouse slowly and satisfied that all was working well as planned, he moved to the front of the boat and apparently gunned it. According to Tad, he heard a loud noise and looked back just in time to see that outboard engine shoot straight up into the air and then plunged back down into the lake never to be seen again.

Tad said that he had engaged Eddy Anglin and a couple of his high school friends that worked as local lifeguards at the Old Lake to try to dive down to recover the engine, but without luck. Said the bottom was muddy and old SkyKing was most likely under the mud. Tad loved that engine and used to work on it plunging it into a large barrel of water and tuning it up at the house. It made a lot of noise, but we kids loved it too.

Tad would run trout-lines with chicken guts from the slaughter house for bait at the New Lake. One day in the garage he pretended to eat string guts like they were spaghetti dangling them above his mouth when Mary ask what he wanted for lunch. She was not happy but I think she liked him anyway. I saw her smile as she retreated to the house. I know we kids all did and delighted in his antics. You could get a pretty respectable fish on a lake trout line, but you had to watch for the turtles and snakes.

Tad would carry a .22 rifle to shoot water moccasins and he was a good shot. That New Lake was full of them. One night we had run the trot lines and had our stringers full of fish. Tad had looped the stringers around a post on the walkway out to the boathouse. The hour was late and Tad had brought some crackers and potted meat. I had never had this and it was a real treat for me. After our feast, it had gotten dark and Tad lit a Coleman lantern so we could see to get the fresh caught fish and head back to town.

Tad held the lantern high and I lay on the wooden walkway to the boathouse as the stringers had slid below the waterline. I felt around, found them and pulled the stringers up together over the end of the post. Up came our fish with two very large cotton mouth water moccasins wrapped about with their mouths wide open. We were so startled, Tad dropped the lantern into the lake plunging us into darkness and I dropped the two stringers, fish, snakes and all back into the lake and took to my heels with my heart about to explode in my chest.

Tad always claimed the wind blew out the Coleman lantern and I never disputed him, but I knew better. He later claimed to have stored the lantern in the boathouse and I did not dispute that either. I knew that even God's wind cannot blow out a Coleman lantern wick, but when your a kid, there were two sides to a story, your side and the adult side. He always claimed I owed him for two new fish stringers, but he never pressed me for it. I told him I knew exactly where those stringers were if he really wanted them. He mumbled something about a little snake or two would not bother anybody, but to my recall he got out of there as fast or faster than me. I'm guessing he thought he'd let that dog or stringers lay for a few days before he went back for them.

Tad bought a house out on the Lake Road and moved away when we were still in grade school. Mr. and Mrs. Fulton moved into the house. They were the Webster School maintenance folks. The home they had been living in on the other side of my grandfather's house did not have inside plumbing so this was a step up into high cotton for them, no matter the bathroom size.

There was not a kid in our gang who did not miss Tad, or parent for that matter. After all, in a way he sort of ran a free sometimes day care center that took field trips.

I only recall seeing Tad once at the Post Office after I was grown and home on military leave. We visited and laughed for a long while and then parted. Tad had a great since of humor and was a wonderful man.
Thanks you, Bill, for another trip down memory lane!

Friday, February 4, 2011

Memories of Henryetta

I recently received an email from John Greiner, Bill Miller, Gene Stanley and Chuck Richeson recounting things they remembered about growing up in Henryetta.  I'm going to copy them and post them here, as I found it fascinating reading, and I thought others might as well.  If anyone else has "memories" they would like to share, send them via email to me and I'll post them on the blog.  You can find my email address on my profile on the right hand side of the blog.

The night I thought I was hit by a poison dart

By John Greiner

I was probably 7 or 8 years old and already had heard tales about Mr. Bramble, but I wasn’t sure if I knew him or could recognize him. All I knew was he lived in a two-story house with lots of supplies and sometimes junk in his front yard and kids were scared of him because he was eccentric.

One night I met him but didn’t realize it at the time.  But for a few minutes, it was scary.

It started when my Dad bought a small gambler’s pistol from someone who found it when the lake road was being built or improved.  The pistol fit in the palm of your hand and the barrel opening was so small that not even a piece of buckshot would go in it.  I think it’s called a pin gun.

No one seemed to know much about it so my Dad took me to see a gun collector he called ol’ man Riddle.
Riddle lived upstairs in a two-story red building on the east side of 4th street near the intersection of Broadway or Moore. Bramble lived around the corner.

My Dad and I climbed a metal staircase on the south wall of the two-story red building, knocked on the door and entered after Mr. Riddle answered the door.  Sitting in a chair in the room was another man I was not sure of.

I would learn it was Bramble.

The room was small, and I think the only real room besides a bathroom.

Ol’ Man Riddle, tall, thin and white haired, sat on his bed and looked at my Dad’s pistol. As they talked, he pulled out a German Machine Pistol from under the bed. I watched with the amazement of a little boy. The pistol was a German Mauser. Its wooden carrying case became the stock of the gun when the gun was assembled...

The other man with Ol’ Man Riddle said nothing and continued to sit there, glancing my way once in a while.

I still wasn’t sure who he was, but that was the way when we were kids. We didn’t always know someone who was talking with our parents unless they introduced us.

For some reason, I thought it might be Bramble. I would know soon enough.

While I sat their watching Mr. Riddle and my Dad talk, I was sure I saw the other man throw a dart at me. I had been looking to the right and vision in my left eye never has been good.

Anyway, I was hit and was frozen with fear.

I just had been hit with what I was sure was a poison dart.

Neither my Dad nor Mr. Riddle saw it happen. They continued to talk.

I continued to be frozen with fear, thinking I would die and no one would know why.

Nothing hurt but I still thought I would die soon.

Finally, I turned my head to the left and saw the back of the dart sticking out from near my chest.

Carefully, I looked more closely, fingered the back of the dart and pulled it out slowly, praying it wouldn’t hurt.

It was a purple colored square shaped candy sucker.

I was relieved. I wasn’t going to die.

The man must have reached over and stuck it between my chest and left arm.

It was Bramble.

But he just was giving a kid a sucker the unorthodox way. He wasn’t trying to kill me, despite all the stories I’d heard about him.

I later told my Dad about it.

He laughed and said Mr. Bramble wouldn’t hurt anyone.

I sure was glad. I was more than glad.

This was from Bill Miller

Hi All:

Wanted to wish each of you and your families a Happy New Year and hope and know that you enjoyed the merriest of Christmases.

Also wanted you all to know and especially the planners and leaders of the reunion again how much I and my wife Nancy appreciated the invitation. I have to admit that I was pretty much at a loss for conversation and perhaps more than a little nervous. It is difficult to reconnect to so many folks after 50 years but you did make us feel welcome. If any of you every find yourselves in the Houston area, our home is open to you.

Still find it hard to believe the girls were not aware of the punishment in school we boys received by wooden rulers, ping pong paddles, and leather straps way back then.

Since this past summer, I have continued to road travel mostly through out the southern states. After 309,000 miles, I finally had to put my old red truck down and shop for a new one. Waxed it, parked it out front and sold it to the first guy that came along with cash. Nancy said that my last four trucks had been red in color and she did not care what I got just so that it was not red. I got black to keep the peace.

Ron, I have given considerable thought to the hand grenade story at Nickel's Park and I do have a vague recollection of Nick Hamra telling me that it was found at an Easter Egg hunt and the pin pulled and thrown into the lake for disposal. At the same time he was also telling me how he had found a prize egg and won an airplane ride on a four engine plane, so you can see why I might have dismissed the entire matter as a bit of a tall tale. Maybe some truth in it after all? I can at least tell you I do recall being told about it.

I have been making a few improvement around the house. New well water storage tank, enlarged septic system, added carport to barn/garage/workshop and built a steel bridge to playhouse for our new granddaughter.

I did go through Henryetta a day or two before the all class reunion and stop-ed to visit with Mike Doak with whom I am indebted too for making me a part of a past I had long forgotten. His office turns out is in the towns bookleggers domain back in the day.

Dick Cameron bringing Ron Siegenthalers Mom to see me was very special. We lived and played on the same street for years. His Dad was Mr. E.G. to all us kids and very witty. When teaching us to play badminton, he would miss the bird and then look at his racket in disbelief as thought it might have a hole in it. He cheated in croquet and swear he did not to all us kids delight. I was home when he was very sick & in the local hospital. I went to see him but was never quite sure if he new.

I subscribe to the Free Lance and also receive the News Letter. I read the articles and John's recent article got me to thinking and wondering if anyone remembers some of the character's and places that I recall that seem to make Henryetta so memorable, at least to me.

I'm sure we all remember Mrs. Brown and Mrs. Jonus that ran the penny candy and pop stores. Their were lots of those little neighborhood store around town. On our street was Mr. & Mrs. Hammel. He kept a pet crow in a large pen and she was deaf. This is the lady I told you my grandfather made me return half my earnings for shoveling snow as he felt she could not afford it. Miss Piper used to make us cinnamen rolls and Mr. & Mrs. McKay let us have all the green pears we could eat off there trees.

My mother used to point out a lady in a flat black hat who always seemed in a hurry that ran the Red Cross, Gostley was her name I think. Mom said almost any family in town that had a service member was in someway indebted to her. She also pointed out the man who sent and received telegrams from the Rexall drug store and pondered all the happy and sad messages he had seen.

There was a very large heavy man with the nickname of "Tiny" who cleaned up the different pool halls. It was said that Tiny had been born with two hearts and lived on a pension from a foundation that he had sold his body to after his death. He could be seen sleeping in the movies a lot but I never heard an unkind word and he always smiled and spoke.

The Phillips 66 station at 7Th and Main was a great place to get air for your bike tires and a decal for your bike fender. The Dodge, Desoto, Plymouth dealer next door or the Studebaker and Ford dealers across the street and the Chevrolet dealer all unveiled new cars that were kept covered until that specific date to the expectation and delight of the entire town.

The Winters dairy on 8th and Main where folks would be allowed to chill watermelons in the big walk in coolers [for free or for a fee, I'm not sure]. The same was true at the Peoples Ice Co. across the track where you could buy blocks of ice and which was still delivered to houses under a old tarp in the hot summer sun on the the back of an old pick-up truck by the thinnest, strongest, kindest man I had ever seen. We kids would chase after his delivery truck and he never spoke, but always chipped off a piece of ice for each of us before loading his shoulders to make a delivery.

On Saturday, everyone came to town and the stores stayed open until 8:00 pm. Folks from the country sold their garden produce from the backs of old trucks and wagons and old men gathered on the corner of first and main where there were several benches. They were fondly refered too as the spit and whittle club.

There was the pleasant aroma of a bakery and half dozen grocery stores located on main street, the heat from the dry steam cleaners as well as the unpleasant smell of beer and tobacco emitting from the half dozen pool hall / saloons. You could smell pop corn when you past the picture shows.

There just is no good way to describe the smell of the chicken slaughter house just across the track on Main. Breath taking I guess. We peddled fast on our way to and from the swinging bridge across Coal Creek. If afoot to Cameron field, it was quicker steps, shorter breaths.

Nothing smelled better than that of home cooked meals from the different cafes along with home made pies and cakes. The City Cafe on 5th & Main and the small dinner operated by Mr. & Mrs. Moore next to the town bus station where Wayne, Don & John Morris's Mom worked, just across from Jim Hudson's dad's business.

Understand now, there was no A/C in those days. Men wore hats and women carried umbrellas to shield them from the sun. Merchants provided roll out awnings for shade. My earliest recollection of A/C was the American Exchange Bank and as it was made of Marble and Steel and Brass, it was down right cold in there. The two movie theater Morgan & Blaine were next. You would get a head ache coming out of there into the hot summer sun after the movies. Next door to the Patty Ann was restaurant called the Whiteway Cafe. You could could get six hamburgers for a dollar. They had a Willie The Penguin neon light that advertised to come in, it's Kool inside.

My next door neighbor was a man named Tad Sherman who had a dog named Lady. He was a wonderful man who treated the entire neighborhood kids as though we were his own. He taught us to hunt to fish and to sane for our own minnows and crawdads. He haulled us kids everywhere in an old Model T. That dog used to follow me to school and to the movies, waiting outside for my return.

One summer we were invaded by grasshoppers, another by crickets. The smell of DDT white powder on the sidewalks hung heavy in the air. A wonder, we didn't all up and die.

Do you recall Marlers Shoe Parlor and Mr. Marler the town cobbler, where you could get your shoes re-soled and re-healed and later when we were teenagers add steel taps to our boots toes and heels just to see how much noise we could make.

As I recall there was only one Furniture store and two dime stores on main and of course a Penny's and a CR Anthony's store. My oldest brother Jack, class of 48 had an excellent career as a Penny's executive and retired from them after 50 years. I know we had a Ginsberg's, Hamra's and several other speciality clothing dept. stores as well as Brown's book store.

Doc Burnett owned the hardware store on 5th & main where the town siren was mounted on the roof. There always seemed to be a group of men gathered there visiting as was the case at Jack Whips Men's store where our Scott master Doug Hart worked and where scouting gear was sold.

The old firehouse, courthouse, jailhouse were all interesting places for us kids to drop by. You could sometimes sneak down this winding staircase that led to the jails from the courthouse. Sometimes during the summer they had free movies at the courthouse for the kids. I think think the C of C sponsored them just as the Rod & Gun club sponsored fishing tournaments at the lake. I had a cousin die in a drowning accident in the lake one year.

Bill Tharp, a former teacher and then newpaper editor stopped me on the street one hot summer day to accompany him in an effort to fry an egg on the court house steps. It did not work and we had to clean it up.

Even the police could provide unintended entertainment. Like the time it was discovered that the local bootlegger, Johnny Wilson just showed up the first of each month regular as clockwork to pay the fine for breaking the law for selling booze rather than being arrested every day. Talmage Watkins [nicknamed high-pockets] who collected from the parking meters and wrote tickets if your time expired, unless of course you left a coin in the slot to be be pushed into the meter in the event you over-parked. Times were different then. Anyway, Talmage was practicing his "quick" draw at the station under the courthouse and the gun went off and he shot a hole in the police booking log. ".

The police would also take a fellow home if they knew him when he had a little to much to drink and not causing trouble. Case in point was one of the town founders, Barkley Morgan who had fallen on hard times and liquor had bested him.

Down on about 10th and main were two drive inns. One was call Jones & Whitey's, don't recall the others name, but it burned down one night. I went to a ministerial show on that location before the drive inn was built.

We used to go the Post Office Drug which was owned and run by Mr. Russell. He let us review the new comic books before buying. We played the pin ball machine and visited with an old gentleman named Sam who worked there. When I used the pay telephone, he would tease me about "sparking" and "courting" the girls. There must have been four or five drug stores in our town. You could get a hobo Sunday on any hot afternoon with a smile. People were just genuinely nice. Teachers that smoked could get there cigarettes in a brown paper bag there. I know, because my mother worked at several of those drug stores for many, many years.

Somebody wrote recently about a boy that was shot and killed when we were kids and that was bad. Few may know or recall that the boy back then that was killed was a sub. newspaper carrier and had purchased the papers for the regular carrier that week. Part of the purchase was a .05 charge weekly that we carriers each paid for a life insurance policy. Gene Fields, the circulation manager went to work and got his family the $500 insurance money. Just a darn nice thing to do in in the face of tragedy.

A very kind old gentleman ran a rock shop behind the Patty Ann and he let us watch him work, cutting & polishing. He lived next door and had several large tower bells in his front yard.

Another old guy lived in and run the Calico Rock Bicycle Shop near 2nd and Main. He sold stringed musical instruments and an assortment of other interesting items. He had an honest to God wooden leg that he swang forward from the hip in order to walk and it squeaked and thumped loudly on the wooden floor. Believe me when I tell you he had a Parrot that could talk and it talked and cussed a lot. The old guy would scream "shut-up" to the bird when he was busy with a customer and the bird would answer back in kind.

No one could forget Barney our Cub Scott Master who also ran the projection at the movies and would let us visit him in the booth sometimes and another named Barney at the Main Barber Shop where my grandfather took me to get a haircut every month. Barney always gave me a nickel for being good.

Every Saturday night Papa Tate would take me to the cowboy picture show at the Morgan threater. Everyone in town knew him. My grandfather used to be police chief and was Mr. Tate to all but us kids in the neighborhood and I think John Greiner counted near 20 of us. To most of us he was just Papa.

He died at age 90. His Dr. Tanniehill of 50 year stood by his bed and wept when he could do no more. Dr.'s used to come to your home in the middle of the night in those days. One night he came and operated on my grandfather in his bed. Another he came and took my mother to the hospital but not until he explained to three frightened kids what was going on.

Papa Tate is buried at Westlawn with his wife, his parents, three daughters and three grandkids. One of his grandsons ashes, Buddy, class of 49 were spread on a hill overlooking the town of Henryetta at his request. One granddaughter, Kay class of 62 is buried in Okmugoee.

When my mother died, she had a fine church service and burial with all five of her kids from as many states in attendance. My wife Nancy glanced over her shoulder at the long line of cars coming behind up the hill to the cemetery and remarked that the overflowing church and the long procession of cars made this a "good funeral" down in Temple TX where she was raised. I told her she should have seen my Papa's funeral.

I never met so many nice people as I did in Henryetta. What a great town to have been raised in.



Thank you for sending this very great history of our times in Henryetta. It is what I call vintage Americana. I am going to print it out for my files and also save it in my computer. When we were together at our 50th reunion, we talked about Hawks Hometown Dairy and the old barn in the alley between 7th and 6th where Hawks stored the milk. You were able to fill in things I never knew about the Hawks company and hopefully, I was able to fill in some others. Today you filled in some other things I never knew. I remember when the Free-Lance ran a picture of you looking at an egg on the sidewalk to see if it would fry in the hot summer sun. You mentioned an invasion of crickets. I didn’t know anybody else remembered that. I remember that merchants were sweeping the crickets off the big sidewalks. Crickets covered the sidewalks on Main like a rug. I completely forgot about the Willie the Penguin sign. I think Jones drive-in was run by Maggie Shaw. She ran one of those places near the laundry that Roy and Ron Rakestraw’s parents owned. I remember all the people you mentioned, including Barkley Morgan, Talmadge Watkins, Earl Russell, Sam(Mrs. Russell’s father); Tiny and most of the others. One of Mrs. Ghostly’s daughters was Alice Ghostly, the famous actress. Allen Wadsworth knows the name of the boy who got killed. I never knew about Mr. Fields’ kindness to his family. I think the boy’s name was Danny. Allen would know. I too got to talk with Mrs. Siegenthaler. I told her I think we kids had a lot more fun growing up in those days than kids do now. It seems like we spent lots of hours in the Siegenthaler’s backyard and also in that particular area of the neighborhood, playing kick the can and other things. Tad Sherman’s daughter was older than we were. Her nickname was something like Pookie. Her real name was Georgeann and she was the football queen in the 1952 season. Well, unless something disastrous happens, I will be at the next all-school reunion. Bill, we’ve got more things to talk about. Ron Rolen and I took a field trip to Henryetta one day about a year ago and walked all around the old neighborhood. Last thing I want everyone to know: Bill Miller was responsible for me scoring the only touchdown our 8th Grade Junior High School team scored in 1955. Our coach was Larry Campbell, who I believe was one of the great ends in Henryetta history. Anyway, we were playing Alice Robertson’s 8th grade team from Muskogee. For some reason, I rushed the quarterback who threw the ball. I tipped it and it wobbled toward our defensive line, which was anchored by Bill. I yelled for him to catch it, but for some reason Bill batted it back to me, I caught it, turned and raced into the end zone. To everybody else, Bill and I talked about that play at our 50th reunion. I told him my Mother laughed and said, “I’ve seen you boys do that in the backyard.”

Well, thanks Bill for the great email about our town.

It’s good to hear from you.

Bill - John,

You guys made my day. Bill, your historical remarks are great and brings back old memories and made me recap my memory on things that I had forgotten.

The Calico Rock Bicycle Shop brings back a lot of memories as my mother owned the Stanley Help-U-Self Laundry in the early 50's at 204 W. Main. Our family lived in the back side of the laundry so the 200 Block of Main street was "my neighborhood" for a few year so we would see a lot of Main Street business people, police and others daily while living there. There was also a blacksmith in the alley in the 200 Block between Main & Trudgeon that was also very interesting. That guy could fix anything and if he did not have the parts to fix something, he would forge the steel and make it. Talmadge Watkins would stop our laundry often to say "hello" to my mom and family. Same for Police Chief Chester Beard and others.

My brother Bill worked at Whipp's Men Store and the store was a good hangout for many of the guys. Mrs. Ghostley would have dinner several times a week at the Patty Ann and I had the opportunity to serve her often, and occasionally her daughter Alice would come to in town so I was able to visit and serve with both of them. And, my two brothers, Jim and Norman, ran the shoe shine stand at Ritz Barber Shop from 1951-53, adjacent to what is now the American Exchange Bank; then, Norman and I ran the shoe shine stand at the Main Barber Shop from 1953 through 1957.

Henryetta was a great town to grow up in, to be from, and to have great memories about!!

Thanks to Bill and to John for your great emails about "our' town. It was good to hear from both of you.

John, Thanks for all of the updates. Bill Miller certainly has me beat in recalling a lot of the names and events. A couple of quick notes on memories maybe you can pass along to the group. Does anyone remember an old man about town that went by the name of Bramble or something like that. I remember he would always reach in his pocket and give us candy but Mom would never let us eat it. If I remember right he was pretty disheveled in appearance and a little scary. Let me know how I can get on "Memories of Henryetta" list and I'll try to make a few more contributions as I probe my way through the fog of my memory. Thanks again.


Tuesday, November 23, 2010

Catching up with John

It was exciting to receive an email from John Greiner  with some photos of his recent activities.  I've copied his emails and included the photos.  Here's what John and his wife, Marsha, have been up to recently.

"If you're still taking photos for the web, I have a few to send you. They are of me, my wife Marsha, Carleton and his wife Julia at a restaurant. The rain thwarted efforts to get pictures of us outside. We visited them in their home at Oneonta, New York, where they have lived for probably 40 years. They live outside town in a rural area. It's beautiful, but Marsha tells me I wouldn't think it was so beautiful if I had to drive in snow about 8 months of the year.

Marsha and I went on a cruise of the Hudson River in October. We stayed with Carleton and Julia before we left for NYC to take the cruise. All of it was fabulous. 

Then we went to the far west where Marsha went to a convention in Portland while I went to western Washington state on the Idaho line to see an old Army buddy from long ago. Here are a few pictures.

I got to thinking about sending something to the website after I got the Henryetta newsletter with my story about Hens and Knights, plus a real good picture of several of our classmates.

This photo is of me pointing to the sign on the grounds of FDR's home in New York. YES. I STILL AM A DEMOCRAT!. Now that I no longer write stories, I can tell people. FDR's home is called Springwood and is located in the town or township of Hyde Park.

This photo is me standing by the railing on the riverboat on which we cruised on the Hudson River. I would recommend it to anyone.

This picture is of me and an Army buddy named Merrill Oaks. We were in Panama together. We stayed in touch, with him visiting me a few times.  We were shocked to find out we had not seen each other since 1976. He lives in Washington State, taught at Washington State University."


Thanks, John , for sharing your photos and update!

Friday, November 5, 2010

All School Reunion October 2010

Betty Decker sent me a CD with lots of photos from the 2010 HHS All-School Reunion held in October.  Since there are quite a few photos, I'll put them on in several "batches"  Here is the first installation.
If I spell names wrong or have the wrong information, please let me know so I can make a correction!

Barbara Elmore ('60) and Jim Muehlhausen

Carolyn Sprague Dewberry and Eloise Hull Woodliff Class of 1960

Karen Thomas Anglin ('57), Eddie Anglin ('55) and Georgeanne Radebaugh ('58)

Gene Stanley, Carolyn Dewberry, Betty Decker Class of 1960

Gwen (Preston) Henry and Freda (Stone) Meacham  Class of 58

Mickey Jackson ('59) and ?

Mike Doak

Phyllis Shepherd ('62) Barb Elmore ('60) and Susan Burnett Newman ('60)

Susan Burnett Newman, Sue Sherment Gueissman, Barbara Lust Elmore, John Walker, Betty Ayres Decker, Gene Stanley

Sharon Beithol, Karen Thomas Anglin, Diana Burnett Agee, Jeanie Polston

Ruth Gaston Krienhagen  ('41) and Pauline Shepherd Martin ('39)

Rita Ingram Peters ('59), Jane Buzan, and ?

More photos will be posted soon!

Monday, September 13, 2010

A Trip to Kimberling City

Barbie and Betty recently visited Sue at her home in Kimberling City, Mo.  Sounds like they had a great time shopping, visiting and enjoying the great view from Sue's deck (while sipping wine!) 

Thanks for sharing your photos on the blog!

Wednesday, August 11, 2010

Buddy Vernetti

Buddy told us he was getting married......and he did!  Here's their wedding photo!

Tuesday, July 20, 2010

Keeping In Touch

My goodness, do you realize that it's been  almost 6 weeks since we gathered in Henryetta for our 50th class reunion?  What have YOU been up to since then?  I thought it would be fun to post some "updates" and/or "what's going on" since our reunion.  So I'll start out with some photos taken over the 4th of July weekend when Tom and Charlie and I took a little trip to the Sierras.  I would love to post what YOU'VE been up to - just send me some photos and let me know what's going on in your life, and I'll get it on the blog.

We saw lots of beautiful mountain scenery on our trip.......snow covered mountains, sparkling blue lakes,

we even had a snow-ball fight at the top of.......

Sonora Pass!

We enjoyed the many wildflowers that were blooming along the way,

And watched a 4th of July Parade in the restored gold-mining town of Columbia, California!

Hope your 4th was great!

Now it's your turn.  Send me an update on your summer activities!  With lots of photos!  Let's keep in touch!

Monday, June 21, 2010

Dear Classmates

Most of the photos that I have received have been posted.  There are a few more which I will post soon, but I will happily post any more photos that are sent to me. 

I just have one little request.  I am really getting tired of seeing "0 COMMENTS" , so, after you finish checking out the postings, please leave me a comment or two - it would be in a way like we're continuing visiting at the reunion!  And,....it's so easy to do.  Just look at the bottom of each entry.  You will see the word "comment". 

Click on it and it will take you to a white box, where you can type your comment. 

Then choose "Select Profile".  The easiest is to choose "Anonymous".  (If you choose anonymous, I would appreciate it if you would sign your name in the comment box, or otherwise I won't know who left the comment!) 

Then click "Post Comment".  Sometimes another box pops up with a nonsense word for you to type in a small box.  Sometimes not.  Anyway, that's all there is to it. 

And your comment will show up under the post (when I click on "comments".)  Wasn't that easy!  And it will make me so very happy to hear from you!  You do want me to be happy, don't you?  I thought so!

Here's a little tip.  You can right click on a photo and save it to your computer.  Nifty, huh?  So if you see a photo or two that you would like to keep, save it to your computer and it's yours!  A present from me and Mr. Blogger.  Another handy tip....if you left click on a photo, it will usually enlarge. 

Hope to hear from ya'll via the "comments" on the blog! 

And yet another tip:  Blogs are really easy and fun to do!  Go to http://www.blogger.com/ and follow the easy set up directions!  It's a great way to share photos with others.

It was sure fun seeing everyone!  Ciao!


Faces of the Class of 1960

Saturday, June 19, 2010

Saturday at the Reunion

Saturday afternoon we gathered at the high school to socialize and view memorabilia displayed around the room. 

Saturday evening we enjoyed a buffet dinner at the Henryetta High School Cafeteria.  Now if this brings to mind school cafeteria meals of soggy mashed potatoes, jello and "mystery" meat served by grumpy ladies in hairnets, stop right there!  This catered meal featured roast pork loin in cherry sauce, sauted vegetables, fresh green beans, choice of potatoes, crisp green salad, hot loaves of home-made bread, and delicious fruit cobbler with ice cream.  And our servers were the Henryetta High School cheerleaders!  Not a hairnet in sight!  We continued to visit, view the memorabilia displayed, watch the class DVD and pose for our group photo! 

Chris Lamb surrounded by her "girls" - Eloise, Jeannie, Barbie, Betty, Susan, DAnna & Sue

Jeanie and Chris Lamb

C.A. Riser, Allen Wardsworth, Buddy Vernetti and Susan Newman

Chuck Richeson and Barbie Elmore

Deanna Durbin, Billy Joe Stephenson, Dwayne Rutland and Susan Rutland

Our "unofficial" group photo

John Moore, Allen and Joyce Shaw

John, Dick, Charles, Don, Allen, Dwayne

Joy Ingram Kuykendall and her husband

Mary Cameron and Theresa Stanley

Ron Rolen, Bill and Nancy Miller

Donna and John Molet, Roseann Petron Biven and her husband, Dwain, David and Ann Goodman

Susan and Eddie Newman

The Shaws

Thomas and Suzzi Dawson