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Looking Backward 8.2.2012

  25 Years Ago

July 30, 1987


About 175 enthusiastic folks turned out last Friday night for an evening of music on the Ava square, sponsored by the Retail Merchants Division of the Ava Area Chamber of Commerce. If you like down home country and bluegrass singing and instrumen­tals, you won’t want to miss the program this Friday night.

All the thrills and excitement of a professional rodeo gets under way here tonight as the Ava Saddle Club presents three big nights of IPRA rodeo action.

Dr. Larry Beem, a practicing chiropractor in Oklahoma City since 1970 opened an office in Ava this week.

Mr. and Mrs. Ronald McFarlin (April Lakey) wish to announce the birth of their daughter, Kassi Elaine, born July 16 at 4:11 p.m. at Cox South in Springfield.

Southwest Missouri State head football coach Jesse Branch and sophomore tight end John Douglass from Mtn. Grove will be among the publicity tour group that will visit Ava next Thursday, Aug. 6.

Mrs. Anna Halford and Lester Thurman were honored July 16 with a 6 o’clock dinner at the Highway House Café for their birthdays. Guests at the dinner were Vernie Halford, Lorene Thurman, Harl Elliott, Tommy Dye, Harley and Eula Mae Dye, and Everett and Thelma Chisam.

The Ava Junior Varsity Cheerleading Squad attended the NCA Cheer Camp at SMSU June 29-July 2.  For daily evaluation the squad received two blue ribbons, one white and one read, out of a possible four blue.  Members of the squad are Amy Litwiller, Larissa Dills, Tammy Graham, Mary Willis, Melissa Christian, Jill Lansdown and Tammie Nall.

CHAMPION – Doug Hutchison had the misfortune of his hog barn burning Saturday. Light­ning was the cause. It had 700 bales of hay stored in it.


50 Years Ago

July 26, 1962


The Amalgamated Clothing Workers of America, AFL-CIO, has apparently started an intensive effort to organize employees of the Rawlings Manufacturing Company in Ava.  A meeting for Rawlings employees was called by union organizers last Friday evening after the closing of the factory for the day.  A Herald reporter was denied admittance to the meeting and was told that the meeting was “for Rawlings employees only.”

Three local boys left Ava Monday, July 23, to begin enlistment periods with the United States Navy and arrived at San Diego, Calif., Tuesday night to begin boot training at the U.S. Naval base. The young men: Larry Owens, son of Mr. and Mrs. Leonard Owens; Tom Williams, son of Mr. and Mrs. Charley Williams, Campbell Farms, and Gene Garrison, son of Mr. and Mrs. Eddie Garrison, enlisted at the Springfield Naval Recruiting office earlier this month and had their final examination and swearing in activities in St. Louis Tuesday.

City and county officers are putting forth every effort to find persons who are turning in false burglary and fire alarms, and these malicious “pranksters” will be dealt with severely, if caught, officials indicate.

A number of the 26 monks from Our Lady of the Assumption Abbey, 15 miles east of Ava, came to town July 16 to donate blood to the Red Cross in the hall of the First Baptist Church building.

The Rev. James C. Hoggard of Peragould, Ark., assumed the pastorate of the General Baptist Church in Ava on Wednesday, July 18.  The Rev. Hoggard, his wife, and their two children, La Faun, age 5, and 3-year-old Randall, arrived in Ava on Tuesday last week, and immediately established residence in the church parsonage located at the corner of Spring and Webster streets.  He succeeds the Rev. Robert Porter, who resigned in May.

Mr. and Mrs. James A. Herrell of Ava announce the birth of a son at the Mansfield Hospital on Friday, July 20.  The baby, who has been named Jeffrie Dewight, weighed 8 pounds and 12 ounces at the time of his birth.

Ten students from Ava will receive degrees at Southwest Missouri State College summer commencement exercises Tuesday, July 31, at 8 p.m. in the Fieldhouse. They are Wanda Victor, education major; Shirley Gentry, business major; Mary Rosalie Grabeel, education major; Freda Gray, education major; Billy Hodges, education major; Ruby Mackey, education major; Dora Mahan, education major; Betty Moore, education major; Betty Satterfield, education major; and Sybil Gheer, education major.

ALMARTHA –– Mr. and Mrs. Eukal Gardner and Beverly returned home Sunday after two weeks vacation.

BROWN BRANCH –– A new porch has been built onto Mrs. Marion Higgins’ house and the house painted gypsy brown, trimmed in white.  The shade trees have been trimmed, making a fine appearance to the home site.


75 Years Ago

July 29, 1937


Robert Kenyon, 23, of the Grimmet community in Howell County, was sentenced to die on the gallows September 2 for the kidnapping and slaying of Dr. J.C.B. Davis, prominent Willow Springs physician.

Prospects for softball games under floodlights on the city park diamond were considered excellent this week by Ava’s ever-growing list of softball enthusiasts. Six poles for reflectors and lights and one for a transformer were set up at the diamond this week.   Today the association counted ninety-seven members. The treasurer had received at the time $145.50, $1.50 for each player. That sum augmented by admissions of 5 cents and 10 cents for each game will go for the first payment on the installation of the lighting system. The lighting system is being installed at a cost of approximately $350.

The building and furnishings of Douglas County’s new courthouse is now complete.

GRAND OPENING of Brown Derby Café, Meeker Building, Ava, Saturday, July 31, 1937.  Steak, chicken and fish dinners, Blatz beer on tap. Our hospitality is yours to enjoy.  Dine and dance in the coolest spot in the city. Music reproduced by the Modern Wurlitzer.  W. P. “Bill” Hawkins.

George Johnson, young Douglas county schoolteacher, and Miss Alma Sellers of Smallett, were married in Mtn. Home, Arkansas, on November 7, 1936, it has just been announced. The marriage was kept a secret by the young couple until this week.

Unie Ellison of Washington, D.C. arrived in Ava Monday afternoon enroute to Roy where he will spend several days vising his brother and family, Mr. and Mrs. Earnest Ellison and children.

Howard and Cloine Pettit left Friday afternoon for a three weeks trip to be spent in Colorado where they will visit their brother, Harold Pettit and Mrs. Pettit and another brother, Joe, who is also a guest in the Harold Pettit home.  The Harold Pettits are now located three miles from Leadville, Colorado, where they operate a mountain resort tavern and dance pavilion. During their stay Howard and Cloine expect to accompany Joe to Casper, Wyoming, where he will resume his work in a beauty salon there.

Homer Morrow of Buffalo hooked and landed what is given up to be the largest rainbow trout ever taken out of the Bennett Spring branch on a fly rod last Friday. It weighed 7 pounds 6 ounces.

Everett Reynolds, who for the past year has operated a barber shop at the Ava hotel, this week moved to a chair in the shop operated by Charles M. Spurlock on the south side of the square.

PLEASANT GREEN –– Fox hunters, bring on your dogs! Two red foxes were seen recently playing in the road south of the schoolhouse.


100 Years Ago

August 1, 1912


Next Tuesday we will hold the Primary Election. Every voter should take time to go to the polls and vote. Help nominate men who are to serve us in public office.

The State Convention of Progressives at Kansas City was a wild demonstration for Roosevelt. Everybody present were supporters of the colonel, except a few St. Louis delegates who wanted to instruct for Governor Hadley.

Why do merchants and busi­nessmen in Ava return to their place of business after their eve­ning meal?  It is certainly not be­cause they gain financially by doing so, neither is it because they are so fond of work that they spend fifteen hours a day at it.  We be­lieve every merchant here would be much better off physically and equally as well off financially if their stores would close at 6 p.m. and remain closed until 6:30 or 7:00 the following morning. Eve­rybody needs to work; they also need recreation and rest.  Why not get together and agree on hours for opening and closing, then stick to them.

Stock on ranges are breaking in our farmers crops and destroying them already.  Get up a petition for a vote on the stock law for Benton, Boone, Walls and Spring Creek townships. Pastures would be better, stock more agreeable, neighbors less expense for fencing, better milk cows, more cream to sell, less plowing of land, more money for our stock and farms, for those who wish to dispose of the same.

Plenty of bees are now found in trees in the woods and men cut trees and destroy the bees. It ought to be a fine to destroy the poor bees for they are fully as useful as many protected game.  Who is the representative for the poor bee protection.

Let us who are on or near the Ava and Almartha mail route get together and have a mass road working, a hundred men and teams or more and fix up in a passable manner the main road into Ava.  Who says yes? And you merchants, bankers and businessmen in Ava, help us with money and dynamite and boost so we can come to Ava to buy your goods. They help in other parts of this and other states.

All hands and cooks are at Brown’s Cave picnicking and plenty office seekers there telling you how good they are.

BRUSHY KNOB ITEMS – Uncle Henry Harrison has been helping Rufus Morgan make hay this week.

A temporary building for the use of the Senate and House of Representatives of the General Assembly will be constructed this fall.

As to yet nothing further has been done to insure for Ava an electric light plant, but there should be soon, so the plant could be installed by or before cold weather sets in.

T.L. Plummer has a bunch of men down near Hammond, Ozark County, this week, repairing the telephone system.


125 Years Ago

July 22, 1887


Springfield has been selected by the Frisco road as a feeding point, and extensive stockyards are being laid out in the northwestern part of town. This will be quite a good thing for Springfield. The yards are located at the intersection of the Connecting Railway with the Frisco. This will always give a good home market for Greene County farmers who will thus begin to realize that the Frisco is our friendliest and best railway.

How much brain a human being can lose and still go on with the ordinary manifestations of intellect and have good muscular action and unimpaired nervous force is a question which has often bothered says a New York special to The Cincinnati Enquirer.  There has been and still is a wide diversity on the subject.

There are said to be thirty-two summer resorts along the Atlantic coast between Cape May and Long Branch.  It is estimated that one hundred thousand people bathed in the surf at Coney Island, New York, on the Fourth.

In 1837 a colored woman put $94 in a savings bank at Baltimore. The other day her heirs drew out $2,300 as a result of the increase of the original amount.

A little 4-year-old sat clinching his fingers around a silver quarter of a dollar at Sunday-school recently and reluctantly surrendered it to the lady who collected the contributions, saying afterward:  “I didn’t want to give it to Mrs. B.  I wanted to give it to the Lord.”

It Must Never Occur Again – We know who has been milking our cow of late, and if the offense is repeated names will be printed, let the chips fall where they may. – Harold

We want rain.  Give us a little rain. The weather is more comfortable today.

John Thurman of Girdner is laying the foundation for the new courthouse. He is doing a very neat job.

A slight cutting affray stirred the quietude of our little burg the fore part of the week.  It seems that Tommy Brixey and James Burchell had both fell in love with the same girl and meeting the other night they had a row – Burchell using a knife and cutting Brixey quit badly in the side and on the hand. Outsiders interfered and stopped the fight and Tommy was taken home and a Dr. summoned. The wounds were pronounced not fatal. Both the boys stand well in the community and were good friends up till the time of the row.

The School Building sports a new belfry the work of J. McDanel.

SO VERY AWFUL PLEASANT – To see a rain cloud go by in hot weather.   …   To introduce your best girl to a better looking fellow.   …   To need two nickels and only have one.   …   To get skunked in a game of checkers.   …   To build a courthouse and have every man that subscribed six bits come around and boss the job.

BRYANT NEWS –– We are having dry weather at this time of writing and if we don’t get the needed rain before long the corn crop will be very light.