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Looking Backward 1.15.2015

  25 Years Ago

January 11, 1990


Douglas County native Miranda Welton recently assumed the posi­tion of county executive director for ASCS offices in Douglas and Ozark counties. Miss Welton, 23, a 1988 graduate of the University of Missouri, officially began her duties Dec. 17, replacing Kirby Mackey, who retired.

Another eagle has been shot in Douglas County and wildlife offi­cials are eager to find out who is responsible. This is the second eagle to be shot in the county dur­ing the past month. While bald eagles are becoming somewhat common in this area of the state during winter months, the sighting of a golden eagle here is rare.

Keith Jenkins scored a hole-in-one at the Ava Country Club golf course Sunday afternoon. Jenkins hit the ace on the par-three No. 7 green, swinging a seven iron. Wit­nessing the shot were Stan Lovan, Wayne Garrett and C.E. Hecken­dorn.

BROWN BRANCH – Four new houses are being built. At the con­fluence of Kentucky Hollow and Beaver Creeks, halfway to Brad­leyville, the house on the farm that at one time was owned by Andy Smith, then his son, John Smith, has been replaced by a small white house. Hilton and Norma Bray have bought that farm. The Glen McPhersons lived on the place until moving into Bradley-ville. Up W-1 east, up the hill from Brown Branch is a new house set in a lovely wooded hillside. Owners Alan and Kathy Dorsey built on part of the former Hester Ann Lawrence place. In the Sandy community, Mr. and Mrs. Billy Hodges are building a house on their place, the former home for many years of Walter and Mae Deckard.   When repairs were started on the house where J.B. King lived before moving to For­syth, much termite damage was discovered, so that house is to be replaced with a new house. This is down 390 west of Brown Branch.


50 Years Ago

January 7, 1965


Two Ava businessmen are among 750 honorary colonels who will participate in inauguration ac­tivities Jan. 11 in Jefferson City. Cleo Cooper of Ava, and Bob Cooper of Mansfield, sons of Mr. and Mrs. E. H. Cooper of Ava, will parade through downtown Jefferson City Monday. Each will be wearing a regulation U.S. Army dress uni­form. The colonels were appointed by Governor Warren E. Hearnes, to provide a color guard and march during Hearnes’ inauguration.

“Dairying is so commonplace in Missouri and Douglas County that few people realize how important it is,” says County Agent Marcus Holman. “It is the most important source of income in the county, and is second most important farm in­come in Missouri,” Holman added. Douglas County ranks 11th in the nation in pounds of milk produced.

A new $77,000 addition to the Ava Elementary School is sched­uled for construction this year. Plans call for completion of the six self-contained classroom addition before the next school term.

A taxicab owned by Ray Thompson of Ava, which was sto­len on Dec. 5 was recovered recently in Joplin from a used car lot. Law officers said the vehicle, a 1960 Valiant, was sold to a used car dealer in Joplin by Jerry Leon­ard Lawrence, 24, of Springfield. Lawrence was taken into custody and is being held in Greene County. Another man arrested in the theft several weeks ago, Russell Mag­gard, is scheduled for a preliminary hearing here on Saturday.

Mrs. John Follis, of Route 5, Ava, is one of 68 regional winners in the Kitty Clover Chip Switcher Tongue Twister Party Spree con­test. Her prize was $50 worth of groceries at Don’s Supermarket.

Mrs. Maude Robertson, student counselor at Ava R-1 Schools, has accepted an offer from the Drury College staff in Springfield to teach two courses, counseling techniques and occupational and education information. The courses begin June 7.

Mr. and Mrs. Jesse M. Nash of Ava will observe their Golden Wedding anniversary on Jan. 16 with an open house at the Legion Hall. The couple was married on Jan. 16, 1913 at the home of her parents at Squires by Rev. Samuel Hargis. They have nine children.

WASOLA –– Mr. and Mrs. Larry Warden of Kansas City have returned home after a few days with Mr. and Mrs. Mike Warden.

Mr. and Mrs. Jim Sivils, son of Mr. and Mrs. Lloyd Sivils of Ava, announce the birth of a six-pound, seven-ounce son, James Lloyd Sivils, III, on Jan. 1 at Burge-Protestant Hospital. Mr. Sivils, assistant Greene County prosecut­ing attorney, was absent from cer­emonies when the oath of office was administered. A.E. Willis, county clerk, went to the hospital and performed the ceremonies in the waiting room. Minutes after completion, the son was born to Mr. and Mrs. Sivils.

75 Years Ago

January 11, 1940


The temperature went to an official 5 degrees below zero Fri­day morning last week, the coldest weather recorded this winter at the U.S. Forest Service ranger station.   Due to weather conditions and ina­bility of many rural students to reach Ava over bus routes, school was dismissed there this week. Snow and ice make it almost im­possible to operate the buses in some sections, especially where they were compelled to leave the main highways, Supt. Parker said.

Bert Henderson, Sparta druggist on trial for his life here Monday and Tuesday for the alleged murder of Dr. Hugh Wise, physician at Sparta, on May 28, 1939, was found guilty of manslaughter by the jury in a verdict which was returned about 9:30 o’clock Wednesday morning. The jury recommended punishment as eight years in the penitentiary.

Mr. and Mrs. Norval Wallen and son, Norval, Jr., moved Tuesday to Mansfield where they plan to establish a permanent home. The Wallens made this move so that Mr. Wallen can manage a Western Auto Store, which he opened in Mansfield Saturday.

Noble Reese and Norman Ball, farmers living in the east part of the county, killed a female wolf with one foot gone Friday on the old Laurie ranch east of Vanzant.

This Week In History –– Months before the opening of the Civil War, St. Louis became a hot-bed of Union and pro-Southern sentiment. One enthusiastic ban of southern sympathizers met on Jan. 7, 1861, 79 years ago this week, and organized what they called the Minute Men. This small group of about 300 men managed from that time on to keep the “Wide Awakes” and other northern clubs in a constant state of fear. They made the Berthold House on Fifth and Pine streets their stronghold, flew a Confederate flag over it, and from there came forth to heckle and even sometimes stone the parading Union men.

That’s Wrong – You’re Right! Getting out this paper is no joke. If we print jokes people say we are silly; if we don’t they say we are too serious. If we clip things from other papers, we are too lazy to write them ourselves; If we don’t we are too fond of our own stuff. If we don’t print contributions, we don’t appreciate true genius; If we do print them the paper is filled with junk. If we make a change in the other person’s write-up, we are too critical; If we don’t we are asleep. Now, like as not, someone will say we swiped this. –We DID.

Mrs. Lawrence Croslin and Mrs. Bill Guthrie entertained with a birthday party last Wednesday af­ternoon in compliment to Mrs. Boyd Robertson of Joplin who was celebrating her birthday anniver­sary. During the afternoon the ladies played pinochle and at the close of play, the high score prize was presented to Mrs. Freda Garri­son and low prize was won by Mrs. Virgil Kester.


100 Years Ago

January 21, 1915


The burning of two large electric cables in the New York subway resulted in the partial asphyxiation of hundreds of passengers, and a panic ensued in which scores were injured. One woman was killed.

General Hill is in command of American troops at Naco, Arizona, the border town that has been suf­fering from the bullets fired across the line by the Mexicans, attacking and defending the Mexican town of Naco.

French soldiers near Arras are helping the inhabitants repair their raised homes so that they will be fit to live in. The houses were wrecked by German shells.

There is no question of the value of the work of our agricultural schools and experiment stations, but an experiment that is successful in the locality may fail in another, so it is well to verify the experience of others by an experiment of your own.

The two merchants at Tigris, Mr. Haynes and Allen have been doing lots of business lately.

TIGRIS ITEMS –– Butchering is about over in this neighborhood, and most everyone will have plenty of meat this winter.

Miss Lois Surguine is teaching a successful term of school at Pleas­ant Green. This is her second term there.

The new ventures in millinery are even smaller than the small hats worn this winter. Many are merely a narrow band of satin or straw extending like a bandage about the head, supporting a scant crown of satin gathered in to the band at its upper edge. By way of trimming, exquisitely made flowers are sewed flat to the band.

HEBRON ITEMS –– Mud is plentiful at this writing.

There will be a debate at Mt. Arart Friday night. Everybody invited. The question is resolved, “that Wilson’s administration is a success”. The speakers are: Aff. T.F. Kirkman, H.E. Alsup; Neg. Arthol McDaniel, James Roberts.

Ava is particularly well situated for a tomato cannery and raising small fruits. What other towns and farmers are doing, we can do, if all get together.


125 Years Ago

January 16, 1890


  1. LOUIS, Jan. 12 –– About 4:30 o’clock this afternoon a cy­clone struck the southwestern section of the city and swept on through to the northern limits, making a pathway nearly a quarter of a mile wide and leaving death and desolation in its track.

The Prohibitionists of Missouri are to hold a mass convention at Sedalia next month; and as St. John is to be one of the speakers, the inference follows that the expenses of the occasion are to be borne by the Democratic National Commit­tee.

The baby king of Spain was re­ported dead and an outbreak of the people feared; but, later reports, pronounced the little monarch much improved and likely to recover.

  1. W. Singleton has been appointed gauger and surveyor for the new distillery near Ava.

The cold wave struck Ava and vicinity at about 8 p.m. Sunday and quickly lowered the mercury to 10º above zero.

The following marriage licenses have been issued this week by the Recorder: W.J. Reed to Lizzie Turner; J.J. Cain to Tempsy Eddings; J.W. McKay to Sarah Lewis; Jno. Dagger to Almeda Evans.

During the closing exercises of the 2nd term of the Douglas County Normal School, at the school house in Ava, on Monday evening last, a lamp was accidentally upset and broken. The oil quickly took fire and a stampede for the door by the affrighted audience was the result. The flames were extinguished and the people quieted before anyone was seriously injured.

What Women Can Do –– A correspondent of a New York paper has found three smart women up in Somerset County, “somewhere above East Norridgewock.” Two of them sisters, and the other was formerly a milliner who got tired of making bonnets and decided to try farming, so she cast in her lot with the two sisters, who own the farm where they now live. The three live in a house described as a weather-beaten pink in color, and it stands under a group of magnificent maple trees. They are experts in canning berries and in all other kinds of housekeeping, and can drive an ox-team, milk, churn, ride mowing machines and chop wood with the best of folks. They enjoy good health and spirits and believe that farming pays.

It is perhaps not generally known in this country that every seal skin taken by authorized agents of this government from the Seal Islands, the Alaska Commercial Company, is sent to London to be dressed. And they are then returned to the United States to be sold, paying duty, although they are the actual “catch” of Americans and originally the property of the United States.

AROUND VERA CRUZ – John Appling has sold his farm and bought one near Cedar Gap, where he and his family at present reside. Mr. Beck purchased the Appling farm and, with his family, is resid­ing there. John Haynes has re­moved to Thomas Riley’s old house, and will make crops on Mr. Silsbee’s land this year.