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Looking Backward 2.25.2016

25 Years Ago

February 21, 1991


Seventh District Congressman Mel Hancock was keynote speaker at the Support Group Rally held Saturday afternoon in the Ava High School Gymnasium.  More than 800 people attended the rally, including representatives from all branches of the armed forces.

A break-in at McKnight’s Package Store just south of Ava was reported Monday morning.  Burglars were first unable to enter the building, so apparently used their vehicle to ram the building and force the door open.  Vandal­ism at the Blue buck Church in the east end of Douglas County is also under investigation.

1990-91 officers of the Ava High School FFA Chapter are Cliff Stonerock, reporter; Honey Nokes, parliamentarian; June Gooden, vice president; Joey Fesler, treasurer, Landon Johnson, sentinel; Travis Graham, chaplain; Reggie Bray, secretary; and Sean Dobbs, presi­dent.

Kristi Reeves, 1986 graduate of Ava High School and 1990 gradu­ate of Northeast Missouri State University, is the recipient of a Rotary International scholarship.  The scholarship provides for nine months at an international univer­sity. Kristi has been assigned to La Troke University at Melbourne, Australia.

On the afternoon of Saturday, Dec. 29, Christy Strong and Terry Moore were united in marriage at the Girdner Church south of Ava. The Rev. Ronnie Pinckney read the double-ring ceremony.

Mr. and Mrs. A.R. Smith celebrated their 50th wedding anni­versary on Dec. 14, 1990 with a beautiful reception given by their niece, Jan Huston.

DRURY – We have had several changes in the weather here in east­ern Douglas County Monday, including fog, cloudiness, sunshine and a small thunderstorm, but not cold.


50 Years Ago

 February 17, 1966


A surprise snowfall Sunday night left a four-inch blanket of snow over this area, causing can­cellation of schools Monday.

Enlisting in the U. S. Air Force is James Alford Lathrop, son of Mr. and Mrs. Russell Lathrop of Route 4, Ava.  Airman Lathrop has flown to Lackland AFB, San Antonio, Texas, where he will attend 6 weeks of basic military training.

Mr. and Mrs. Clarence Spurlock will observe their 50th wedding anniversary Sunday, Feb. 20, with open house at the MFA Hall here.  The couple was married Feb. 23, 1916, at Ava,  They have one daughter, Mrs. Wilma Shipps, and one grandchild, Sammie Shipps.

Two Ava women, Mrs. Arthur Singleton and Mrs. Alta Vinson, were in Mansfield Sunday after­noon and visited with their friend, Mrs. Lincoln Barnes, who very recently established residence in Mansfield.

Miss Jan Hart, daughter of Mr. and Mrs. Norman Hart, Ava, was crowned Miss Business University at the Springfield Draughon Busi­ness University’s annual Winter Mixer held at the UMCA in Springfield on Feb. 9.

Members of the Young Married Women’s Sunday School Class of Ava First Baptist Church and their teacher, Mrs. Ernest Cantwell, held a social meeting and pizza party at the church Tuesday night, Feb. 8. Members and their guests attending the event were Mesdames Virginia Coats, Sue Bacorn, Judy Davis, Gladys Davis, Virginia Cagle, Earlene Cagle, Laura Rook, Wanda Johnson, Vada Stott, Wanda Sexton, and Darla Stark and Miss Babs Meeker.

Mr. and Mrs. Jerry Mackey of Springfield, the son of Mr. and Mrs. Ralph Mackey and Mr. and Mrs. Paul Gardner of Ava, returned home Friday after completing their second all expense paid vacation tour given them by his company, Salad Master of Dallas, Texas.

County Supt. Elmer Peterson is producing a lemon crop on a small scale in his office in the courthouse. Mr. Peterson’s lemon tree is about 7 years old and is bearing lemons as large as three-inches in diameter.

Heavy rains fell here Tuesday night and Wednesday of last week, causing much flooding.  Several folks thinks it was about five inches.

A group of Ava ladies were hostesses at a wedding shower Sat­urday  night at Ava Country Club in honor of Mr. and Mrs. Dean Latimer (Diana Stott) of Marshall.  Mr. and Mrs. Latimer were married in an eight o’clock double ring cer­emony Saturday evening, Feb. 5, at the home of her sister, Mrs. Chelmer Ireland and Mr. Ireland, 505 NE 5th Street, in Ava.

FOIL and CLARK –– Mrs. Minnie Terry and Mrs. Edith Jones visited Tuesday with Mrs. Glenda Hayes and her aunt and uncle.

Despite the fact that living costs are much higher today than they were some years ago, residents of Douglas County are in better shape, financially, than they were then.


75 Years Ago

February 20, 1941


Motorists in Douglas County still have until Monday to drive cars bearing 1939 license plates without being prosecuted, it was announced this morning by Prose­cuting Attorney Willis H. Mitchell.  February 19 was set by the state as the deadline for the use of 1939 plates.

  1. J. Summers of Seymour has accepted a position as salesman with the Kerr Chevrolet company here. Mr. Summers is a member of the 100-car chapter of the 100-car club of Chevrolet salesmen.

What do you want most in life? Members of a class in American Problems in Ava High School asked themselves that question and spent four days answering it, com­pleting a list of twelve items Tues­day morning.  As decided by the class, the most worthwhile things in life are:  1.  Good health, 2. Friends, 3. A happy home life, 4. Good character, 5. Financial secu­rity, 6. A religious life, 7. A long life, 8. Peace, 9. Sufficient educa­tion, 10. A job I like, 11. An attrac­tive appearance, and 12. To live in a country of democracy and oppor­tunities.   The items were not listed according to any degree of importance.

Mr. and Mrs. Dale Stewart announce the birth of an eight-pound son on Wednesday, Feb. 12. The young man has been named Robert Samuel.

RANDOM SHOTS –– I’m thinking of a wise old minister who once said, “When I have to have a substitute, have to find a man to preach my sermons for me, I look up the very worst possible one I can find for the job.  Then when I re­turn to my pulpit my friends are telling me how much they have missed me and how happy and de­lighted they are to have me back again.”

Walter Holman has recently accepted a position with the Ava hatchery and began work Sunday. Mr. Holman will fill the position held by Frank McBride who is leaving this week to operate a hatchery in Arkansas.

Wilburn Dewhirst of Rolla spent the weekend in Ava with Mrs. Dewhirst.  Mr. Dewhirst had been in Rolla since last Tuesday after going there to work on the con­struction of Fort Leonard Wood.  Mrs. Dewhirst and her sister, Miss Una Ellison, drove Mr. Dewhirst to Rolla Sunday and spent several hours visiting interesting places near the camp.

Bill Shull of Springfield spent the weekend in Ava and was a houseguest of his grandparents, Mr. and Mrs. Alex Crumley.  Shull is studying at Springfield Teachers College in Springfield.

Mr. and Mrs. Edward Heard announce the birth of a son on Lincoln’s birthday, Feb. 12.  The youngster has not yet been named.

PLEASANT GREEN –– Tom McCullough and Hughlet Woods barely missed having a very serious accident recently.  Both cars were damaged considerably but both were in condition to be driven home. No one was hurt.


100 Years Ago

February 24, 1916


A special train Tuesday after­noon took J.A.G. Reynolds, F.S. Timberlake and John W. Byng to Mt. Zion where they met with the managing businessmen of the col­lege in the interest of the new tomato cannery.  Geo. A. McFarlin and others were supplied with blank contracts, and it is expected that several acres will be contracted from that section within the near future.

Fire from unknown origin com­pletely destroyed the Marshfield High School building early last Saturday morning, causing a loss of about $20,000.  A large number of the students had participated in a Washington’s birthday party in the building the previous evening and it is supposed that some one had carelessly dropped a match or cig­arette, which caused the blaze.

While in a fit of jealousy, Warren Jury, age 25, shot and seri­ously injured William Gaulding and the girl, he, but a few hours before, had asked to marry him, Monday, Feb. 14, near Hyattsville, Kansas.  Jury is now imprisoned in a Ft. Scott jail, while Mr. Gaulding is in a precarious condition.  Mr. Gaulding is well known throughout Douglas and Ozark counties, hav­ing lived near Sweden for a number of years. He is a brother to Bob and Lant Gaulding who until recently lived near Thornfield, Ozark County, and is a brother-in-law of Mrs. I. R. Strong, of Ava.  Gauld­ing is in a critical condition, and three of the bullets in his body have not been located. Jury has admitted that he returned to the Gaulding home with the intention to kill the entire family and then kill himself.

John C. Harlin, collector and cashier of the Bank of Gainesville, is reported very ill on account of stomach trouble.  Mr. Harlin will seek medical aid in St. Louis as soon as his condition improves sufficiently to make the trip.

The Curnutt home on Quality Hill was the scene Monday night of one of the most elaborate social functions of the season, when about 65 members of the C.E. Society were entertained by Misses Lela and Myrtle Curnutt. The time was spent at music, various contests and games.

WHITE CREEK ITEM – Henry Townsends are enjoying a new range stove just put up, and it’s a good looker, too.

Last Wednesday morning at 11:00 o’clock a large crowd gath­ered at Victory Church to witness the wedding of Orvil Wheat and Miss Sadie Lowery.

ROME –– Andy Huffman is building a new house on the old home place, which he sold to his parents about two years ago.


125 Years Ago

February 26, 1891


KANSAS CITY, Feb. 24 –– It was the most destructive fire that has visited this city for many years.  Everybody within a day’s journey of Kansas City knows the locality where its greatest dry goods house, that of Bullens, Moore & Emery, was located for years.  It was these building that were burned in the six large building, running through from Delaware to Main Streets, were many business houses newly opened.  It is pretty certain that the fire was caused by an electric light wire.

The onyx caves of the Ozark region have been attracting much attention in the east.  New York papers are devoting considerable space to the supposed wealth of our numerous caverns.  Southwest Missouri may yet become a land of wonders to the marts of the east, when the people of that section of the Union discover that the Ozark plateau did not exhaust itself in producing the now extinct Bald Knobbers.

Why is a newspaper like a pretty girl?  To be perfect it must be embodied in many types;  its form must be well made up;  it is chaste though it is inclined to be giddy; it enjoys a good press, and the more rapid the better; it has a weakness for gossip; talks a great deal; it can stand much praise and is awfully proud of a new dress.  But the greatest resemblance is, it cannot be kept in good humor without cash.  Delinquent subscribers will make a note of this.

The Prince of Wales during the 49 years of his life has drawn $16,500,000 from the public treas­ury and has made debts for which no one dares to dun him to the amount of about $5,000,000.  He has been able to do this without having done anything great or creditable or any service to the state, by simply having consented to be born the oldest son of a queen.

The mail hack failed to come through on Friday, owing to the high water in Bryant Creek.

George Holman of Hunter Creek was arrested on Monday by U.S. Marshal Roper on a charge of sell­ing whiskey without having a government license.

Thomas Burchell was taken to Springfield last week by Marshal Roper, to answer to a charge of collecting illegal witness fees.  The case was heard before U.S. Com­missioner Howell and Burchell discharged.

Hartville, county seat of Wright County, has recently been incor­porated.

LITTLE BEAVER –– The Bradleyville Normal is on a boom, new students are being added almost every day.

On Tuesday, Judge J. A. Spurlock was notified by the pen­sion department at Washington, D.C. that a pension of $5.00 has been allowed in favor of G. W. Shelton, of this township.  Judge Spurlock has worked about 6 months on this claim and secured the allowance in much less time than is usually taken by other pen­sion agents  in similar cases.