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Looking Backward 4.6.2017

25 Years Ago

April 2, 1992


“We Did It!” says a banner that was displayed at the county line Monday afternoon when tree No. 1,404 was planted to complete that phase of the beautification project.  Wilma Hutchison was project co-ordinator.  As a result of this project, dogwood and redbud trees now line Highway 5 from Ava to the Wright-Douglas county line north of Ava.

“Coach” Jess Blevins will have a new title July 1, as the Ava R-I Board of Education voted Monday night to employ him as middle school principal.  Blevins, who has coached basketball and taught at Ava High School for the past three years, will succeed Jim Holobaugh who announced last month that he would retire at the end of this school year, after 32 years in education and 23 years at Ava, all as middle school principal.

Plainview students competed in the annual Forsyth Spelling Bee Saturday, March 28, and came home with two big winners. Amber Johnson, daughter of Jimmy and Beverly Johnson, took first place in the third grade division; and Jacqueline Norbert, daughter of John and Mae Norbert, took second place in the first grade division of competition.

Hutch’s Country Inn, located five miles north of Ava on Highway 5, re-opened Wednesday morning under new ownership and manage-ment.  The new owners are Kathy Allen, Mansfield, and her daughter, Brenda Emerson, of Ava.

Mary Mooney, a junior at Rockhurst College, was elected the Vice President of Rockhurst Organi-zation of Collegiate Women for the 1992-93 school year.  Mooney is the daughter of Peter and Kathleen Mooney of Ava, Mo.

Lily Kerns, art teacher at Plain-view R-8 School, recently had an article published in “Provoking Thoughts,” a magazine which deals with thinking skills.  Mrs. Kerns said the article was written as an after-thought, after she had her students create mazes as an art project.


50 Years Ago

 March 30, 1967


An Ava High School student body king and queen were crowned in ceremonies Friday at the high school auditorium.  Named as Queen was Marilyn Kester, senior, daughter of Mr. and Mrs. Virgil Kester.  Crowned as King was Charles Davis, son of Mr. and Mrs. Charles E. Davis.

Warrants have been issued for two men in connection with the March 13 armed robbery of the Spurlock Store and Post Office at Squires.  Sought are William Lee Cochran and Joe David Cochran who are both charged in Douglas County Magistrate Court with “grand stealing.”

Douglas County Treasurer C.O. Singleton received a check this week totaling $93,802 representing the third payment from the 118th State School Fund Apportionment for state aid to public schools of Douglas County for the 1966-67 school year.

Members of the Ava Lions Club distributed over 180 pounds of candy Easter eggs last Friday afternoon at the Ava Elementary School.  Pre-schoolers were allowed first in line, followed by distribution to students in all six grades.

It has been unofficially announ-ced that door-to-door mail service for Ava has been disapproved with the reason for disapproval being that we do not have the population to justify the service.

CROSS ROADS – Margie Teal, a student at S.M.S. in Springfield, is spending an Easter vacation here with her parents, Mr. and Mrs. Charley Teal.

BLACK OAK –– Mr. and Mrs. Herse Walker and David of Thayer, Mo., and Mrs. Troy Sherrill, Patti and Tim were dinner guests Sunday of their parents, Mr. and Mrs. Glenn Fry and Roy.

BAKERSFIELD –– There were lots of forest fires around here Saturday.  The shower of rain soon brought them under control.

RED BANK –– Mr. and Mrs. Gary Lirley and children visited Sunday with his parents, Mr. and Mrs. Clyde Lirley and family.

Mr. and Mrs. P. P. Baird celebra-trated their 55th wedding anniver-sary February 28.  The Bairds formerly resided in the Arden community.  They were visiting with friends and relatives here Wednesday, and with other relatives in the Arden community.

In the late afternoon three Ava friends, Mrs. Homer Hailey, her daughter, Miss Geraldine Hailey, and her daughter-in-law, Mrs. Edwin Hailey, visited with Mrs. Bragg, who is a shut-in, and gave her an Easter plant sent to her by her church.

Army SP-4 Cedric Dale Farris, son of Mr. and Mrs. C.W. Farris of Heber Springs, Ark., formerly of Ava, has returned to Germany after a 30-day furlough here with his family and friends.  SP-4 Farris’ wife, Pauletta (Engelhardt) and daughter, Dalena, live at McClurg.


75 Years Ago

April 2, 1942


Mrs. H. L. Barnes Witnessed Attack on Pearl Harbor –– Mrs. Horace L. Barnes, recently arrived in Missouri from Hawaii where her husband is a Naval first class petty officer, has told some of her personal experiences in the attack by Japanese warplanes on Hawaii December 7.  She was awakened that Sunday morning at about 7:45   o’clock by the noise of the planes and machine gun fire.  “I rushed to the window, parted the curtains to look out and saw a Japanese airplane. Almost at the moment I saw it, it burst into flames,” she said. Her husband rushed outside the house and saw another Jap plane over head.  Mrs. Barnes and their small daughter, Eleanor Genevieve, now two years old, took refuge on a rural road and her husband went to his battle station.  From the rural road Mrs. Barnes could see the Jap dive bombers bombing Pearl Harbor.  The battle lasted until about noon, she said.

Defense savings stamps will be given as prizes in the annual Lions club Easter egg hunt for Ava’s grade school and pre-school children this year.  Fifty cents worth of defense stamps will be given to the pupil in each grade who finds the most eggs and in addition a ten cent stamp will be given for the finding of special eggs.  There will be approximately 1300 eggs in the hunt and 25 of the special eggs.

Mr. and Mrs. Herman Davis who have been living in Neosho while Mr. Davis has been employed at Camp Crowder, have returned to their home in Ava and will remain here.  Mr. Davis is now employed as a milk hauler for the Carnation Company.

KEESLER FIELD, Miss. –– Private Chester Neil Breckner, son of Mr. and Mrs. Harvey Breckner of Drury, tomorrow will be graduated from the huge air Corps technical school here after an intensive 19-week course which prepared him to serve as an airplane mechanic “on the line.”

SANDY –– Mrs. Grace Wilson announces the birth of a daughter, Wanda Sue.  The father, Cleo Wilson, is with the armed forces somewhere in California.

STAR –– Howard Alderman, student at Missouri University is now a member of the Burrel Symphony Orchestra.

WASOLA –– Mr. and Mrs. Paul Cudworth are moving to their home at Ava.  Mrs. Cudworth last week finished her term of school at East View in Taney County.

ROBERTSON –– Bernie Lewis and Selbia Brooks closed a successful term of school Friday. The children were treated with ice cream and a matinee at the Avalon Theater.

PLEASANT GREEN –– Mr. and Mrs. Arthur Johnson have moved to Arden on what is known as the old Jasper Garrison place.


100 Years Ago

April 5, 1917


The quietest and most harmon-ious city and school elections ever held in this community took place at the regular annual election last Tuesday.  Attorney A. Buchanan was elected Mayor and O. W. Jones, City Marshall, by practically an unanimous vote.  Jesse A. Mitchell was reelected Alderman in Ward No. 1, and C.W. Meeker was elected for Ward No. 2.

  1. S. DECLARES WAR –– At the request of President Wilson Congress has declared war on Germany; 500,000 men will be called into service.

Many queer things have been discovered by the drill since and before Colonel Drake discovered that oil could be obtained by the artesian process, but the most unique one is that recently struck in the Philippines.  It is located in the town of San Fernando, on the island of Ticao.  At the depth of 405 feet an enormous vein of water was struck, with such a gas pressure that the volume was thrown 50 feet in the air.  It was only by exerting every possible effort that a small flood was averted.  Samples of the water show that it is heavily charged with carbonic acid gas and appears and tastes like ordinary soda water.

In the firm control of our thoughts lies the secret of the most wonderful possession of which we can boast – character.

The Ava Motor Car Company reports the sale of six cars last week, three Dodges and three Maxwells.

Mrs. Edith Martin and son Virgil and daughter Miss Daisy, Rev. and Mrs. G.W. Holmes and Miss Myrtle Curnutt motored to Seymour and attended a musical concert Friday.

Mrs. Knight received a letter from her son, E.J. Knight, who has just completed a successful term of high school at Buffalo, Mo., stating that he had accepted a better position as Superintendent of a public school in Kansas at a salary of $1600 a year.

Robbers broke into the G.W. Freeman & Son dry goods store and the Dyer Furniture store in Mans-field Wednesday night of last week.  Two of three suits of clothes, a quantity of pennies and some other clothing were taken at the dry goods store.  At the furniture store, a quantity of groceries and other small articles were missed.

HIGH SCHOOL NOTES –– The new high school students this week are Gladys Stewart of Prior, and Jesse Brown of Ava. …The national flag was put up Monday by the senior boys.  It was stretched on a rope between the two buildings. The reason for displaying the flag this time was the special session of Congress which convened Monday at eleven o’clock to decide the question of war which confronts the nation.  As a school we are trying to show loyalty and patriotism.

PINE FLATS –– John Alcorn was seriously hurt last week by a loaded wagon passing over his body and breaking his shoulders and also his ribs.


125 Years Ago

March 31, 1892


The deadly cyclone sweeps from Texas to the Great Lakes –– The great hurricane which Thursday began upon the plains of Texas, and Friday, had reached the great lakes, stands unexampled in the records of the great west.  The tempest in Kansas was not only unprecedented in the fatalities it created but in extent and duration.  The wounded number hundreds.

A reliable report from Taney County swells the number of prisoners in custody for the murder of Deputy Sheriff Williams and Bright to five.  One of the prisoners is George L. Taylor of Forsyth, a prominent young attorney who has figured very conspicuously in the Bald Knobber militia feud at Taney County, being the trusted friend of Capt. Nat. N. Kinney from the inception of the regulator movement down to the day that Bill Miles shot and killed the stalwart chieftain, on August 20, 1888.  Two of the other prisoners are Frank Lewis of Bear Creek, and one Coombs, who lives on Roark, near the home of the Brights.  Coombs is said to be giving the secrets of the mob away, and Sheriff Cook has six deputies scouring the country for more of the lynchers.

NEW ORLEANS –– One of the most destructive cotton fires on record broke out at 10:20 o’clock yesterday morning among some cotton on the sidewalk in front of the fireproof press on North Front Street.  Five cotton presses were burned with their contents of 80,000 bales of cotton.  The loss is estimated at $3,000,000.

Laclede County voted on a pro-position at a special election to raise $30,000 to build a new courthouse.

The large vote in favor of giving the Ava Normal School the free use of the new schoolhouse is a very satisfactory proof that the people of Ava and vicinity appreciate the advantage derived from it both direct and indirect.  It has certainly caused our town to nearly double in population.

Ava needs more territory.  The present city limits should be extended in every direction.

Samuel Plumb, Walls Township, received his first pension voucher last week. He has been allowed six dollars per month and back pay amounting to $107.

City election on Tuesday resulted in the election of W.F. Reynolds, W.J. Turner, M.B. Silvey, W.S. Platt, and Geo. B. Waters as trustees for the town of Ava for the ensuing year.

The heavy rains of the past week are reported to have caused a large amount of damage all over the county especially on the farms in the bottoms, which in some instances lost nearly all their fencing.

Dr. J.R. Murray, druggist, has completed the addition to his drug-store, south side of the square.

Sheriff Klineline and two deputies left Ava for Jefferson City the first of the week in charge of Thomas Fitch and Joshua Irvin.  Fitch and Irvin were convicted at the recent term of circuit court on a charge of seduction under promise of marriage and each of them received a sentence of two years at hard labor in the penitentiary.