Sunday, September 28, 2008

Oak Hall Community Items

Let's take a visit to the little community of Oak Hall and see what was happening in the year 1911. This community was located in the western area of our county. Another community close by was Forest Grove. Visiting and keeping in touch with your neighbors was a very important part of these people's lives.

Crittenden Press, June 22, 1911
  • Wheat cutting is all the go at this writing; corn is growing very fast on account of the recent rains.
  • Miss Arlie and Austin Shelton, of Dixon, Ky., who have been visiting their uncle, W. G. Conditt, returned home Monday accompanied by Miss Grace Conditt, who will be their guest for a few days.
  • Messrs Rufus and Roy Terry, of Chicago, Ill., visited friends and relatives in this vicinity last week.
  • Walter Worley and Miss Stella Robinson, of Forest Grove, attended Sunday School at this place Sunday afternoon.
  • Our Sunday School is preparing to have some Children's Day exercises in the near future.
  • W. L. Terry and family passed through the neighborhood Sunday evening enroute home from a visit to W. B. Rankin.
  • Mrs. Caroline Belt visited her daughter, Mrs. J. U. G. Cleghorn, last week.
  • Miss Susie Barnes gave a birthday party to quite a number of her young friends Friday evening, and everyone present reported a nice time.
  • We all hope that these talked of turnpikes will materialize in the near future; but in the meantime some respectable dirt roads would come in pretty handy.

Wednesday, September 24, 2008

County Court Items of Interest

The old County Court books in our Court House reveals much history of our past. Here are some interesting items that I found recently.

County Court Book 13, page 43, Feb. 26, 1906
  • On motion of L. Berlin a resident of this county and it appearing to the satisfaction of the court that he is a man of good moral character, it is therefore ordered that he be granted License to peddle goods, wares and in a one horse vehickle in this county for one year from this date. Said Berlin's description is as follows: age -29 yrs, height- 5 ft 5 ins, weight - 128 lbs., dark complexion, dark hair and blue eyes.
  • It is ordered by the court that George Ann Adams and her two children, aged 2 and 6 be and they are hereby declared pauper's and that they be delivered to the keeper of the poor house for care and attention as the law directs.
  • On motion of Charles T. Riley, a citizen of this county and it appearing to the satisfaction of the court that he is a man of good moral character, it is therefore ordered that he be granted license to peddle patent medicine in the county for one year and who's description is a follows: about 30 years of age, 5 ft 5 ins in height, weight 154 lbs, light complexion, blue eyes, light hair and sandy mustache and is to travel on foot in selling said articles.
  • On motion of B. B. Terry, a citizen of this county and it appearing to the satisfaction of the court that he is a man of good moral character, it is therefore ordered that he be granted license to peddle goods, wares, merchandise, jewelry, drugs, ect, in the county for one year. His description is as follows: 35 years of age, wight about 160 lbs, light red hair, light complexioned, height-5ft 10 ins and blue eyes, and is to travel in a one-horse wagon.
  • June 13, 1906 - It is ordered by the court that Stephen and Melvina Marvel residents of this county be and they are hereby declared paupers and that they be delivered to the keeper of the poor house for care and attention as the law directs.

Friday, September 19, 2008

Odessa School

Located several miles from Marion on the Blackburn Church Road used to be a little one room school that few people now remember. It was named Odessa School. The picture at right was made in the 1970's after the school had been discontinued for many years. Today the school house has been remodeled and is used as a family dwelling.

From the files of The Crittenden Press dated, Jan. 5, 1911 we can find out what was happening at Odessa School.

The 6th, 7th and 8th grades are doing some good work. The third grade pupils are coming right on - just watch them. The first and second grades will soon be promoted. The average attendance is 32.

Our trustee, C. H. McConnell, and Superintendent, E. J. Travis, have had new patent seats placed in the school house. This is a great improvement over the long "bench."

The school enjoyed a pleasant trip to the old noted Saltpeter Cave last Friday afternoon. This is one of the wonders in East Crittenden.

The Honor roll of Odessa school for the 4th week ending Dec. 16th, is as follows:
  • First grade - Robert Herron, Roy Herron, Leslie D Avis, Allie McNeelye, Delmer Travis, Elsie Coleman and Lucy McChesney.
  • Second grade - Alma Herron, Lexie Coleman, Robert Warren, Leona Coleman and Ray Travis.
  • Third grade - Lera McConnell, Jessie Travis, Hubert Herron, Herbert Herron, Roy Coleman, Richard Edlder, Freddie Travis, Sarah Elder, Dixie Travis, Allie McChesney, Ila Stembridge, Dixie McChesney.
  • Fifth grade - Nellie Davis, Pearl Travis, Lewis Coleman, Herbert Vanhooser, Ernest Davis, Cora McConnell, Ila Winn, Ray Eldr, Lena Coleman and Rosa Herron.
  • Seventh grade - Robert Vanhooser, Henry McConnell, Hodge McNeeley, Mable, Maud and Ethel McConnell.
  • Eighth grade - Cole McConnell.

News item written by their teacher J. B. McNeeley.

Tuesday, September 16, 2008

Native Sons Return To County

In July 1934 Crittenden County was having an "Old Home Week" for Crittenden County natives that were scattered throughout the land.

From all corners of the United States, they returned to visit friends and relatives that they had not seen for many, many years. Perhaps never before were so many of Crittenden County's sons and daughters back home at one time.

Among the ones that had been away for several years, Hal Dorr heads the list. He left Marion in 1899 and this was his first trip back in 36 years. Mr. Dorr now resides at Los Angeles, Calif. While here he visited Miss Anna Eliza Johnson, Dallas Dunning, Howard Henry, W. O. Tucker and others in Marion and Pate Stewart and Kit Shepherd at Tolu.

While here Mr. Dorr met one of his boyhood neighbors, Massie Champion, who now lives in Oklahoma City, Okla., who was back for the first time in 27 years.

Mr. T. N. Cochran say he remembers very distinctly when the Dorr family moved away, as he was superintendent of the Marion Methodist Sunday School at that time, and the Dorr family with two other families moved away about the same time taking 25 members of the Sunday School that then numbered less than one hundred.

Mr. and Mrs. Lacy Nunn and daughter, of Columbia, La., were here for the first time in seven years. They were visiting Mr. Nunn's relatives here.

Alvie Walker, a resident of New York City, for the past 9 years, visited his mother, Mrs. Sarah Walker At Deanwood.

Ray C. Love and children, of Titusville, Fla., visited Mr. and Mrs. Walter Love for their first return in 14 years.

Saturday, September 13, 2008

The Fiddlers

Here is another fun activity that took place at the Marion Opera House in April of 1902.

The Old Fiddlers Contest proved to be one of the most successful entertainments Marion has ever enjoyed. The Opera house was packed with people, and thirty-four old fiddlers decorated the stage with their goodly appearance and charmed the listening throng with their old time melodies.

When the curtains rose the thirty-four violins were pouring forth the stirring strains of "Dixie" and the audience rose to its feet and cheered and cheered.

After this came the contest between six of the fiddlers with the "Arkansaw Traveler" as the theme. Dr. W. F. Randalls won the prize.

Then came the various other contests, all with their unique and charming features. The greatest interest centered in the contest of the "Best Old Time Fiddler." All of the old pieces were heard in this, Dan Tucker, Yankee Doodle, Old Back Joe, Billy in the Low Ground, Leather Breeches, Natchez Under the Hill, Fisher's Hornpipe, Devil's Dream. Each fiddler chose his own piece.

The prize hung in the balance until J. H. Johnson, the man with the green fiddle, stepped to the front and began his medley of all old tunes. His violin laughed, wept, sang in the soft tones, stormed, screeched and cooed. In a minute he had the crowd with him, and in two minutes he had demonstrated that he was the master of the occasion. He won the capital prize.

Other who won prizes were: Leeson Lawson, Barney Thurman, of Blackford, J. M. Loovorn of Marion, T. E. Bartley, Robert McCarrol, Dr. Bourne, John Morris of Hopkinsville.

Our own boys won the plaudits of the audience, Charley Davis, Jim Loovern, Billie Marvel, Billie Duvall made sweet music and enjoyed the occasion.

J. H. Johnson, the winner, lives at Fords Ferry, played a fiddle made by a Fords Ferry man, - Lee Yeakey. He is an artist.

Edgie Gregory, of Dycusburg, edged in with his banjo to the delight of the audience.

The old time melodies charmed the audience for over two hours.

Sunday, September 7, 2008

Crittenden's Preachers in 1891

Crittenden Press, Nov. 19, 1891
Probably no county, in proportion to its population, has furnished, to the various denominations, as many ministers as Crittenden.

Among the native preachers, now active in and preparing for the ministry are, of the Missionary Baptists: T. C. Carter, W. R. Gibbs, Wm. Belt, Eli M. Eaton, H. B. Fox, J. J. Franks, W. C. Pierce, R. A. LaRue, Henry Holloman, D. P. Campbell, H. G. Summers, Israel M. Bebout and J. M. Roberts.

Of Methodist there are in the Louisville conference, J. W. Bigham, Rushing, the two W. F. Hogards, (father and son), the two Loves, R. C. and H. C. (brothers), Stubblefield, McConnell and G. S. Summers. Then J. G. Haynes and B. E. Martin are preparing for the ministry in this church and have licenses to preach, so has R. S. Clark.

The Cumberland Presbyterian have Rev. James F. Price, W. C. M. Travis, who are active in the ministry, while Davis, Ben. F. McMican, Jacobs and Boisture are in the preparatory department.

This makes a total of thirty and the list is doubtless incomplete, and does not include a number of divines who live and have work in the county, but who were not born and reared here. It will be seen from this that the divine command: "Go thou and preach the kingdom of God," has not gone unheeded by the people of this county.

Paying for a Frolic.
Saturday John York and William Barrack were before judge Moore to answer the charge of disturbing religious worship at Sisco Chappel. Barrick entered a plea of guilty and was fined $20.00. York entered a plea of not guilty, but the jury took a different view of the matter and charged him $20.00.

The evidence showed that the boys fired a pistol and exercised their lungs too near the church. Our courts have had a number of cases of this character recently and the result usually makes such sport an expensive luxury.

Thursday, September 4, 2008

Marion's Opry House

The Opry House

In the early 1900's Marion was a lively place with it's many stores located near the court square. On the north side of the court house was located the popular Opry House. Here all kinds of shows and activities took place. Let's visit the Opry House in October of 1903 and see what was going on.

Crittenden Press, Oct. 22, 1903
The following account of the ball given at the Marion opera house was written by one of their new press reporters.

It was a gallant array of Knights and Dames that graced the opera house floor on Thursday evening.

The inspiring strains of the well equipped brass band of Madisonville with its twelve pieces made music that could only be likened to the celestial waves.

The opera house under the direction of Manager Will Clifton. It was a magnificent sight to view the wildly circleing, handsomely dressed waltzers. It was indeed a great dance.

Tuxedos and swallow tails was for the night discarded, but we are happy to say every gentleman had a coat on.

Your reporter interviewed several of the contestants and takes pleasure in reproducing their views:
  • Sam Gugenheim "It was simply a peach."
  • Will Clifton "You bet that was a dance."
  • George Roberts "Fine."
  • John Wilson "It closed a little too early."
  • H. H. Sayre "I left at mid-night."
  • Roy Gilbert "Lets have another."
  • Ernest Carnahan "Never had so good a time."
  • Tucker the druggist "It was a great dance."