Looking Backward

25 years ago

Kirk Dooms, of Ava, was sworn in last Friday as postmaster at Squires, filling a vacancy that had existed since longtime postmaster Fred Spurlock retired in the fall of 1992.

Folks around this part of the Ozarks won’t have to sit around and wonder when the first snow will come… or for that matter, when cold weather will arrive. They have both already been here.  Snow before Halloween is a very rare occurrence in southern Missouri, and an official accumulation of snow is even more rare. 

Although there is still one more week left in the district schedule, it is confirmed that Ava will host the game here on Wednesday evening, Nov. 10, in the first round of the state Class 3A play-offs.  Ava Will represent District 9 and Bolivar will most likely represent District 10. 

Alva Ritter celebrated his 77th birthday October 20 at his home with a snow storm of two inches on the ground and snowing all day.  

Vanzant author Jerry Minchinton will be autographing copies of his book, Maximum Self-Esteem, at the book signing / tasting fair at Jean’s Healthway in Ava Saturday, Nov. 6. 

Mary Gibson and her daughter, Denise Mitchell, Ava, affiliates for United National Real Estate, have earned the company’s Century Club and Founder’s Awards for attaining a new high in sales through September. 

FRIENDSHIP –– Donna Dixon and Helen Batten worked on the Christmas program Monday night. 

EVANS –– Tyler Brown was given the Principal’s Award at school Thursday because he had excellent behavior for the first quarter of school. 

GENTRYVILLE –– Bertha and Dean Scherer, Janet Smith, Ella May LeRoy and Ann Collins visited Sunday with Agnes Williams, Karen, Doug and Sirena Fredrick. 

SENIOR CITIZENS NEWS –– The Sassafrass Sprout Ho Downers were very entertaining. We enjoyed them coming and dancing for us. We hope they come and dance for us again. 

50 years ago

Dr. Taylor Woods announced this week that he has sold his veterinary clinic property on Highway 14 and has awarded a contract for the construction of a new facility on Highway 5 north.  The new clinic will be located just north of the Highway 5-14 junction between Hutch’s Country Inn and his new residence. The building is expected to be completed within three months, Dr. Woods said. 

Missouri Conservation Agent Robert Cook announced this week that a total of 81 deer had been killed in the 5,500 acre Caney Mountain Refuge as of Tuesday. The deer wee killed in the primitive weapons hung which includes muzzle-load rifles, cross bows and long bows. 

NEW YORK –– Douglas County supports a greater number of business establishments –– small, medium and large –– than do many communities of its size.  And they have been showing sturdy growth, as evidenced by the number of people they employ and by the bigger payrolls they are carrying. 

Jackie Nelson was honored with a birthday party Sunday, Oct. 20, on his seventh birthday.  

E-3 and Mrs. Leon Potter (Wilda Lou Moore) of Route 5, Ava, announce the birth of a daughter Kristy Gay, at 5:03 o’clock Wednesday afternoon, Oct. 16, in Burge-Protestant Hospital, Springfield. 

Mrs. James Norman and her three children, Gayle, Kris and Phillip of 811 NE 2nd Avenue, and her parents, Mr. and Mrs. Raymond Sellers of Route 4, returned to their homes Sunday evening following a weekend visit with Mrs. Norman’s brother and family, Mr. and Mrs. Jerry Sellers and daughters, Laura and Lisa, of Peoria, Ill. 

Gene Kilburn, son of Mr. and Mrs. Elmer Kilburn, Route 1, Ava, was recently promoted to the rank of sergeant. 

Everett Tate, who lives in the Champion community east of Ava, was surprised Sunday, October 20, when several family members and friends gathered at this home for an early observance of his 80th birthday. 

Ora T. Tallent, Ava superintendent of schools, will be leaving Springfield at 6:30 Saturday morning, Nov. 2, on the first part of a trip which will take him to Norway, Denmark, the USSR, and Hungary.   

Miss Glade Top Trail, Sherry Plaster, and her two attendants, Donna Buchanan and Ruth Crutcher, were escorted to the chicken barbecue on the Glade Top Trail Sunday in a convertible provided by Kerr-Gaston Chevrolet Olds. Co. 

The state’s Motor Vehicle Inspection Law, which becomes effective in January, requires that the lighting equipment on vehicles presented for inspection be checked.

ALMARTHA –– Mr. and Mrs. Kirk have purchased the Almartha Store from Eukal Gardner. 

SMALLETT –– Byrd Kester and his daughter, Mrs. Zella Isbell, spent Friday night and Saturday with Mrs. Lou Felton and Mrs. Mae Hughes. 

LITTLE CREEK –– Ricky Jones, Mike Degase and Max Roberts ate Sunday dinner with Rocky Degase. 

75 years ago

The German army on the Russian front the past week has been staggering back in retreat before Russian forces so powerful that Nazis compare them to a giant unaware of his own strength.

Th city’s auxiliary water pump, which has been undergoing repairs since the auxiliary well was deepened, was put into operation Wednesday and is being used this week while the main pump is being overhauled. 

Women taking part in the canning school held in Ava under supervision of the high school vocational agriculture department canned 4,938 pints of food in the three months the canning center was in operation, it is announced by George Schmitt, vocational agriculture instructor. 

Word has been received by Mrs. Golda Cameron of Miller that her brother, Floyd Brazeal, U.S. Marine Corps has been lost at sea.  Brazeal, 19 years old, was the son of Walter Brazeal of Route 3 Ava. 

Elza Hutchison, machinist mate first class in the U.S. Navy, left Ava Monday for San Francisco California where he will report for duty. Mr. Hutchison came to Ava Oct. 3 after spending three years on submarine duty in the South Pacific. While here he was a guest of his mother, Mrs. Willie Hutchison, and other relatives. 

Jim Engle and Mrs. Ruth Roe, both of the Vera Cruz School District, were married Friday last week in Hartville.  Judge E.L. Colton officiating. They will live on Mr. Engle’s farm in the Vera Cruz district. 

There comes the faint melancholy “honk-honk” of a small belated flock of wild geese in irregular formation and flying high. A mere speck in the misty gloom of a murky morning sky where no harm may reach them, from the ground. We send after them a whispered message –– good luck and happy landings. 

Mr. and Mrs. J. A. McKinney and family who will leave Ava next week to make their home in Marshfield where Mr. McKinney is employed in the Marshfield Schools, were entertained in two Ava homes last week. 

A group of relatives and neighbors gathered at the V. E. Yandell home south of town Thursday night for a wiener roast in honor of Mrs. G.W. Reed and Mrs. Yandell who were celebrating birthdays. 

Miss Retha Jenkins, who is now employed in the local Ben Franklin Store, spent the weekend with her parents, Mr. and Mrs. Lee Jenkins and family in their country home south of Ava. 

A surprise birthday dinner was given Tuesday evening for Mrs. Mina Jackson in her home on Elm Street. Covers were laid for Mr. and Mrs. Russell Thompson and three sons, Mr. and Mrs. Vernon Jackson and two daughters, Sergeant Oliver Jackson of Wright Field, Dayton, Ohio, and Mrs. Jackson, the honoree and her daughter, Miss Ruth. 

100 Years Ago

Until the war ends the food program is a part of the military program. During the year the American people must save food that we may increase our shipments by 50%. This campaign calls for intensive saving in every household.

The road meeting at Bryant last Friday night was not largely attended owing to the influenza scare in that vicinity.    Messers J.A.G. Reynolds and H.S. Wilson of the County Highway Commission attended the meeting from Ava and report much enthusiasm among those present. Plans are developing for the finishing of the Ava-Mansfield road to the county line, and especially to work the Bryant hill. 

Liquor laws forbid the selling of intoxicants to boys or to confirmed drunkards, but allow sales to moderate drinkers. The liquor traffic is licensed to accommodate the moderate drinker. He still has money.  He demands his booze. He too often holds the balance of power. On the shoulders of the moderate drinker and also on those who are led by him rests the responsibility of the legalized liquor traffic. 

Carl Flemming, Tommy Robertson and Rev. Rippee will depart today for Nitro, West Va., for government positions. 

Geo M. Ford of Roy sold his personal property at public auction on Wednesday of this week and is preparing to move to North Missouri. 

If the influenza epidemic continues to improve in Ava during the remainder of the week the Ava schools will likely open again next Monday. 

Clarence Clinkingbeard, son of Mr. and Mrs. W.R. Clinkingbeard of Ava, won second prize on single comb white leghorn chickens at the Mansfield fair. Clarence entered two pullets and a chockerel in the contest.

GIRDNER –– Bige Walker has moved back from the prospecting at Mansfield with his drilling outfit. 

Well, let everyone on election day go early and work hard for prohibition and woman suffrage. 

TOPAZ –– Mr. and Mrs. P.D. Gott are the proud parents of a baby boy. 

A German gas mask is on display in the window at the H.S. Wilson Hardware store in Ava. The mask was sent to Mr. and Mrs. Chas. Highbarger of this city by their son, Pvt. A.J. Highbarger, who is now on the Western front in France.

 No wrong can be justified by law.  When in Rome do as you ought to do. 

Between two evils choose neither. 

Nothing is settled until it is settled right. 

Let each man resolve that he will with God’s help be found where God wants a man to be, then he can square his shoulders and look the whole world in the face and feel like a man because he is a real man. 

125 Years ago

E. W. Stevens, Sedalia’s mayor, was robbed of a $500 diamond stud at the Adams Street depot in Chicago. 

Citizens of a number of Ohio towns received small pox scabs by mail and post office authorities are trying to solve the mystery. 

It is believed Budd Stone will make a third confession concerning the Wratten murder, and evidence connecting one or two confederates will be forthcoming. 

After an absence of 35 years, Dennis Sullivan turns up and claims property he left in New York. 

The first white baby born in the Cherokee strip recently opened to settlement has been named Hoke Smith, in honor of the Secretary of the Interior. 

A citizens’ mass meeting was held at the courthouse at Nevada, Mo., to consider the raising of $15,000 to build a narrow gauge railroad from Nevada to Eldorado Springs. 

It has been discovered that West Virginia towns have been flooded with counterfeit silver dollars.  The bogus money has the true ring, but is a little overweight and perceptibly larger in diameter. The people appear perfectly willing to take them, although aware that they were not minted by the government. 

Up to September there were 140 arrivals of steamboats at Rocheport. 

It is officially announced that Springfield has not given up the fight for a Normal school 

The northern most cotton crop in Missouri this season was raised by a man in Harrison County. 

At the Jefferson Township Fair, in Linn County, there were 21 entries for the baby show. 

All the weather prophets agree that Missouri corn shucks are thick and that a severe winter is inevitable. 

In an Indian burial mound recently opened in Boone County were found a skeleton, a tomahawk and a Spanish sword. 

Although Ava merchants are offering as high as fifteen cents a pound for good country butter, they find it difficult to get enough to supply the demand. 

Richard Evans, of Joplin, has been arrested and bound over by United States authorities for taking letters from the post office belonging to his wife. The couple had been separated eight months. 

Electrocution kills a condemned criminal in one-tenth of the time hanging does.  Yes, and it does away with his painful suspense, too. 

There is a general idea that the president’s salary of $50,000 a year is all that he receives. This is a mistake. In all the president and his house cost the country over $125,628. 

Six members of the Dalton gang rode up to the store of George Hall at Cashing, 50 miles east of here, while the store was full of people and compelled the man to hand over the contents of his safe, some $200.  They rode away unmolested.