Sunday, November 20, 2011

Davidson was booming town

Sent to The Frederick Press and The Frederick Leader, November 21, 2011
Davidson School, 1916

1926 Davidson profiled in SWOGS Publication
The Southwest Oklahoma Genealogical Society recently mailed its fall 2011 issue of “Tree Tracers”, the quarterly SWOGS publication, to members of the organization.  As always, “Tree Tracers” contains a number of fascinating articles, reports and genealogical information, including a 1926 item from “The Frederick Leader” titled “Who’s Who in Davidson, Oklahoma.”
In 1926, the area that is Tillman County had been opened to settlement for only 25 years, but Davidson was a booming center of agriculture and business.
The 1926 piece contains a description of Davidson, as follows:
“Davidson, in the southwestern part of Tillman county, is just 13 miles from Frederick and 24 miles from Grandfield.
Simmons Gin in Davidson, 1916
“Davidson was founded in 1901 by Arthur and David McClure, brothers, who opened the first grocery store in town. Don Ross opened the first lumber yard, and T.H. Shive the first hardware store, which was managed by E.M. Napier. Mr. Schofield and Albert North opened the first bank and Mrs. Jack Willis built the first brick hotel about the year 1904.
“The population is 800, and in addition, Davidson is the trading center for an area of approximately 100 miles in diameter, and is in an agricultural section producing cotton and wheat. It has five gins and three grain elevators.
“The Davidson gins ginned 15,000 bales of cotton in 1925. Two Frisco trains daily serve this city. There were 207 carloads of freight shipped out during the past year and 670 carloads shipped into the town. The Frisco railway serves the town and State Highways Nos. 5 and 14 pass through it.
“Davidson has a fully accredited school and employs ten teachers, a new Baptist church recently completed at a cost of $20,000, Methodist church, Church of Christ, Latter Day Saints and Primitive Baptist, none of which has regular pastors.
“The city government consists of a board of trustees of which organization F.L. Hood is chairman, Joe Seay and C.J. Hudson, members; L.L. Wilson, clerk and J.H. McClure, treasurer. The fraternal organizations are limited to the Masons and Eastern Star, but they are active and have good memberships.
“Davidson has five cotton gins, two elevators, three dry goods stores, two hardware stores, one barber shop, style shop, tailor shop, drug store, variety store, bank, post office, Ford agency, privately owned light plant, three filling stations, two blacksmith shops, two cafes, rooming house, hotel, shoe shop, electric shop, bakery, picture show and Frisco depot. Natural gas has recently been installed."
The 1926 article “Who’s Who in Davidson, Oklahoma” went on to list names, credentials and background of 70 prominent Davidson residents.
The Southwest Oklahoma Genealogical Society meets monthly and is an outstanding resource for individuals who are interested in researching their family history.
Individual memberships in the SWOGS are $15 per year, or $18 for family memberships (two names).  Membership dues or inquiries can be sent to P.O. Box 148, Lawton, OK 73502-0148.
“Tree Tracers” is mailed to SWOGS members four times per year.

NOTE: The listing of "Who's Who in Davidson, Oklahoma, 1926" was printed in "Tillman County Chronicles" sent to local newspapers and posted online on September 29, 2011. For purposes of online-consistency, though, that listing has been arranged to follow this one.
The listing of people and information from the 1926 "Who's Who" can be found in the blog posting that follows this post.
-- JW
Threshing crew near Davidson, 1921
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      Joe Wynn is a member of the Tilman County Historical Society’s board of directors

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