Monday, May 28, 2012

Memorial Day... 1921

Veterans Memorial at Tillman County Courthouse in Frederick

Memorial Day

The first Memorial Day was observed on May 30, 1868, when flowers were placed on the graves of Union and Confederate soldiers at Arlington National Cemetery.
New York was the first state to recognize the holiday, in 1873.
By 1890 it was recognized by all of the northern states, but for many years the South refused to acknowledge the day, honoring their dead on separate days.
After World War I, the holiday changed from honoring just those who died fighting in the Civil War to those Americans who died fighting in any war.
 It is now celebrated in all states on the last Monday in May.
Tillman County Veterans War Memorial
Tillman County Observance
In Tillman County, a Memorial Day program was held on Friday, May 25, at the Veterans War Memorial that is located on the lawn of the county courthouse in Frederick. A monument listing the county’s war casualties was dedicated there in 1991.
For Memorial Day wooden crosses, arranged in star formation, represent the county’s war dead.
In 1921, when Memorial Day had been celebrated in Oklahoma for only a few years, a June 2, 1921, article in The Frederick Press describes the holiday’s observance in Frederick.

From The Frederick Press, June 21, 1921
Beautiful and impressive ceremonies were held at the graveside of John Schumpert, Frederick hero who gave his life for his country on the battlefields of France, Monday morning by John S. Kerr Post, American Legion, following a parade of the members of the post through the business section of the city headed by the Commercial Band and a long procession of cars to the city cemetery, where the ceremonies were conducted.
The Rev. B.J. Kimber delivered the memorial address in which he paid eloquent tribute to the dead of the World War, and Earl Hall, commander of Kerr Post conducted the ritualistic ceremonies, while the firing squad of the post fired three volleys and bugler Alma Steed, of Company H. Oklahoma National Guard sounded taps.
Nearly every business house in this city was closed from 10 o’clock in the morning until 1 o’clock in the afternoon and banks and most offices remained closed all day in observance of the national holiday, Memorial Day.
NOTE: See update to this story in June 3, 2012 Chronicles post.

Friday, May 25, 2012

Old Junior High Gym... Gone

May 25, 2012
The gym last fall (photo taken November 5, 2011)

Frederick's Junior High Gym Razed
The old Frederick Junior High Gym, built in 1922 as Frederick High School’s gym, has been torn down.
Site of the old Frederick Junior High Gym on South 13th Street (photo taken at noon, May 25, 2011)
 The old school’s auditorium and classroom wings were removed several months ago, leaving the attached gym as a free-standing, doomed relic of the past. Removal of this last part of the school took place this week. Today (May 25, 2012) workers are clearing the last part of the debris and hauling the stately building’s brick and concrete to a landfill.
When the gym was constructed as part of the Frederick High School and Convention Center in 1922, it was an impressive facility. The city of Frederick was only 20 years old at the time, the area that is western Tillman County had been opened to settlement for only 21 years, and this grand brick gym was a modern showplace.
Although small by today’s standards, the gym hosted the Tillman County Basketball Tournament for decades. Schools from across the county (and in those days there WERE many schools in the county!) sent teams to Frederick for the annual tournament, and thousands of supporters attended.
My dad, D.B. Wynn, who graduated at Weaver Consolidated #13 in 1936, told stories about the big county tournament in those days. Everybody came. Fans packed the gym’s second floor balcony, and the best seats in the house were had by those who sat with legs dangling from the balcony.
In January 2012, the gym remained after the school was removed.
In the 1960s, dressing rooms and showers were built at the east front of the gym. The modern addition did not match the building’s 1922 architecture and always seemed aesthetically inappropriate.
When Frederick High School moved to its new campus in 1950, the former high school became Central Elementary School and the gym was used by Frederick Junior High.
Generations of Frederick’s young people remember the junior high gym as the site of P.E. classes, volleyball, basketball, climbing rope, and running laps around the scary oval balcony track.
Photo taken during the February 26, 2011 Oyster Fry Craft Show pictures the old gym's balcony area.
Rubble from the razed building is being hauled away (photo taken May 25, 2012)

Monday, May 7, 2012

Murrell Bros. Chevrolet, 1935

Chevrolet Models were featured in a 1935 ad (Source, Old Car Manual Project)
Chevrolet for 1935 Sold in Frederick

On January 1, 1935, a Murrell Brothers Chevrolet Dealership ad in The Frederick Daily Leader announced arrival of the 1935 Chevrolets.
The ad was followed on January 7 by a news item stating that new models were now on display at the local dealership on West Grand Avenue.
In 1935, Chevrolets came in two levels – Standard and Master Series.
Standard Chevrolets were the traditional models, but the Master DeLuxe series cars were refined to appeal to buyers who might have more expensive tastes.

Price of the Standard Chevrolet in 1935 started at $465. Price of the Master DeLuxe Chevy started at $560 and ranged upward to $675.

In addition to being more costly, the Master Deluxe cars were heavier, all-steel construction with a longer wheel-base than the Standard models.
Besides having more upscale interiors and options, the most notable thing that distinguished 1935 Master series Chevrolets were the doors.
All Master series Chevrolets had “suicide” doors which opened from front to back. That included the front driver's and passenger-side doors. Opening and closing those "reverse hung" doors had to take some getting used to.
Doors of Chevrolet’s standard models maintained more traditional, front-hinged configurations.

For 1935, the Master series Chevrolet adopted all-steel "Turret-Top" construction, and featured two-piece windshields. Safety-glass was an option.

1935 marked the first year that the radiator cap was located under the hood.
Chevrolet's advertising line in 1935 was "The Most Finely Balanced Low-Priced Car Ever Built."

Even so, Chevrolet's sales numbers dropped below Ford's that year for the first time since 1930.

 Chevrolet sold 548,215 cars in 1935 -- 201,773 Standard models and 346,442 Master DeLuxe models.

A great GM produced safety film featuring the 1935 Chevrolet is located at the following You Tube site:

Master DeLuxe Sedan from 1935 brochure (Old Car Manual Project)

Chevrolet 1935 Master DeLuxe Coupe (Old Car Manual Project)