Episode OS13, 2nd Qtr. 1880 - Life in Oak Springs and More
The Nixon family was selling their farm and moving into Oak Springs
Three jail cells were added to the stone Town Hall
April items of interest
For their First Anniversary promotion, Parks Wagon and Implement Sales Office conducted a drawing from the names of persons registered in the Office on Thursday, Friday and Saturday, April 1, 2 and 3. Each person was entitled to one chit in the drawing, plus one additional chit for each purchase of $1 or more on each of those days. Winners were published in the Wednesday, April 7, issue of the Oak Springs Enterprise as well as in the store on Monday morning. The winner of a $5 store credit was Earnest Potter. Hiram Carver won a $3 store credit. J.P. Polk, Bryce Taylor and Jed Cunningham each won a $1 store credit.
It was learned that the Russell and Norma Nixon family had recently moved into their new home in Oak Springs. Ira Mason and his wife, Eva, had arrived on the former Nixon farm and taken possession on March 1 as agreed.
The Chamber of Commerce held their April meeting on Wednesday, April 7th, at the Community Building, at 7 p.m. The members present agreed to take responsibility for the 4th of July celebration for 1880. Augustus Ward agreed to chair a committee to plan this event, contingent on others helping him understand what had taken place in prior years. Several persons volunteered to discuss that history with Augustus, who committed to make a record of what he learned, for use in future year’s planning as well. The Chamber also passed a resolution urging those interested in continuing the Oak Creek Valley Fair last summer to form a formal Association for better recognition, legal status and funding opportunities.
The Town Council reported two actions related to local law enforcement. First, the addition to the Town Hall consisting of 3 steel bar jail cells had been completed along with the remodeling of earlier holding rooms adjoining. Second, they approved a resolution to hire a Town Marshall, who would also serve as a Deputy Sheriff for Oak Creek Township under an agreement with the County Sheriff’s office. Both vandalism and drunk and disorderly activities had increased in recent months, and required positive action by the Town Council.
Ward Confectionary and Bakery announced that for their First Anniversary on Saturday, May 1, customers that day would receive a 10% discount on any purchase or paid order of over $1. Also, each purchase of over $.50 would earn a free cupcake of choice from among those available at the time.
The town continued to grow
May items of interest
State Representative Lewis Truesdale hosted an information meeting at the Community Building on Wednesday evening, May 5, at 7 p.m. with a representative of the State Department of Revenue which had been charged with the responsibility of setting the rules for the newly authorized local school taxing districts. It was learned that one rule already in place was that an election to set up a local school district could be held beginning as early as the first Tuesday in the coming month of August. Local school officials indicated they would attempt to meet the requirements to do that with the hope and intent that the local electorate supported the school sufficiently to move ahead immediately under the new law.
There was an announcement in the May 12th issue of the Oak Springs Enterprise that Simeon Bishop and four others had formally organized the Oak Creek Valley Fair Association. The announcement urged others in the community who supported the Fair to join the Association in one of several ways listed. The date for 1880 was set for the 7th, the first Saturday of August.
Clyde and Minerva Orchard moved into their new home on First Street South. Seaborn Carr, recently employed at the Oak Springs Savings Bank as Cashier, was making his residence at the Duncan Boarding House. Another a new resident at the Duncan Boarding House was Dr. Ollie Seaman, a Dentist. He planned to open his Dental Office in the Preston Office Building on June 1.
Work had begun on the stone federal government office building, to include a new Post Office, on Central Avenue on the north side of Main Street.
The Oak Creek Valley Fair Association received approval from the Town Council to construct a pole barn on Lot 2 of Block U, directly south of the Olson Blacksmith Shop, and near Patton Pond, that could be used to house animals for the fair in August and other uses during the year.
The Wingfield and Cox partnership had begun construction of four additional rental houses on Block A similar to those they had built on Block E that were so quickly rented to quality tenants. Joseph Cox would again be the rental agent for these properties. It was also learned that Abner Wingfield had purchased Lot 3 of Block AA, immediately west of the George King residence, along West Main Street, for the purpose of eventually constructing a residence.
New births were announced each month
June items of interest
Russell Nixon reported three new babies born across the valley, one each in March, April and May, who would be included in the 1880 census. Agatha Derryberry was a daughter born to David and Dorcus Derryberry in March. T.J. and Shirley Sullivan Toll were parents, in April, of a daughter, June Toll, as well. Grandparents were Ivan and Hazel Toll, in town, and in the west valley, Jourdan and Martha Sullivan. Albert Johnson was a son, born to Campbell and Lizzie King Johnson, born in May. Grandparents were Lawrence and Lucinda Johnson and George and Marcia King.
On Sunday afternoon, June 20th, Reverend Willis Bailey officiated at the wedding of Vance Rhodes and Alice King. This wedding was in the west valley at the Theodosius and Lillian (Campbell) Rhodes farm home. The couple’s extended families were in attendance and partook of fine refreshments at the reception following the wedding. The Rhodes family recently purchased two additional 160-acre tracts of farmland south and east of the original farm that had been first settled in the late 1830s. Vance and Alice will make their home in a new cottage built along the West Branch Creek, not far downstream from his parental farmstead.
Joseph Carver and Vicki Wingfield were wed at her parents’ farm home north of Oak Springs on Sunday afternoon, June 27th; Reverend Willis Bailey officiating. The families of both enjoyed gathering for the wedding and reception following. The newly wed couple will make their home at the Campbell Boarding House, where he had been residing and where she had been working for the Campbell family as well. He, of course, is the Assistant Manager of the Campbell Dry Goods Store.
Knowing that Jacobi Inman was the Oak Creek Township U.S. Census Enumerator, we asked him late in June if the census was complete. He said that he had turned in all of his required paperwork on Friday, June 25th. He said that he sincerely appreciated the kindness shown by all persons he contacted across the township in carrying out his duties. He added that all information gathered was confidential and could not be shared.
Note from the author
This is the thirteenth episode of a new short story (OSx) series, Life in Oak Springs. The stories are set in the Ozarks Mountains setting of “The Homeplace Saga” series of family saga historical fiction. This episode is for the Second Quarter of the calendar year 1880, following the 40 episodes of “The Kings of Oak Springs” stories. That series had followed the time period of the “American Centennial at the Homeplace: The Founding (1833-1876)” collection of short stories. Some of these earlier stories are published on The Homeplace Saga blog, found at the link, below. These OSx episodes move the story forward for the entire "Saga" series.
The first 20 episodes of the King Family series have now been compiled into an eBook, titled: "The Kings of Oak Springs: The Arrival Months in 1876 Vol 1." The second 20 episodes will become Vol 2. See the link, below, to get yours.
“The Homeplace Saga” historical fiction family saga stories are the creation of the author, William Leverne Smith, also known as “Dr. Bill.”