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Episode OS8 - 1st Qtr 1879 - Life in Oak Springs and More

Updated on November 25, 2017
Homeplace Series profile image

Dr. Bill's first passion is family history. His second is a passion for creating family saga, historical fiction stories that share it.

He was buried in the cemetery

Stone cross on tombstone
Stone cross on tombstone | Source

January items of interest

The funeral memorial service for a founding settler of Oak Creek Township, and State Senator, Hugh Truesdale, was held at the Community Building on Friday, January 3rd. Harry McDonald, one of the children (a ten-year-old) in that founding settlement party, now residing in Jefferson City, spoke of the many contributions of Senator Truesdale to the early days of the settlement in the valley, to the founding of Oak Springs, during the late war as a State Representative, and in recent years as the area’s State Senator. State Representative Lewis Truesdale, the Senator’s son, also spoke to the gathered family and friends. His remarks focused on his father’s contributions as a family man, a businessman in the mule and horse breeding business, and his contributions during the late war to the benefit of Union interests. Following the memorial services, interment was at the Oak Creek Township Cemetery, about a mile east of his original Truesdale homestead.

Daniel McDonald put a bordered notice in the Oak Springs Enterprise thanking all those who participated in making his special cattle sale such a big success.

At the Fourth Sunday gathering on January 26th, Martin Wilhite introduced his family to the community. He said that his wife, Martha, would serve as bookkeeper for the Drug Store and his daughter, 19-year-old Cynthia, would be in charge of the retail side of the Drug Store business. Their 17-year-old son, Reese, was enrolled in the Junior Class at the High School and looked forward to being a part of the first graduating class in Oak Springs in the spring of 1880. Reese would work part-time in the Drug Store. He urged everyone to watch for an early February opening for the store.

It was noted that Miss Nellie Truesdale, teacher at the Patton School, had moved in with her mother, Victoria Truesdale, in her home on East First Street South.

Trey Parks purchased Lot 4 on Block H, across the street north from the Levi Weston Home and Shop and the Parks Wagon Works. The Parks Wagon Works also purchased Lot 3 on Block H, directly west of Lot 4. A Sales Office for the Parks Wagon Works will be built there, facing on Second Street, a little over a block east of Central Avenue.

She specialized in cake decorations

A decorated wedding cake
A decorated wedding cake | Source

February items of interest

The Wilhite Drug Store & Sundries opened on Monday, February 10, 1879. Their ad in the Oak Springs Enterprise encouraged customers to not only get their drug needs filled at the new store but to come in and check out the array of Sundry items now available, many of which had not been available in town prior to this time.

At Fourth Sunday, on the 23rd of February, the Augustus Ward family was introduced to the community. Augustus Ward noted that whereas he was the Baker in the family, his wife was an accomplished Confectioner and Cake Decorator. Both of their children were involved in all aspects of the business, as well. Customers could expect to see either 20-year-old Grant or 18-year-old Emily working in the front of the store nearly every day.

Also introduced to the Fourth Sunday gathering was a new farm family who would be settling in the far east valley. Earnest Potter and his wife, Cordelia, had purchased the southeast quarter of Section 19, on the north side of the Houston Road, just to the east of where it crosses Oak Creek, diagonally from the Samuel Street farm. While their house was being built, Earnest, Cordelia, and their two young children, 4-year-old Deliah, and 2-year-old Clarence, were living in the Duncan Boarding House.

Lewis Truesdale announced at the Fourth Sunday gathering that he would not run for the Senate seat vacated by his father’s death. Representative Truesdale stated that he was very happy serving the community in the State House of Representatives. He especially believed, he added, that there were still important Education goals to be accomplished in his current position.

Five babies were introduced

A new born baby
A new born baby | Source

March items of interest

Augustus Ward announced that although they had suffered some construction delays in completing stonework due to the weather, he was still confident that the Ward Confectionery/Bakery would open by May 1.

Two out-of-town candidates for the special election to fill the vacant State Senate seat of the late Hugh Truesdale ran ads in the Oak Springs Enterprise each week leading up to the special election date. They each also appeared at a special election forum held in the Community Building on Wednesday, March 19.

Jerry Potts announced that the Potts Apothecary would close on March 31. All items on hand, in the store, would be sold at liquidation prices up until that date, when the doors would be closed. He also announced that the space now occupied by the apothecary business would be remodeled as part of an expansion of the newspaper and print shop business.

Five births were announced in the Oak Springs Enterprise during March. Angeline Inman was the daughter of Jacobi and Allison (Olson) Inman. Burley Norton was a son born to J.W. and Lucinda Norton. Narcissa Polk was a daughter born to J.P. and Jean Polk. Garrett Nixon was a son born to Russell and Norma Nixon. Arminta Reeves was a daughter born to S.L. and Martha Reeves.

It was learned that Willis and Marita Lynch, who had just come to their farm in the east valley in 1878, had sold their farm to Theodore and Ida Stark and moved out of the valley. Mr. and Mrs. Stark, and their children, a daughter, Rachel, 13, and a son, Marian, 10, had moved on to their new farm earlier in the month.

Trey Parks announced that the Parks Wagon and Implement Sales Office would open on East Second Street on Tuesday, April 1, 1879. This would be the primary sales office for Parks Wagons. The office would also be a retail dealer for Deere & Company plows and other farm implements. Alfred Weston had been employed full-time as Sales Manager,

Note from the author

This is the eighth 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 First Quarter of the calendar year 1879, 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.”

Video Book Trailer

Video Book Trailer


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    • Homeplace Series profile imageAUTHOR

      William Leverne Smith 

      4 years ago from Hollister, MO


      What kind words. It seems you are hearing the same as I do. How gratifying. Thank you, so much, for your continued support! ;-)

    • bravewarrior profile image

      Shauna L Bowling 

      4 years ago from Central Florida

      I can see the community growing and bustling about setting up the town center. I could almost hear the chatter as the town populates. I also hear your voice narrating the story. Oak Springs is alive and well!

    • Homeplace Series profile imageAUTHOR

      William Leverne Smith 

      4 years ago from Hollister, MO

      Love it. No higher praise possible. That voice is close enough for me! I'll keep doing my best to live up to it! ;-)

    • billybuc profile image

      Bill Holland 

      4 years ago from Olympia, WA

      You remind me of James Michener. That's a compliment of course. :)


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